Iran's Regime Infuriated Over FTO Designation of IRGC
By Amir Taghati
The US government has designated the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, IRGC, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) — a move that infuriated Iran’s regime officials.
Regime analyst, Amir-Ali Abolfath, said after learning of the designation, “When a group or an organization is designated as foreign terrorist organization, the entire security, intelligence and military apparatus of the United States get involved in confronting this terrorist entity, and would kill or capture any of its elements when they are caught.” Referring to Quds force footprint in Syria, Iraq, Yemen and elsewhere, Abolfathi continued, “If this designation becomes final, all of the IRGC forces, basis, and infrastructure would be considered the legitimate terrorist targets and a US military attack on forces and infrastructure would become warranted.”
Donyaye Eghtesad (The Economic World), a government-run newspaper published Abolfathi’s remarks, as well as US claims that the IRGC has complete domination and control over Iran’s economy. They wrote that if this designation is approved, Iran’s business counterparts outside the country must stop doing business with Iran or face penalties from the US government.
Ali Khorram, former Iranian regime envoy to China warned of the consequences of such a designation, “Such a move would pave new ways for social unrest in Iran. Since the recent protests in Iran were centered on economic shortcomings such as skyrocketing inflation and unemployment, shortage of goods and services, environmental crisis and even people’s anger toward the government, the designation would turn these economic grievances into political demands. Even if the social problems we are facing result in only economic complaints, it would be foreseeable to consider that the protesters accuse the government the main responsible party for their problems.”
The IRGC’s FTO designation has angered the regime. Fear of economic bankruptcy, and fear of military repercussion has the regime enraged.
Hamdeli newspaper wrote, “Without any doubt, these sanctions following the economic disasters and Iran’s regional and global policies, to American senators, would be a way to break the back of the country’s economy.”
Inside the country, the IRCG has become a target for the people’s acrimony following the recent flash floods in most parts of Iran, which many blame on the IRCG’s rerouting of water to save their own property, along with the government’s agonizing slowness in sending relief to the devastated areas.
The ‘new outbreak of social protests’ together with ‘the turning off of the economy’ has the regime’s fearful of the movement toward toppling the regime.
The IRGC controls a major portion of the country’s economy and its first and foremost duty is to salvage the Velayat-e Fagih (the guardianship of clergies). It has been an essential tool that’s prolonged the rule of the regime.
Their fear of the people’s rage played the role in the Fajr Corps in Fars Province, southeastern Iran, where a statement was issued that attempted to bully the people and the Iranian opposition, the PMOI/MEK. In fact, instead of concentrating on the relief efforts for the flood-hit areas, the repressive forces were dispatched to confront any protests. However, they were met with a tough response from the residents and especially the youth.
Considering the importance of the IRCG’s role in Iran’s government, the FTO designation has created great concern for government officials.