Signs of change in Iraq?

Iraqi security forces raided a central command compound of an Iran-backed proxy group in southern Baghdad late on Thursday, June 25, detaining more than a dozen members of the group, government officials and paramilitary sources told Reuters. Other reports are indicating 23 individuals were arrested.
Iraqi security sources are saying those arrested not only played major roles in attacks on the U.S. Embassy and sites where U.S. bases are stationed/housed, they were also involved in planning for future attacks of similar nature.
The move is being described as the most brazen measure by Iraqi forces against a militia group backed heavily by Tehran in years and specifically targeted the Kataib Hezbollah, which U.S. officials accuse of firing rockets at bases hosting U.S. troops and other facilities in Iraq.
Kataib Hezbollah is the strong and most organized militia group affiliated with Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) Quds Force in Iraq. Their former leader was Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, commander of Iraq’s Hashd al-Shaabi, or the Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF), a paramilitary umbrella grouping heavily backed by and under the influence of Iran’s regime.
Iraqi security forces arresting members of Iran-backed Kataib Hezbollah in southern Baghdad, Iraq – June 25, 2020
Reports indicate four Kataib Hezbollah senior commanders and 16 members, alongside at three one senior IRGC Quds Force were detained, according to an Iraqi official talking to the media on the condition of anonymity. There are also unconfirmed reports that all individuals detained in this raid have been transferred into the custody of U.S. forces. Iraqi security forces also confiscated a number of rocket launchers from the site, according to Reuters.
Spokesperson for the international coalition forces in Iraq, however, has denied any role in the raid targeting Kataib Hezbollah members in Baghdad’s Al-Doura district.
The Iraqi Joint Operations Command issued a statement saying the individuals were detained based on arrest warrants. Following the raid there were rumors on social media about the release of the detained Kataib Hezbollah and IRGC Quds Force members. None were confirmed and it appears pro-Iran users on various platforms had launched a desperate face-saving initiative considering the major embarrassment and realizing the consequences of the raid.
Iraqi security forces conducting the Thursday night raid targeting the Kataib Hezbollah site in southern Baghdad, Iraq – June 25, 2020

The Iraqi military said the raid, carried out in the middle of the night by the U.S.-trained Counter Terrorism Service, was directed at militiamen suspected of firing rockets at foreign embassies in Baghdad’s fortified Green Zone and its international airport.
Iraqi authorities were questioning the individuals detained during the raid, the statement adds. The incident took place after a number of rocket attacks near the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad and other U.S. military sites in recent weeks.
Before the military issued its statement about the raid, Iraqi government officials and paramilitary sources had given contradicting versions of what happened.
The paramilitary sources and one government official claimed those held were sent to the security branch of the PMF. Such statements further indicate Tehran’s need to save face following the raid.
A second government official, however, flatly denied any such transfer and said the militiamen were still in the custody of other security services. One PMF source initially said 19 men had been detained. A government official told Reuters it was 23.
After the operation, unidentified gunmen entered Baghdad’s Green Zone and drove vehicles towards government buildings and a headquarters of Iraq’s Counter Terrorism Service, according to the military, as PMF officials demanded the release of the detained militiamen.

Large convoy of Hashd vehicles and Hashd supporters on the streets of Baghdad following the news of a ‘raid’ on Hashd office..
This is around 5:30am! pic.twitter.com/rSvSmtWpZm
— 🇮🇶Iraq & Middle East Updates (@IraqLiveUpdate) June 26, 2020

More footage of intimidating measures that were not fruitful at all for Iran’s regime and their Iraqi proxies.

White Toyota trucks filled with armed men wearing masks parading and threatning the Iraqi Counter Terrorism units is not the way your militia will win hearts and minds..last time the ICT forces faced”Men in trucks”the entire country supported them.Militias PR is suffering tonight pic.twitter.com/RpAHfMi2bF
— Steven Nabil (@thestevennabil) June 26, 2020

Early Saturday morning local time there were reports of gunfire near the Iranian Embassy in Baghdad. Knowledge of Tehran’s tactics say these were measures aimed at intimidating the Iraqi government to release the detained individuals. Signs indicate the days of these measures being of any use are over.

