Georgia Tech grad student from Iran blows self up with Molotov cocktail

via Georgia Tech grad student from Iran injured by Molotov cocktail – CBS Atlanta News. h/t Lisa

ATLANTA (CBS ATLANTA) – We now know who was hurt at a midtown Atlanta apartment building Tuesday in an explosion caused by what law enforcement called a “Molotov cocktail.”

Saamer Akshabi is a graduate student from Iran, studying at the Georgia Institute of Technology’s College of Computing in Atlanta.

The fire happened at about 4 p.m. Tuesday at the apartment located about a mile from Georgia Tech’s campus at 275 10th Street near Piedmont Park.

Akhshabi suffered severe burns on his hands, arms, chest and face, authorities said. He was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital with third-degree burns over 90 percent of his body.

Atlanta Fire Rescue noticed what appeared to be a Molotov cocktail along with several other plastic bottles filled with liquid. AFR cleared the apartment and Homeland Security was notified.

SWAT cleared the apartment of any explosives and examined the liquid, identifying it as gasoline and kerosene.

The Joint Terrorism Task Force was on the scene, along with the Atlanta Police Department’s bomb squad. ATF and FBI agents also were at the scene.

Georgia Tech released the following statement Tuesday night:

“Georgia Tech is working with law enforcement to notify the victim’s family. Until that notification is made the Institute is not able to release the victim’s information. We are able to confirm a Georgia Tech graduate student was involved in an incident involving a fire in a building off of 10th street this evening. Our primary concern is to provide appropriate assistance to the victim and for his family as well as his classmates. We continue to cooperate with the investigation of incident.”

Georgia Tech has since confirmed Saamer Akshabi is the man hurt in the explosion

Law enforcement continues to investigate.

Jawa notes, Terrorist “Workplace Accident” at …. Georgia Tech?

…this would-be bomber is also a big, big fan of Obamacare. He also loves himself some gun control.

Gun control, yes: Molotov cocktail control, hell no!

He wouldn’t be the first jihadist from Georgia Tech.

Iranian Immigrant Arrested for Shipping Military Secrets to Tehran

via U.S.-Iranian Citizen Arrested for Shipping Military Secrets to Tehran :: The Investigative Project on Terrorism.

A criminal complaint charged Mozaffar Khazaee (aka Arash Khazaie) of shipping secret copyrighted documents relating to the U.S. Air Force’s F35 Joint Strike Fighter Program and military jet engines to Iran.

Khazaee, who became naturalized in 1991 and holds dual U.S. and Iranian citizenship, allegedly obtained the information from defense contractors with whom he had been employed as an engineer.

The investigation against Khazaee opened in November after investigators from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Service (CBP) and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) noticed a shipment that Khazaee sent by truck from Connecticut to a freight forwarder in Long Beach, Cal. Although the documentation on the shipment said that it contained household goods, inspectors found “numerous boxes of documents consisting of sensitive technical manuals, specification sheets, and other proprietary material relating to the U.S. Air Force’s F35 Joint Strike Fighter program and military jet engines,” an affidavit attached to the complaint said.

Khazaee, who recently moved from Connecticut to Indianapolis, was arrested in Newark before he could get on a connecting flight to Frankfurt on his way to Tehran.

He made an initial court appearance Monday. The charge against him carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison if Khazaee is convicted.

Report: U.S. fighting alongside Iran’s Al Qods Brigades in Iraq (video)

via Debka: US and Iran’s First Joint Military Venture: Fighting al Qaeda in Iraq.

Iraq is two weeks into a major offensive for cutting al Qaeda down – the first major military challenge the jihadists have faced in the past six years. Three armies are fighting alongside Iraq: the United States, Iran’s Al Qods Brigades officers and Syria.

via ABC News,

Former CIA Case Officer Robert Baer…describes the al Quds forces as the “bad guys … who 100 percent have American blood on their hands.”

Ancient Dearborn Democrat meets with Hizbollah-linked imam

Term limits anyone? via The Arab American News – Elahi meets with Congressman Dingell, discusses U.S.-Iran relations.

Imam Elahi (right) pictured with Congressman Dingell.

Imam Elahi (right) pictured with Congressman Dingell.

