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Iran: Eyes on the Americas

In an article Titled, “Iran’s Tango with Latin America,” National Interest recounts evidence that Iran has been engaged in a long project of expanding its influence to American adversaries in the Western hemisphere, particularly Venezuela.

The article points out that Iran has helped to establish organizations like the House of Latin America in Iran, which promote anti-US violence, as well as setting up supposed diplomatic posts and cultural centers that actually function as part of a global infrastructure to support Iran’s terrorist network. Apparently, this network has been utilized to smuggle supporters of Hezbollah and Hamas into the United States from Mexico. It has also contributed to well-publicized and direct terrorist incidents including the 1994 bombing of the Argentine Israeli Mutual Association.

Pointing out that the Islamic Republic has dedicated much of its political life to characterizing the United States as the “Great Satan,” this article reaches back to the beginning of the regime’s history and suggests that the 1979 Iran hostage crisis may actually mark the unrecognized beginning of the ongoing war between US interests and a global network of extremists.

In spite of this, and in spite of the fact that that network has long-since established itself in the Western hemisphere, US intelligence and governmental agencies have virtually been ignoring the threat, according to the article. The author presents all of these observations as support for the claim that the US should be pursuing a more comprehensive policy for containing the threat coming from Iran, by utilizing more than just “limited, cosmetic sanctions.”

No doubt this author has additional concerns about the limited effectiveness of current sanctions in light of the relief that is still being offered to Iran as part of the P5+1 negotiations.  Tasnim News Agency boasts that Iran has just received the second of six installments of frozen assets that were promised by the US as incentive for merely continuing the negotiations past the original July deadline. This latest payout will provide Iran with 2.8 billion dollars over a four month period.

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