On Saturday, June 27, Iraqi media began reporting of significant changes in the Iraqi security hierarchy. Falih Fayyadh, the country’s National Security Advisor and PMF chief, was sacked from his government post and replaced by former defense minister Khaled al-Obeidi, a member of Iraq’s Sunni minority.
Former Iraqi defense minister and now National Security Advisor Khaled al-Obeidi
It is worth noting that Fayyadh has very strong ties with Iran’s regime. There are further claims that Fayyadh has also been sacked from his role as the PMF chief. Don’t be surprised if he ends up in Iran in the coming days or weeks in fear of being apprehended by Iraqi or U.S. forces.

Former Iraqi national security advisor Falih Fayyadh seen with Iranian FM Mohammad Javad Zarif (Top), Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad (Bottom Left), Ali Shamkhani, Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (Bottom Center), and former Iraqi prime minister Nouri al-Maliki (Bottom Right) who is described as one of Iran’s main allies in Iraq.

This raid also signals that new Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi, whose government is currently in talks with Washington over Iraq’s security, political and economic ties with the U.S., intends to take serious action based on pledges made to rein in militia groups that have attacked U.S. installations.
Iran-backed parties and factions have shown rising hostility to Kadhimi, who is due to travel to the United States in coming weeks as part of talks over Iraq’s ties with Washington, according to Reuters.
Most importantly, this is a strong message to the mullahs’ regime in Tehran considering the billions they have poured into Iraq, especially after the 2003 war. Moreover, this further indicates Iran is losing the influence and grip it enjoyed on its western neighbor prior to the killing of Qasem Soleimani by the U.S. military on January 3 of this year.
This latest development indicates a strong initiative aimed at preventing Iran from taking advantage of the strategic talks between Baghdad and Washington, especially with only months left to the U.S. presidential election.
The balance of power in the region is shifting against Iran. This can also be seen in recent anti-Tehran demonstrations held in Lebanon and Syria.

During the past 36 hours the cities of Damascus & Idlib in #Syria have witnessed rallies against poverty, unemployment & economic difficulties. Demonstrators are demanding Assad step down in order to end the war & bring an end to meddling by #Iran & Russia in their country. pic.twitter.com/pEkDKPGcDc
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) June 8, 2020

To make matters even worse for Iran, crippling sanctions are leaving the regime economically bankrupt, thus preventing the IRGC from pouring cash into its proxies for further malign initiatives across the Middle East. And even more important for Tehran is the impact of these developments inside Iran. People across the Iran will realize the regime is weakened, further encouraging them to launch uprisings similar to that of November 2019.
Developments during the past few months are further indicating the importance of Qasem Soleimani’s elimination in weakening the IRGC Quds Force and Iran’s regime. This shows the downgraded status of regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the IRGC inside Iran.
Iran’s regional policies of warmongering and terrorism are tools used to strengthen the regime’s position inside Iran. When Tehran’s influence in the region is downgraded and weakened significantly, the regime’s crackdown machine inside the country also suffers a major blow. This is a nightmare scenario for the mullahs’ ruling Iran.
For now, the Iraqi people, such as those protesters who remain in Baghdad’s iconic Tahrir Square, are celebrating the recent turn of events. And the Iranian people are watching very closely.