DEARBORN HEIGHTS – Last week, Imam Mohammad Ali Elahi and Congressman John Dingell met to discuss U.S.- Iranian relations.

The discussion centered on the election of the new moderate Iranian president and the opening of a new chapter in the relationship between the two countries.

Elahi asked the Congressman to refer to his wisdom and experience to help improve U.S. relations with Iran.  He pointed out President Obama’s friendly messages to the Iranian people, over the last few years, and asked that the U.S. turn those words into actions and begin renewed diplomatic dialogue between “these two great nations.”

He described Rouhani’s election as a great opportunity and a test for the Obama Administration to establish a direct dialogue with Iran, based on mutual interest and respect.
Congressman Dingell promised to do all that he can to help and assured Elahi that he would assign a member of his office to continue this conversation.

Click the image for more on Elahi and his links to previous Iranian presidents as well as Hezbollah Spiritual Leader Sheikh Fadlallah, pictured below:

elahifadlallah2

Also read Rouhani is not a moderate, and Hassan Rouhani is no “moderate.”

Argentine Indictment Accuses Iran of Terror Plots, Cells in Latin America

via Latin Times.

A prosecutor from Argentina, Alberto Nisman has accused Iran of planning to carry out terror attacks in various Latin American countries, BBC reports. Nisman believes Iran is sending spies to gather intelligence in order to execute terror plots in Brazil, Chile, and other countries in Latin America.

Alberto Nisman is investigating the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community in Buenos Aires. 85 people were killed in the attack. On Wednesday, the New York Times reports that Alberto Nisman accused Iran of masterminding the attack.

“I legally accuse Iran of infiltrating several South American countries to install stations, in other words espionage bases destined to commit, encourage, and sponsor terror attacks like the one that took place against Amia,” BBC reports Nisman as saying.

The Japan Times reports that Nisman accused the former cultural attaché from Iran in Buenos Aires, Mohsen Rabbani of working to build an intelligence network over the past two decades.

These are sleeper cells,” Nisman said in an indictment. “They have activists you wouldn’t imagine. Sometimes they die having never received an order to attack.”

According to reports this past February Argentine legislators worked out an agreement with Iran to set up an international commission in order to get to the bottom of the 1994 Buenos Aires bombing.

The Argentines have issued indictments and called for the arrest of several high level officials but Iran has not turned over anyone wanted in the bombing.

That’s odd. The ever so trustworthy U.S. State Dept. just released a report declaring there were No Active Al Qaeda, Hezbollah Terror Cells in Western Hemisphere. More via the BBC:

He said the countries targeted included Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Chile, Colombia, Guyana, Trinidad and Tobago, and Surinam.

Argentina has issued arrest warrants for several Iranian nationals and a Lebanese national in connection with the bombing.

State Dept. Spokeswoman Refuses to Criticize Iran for Excl Women from Election

Obama would never criticize Islamic sharia law. Apparently his former spokeswoman won’t either. via Daniel Harper @ The Weekly Standard.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki refused to criticize Iran for excluding women candidates from the upcoming “election” there. The remarkable exchange, which concludes with Psaki saying this (“We want this [election] to be free and fair. There’s a lot of ways to, of course, define that.”) happened at Friday’s press briefing.

QUESTION:Jen, can I change the subject? It would seem that in Iran the Guardians Council, which is vetting the candidates for the upcoming elections next month, have decided and have ruled that women cannot contest, they cannot stand as candidates. I wondered what the United States reaction is to that, considering that 50 person of the population in Iran is women – are women.

MS. PSAKI:Well, we don’t take positions on any candidates, as you know, and we hope that the upcoming elections will be free, fair, and transparent and will represent the will of the Iranian people. So we wouldn’t weight into decisions made by the government. Of course, broadly, we hope that women around the world participate in politics and elected office, but beyond that I don’t think I have anything specific for you.

QUESTION:Taking the word “fair” – if you’re being fair, it would seem to exclude 50 percent of the population from an election, would already mean that it is not a fair election.

MS. PSAKI: Well, we don’t weigh in on to the candidates and the candidates that are chosen through the process in Iran. Of course, of course, broadly speaking we do want women to participate in elections around the world and rise up in elected office.

QUESTION:Just not in Iran?

MS. PSAKI:

I’m not suggesting that, Arshad. I’m just suggesting that we leave it to the process that happens in Iran for them to pick their candidates.

No problem picking the candidates by funding coups in Libya, Egypt and Syria. Hypocrites.

Sec of State John Kerry reveals daughter married Iranian-American with extensive ties to Iran

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via Secretary of State John Kerry demonstrates why Huma Abedin’s background mattered | Walid Shoebat.

Here we have an example that demonstrates this reality further and it comes via Kenneth Timmerman, who has picked up on the fact that the new Secretary of State – John Kerry – has a son-in-law with family still living in Iran. This reality could conceivably affect how Kerry deals with the Iranians.

Via the Daily Caller:

In a greeting to the Iranian people on the occasion of the traditional New Year (Nowruz) holiday last week, Secretary of State John Kerry exposed a secret that journalists and academics have been agonizing over for the past six weeks: the fact that his daughter has married an Iranian-American who has extensive family ties to Iran.

“I am proud of the Iranian-Americans in my own family, and grateful for how they have enriched my life,” Kerry said in the official statement. Kerry also said he was “strongly committed to resolving” the differences between the United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran, “to the mutual benefit of both of our people.”

Politicians like to keep their families off-limits to the press, a decorum enforced vigorously when it comes to politicians who are in favor with the national media but ruthlessly discarded for others. But in Kerry’s case, there could be larger ramifications.

Since its inception, the FBI has vetted U.S. government officials involved in national security issues, and it generally won’t grant clearances to individuals who are married to nationals of an enemy nation or have family members living in that country, for fear of divided loyalties or, more simply, blackmail.

There it is. Certainly, even leftists can comprehend this concept without inserting race into their thought processes (oh, wait). Imagine a scenario in which a representative of Iran’s mullahs approaches the State Department with a list of demands that, if not met, could have serious consequences for Kerry’s in-laws living in Iran.

In the current political construct, such demands could conceivably involve the U.S. withholding money, weapons, or aid earmarked for a country like Egypt as tensions in the Middle East escalate. While that may not sound like a bad idea to those of us who understand the threat of the Muslim Brotherhood, shouldn’t our Secretary of State’s sole interest be in lockstep with the interests of the United States?

Off topic but related: Strange bedfellows — Iran and al Qaeda

Iran sentences U.S. pastor to 8 years in prison for preaching Christianity

via Saeed Abedini: U.S. pastor sentenced to 8 years in Iranian prison for preaching Christianity in homes | Mail Online.

An American pastor from Idaho has been sentenced to eight years in one of Iran’s harshest prisons for preaching Christianity in Iranian homes, it was revealed today.

Saeed Abedini, a U.S. citizen who was born in Iran, has been held since September and charged with ‘threatening the national security of Iran.

The 32-year-old father of two says he was in the country only to establish and orphanage and was not preaching Christianity.

Abedini, seen here with his wife Naghmeh and their two young children

The American Center for Law and Justice, which is working with Mr Abedini’s family to free him from Iranian custody, says the pastor led house churches in the Islamic nation in the early 2000s, when the state did not consider such activities a threat.

‘With today’s development I am devastated for my husband and my family.  We must now pursue every effort, turn every rock, and not stop until Saeed is safely on American soil,’ Mr Abedini’s devastated wife Naghmeh, said.

Mr Abedini is being held in Evin Prison in Tehran, the infamous gulag that houses most of the country’s political prisoners.

The ACLJ, a legal advocacy group founded by televangelist Pat Robertson, reports that Revolutionary Court Judge Pir-Abassi convicted and sentenced Mr Abedini after a hastily-called court hearing.

The group says that the ruling violated Iran’s judicial rules and was motivated purely by politics.

‘We know that with the Iranian Revolutionary Court, Pastor Saeed’s conviction and sentence had to be approved at the very top – The Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei had to sign off,’ Jordan Sekulow, the director of international operations, wrote.

The ACLJ says that Mr Abedini was beaten and tortured while in Iranian custody.

He and his attorney were allowed to attend just one day of his trial, which began on January 21.

Iranian officials had previously said they were planning to release the pastor, so the news that he was sentenced to eight years in a harsh prison came as a shock to his family and supporters.

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney and the State Department have both called for Mr Abedini’s release, thought the Iranian government has clearly ignored the request.

Have you heard their calls for his release? Because when a movie trailer about Islam was made, all levels of Obama’s administration were in the media condemning it. Quite a contrast.

U.S. Christian convert from Islam faces death penalty in Iran

#MyJihad is a religion of peace.

WASHINGTON — A Tehran court will next week put on trial an Iranian American Christian on charges that could carry the death penalty, his wife said Thursday, in a case that has raised concern among US officials.

Saeed Abedini, a naturalized US citizen who converted to Christianity, was arrested in September on a return visit to Iran and in a recent letter said he suffered beatings in prison, his wife and his US-based lawyer said.

His wife said that the 32-year-old will face charges of harming national security starting Monday at a trial under Abbas Pir-Abassi, a revolutionary court judge who has been criticized overseas for harsh verdicts.

Naghmeh Abedini voiced hope that international pressure would benefit her husband but said it was “highly possible that put under pressure (by Iran’s leadership) they would give a very long sentence and possibly the death penalty.”

State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland recently said the United States had “serious concerns” over the case and urged Iran to grant Abedini access to an attorney. His wife said he has not seen a lawyer since his arrest.

Iran’s constitution following the 1979 Islamic revolution recognizes the rights of several religious minorities including Christians, but the regime has targeted former Muslims for leaving the faith.

Continue reading via AFP: US Christian faces death in Iran trial: family.

Iran will pursue makers of Muhammad film, not makers of Sunni-made anti-Shia film

Little late fellas, the brown shirts already got him. via Iran will pursue makers of anti-Islam film: vice-president.

DUBAI (REUTERS) – Iran’s government will “track down” those responsible for making an amateurish film clip mocking the Prophet Muhammad, a senior official said, Iranian media reported on Monday.

The video made in California and posted on YouTube portrayed the Prophet Muhammad as a womaniser and a fool. It has ignited a week of violent protests across the Muslim world.

See the Muhammad movie here.

“The government of the Islamic Republic of Iran condemns…this inappropriate and offensive action,” First Vice-President Mohammad Reza Rahimi said, according to the Mehr news agency.

“Certainly it will search for, track, and pursue this guilty person who…has insulted 1.5 billion Muslims in the world.” The Islamic Republic’s founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini condemned to death the Indian-born British novelist Salman Rushdie in 1989 for his novel The Satanic Verses, saying its depiction of the Prophet Muhammad was blasphemous.

Back in 2008 we posted a set of videos entitled “The Shia and their Crimes.” It was made by Sunni Muslims in Arabic. It was posted by a Russian Muslim(s) around the web. No riots. Not a word from Iran.

Maybe Iran should focus on the Sunni’s who made this anti-Muslim film. And evidence is emerging that the Muhammad movie was a Salafi plot all along.

Moral of the story: It’s not about the movie!

Update: Hezbollah supporters rally against anti-Islam film (plenty of those in US too)

California Muslim Arrested in Mexican Hezbollah Bust

Morning note: Please read and tweet the posts stuck to the top of the home page in memory of those lost on 9/11 – thank you.

via Hezbollah Suspected Terrorist Arrested in Merida – The Yucatan Times. h/t Gateway Pundit

The American citizen of Arab origin Rafic Mohammad Labboun Allaboun, a suspected member of the terrorist network Hezbollah, was arrested Saturday night in Merida through an operation conducted by the National Migration Institute (INM) and the State Police.

Labboun Allaboun was arrested in a house located in the street 41-B, between 56 and 5 of the colony Francisco de Montejo in the west part of the city. At the moment of the arrest, the suspect identified himself with a fake passport from the government of Belize.

Eyewitnesses from the colony, where the operative took place, recalled that close to 9 PM vehicles from the INM and the SSP parked front of the premises, several officers heavily armed got out, and in a very quick and effective operation arrested three men. The suspects were taken, apparently, to a security complex located on the loop highway escorted by a high security convoy.

In the same operation, George Abdalah Elders and Justin Yasser Safa were also arrested; both Belizeans citizens with valid migratory forms (FM1) issued by the INM.

Official sources stated that intelligence agencies from the United States were tracking down this group, allegedly part of the terrorist network of Hezbollah, this cell operates in Mexico and Central America.

After the arrest, information leaked that somehow Labboun Allaboun is linked to the 911 attack of the Twin Towers in New York, the data has not yet been fully confirmed.

Allegedly the group arrested were participating in financing activities in an attempt to bail out incarcerated Hezbollah members jailed in the United States.

However, Mohammed Labboun was deported to the U.S. a few hours after his arrest, Sunday very early in the morning. The head of the INM in Yucatan, Benito Rosell Isaac declared that there is a warrant against Labboun from Houston, Texas.

What was the warrant for?

Connecting this guy to 9/11, which by almost all historical accounts was funded and perpetrated by Saudi’s – despite a recent court attempt to pin it on Iran, would seem tenuous at best. The timing, a day before the 9/11 anniversary and with hawks calling for war with Iran, is also curious. We anxiously await that evidence but until then remain skeptical.

Reporter Lee Kaplan has more on this Californian, Saba Islamic Center Imam Nabbed with Hezbollah Cell in Mexico: Continue reading

U.S. Seizes $150 Million in Hezbollah-Linked Cash from NY Account

via U.S. Seizes $150 Million in Alleged Hezbollah-Linked Cash – Corruption Currents – WSJ.

U.S. officials said Monday they seized $150 million connected to a scheme in which entities linked to Hezbollah allegedly used the U.S. financial system to launder money through West Africa and back to the group’s base of Lebanon.

The seizure stems from a civil lawsuit filed last year by federal prosecutors in Manhattan against defunct Lebanese Canadian Bank, or LCB, and two Lebanese exchange houses seeking more than $480 million in funds allegedly derived from drug trafficking and other criminal activity passing through the U.S. financial system.

The seizure was reported by The Wall Street Journal, and there’s more here.

Hezbollah is a U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization. The group’s leadership has denied engaging in money laundering to finance its activity.

Prosecutors said Monday they seized $150 million from a New York correspondent account of Lebanon’s Banque Libano Francaise SAL, or BLF. Société Générale de Banque au Liban, which bought LCB in September 2011 for $580 million, paid for part of the transaction through BLF. The seized funds are substitutes for the money in the LCB account in escrow at BLF, prosecutors said.

The warrants to seize the funds were issued August 15, but made public Monday. Neither BLF nor Société Générale de Banque au Liban were accused of wrongdoing, prosecutors said.

 

Huffington Post hires Muslim extremist as political director

Hiring Islamists is all the rage. Nancy Pelosi just hired one [Pelosi hires Muslim editor of disgraced liberal pro-sharia blog], now Huffpo adds to their militia. Another new news source - Washington Free Beacon - exposing the many threats to the U.S., usually from within. via HuffPo’s House Jihadi

A devout Muslim who has praised Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and publicly branded all non-believers as mentally ill “animals” was recently hired to serve as the Huffington Post’s political director in the U.K.

Mehdi Hasan, a controversial British media figure whom insiders have billed as a mouthpiece for the Iranian regime, recently left his job at the left-wing New Statesman magazine to join the Huffington Post as a senior staffer, according to reports in the British press.

The Huffington Post merged with Internet giant AOL in February 2011 to form the Huffington Post media group.

Hasan formerly served as political editor of the New Statesman, which is affiliated with a socialist political party and has faced criticism for publishing articles that many observers have deemed anti-Semitic. In one instance, the New Statesman published an article titled “A Kosher Conspiracy” that purported to expose the great power of Britain’s “pro-Israel lobby.” The cover of that issue featured a Star of David piercing a Union Jack.

Sidebar: Communist Party USA Endorses Obama For 2012

Hasan can be seen on tape delivering multiple religious screeds in which he accuses non-Muslims of being animals and mentally inferior.

“We do not bend our law, or morality for short term aims,” Hasan is seen saying in one video recording of his lecture. “Never. And we never lose the moral high ground.”

“Once we lose the moral high ground we are no different from the rest, of the non-Muslims, from the rest of those human beings who live their lives as animals, bending any rule to fulfill any desire,” Hassan said.

He goes on in the recording to praise Iran’s Khamenei for issuing a religious ban or “fatwa” against nuclear weapons, despite that country’s continuing pursuit of nuclear arms.

