Trump said in a statement issued by the White House on the 8th that Irans Islamic Revolutionary Guard provides support to terrorist organizations in many countries in the Middle East, and any business dealings with the Islamic Revolutionary Guard or support for the Islamic Revolutionary Guard will be at risk.
History of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard in Iran
According to the relevant U.S. procedures, the U.S. State Department notifies Congress of the decision. If Congress has no objection within seven days, the decision will come into force. If it comes into effect, the United States will launch a series of sanctions, including financial institutions freezing the assets of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard in Iran in the United States; any individual in the United States will be prohibited from supporting the Islamic Revolutionary Guard; and the United States will also prohibit the entry of relevant personnel of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard.
In response, the Associated Press reported that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard has a wide influence in Irans economic sphere, and the sanctions against it may have limited effect, but they may make it more difficult for U.S. military and diplomats to operate in the Middle East.
The Islamic Revolutionary Guard is a special force in the Iranian armed forces. It was founded after the Islamic Revolution in 1979. On May 5 of that year, the Islamic Revolutionary Committee decided to set up a security force, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard. At the beginning of its establishment, the main task of the Guard was to protect the revolutionary leaders against domestic riots. At the beginning of its establishment, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard had only tens of thousands of people. Its weapons were mainly rifles, submachine guns and rocket launchers. In 1985, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard ushered in the most important change in its development history. In order to strengthen its strength, Khomeini ordered the formation of the Revolutionary Guard army, sea and air forces.
With the expansion and development of the Iran-Iraq war, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard has gradually grown into an armed force with the same status and scale as the Iranian Defense Force. According to a previous report issued by the American Institute for International Strategic Studies, the size of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard exceeds 125,000 people, including about 20,000 Navy personnel and more than 105,000 army and air force personnel.
Zou Zhiqiang, an associate researcher at the Middle East Institute of Shanghai Foreign Studies University, introduced to Pengyang News (www.thepaer.cn) that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard exists in parallel with the Iranian Defense Force, and its strength and position far surpass that of the Iranian Defense Force. It is directly responsible to the Supreme Leader, responsible for missile project development, exporting the Islamic Revolution to the outside world and expanding the regional influence of Iran (especially the Al-Quds Brigade). Involving in the fields of politics (supporting conservatives), economy (monopolizing business), security (mastering militia forces) is one of the main forces influencing Irans internal affairs and diplomacy.
Like the National Defense Force, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard has armored divisions, mechanized divisions, infantry divisions and special forces, equipped with tanks, armoured vehicles, ships and aircraft. Relevant information points out that it is equipped with more than 500 tanks, more than 500 armored vehicles and thousands of artillery. In addition, it has a wide range of weapons such as destroyers, frigates, air defense missiles, armed helicopters and UAVs.
Most notable is that the Islamic Revolutionary Guard is equipped with ballistic missiles, including meteors, conquerors and mudstones. The number of ballistic missiles is as high as hundreds. It is the largest armed force in the Middle East with ballistic missiles. Especially the Meteor-3 missile, which has a range of 2000 kilometers and covers the whole Middle East region. According to the American Institute for International Strategic Studies, Iran has dozens of Meteor-3 missiles. Last April, Hussein Salami, deputy commander of Irans Islamic Revolutionary Guard, said that Iran would never give up developing ballistic missiles. Salami stressed that Iranian missiles are defensive and are the main deterrent force to the enemy. He said that Irans development of ballistic missiles is in accordance with international law, and the relevant anti-Iranian statements are unreasonable.
In addition to ballistic missiles, Irans long-range cruise missiles developed in recent years have also begun to attract attention. On February 2, Iran unveiled a cruise missile called Hoveyzeh. Iranian Defense Minister Amir Khatami said at the launch ceremony that the surface-to-surface missile was launched on the same day, flying 1200 kilometers before hitting the target.
In recent years, Iran has also used ballistic missiles to long-range strike Syrian targets in military intervention in the Syrian situation. In June 2017, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard launched a missile strike against Syrian terrorist bases. Irans Fars News Agency said six missiles were fired. Reported that the operation eliminated a large number of terrorists in Syria, and destroyed the equipment and weapons of terrorist bases. These missiles were launched from Irans Kermanshaa and Kurdistan provinces, located in Western Iran and more than 600 kilometers away from Syrias Dairzur region, demonstrating the long-range missile strike capability of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard.
The hasty and chaotic decision is essentially to contain Iran
Earlier, because of a charge of attempting to assassinate Saudi Arabias ambassador to the United States, the United States had blacklisted a number of organizations and individuals affiliated to the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard and listed the Al-Quds Brigade affiliated to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization. For the first time in the history of the United States, Trump will list the Islamic Revolutionary Guard as a whole as part of Irans national regime entity.
After Trump announced the decision on the 8th, the White House was also worried. According to the New York Times, U.S. officials said Trump made the announcement in a hasty and chaotic process, because the decision should not take effect until the 15th of this month. U.S. military officials stationed in the Middle East said they had not received any instructions on how to implement the policy.
The New York Times pointed Trumps motivation for announcing the decision at this time directly to the ongoing Israeli elections. Trumps attack on Iran fell to the ground on August 8, followed by the Israeli parliamentary elections on September 9. Although many media have predicted that the current Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will continue to be in power, the current polls show that Benny Gantz, the former Army Chief of Staff, is leading by a narrow margin.