Originally published in The Medium

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The regimes of Iran & Venezuela go way back

It is no coincidence that the regime’s of Iran and Venezuela have tag-teamed in a display of “resistance” against U.S. sanctions to score a few cheap political points through sheer propaganda that will only last a few weeks max. Iran has been sending five tankers to Venezuela and the main purpose is to show defiance in the face of measures taken by the Trump administration against both regimes.
Tehran and Caracas have been boasting about an “anti-imperialist” victory of bypassing sanctions through the transfer of 1.5 million liters of gasoline and petrochemicals from Iran to Venezuela. Of course, it goes without saying that there are high suspicions there is much more involved here than a mere transfer of oil-related goods and far more malign objectives are at stake here.
Lesser discussed in the media, however, is the fact that both regimes in Caracas and Tehran were able to take full advantage of the careless appeasement policy practiced by the Obama administration. This is the main topic of this blog.
Recently, Iran has been bailing out Maduro by sending:
-blending components used for producing gasoline
-workers, equipment for oil refining
-and discussed sending gasoline cargoes into Venezuela
(And remember Iran says it needs money to address COVID-19.)
Mahan Air (designated as a terrorist entity), associated directly to Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC-designated by the State Department as a “Foreign Terrorist Organization”) has direct flights between Iran and Venezuela.
Flight W5138 from Tehran to Las Piedras (Source)
another Mahan Air Airbus A340-600 from Iran to Venezuela
April 27—Mahan Air A340s landing in Caracas
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Iran did not establish such strong ties with the Chavez/Maduro regime in Venezuela overnight. Back in 2011, former president Hugo Chavez agreed to permit Iran build missile bases in the South American country. And the Obama administration denied everything.
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“The U.S. State Department said it reviews all information pertaining to Iranian military involvement in the hemisphere, but that it could not vouch for the report,” according to a CNN reported on May 21, 2011. Keep in mind this is just a year prior to the start of Obama’s secret talks with Iran in Oman over the regime’s controversial nuclear dossier that paved the path for the infamous 2015 nuclear deal.
“We have no evidence to support this claim & therefore no reason to believe the assertions made in the article are credible,” Obama’s State Department added.
Maduro, Chavez’ Foreign Minister at the time, described the allegations as an “extravagant lie.” He is seen in this image with his then Iranian counterpart Manouchehr Mottaki.

The cozy relationship between Tehran and Caracas goes all the way back to the early days of Obama’s tenure.
“The missile base is part of a pattern that began in March 2009, when President Obama met Chavez at an Organization of American States meeting in Trinidad,” The Daily Caller wrote on January 3, 2011.
President Obama shook hands with the dictator, as usual, and said he wanted to be friends and reset US-Venezuelan relations. Chavez responded by presenting Obama with a book that claims the United States plunders Latin America,” the piece adds, indicating a clear lesson in “Appeasement 101.”
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Seeing such reactions from Obama, Iran felt the confidence with its plans and was establishing a very dangerous relationship with the Chaves/Maduro regime in Venezuela, involving uranium & Hezbollah sleeper cells, as reports show.
“Iran uses Venezuela and other Latin American countries as havens for its terrorists. For months Hezbollah, Iran’s terror army, has metastasized across our undefended border with Mexico to set up sleeper cells in our cities. And now we learn a senior Hezbollah thug was appointed as Venezuela’s Deputy Chief of Mission to Syria?” The Daily Caller asked.
Iran was also quite busy establishing at least three Iranian missile bases in Venezuela, according to another damning report.

And years later, “the radicals ruling Iran are emboldened by the confusion of the Obama administration in confronting Iran’s nuclear program,” as put by a Fox News piece. Obama, of course, had broader issues in mind with Tehran & went the distance to prevent any interruptions.

There’s more when you dig into it with simple googling, one stumbles upon the utterly corrupt nature of the Iran-Venezuela relationship. “The secret backstory of how Obama let Hezbollah off the hook” was a bombshell Politico report that explained the distance Obama went to keep Iran’s mullahs pleased, even if it endangered the lives of the American people.
“… the Obama administration derailed an ambitious law enforcement campaign targeting drug trafficking by the Iranian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah,” the report reads in part.
It is mind boggling how many millions of people were placed at risk as a result of drug trafficked into the U.S. by the Iran/Hezbollah-linked network. ““The eight-year investigation came to a head just as the Obama administration was negotiating a deal for Iran to put aside their nuclear ambitions,” according to The Telegraph. Priorities, priorities, priorities.
Iran-backed Hezbollah’s sophisticated $1 billion-a-year drug network was actively involved in laundering money and smuggling cocaine into the United States. However, Obama’s departments of Justice and Treasury constantly undermined agents’ efforts to arrest and prosecute important members of the criminal ring, as put by The New York Post. Why one would ask? Because the Obama White House feared offending Tehran ahead of the 2015 nuclear deal.
“This was a policy decision, it was a systematic decision,” said David Asher, an illicit finance expert. “They serially ripped apart this entire effort that was very well supported and resourced, and it was done from the top down.”
When appeasement entered dangerous sectors of the government, we witnessed how Obama officials literally parroted the Iranian regime’s talking points. “John Brennan, Mr. Obama’s counterterror chief who later led the CIA, had argued in May 2010 that Hezbollah was evolving into a political party,” according to The Wall Street Journal. Here’s a look at what John Brennan calls a “political party”…
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And Obama continued their appeasement of Iran by making sure nothing slipped through the cracks. “Project Cassandra officials told Politico that they were transferred to other assignments after Mr. Obama’s deal with Iran was announced in January 2016,” according to The Washington Times.
Further astonishing is that U.S. authorities literally had specific targets in their grasps. If apprehended these individuals could have provided far more information into Iran’s malign activities and brought more corrupt figures to justice. “… the Obama Justice Department refused to pursue Abdallah Safieddine, the leader in charge of coordinating Hezbollah’s global drug trafficking operations, who also serves as Hezbollah’s liaison officer in Tehran,” according to The Hill.
It has now become quite obvious that Obama’s appeasement vis-a-vis Iran/Chavez/Maduro had no limits. Daniel Byman wrote in Lawfare:
The Justice Department did not file criminal charges against Hezbollah members because of tacit White House pressure;
The U.S. government refused to press hard for the extradition of a key Hezbollah weapons supplier in Czech custody, allowing his eventual release;
The United States allowed “an entire Quds force network” in the United States to function and otherwise did not aggressively target Quds Force members;
The administration did not target a Lebanese bank linked to drug laundering; and
The administration stymied the DEA’s effort to go after Hezbollah. Over time, the agency’s task force was denied permission to expand its efforts, and its personnel and resources were steadily drained.
And Obama’s obstructionism rendered the following:
“Multi-ton loads of cocaine” entered the United States;
Hezbollah procured hundreds of millions of dollars from illegal drug money;
The United States lost track of various networks and associated conspiracies with adversaries such as Russia, Syria and Venezuela; and
Drug networks were allowed to flourish and also served as overall logistics hubs. These networks also “procured parts for Iran’s illicit nuclear and ballistic missile programs” smuggled in night-vision goggles and even Bell helicopters.
As noted previously, Iran and Venezuela also have established a dangerous relationship involving Tehran launching missile bases in America’s backyard. It is worth the while to take a look at how former president Hugo Chavez agreed to permit Iran’s regime build missile bases in the South American country.
Chávez has signed a secret strategic cooperation agreement with former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on October 19, 2010, aiming to build an Iran-Venezuelan missile base on Venezuelan soil. The base was to be built on the Peninsula de Paraguaná, about 120 kilometers from the Colombian border. A small group of leading Iranian engineers from the Revolutionary Guard-owned construction company Khatam al-Anbia had paid visits to the designated site on the northern tip of the South American continent.

The secret visit in early February 2010 was approved by the IRGC Air Force commander, Amir Ali Hajizadeh, who voted him with the Venezuelan partners. The Iranian delegation had plans to develop an infrastructure to protect against air attacks. Also planned is the construction of a command and control station, residential areas, watchtowers and bunkers where warheads, rocket fuel and other relevant assets can be stored. 20-meter deep rocket silos were also blueprinted.
Iran had in mind methods to launch a strategic threat to the U.S., much as the Soviet Union planned to do so in Cuba back in the early 1960s.
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“The cost of the Venezuelan military project is being paid for with Iranian oil revenue. The Iranians paid in cash for the preliminary phase of the project, which amounted to “dozens of millions” of dollars, Die Welt wrote,” according to a May 17, 2011, translation by The Jerusalem Post.
The site was to “include missile defenses, special forces units, and control stations. Iran’s oil revenue is reportedly going to the construction of bunkers, watch towers, barracks, and 65-foot deep rocket silos,” according to the Business Insider.
The German daily claims that according to the agreement, Iranian Shahab 3 (range 1300-1500 km), Scud-B (285-330 km) and Scud-C (300, 500 and 700 km) were to be deployed in the proposed base.
(File photos)
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“The leaders of Iran and Venezuela hailed what they called their strong strategic relationship, saying they are united in efforts to establish a ‘New World Order’ that will eliminate Western dominance over global affairs,” according to a Fox News report posted on May 17, 2011.
“Security sources have stated that the plans for the underground missile depots will be prepared by experts from the chemical engineering department of the Sharif Industrial University and Tehran Polytechnic,” the report adds.
There is far more on the disturbing relationship between the regime’s ruling Iran and Venezuela.
“Venezuela is said to have significant reserves, something that Iran is desperately in need of for the continuation of their nuclear bomb project. Other activities include housing of the Quds forces, along with Hezbollah cells in these facilities, so they can expand their activities throughout Latin America and form collaborations with drug cartels in Mexico and then enter America.
“Many of the Iranian so-called commercial facilities in Venezuela are under strict no-fly zone regulations by the Venezuelan government and are only accessible by the Iranians in charge of those facilities!
“With Iran’s refusal to halt its nuclear program and the progress they’re making with their missile delivery system, this new military alliance with Venezuela is most alarming for our national security here in America.”
The breadcrumbs of these warnings were everywhere, only for Obama to deliberately overlook.
“Iran has already built what it calls a ‘tractor factory’ in Venezuela, the most heavily guarded and secret tractor factory in the world. The fenced compound is so secret that even Venezuelans are not allowed to enter it; only Iranians are allowed inside.”,” according to The Daily Caller.
“The factory is in a remote area, not far from a uranium deposit former Venezuelan official estimate holds 50,000 tons of ore. Is it a stretch to connect the secret ‘tractor factory’ and the uranium?”
The malign ties between Tehran’s mullahs’ and the Chavez/Maduro regime expanded to more dangerous spheres: terrorism.
“Iran uses Venezuela and other Latin American countries as havens for its terrorists. For months Hezbollah, Iran’s terror army, has metastasized across our undefended border with Mexico to set up sleeper cells in our cities. And now we learn a senior Hezbollah thug was appointed as Venezuela’s Deputy Chief of Mission to Syria?” The Daily Caller read adds.
And talking about links & ties, we all remember how Obama had good relations with Chavez. In my opinion, as Obama betrayed the people of Iran in 2009, one could say he also betrayed the people of Venezuela.
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I wouldn’t be surprised that Assad in Syria also benefited from Obama’s appeasement of the regime’s in Iran & Venezuela. Of course, we all remember how Obama backed off from his famous Syria “red line”…

The Trump administration, however, does understand the risk of Iran-backed Hezbollah being active in Venezuela.

Worth noting that while Iran describes transferring gasoline halfway across the globe to Venezuela, the regime doesn’t answer the question why they can’t or are not willing to provide for Iranians back home?

Quite interesting that #Iran boasts about sending gasoline all the way to Venezuela, but can’t provide drinking water to Iranians back home. And when locals hold a protest rally, they’re answered with bullets.https://t.co/REaQsdTq9J
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) May 26, 2020

The most effective method to support the people of Iran and Venezuela in their struggle for freedom & democracy is to bring a complete end to the appeasement policy once and for all.

