USA in 'unprecedented move' designates Iran's Revolutionary Guards as a terrorist organisation

Minnie Murray
April 9, 2019

"Today, I am formally announcing my administration's plan to designate Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), including its Qods Force, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) under Section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act", Trump said in a statement, adding, "The IRGC actively participates in, finances, and promotes terrorism as a tool of statecraft". -Iranian military conflict and topple the regime in Tehran.

The IRGC is a paramilitary organization formed in the wake of Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution to defend the government. They have been able to get the president to dance to their tune on other issues, but can they do it again on an issue with much higher stakes for the country?

Iran has already vowed to take punitive actions against the United States as a result of the designation, which could cripple many key sectors of the Iranian economy due to the IRGC's involvement in a range of Tehran's business ventures.

The terrorist designation for the Revolutionary Guards is meant to strike at the heart of the Iranian government's power structure.

The IRGC designation was warmly welcomed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is up for reelection on Tuesday and who tweeted "Thank you, my dear friend, U.S. President Donald Trump. for meeting another of my important requests".

The IRGC designation is seen as the latest in a series of steps Mr. Trump has taken to boost Mr. Netanyahu's fortunes, including US recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights.

Iran's retaliation was swift.

Centcom is the Pentagon wing that oversees Washington's security interests across the central area of the world map, most notably Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Pakistan and Syria.

In a reciprocal move after the USA announced it has designated Iran's Revolutionary Guard a "foreign terrorist organization", Iran's foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif made the demand in a letter to President Hassan Rouhani, according to the official IRNA news agency. If this happens, the United States would be forced to respond.

The Pentagon and U.S. intelligence agencies have raised concerns about the impact of the designation if the move does not allow contact with foreign officials who may have met with or communicated with Guard personnel.

The Pentagon and US intelligence agencies had also raised concerns about the impact of the designation if the move did not allow contact with other foreign officials who may have met with or communicated with Guard personnel.

This additional sanction, like all previous ones, will not force Tehran to submit to American diktats. It will increase financial pressure on Iran and isolate it more from the rest of the world.

"It underscores the fact that Iran's actions are fundamentally different from those of other Governments".

Some European governments that do not agree with the Trump administration's approach have been trying to convince their companies to do business with Iran. Given Iraq's dependence on Iran for energy supplies, trade, and security assistance, he would likely choose his neighbor to the east.

"Iran's influence in the Middle East and its success in fighting against Islamic State are the reasons behind this designation", state TV said, without quoting a specific official.

Both advisors successfully pressured President Trump to reverse his decision to withdraw all USA troops from Syria after proclaiming that US troops will remain in Syria until "every Iranian boot" is expelled from the country.

The IRGC is in charge of Iran's ballistic missiles and nuclear programs.

The Trump administration is planning to designate Iran's Revolutionary Guard a "foreign terrorist organization" in an unprecedented step to ramp up pressure on Tehran. Both are pugnacious, stubborn, and ideological hawks. Netanyahu has become among the most outspoken voices for further action to contain the IRGC and has previously used his close relationship with Trump and their common ambition in the Middle East to contain Iran as a source of political support.

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