In a separate audio recording, Hasan can be heard describing disbelief in Islam as an “infirmity” or mental illness.

“His views as you can hear through those infamous videos, are grossly intolerant and hateful towards non-Muslims,” Raheem Kassam, the executive editor of The Commentator, a conservative online journal, told the Free Beacon. “I see no legitimate way to contextualize things like that. It’s the extreme of the extremes.”

Kassam also called into question whether Hasan’s comments fall foul of U.K. legislation set out to combat extremists.

In his writings, Hasan has defended the Iranian regime on multiple occasions and has tried to rationalize President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s many calls for Israel’s destruction.

In addition, Hasan offered a vociferous defense of Jenny Tonge, a liberal British politician who said, “Israel will not last forever.”

Moreover, Hasan has come under fire for fabricating defamatory information about his political rivals.

Andrew Gilligan, London editor of the Telegraph newspaper, noted that Hasan falsely accused him of being a tool of Iran’s state-run media due to the pair’s political disagreements.

The Commentator’s Kassam argued Hasan might have parted ways with the New Statesman due to his toxic political views.

OK, so he’s no extremist, this is standard Islamic ideology. Read it all.

Iran jails lawyer who defended Christian pastor on death row

No freedom compulsion in Islam. And silence from U.S. media and politicians. via Iran now jails pastor’s lawyer | Greeley Gazette.

The government of Iran appears to be doubling down in the case of a pastor facing the death sentence for leaving the Islamic faith by now arresting his attorney.

The American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), which has been working to secure the release of Christian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani, today called Iran’s decision to imprison Pastor Youcef’s attorney, Mohammad Ali Dadkhah, “very troubling.”

Dadkah told news organizations that government officials had informed him he had been convicted of acting against national security and spreading propaganda against the regime and could expect to be jailed soon.

“The news that this renowned human rights attorney has been sentenced to prison by Iranian officials is very troubling,” said Jordan Sekulow, Executive Director of the ACLJ. “This development only reinforces the fact that Iran has no regard for basic human rights. It also raises further concern about the fate of Pastor Youcef. With his attorney facing nine years in prison, and no other lawyer likely to take the case, Pastor Youcef has no legal advocate, which places him at greater risk.”

The decision by Iran to arrest Nadarkhani’s attorney comes amidst intense international pressure to free the pastor. Their actions towards Nadarkhani mirror those it shows towards the rest of the world in regards to its nuclear program.

Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani caught the attention of the world after being convicted for leaving the Islamic faith, even though he says he has never been a Muslim. Nardarkhani, who is facing a possible death sentence, has been caught in a catch 22 regarding Muslim teaching.

While Nadarkhani tells the world that he was never a Muslim that statement is contrary to Muslim teaching. According to Islam, everyone is born a Muslim. Thus, Nadarkhani or for that matter, any person who becomes a Christian or follows any other religion has “left Islam.”

On page 28, in the introduction of a copy of the Qur’an, printed by Ansariyan Publications in the Islamic Republic of Iran, the translator, M.H. Shakir in the section “Islam and Muslims” states, “In fact, every child that is born is a Muslim. It is the parents who make him a Jew, Christian or Hindu.”

Based on this teaching, even if Nadarkhani had never visited a mosque a day in his life he is still considered a Muslim. Therefore, when he accepted Christ as his savior and became a Christian he left the Muslim faith whether he knew it or not.

How many Muslims would there really be in the world if Islam didn’t dictate death for those who choose to leave?


Flashback: Clinton OK’d Iran-Bosnia Arms Sales

Just saying. via Business | Clinton OK’d Iran-Bosnia Arms Sales, Report Says | Seattle Times Newspaper.

Los Angeles Times | Friday, April 5, 1996

WASHINGTON – President Clinton secretly gave a green light to covert Iranian arms shipments into Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1994 despite a United Nations arms embargo that the United States was pledged to uphold, according to senior administration officials and other sources.

Two top U.S. diplomats, acting on instructions from the White House and the State Department, told Croatian President Franjo Tudjman in early 1994 that the United States would not object to the creation of an arms pipeline that would channel the weapons through Croatia and into Bosnia for the Muslim forces fighting in the bloody civil war.