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The story of “honor killings” in Iran

The misogynist ideology promoted by the mullahs’ regime ruling Iran is the main reason behind an unfortunate phenomenon known as “honor killings” that have long plagued this country.
Two new cases of “honor killings” in Iran under the mullahs’ regime. This includes Reyhaneh Ameri, 22, killed on June 15 by her father with an ax for coming home late; and Fatemeh Barihi, 19, beheaded by her husband.
In late May, Romina Ashrafi, 13, was beheaded in her sleep by her own father. These innocent women are the victims of honor killings in Iran which are sanctioned & institutionalized by the laws of the clerical regime.

The story of Reyhaneh Ameri
Reyhaneh’s sister went to her parents’ home on Monday at around 8:30 or 9 am. When she entered there was no one home and Reyhaneh’s room was locked. She knocks constantly and no one answers. She notices the rugs are in disarray. A few minutes later her father comes home.
Her mother says when left the house in the morning Reyhaneh was still in her room & her door was open. Then she tells her daughter what happened the night before. Reyhaneh had returned home at around 11:30 pm & had a quarrel with her father. After that she went to her room.

Reyhaneh’s father tells his wife, “One day I will kill that girl!”
In 2017 he once tried to kill her and severely beat her with a stick, leaving her entire body swollen. Reyhaneh’s arms & leg were broken & her sister intervened to save her life.
Reyhaneh’s sister becomes nervous & says something might have happened to her. Reyhaneh’s mother and sister finally open her door & see the room in a mess. All her clothes are on the floor. Her mother begins to gather up the clothes, only to see they are wet.

When she pulls the clothes aside Reyhaneh’s mother sees the middle of the room is full of blood. There is blood also on the walls. They call the police. When they arrive, the officers see blood under the rugs. They believe Reyhaneh was dragged from her room to a car.
Reyhaneh’s father had many axes and they realize one of them is not in its place. They start thinking he may have used it to attack Reyhaneh. While the police wait for Reyhaneh’s father to come back home, they track Reyhaneh’s mobile phone to a deserted area.
The tracking device shows the location near the village of Ekhtiar Abad, a 15-min drive from the city of Kerman in south-central Iran. When Reyhaneh’s father comes home he is immediately arrested by the police. He is angry and denies knowing anything.

The trunk of his car was full of blood. So was the back license plate. Reyhaneh’s father is arrested and her mother is sent to a hospital. They search for Reyhaneh until 11 pm. Her father wouldn’t say anything other than that it wasn’t him & he hadn’t killed Reyhaneh.
At 11 pm he says with a smile that he did kill Reyhaneh with a blow of his ax to her head, and left her body in an open area near the city of Kerman. When they find Reyhaneh she was dead. Physicians at the forensics said she was alive until 9 pm. She was suffering for hours.
The story of Fatemeh Barihi
Fatemeh was forced to marry to her abusive cousin at the age of 17. She was beheaded by her husband. State media justified this heinous murder by writing this is the result of Fatemeh fleeing her husband & betraying him the day after their marriage.

This is the regime’s attempt to justify this killing under the mullahs’ laws that allow men to kill his wife in case of adultery. One of Fatemeh’s relatives has spoken out & shed light on the truth.
A few years ago Fatemeh’s sister was forced to marry a few years ago (Fatemeh’s future brother-in-law). The result was nothing but being beaten by her husband, a miscarriage due to blow to her body, and finally, a woman without any hope in life. Fatemeh didn’t want this.
Fatemeh’s husband was more of the same & she was constantly under physical & psychological pressure. As a result, with the help of a friend, Fatemeh fled her husband a few months into their marriage & goes to the city of Mashhad in northeast Iran.

Some time later Fatemeh’s father finds her (how, it is not certain) & returns her to Abadan, southwest Iran. Her father remembers how they his own sister was beheaded. She was accused of adultery for seeking a divorce from her husband who was sentenced to life in jail.

Therefore, seeking an “easier death,” he poisons Fatemeh. But Fatemeh’s mother finds out & saves her life. Fatemeh was then taken to a river & beheaded. It is said that since Fatemeh’s father will not seek justice due to his fear. Fatemeh’s murderer will walk free.
The story of Somayeh Fat’hi
According to the Hengaw human rights organization, Somayeh Fat’hi, an 18-year old woman from the city of Kermanshah, western Iran, was murdered by her father, brother and other family members in what is being described as an “honor killing.” Somayeh was reportedly married and pregnant and was poisoned on Thursday, June 18, due to having “contact with a young man.”
The family has not held a ceremony and “none of the murderers were arrested,” according to the Hengaw report. It is also worth noting that state police officials have denied reports of Somayeh Fat’hi being killed.
This is the fifth case of women being killed in “honor killings” by their fathers, brothers or husbands during the past few weeks. The exact number of such acts of murders in Iran are not declared by officials and state institutions. However, back in December 2019 the state-run ISNA news agency issued a report citing university research saying “around 375 and 450 honor killings” are taking place each year across Iran.
This reports further adds that “honor killings” add up to around 20 percent of all murders in Iran and 50 percent of family-related murders.
Increasing number of cases
There are reports of new cases being reported from across Iran.
Hajareh Hossein-bor was murdered on May 4 by her husband. Her digestive tract had been burned by acid forced down her throat. She was unconscious and could hardly breathe. Her body was found with her head full of thorns, and both her arms and hands had been pounded by stones.

There are also reports that Leyla Farrokhi has recently been killed by her husband in the city of Karaj, west of the Iranian capital Tehran. Her husband then committed suicide. Their 19-year old daughter, witness to this tragedy, is reportedly injured.
Leyla Farrokhi—Karaj, west of Tehran, Iran
There are also cases of women being severely beaten by their husbands.
This 22-year old woman was beaten and tortured by her 80-year old husband! The man literally attacked his wife with a hot metal rod for not working in their farm! Reports indicate neighbors helped the beaten young woman and her 5-year old son flee to find refuge.
22-year old mother beaten with a hot metal rod by her 80-year old husband
This lady’s husband — a drug-addict for a few years according to sources — had been transferred to a rehabilitation camp by members of his family and those of his wife’s. However, when the husband returns home he takes his wife to a deserted field and nearly beats her to death. Due to the severity of his wife’s injuries he takes her to a hospital on June 4.

THREAD
1)This lady’s drug addict husband was taken to a rehab camp by his family. Upon his return, he took her to a field & nearly beat her to death.
The mullahs in #Iran promote misogyny & Iranian women have been suffering for four decades.
WARNING-DISTURBING FOOTAGE pic.twitter.com/2W6Xl62fgy
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) June 23, 2020

Unfortunately, murder and domestic violence takes place everywhere in our world.
But in Iran, the laws of the mullahs’ regime literally support murderers, allowing them to pre-plan and kill their female family members, knowing they can walk free.
In Iran under the mullahs’ regime, violence against women, domestic violence and honor killings have not been criminalized in the so-called Constitution and other laws of the clerical regime in Iran. In fact, they are sanctioned and institutionalized.
Such honor killings and shocking tragedies are the tragic result of the mullahs’ misogynistic laws. Laws that do not criminalize violence against women, including domestic violence, serve to perpetuate it.
The adoption of such hideous and medieval laws, as well as unfair trials, all come into play following four decades of miseries and misfortunes the mullahs’ regime has imposed on the people of Iran.
What’s the solution?
Regime change in Iran by the people of Iran. No need for a new war, nor even a single dollar to be spent. Supporting the Iranian people and recognizing their right to establish a free and democratic Iran that fully recognizes human rights for all, regardless of gender, faith, race, and ethnicity.

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Why doesn’t Iran enter talks with the U.S.?

The recent prisoner exchange between the United States and Iran resulted in U.S. Navy veteran Michael White returning home on Thursday, June 4. Following this welcomed development U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted, “So great to have Michael home. Just arrived. Very exciting. Thank you to Iran. Don’t wait until after U.S. Election to make the Big deal. I’m going to win. You’ll make a better deal now!”