This is not the first time Trump has made such a major decision for his old friend Netanyahu. Trumps announcement of recognition of Israels sovereignty over the Golan Heights during Netanyahus visit to the United States on 25 January provoked strong repercussions among Netanyahu supporters. Analysts said that Trumps decisions undoubtedly gave Netanyahu and his veteran right-wing Likud Group a reassuring pill for the corruption scandal.
Zou Zhiqiang, an associate researcher at the Middle East Research Institute of Shanghai Foreign Studies University, pointed out that Trumps choice to declare Irans Islamic Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization on the 8th had something to do with the Israeli general election held on the 9th, but the latter was not the main reason. Basically, it is the extension and performance of the U.S. Middle East strategy. Zou Zhiqiang pointed out.
Since Trump came to power, he has adopted a containment attitude towards the Shiite powers in the region, contrary to the policy of showing goodwill to Iran during the Obama period. Last May, Trump announced that the United States had withdrawn from the Iranian nuclear agreement and restarted sanctions against Iraq. In January this year, the United States convened regional allies to hold the Anti-Iran Summit in Warsaw, Poland, mainly aimed at some actions Iran participated in and promoted in the Middle East. Critics said that this was a manifestation of the U.S. attracting regional allies to build an anti-Iran international alliance.
Now declaring the Islamic Revolutionary Guard, a part of the Iranian regime entity, as a terrorist organization, has consolidated its consistent policy towards Iran while flattering its traditional ally, Israel. This is an intensification of sanctions against Iran and a further blockade of its avenues to evade sanctions. Zou Zhiqiang believes that whether it is withdrawing from the Iranian nuclear agreement, restarting sanctions against Iran or bringing regional allies together to confront Iran, it is essentially to contain Iran.
In a tweet on the 8th, Bolton, a tough US national security adviser to Iran, said that the announcement of the Islamic Guard as a terrorist organization demonstrates our commitment to exert maximum pressure on the Iranian regime before the Iranian regime stops using terrorism as a way of governing the country.
Or to promote conservatism of Irans domestic political ecology
After the U.S. announced its withdrawal from the Iranian nuclear agreement last year, Irans Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei immediately announced that uranium enrichment would be restarted. Today, Iranian President Hassan Ruhani also responded to Trumps decision on the Islamic Revolutionary Guard. On the second day of Trumps declaration of blocking the Islamic Revolutionary Guard, which coincides with Irans National Nuclear Day, Ruhani said in a live televised speech that Iran would mass produce IR8 centrifuges for uranium enrichment if the United States continued to exert pressure. Later, Xinhua quoted Iranian official media as saying that Ruhani had issued an order to the Iranian Atomic Energy Organization to install 20 IR-6 centrifuges at the Natanz nuclear facility. After installation, the centrifuges will carry out a series of testing activities.
Prior to that, the Iranian Supreme Security Council had equally identified the United States Central Command and its forces in Western Asia as a terrorist organization, the first time it learned of Trumps decision.
The commander-in-chief of Irans Islamic Revolutionary Guard said Wednesday that if the United States takes foolish actions to threaten Irans national security, its forces will plan to retaliate, and the U.S. military stationed in West Asia will not be peaceful. The mutual attack between the US and Iran from the speech level to the policy level is like a time bomb planted in the Middle East, which always arouses the concern of the international community.
Zou Zhiqiang believed that for the first time, the United States listed a countrys formal army as a terrorist organization. On the one hand, it marked the escalation of the hostile situation between the United States and Iraq, which would promote Iran to take a tough stand, further reduce the policy room for both sides, intensify the confrontation situation of regional camps, and the security situation in the Middle East tends to a new round of tension; on the other hand, this arbitrary abuse of the terrorist label will promote Iran to adopt a The act opens a bad head in international relations, which will bring about a new round of impact on international anti-terrorism cooperation and the situation in the Middle East.
At the same time, Trumps sudden decision will also have an impact on Iran.
According to the Independent newspaper, the inclusion of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard in the terrorism list by the United States will not have an impact on those who hold military power, and economic sanctions will have a greater impact on ordinary Iranians.
Over the years, in addition to controlling Irans military and security, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard has gradually extended its antennae to most areas of the Iranian economy and exerted a tremendous impact on its political system. According to Forbes website in March 2017, Irans Islamic Guard forces control at least 50% of Irans gross domestic product, which finances Irans operations in Syria, Yemen and other parts of the world.
Nevertheless, Azar Mansoori, vice-chairman of the Peoples United Party of Iran, who calls for reform and often criticizes domestic hardliners, responded by posting on social networking sites in support of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard. Our first task is to safeguard our national interests. No foreign government has the right to threaten this. The actions of the U.S. government will prompt hardliners to exert more pressure on the Ruhani government, or lead to Irans violation of the nuclear agreement and other consequences. Azar Mansouri said. Irans domestic political ecology may be more conservative, moderate status will be more fragile, foreign policy will be more tough, Zou Zhiqiang said. But Iran will not yield, and the United States will not be able to overwhelm Iran. Source: Wang Zheng_N7526
Nevertheless, Azar Mansoori, vice-chairman of the Peoples United Party of Iran, who calls for reform and often criticizes domestic hardliners, responded by posting on social networking sites in support of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard. Our first task is to safeguard our national interests. No foreign government has the right to threaten this. The actions of the U.S. government will prompt hardliners to exert more pressure on the Ruhani government, or lead to Irans violation of the nuclear agreement and other consequences. Azar Mansouri said.
Irans domestic political ecology may be more conservative, moderate status will be more fragile, foreign policy will be more tough, Zou Zhiqiang said. But Iran will not yield, and the United States will not be able to overwhelm Iran.