US supported terrorists in Iran strike, killing 42.

Amazing how we decry the “terrorism” of Iran sponsored origin in Hezbollah and Hamas while we secretly sponsor terrorism in Iran.  The groups which Iran sponsors have a strong claim to being designated as “freedom fighters.”  Jundullah (the group which claims responsibility for the attack on the Iranian Revolutionary Guard yesterday), on the other hand, has no good claim to being a freedom fighting group in my humble opinion.  And the US does indeed sponsor Jundullah according to ABC News:

A Pakistani tribal militant group responsible for a series of deadly guerrilla raids inside Iran has been secretly encouraged and advised by American officials since 2005, U.S. and Pakistani intelligence sources tell ABC News.The group, called Jundullah, is made up of members of the Baluchi tribe and operates out of the Baluchistan province in Pakistan, just across the border from Iran. 

It has taken responsibility for the deaths and kidnappings of more than a dozen Iranian soldiers and officials.

U.S. officials say the U.S. relationship with Jundullah is arranged so that the U.S. provides no funding to the group, which would require an official presidential order or “finding” as well as congressional oversight.

Tribal sources tell ABC News that money for Jundullah is funneled to its youthful leader, Abd el Malik Regi, through Iranian exiles who have connections with European and Gulf states.

http://blogs.abcnews.com/theblotter/2007/04/abc_news_exclus.html

Seymour Hersh has long been reporting on the US/Jundullah connection:

In an interview with NPR on his latest New Yorker Article, titled ‘Preparing the battlefield’, the renowned investigative journalist Seymour Hersh reveals more striking details of his findings on the aim of the $400 million budgeted US covert operations inside Iran. He provides valuable information on US military preparations to strike the country, on the total expansion of the Bush Administration’s executive power, about the US recognition of Iran’s overall positive role in Iraq and on the US support for the anti-Iran terrorist organisations Jondollah, PJAK and MEK.

Hersh explains that the aim of the US covert operations inside Iran is to create a pretext for attack with the goal of regime change. “The strategic thinking behind this covert operation is to provoke enough trouble and chaos so that the Iranian government makes the mistake of taking aggressive action which will give the impression of a country in acute turmoil”, he said. “Then you have what the White House calls the ‘casus belli’, a reason to attack the country. That is the thinking and it is very crazy.”

Hersh comments that the decision to launch these covert operations was prompted by the 2007 National Intelligence Estimate’s verdict that Iran does not have a nuclear weapons programme and that the approval by the US Congress leadership of the $400 million budget for the operations “is totally an expansion” of the executive powers of the Bush Administration.

He explains how the Bush Administration’s policy of “my enemy’s enemy is my friend” has led the US to support the Baluchi organisation Jondollah and the MEK (Mujahideen-e-Khalq a.k.a PMOI), both of which have clear track records of terrorist activities including against the US. He reiterates that the US has been giving arms and cash to the terrorists in the MEK for years and reveals that “most of the [MEK] leaders have been taking our money and cashing it in an awful lot of bank accounts in London.” He also reveals for the first time that the US has trained MEK teams in the state of Nevada and that “they do a lot of crazy stuff inside Iran”.

Wikipedia sums it up thusly:

ABC news reported in April 2007, citing US and Pakistani tribal and intelligence sources,[8] that the terrorist group “has been secretly encouraged and advised by American officials” to destabilize the government in Iran.[18] According to this report by Brian Ross and Christopher Isham of ABC News, the United States government had been secretly encouraging and advising the Jundullah in its attacks against Iranian targets. This support is said to have started in 2005 and arranged so that the United States provided no direct funding to the group, which would require congressional oversight and attract media attention.[19] The report was denied by Pakistan official sources.[20] But despite their denial ABC stood by their claim.[21] Alexis Debat, one of the sources quoted by Ross and Isham in their report alleging US support for the Jundullah, resigned from ABC News in June 2007, after ABC officials claimed that he faked several interviews while working for the company.

Brian Ross, an award winning journalist and the correspondent who worked most closely with Mr. Debat, said the Jundullah story had many sources. “We’re only worried about the things Debat supplied, not about the substance of that story,” he said in regard to the Jundullah report. Mr. Ross has said, so far ABC has found nothing that would undermine the stories Mr. Debat worked on. But he acknowledged that as the stories of fabrications continue to roll in, the network “at some point has to question whether anything he said can be believed.”[23] This caused the network in 2007 to send a second team of producers to Pakistan investigating the original reports.[21] ABC never retracted the story. The ABC exclusive further reveals that U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney discussed the activity of the group against Iran during his visit to Pakistan.[8] The exclusive makes parallels between American support for Jundallah and U.S. involvement in Nicaragua through Contras.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jundallah#United_States

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