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Anorak | A Bloody Mess

A Bloody Mess

by | 6th, October 2005

‘JUST when you thought the war in Iraq couldn’t get any more damaging, the Times bring news that Iran has been blamed for the deaths of eight Britons in south Iraq.

The Telegraph reports on its front page that a “senior diplomat” says the technology employed in the devices that killed six British soldiers and two British security guards was similar to that given by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards to the Hezbollah in Lebanon.

“All of the British deaths are linked to Iranian technology,” says the unnamed diplomat. These are strong words, and the voice goes onto say that the Iranian’s aim is to tie British troops down in Iraq so reduce the threat of military action against them.

“It would be entirely natural that they [Iran] would want to send a message of ‘Don’t mess with us’,” says the official. “It’s not outside the policy parameters of Tehran.”

And such is the way of these things, the other side responds by claiming that they are the real victims.

And so it is we hear the Iranian embassy complaining of “British forces’ support and link with some terrorist elements that crossed the Iranian border and were behind some explosions in southern parts of Iran”.

That’s no little counter-allegation, and would be taken seriously if the Iranians would care to enlarge upon it and tell us what explosions, what terrorists and which British forces were involved.

Whatever the truth, such talk is unsettling – all the more so when, as the Times reminds its readers via its front page, the Iranians have in place a nuclear uranium–enrichment programme.

The paper also hears from the Iranian embassy. Its spokesman, Hamid Babaie, says: “We categorically reject such accusations.”

Not that anyone in their right mind expects Iran, if guilty of fomenting terror, as the diplomat suggests, to put its hands in the air and confess all.

But as bad as the news is, perhaps there is a positive angle. We cannot but help feel that such news dents the al-Qaeda legend.

Rather than it being behind so many murders in post-Saddam Iraq, we now hear that the mayhem may be at least in part down to Tehran.

And then there’s the murderous al-Qaeda associate Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.

The Telegraph says that in making his case for war, former US secretary of state Colin Powell said al-Zarqawi was operating in the wilderness of the Kurdish region of Iraq. Now the verbose British official says that al-Zarqawi was actually being supported by Iran.

So much for Osama bin Laden. Who needs to rely on a fugitive when you can have the wealth and support of a mighty regional power like Iran backing you up?

The Independent is right in saying that such news will only encourage the hawks in President Bush’s administration to eye Iran as a target.

But if we are to believe the views of this finger-pointing diplomat, the region may well be less fractured that it otherwise appears…’



Posted: 6th, October 2005 | In: Uncategorized Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink