Documents Say Iran Aids Militias from Iraq

[New York Times] Mark Mazzetti - For the past several years, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Quds Force and Lebanese Hizbullah have trained Iraqi Shiites to launch attacks against American forces in Iraq, according to accounts given to American interrogators by captured Iraqi fighters. Now, more than 80 pages of newly declassified intelligence documents for the first time describe in detail an elaborate network used by Iraqis to gain entry into Iran and train under Iranian supervision. Brian Fishman, director of research at the Combating Terrorism Center and a co-author of a new study about Iran's political and military influence in Iraq, concludes that Iran aims to attack American troops in Iraq to "demonstrate a credible deterrent against a U.S. strike on Iran's nuclear facilities." Some prisoners told American interrogators that a separate training course run by Hizbullah in Lebanon was far superior to the training in Iran. To get to the training course in Lebanon, Iraqis were taken to an airport in Iran, where they flew to Damascus and then were driven to the Lebanese border. In Lebanon, they said they participated in training, led by Hizbullah operatives, in "weapons inventory control," "project planning" and communications.

2008-10-29 01:00:00

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