According to the U.S. sources, Tudjman raised the idea of the secret shipments and asked what the American response would be. At the time, the United States was publicly committed to the arms embargo, and its allies in Europe were concerned that a weapons influx would escalate the conflict and lead to revenge attacks against their peacekeeping troops in the region.

But after consultations with national-security adviser Anthony Lake and Deputy Secretary of State Strobe Talbott, the two U.S. diplomats, Charles Redman and Peter Galbraith, relayed to Tudjman that there would be no U.S. protest to the smuggling operation.

Specifically, the U.S. officials were told to say they had “no instructions” concerning Iranian arms shipments – a diplomatic way of saying the United States would not object.

Clinton directly participated in the decision, a senior administration official said.

Thus opened a new chapter in the U.S. policy toward Bosnia, one that has remained secret until now, and that has had important consequences both for the combatants in the long-running war and for the other nations, including the United States, attempting to deal with it.

After the decision, Tudjman was free to allow the Iranians to launch large-scale arms transfers through Croatia. That effort continued until January of this year, even after 20,000 American troops began to be deployed as peacekeepers in Bosnia, administration officials said.

The weapons helped fortify the badly outgunned Muslim force, as well as the Croatians who took a large cut of the shipments, until they were able to fight a better-armed Bosnian Serb army to a standstill.

The support also increased Iran’s links with the Bosnians, which continue ominously to this day. Some Islamic fighters slipped in with the weapons and established operations.

Meanwhile, U.S. government officials not in on the secret policy shift were left in confusion. With its spy satellites trained on the region, the CIA discovered the smuggling and came to wonder whether certain State Department and National Security Council officials were running an illegal covert operation, reminiscent of the Iran-contra affair, sources said.

Then-CIA Director R. James Woolsey took the evidence to the White House, prompting a top-secret, six-month investigation by the Intelligence Oversight Board, the small White House panel responsible for probing wrongdoing in the intelligence community. It delivered a secret verdict of no law violations.

Elsewhere, speculation and grumbling spread, particularly in Europe, that the United States was somehow violating the embargo and reneging on its pledge to uphold it. The White House repeatedly denied facilitating arms shipments to the Bosnian Muslims but never acknowledged its real role.

Clinton-administration officials insist that the decision on the arms shipments was justified. The United States was always sympathetic to the Muslims, who bore the brunt of Serbian territorial aggression, and amenable to easing their plight short of violating the embargo.

At the time the White House was giving the green light to the Iranian arms shipments, the Clinton administration was putting pressure on its allies to isolate Iran globally as a supporter of terrorism and calling on them to participate in trade and economic sanctions.

With the tacit U.S. approval, U.S. officials said, the arms pipeline grew into a large and well-organized airlift operating through Turkey and Croatia, supplying thousands of tons of small arms, mortars, anti-tank weapons and other light equipment.

The Croatian government took a large cut – an estimated 30 percent – for its cooperation, U.S. officials said. The weapons not only helped the ill-equipped Bosnian-Muslim army to stay in the field despite the U.N. embargo, but also aided the Croatian military in the months leading up to its 1995 invasion of the Croatian region of Krajina and its subsequent defeat of Serb forces there, administration officials acknowledged.

The Iranian link that grew with the shipments is now an obstacle to the implementation of the 4-month-old peace accords, acknowledged U.S. officials, who are relying on that plan to bring about a permanent end to the conflict. The Clinton administration has demanded repeatedly that the Bosnian government expel the Iranian military advisers who helped the Muslim government when the West would not, and Bosnia is dragging its feet on complying.

In fact, at the time Clinton was fighting strenuously to defeat congressional efforts to unilaterally lift the U.N. arms embargo so that the Muslims could be armed openly and allowed to defend themselves.

But the Clinton administration asserted that the negative effects were too great and that it would abide by the embargo.

By November 1994, Clinton, under pressure from Congress to lift the embargo, publicly announced that the U.S. would no longer enforce the arms ban. He did not mention that that had been the secret policy for months, or that it was a carefully orchestrated element of an ongoing Iranian arms-smuggling operation.

At the time the White House was giving the green light to the Iranian arms shipments, the Clinton administration was putting pressure on its allies to isolate Iran globally as a supporter of terrorism and calling on them to participate in trade and economic sanctions.

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