So great to have Michael home. Just arrived. Very exciting. Thank you to Iran. Don’t wait until after U.S. Election to make the Big deal. I’m going to win. You’ll make a better deal now! https://t.co/OGJU2VWBWq
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2020

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted a seemingly defiant response. “We achieved humanitarian swap *despite* your subordinates’ efforts, @realDonaldTrump. And we had a deal when you entered office. Iran & other JCPOA participants never left the table. Your advisors—most fired by now—made a dumb bet. Up to you to decide *when* you want to fix it.”

We achieved humanitarian swap *despite* your subordinates’ efforts, @realDonaldTrump
And we had a deal when you entered office. Iran & other JCPOA participants never left the table.
Your advisors—most fired by now—made a dumb bet.
Up to you to decide *when* you want to fix it. pic.twitter.com/TFg698pWS9
— Javad Zarif (@JZarif) June 5, 2020

First and foremost, Trump’s invitation of Iran for talks is not a change in U.S. policy. It also proves wrong all the mainstream media propaganda, especially pushed by the Iran apologists/lobbyists crowd, about Trump being a warmonger and seeking armed conflict with Iran.
However, we also need to keep in mind that Iran understands very well that Trump’s policy differs from his predecessor, and any negotiations with Trump will not be without significant consequences for the regime’s future.
If the regime in Iran enjoyed the capacity to enter talks with the U.S., it should be doing so now prior to the U.S. presidential election. Considering the coronavirus and social unrest crises in the U.S., Iran’s regime could be considering now a good time to enter talks as Trump is entangled with troubles at home and there is no better time to obtain concessions. Tehran agreeing to talks could provide Trump a political victory prior to the elections and allow Iran’s regime to demand for more concessions.
So why doesn’t Iran enter talks with such a window of opportunity? A subject not discussed in western media is the utterly fragile state of Iran’s regime and the fact that Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei completely lacks the capacity to enter talks with the “Great Satan,” as he likes to call the U.S.
Khamenei’s level of authority is nowhere near regime founder Ruhollah Khomeini, Iran’s previous supreme leader. Khomeini relied on his internal support to give in to ending the 1980s Iran-Iraq war despite his eight-year modus operandi of continuing the war until the very last house in the Iranian capital Tehran. Furthermore, the regime in its entirety is far weaker in 2020 than it was back in 1988.
Khamenei, the current supreme leader, cannot hold together the regime’s ranks and files and internal disputes are escalating with each passing day. Khamenei has lost Qassem Soleimani, a key behind-the-scenes figure during the three years of talks that led to the 2015 nuclear deal with Obama. Soleimani was able to continue Iran’s expansions in the Middle East (thanks to Obama’s appeasement) and thus portray a strong image to help Khamenei convince his dismal social base to follow his blessing of talks that led to the 2015 deal with Washington, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
And again, thanks to Obama’s appeasement, Khamenei was able to obtain a long list of incentives in the JCPOA. These flaws led to Trump’s decision to tear up the nuclear deal in May 2018 and impose crippling sanctions that have wreaked havoc to the regime’s economy, plunging its currency parallel to nearly all its desperately needed oil exports.
Khamenei is also very much concerned about defections from his ranks and files. Twice in recent years he has specifically voiced concerns about defections and disillusionment among the Revolutionary Guards (IRGC), the entity that is supposedly the strongest ideological force keeping the regime in power and missioned to safeguard the regime’s “Islamic Revolution.”
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Khamenei has also signaled that a new deal with the U.S. will inevitably result in more deals demanding the regime to scale back on its very pillars of domestic crackdown and foreign warmongering. These are absolute red lines for the mullahs’ regime.
More recently, Khamenei has been preparing his regime for difficult times ahead. He is publicly calling for a “young Hezbollahi government.” In parallel nature, a senior IRGC officer, Mohammad Bagher Ghalibaf, has been selected as the new Majlis (parliament) speaker after a record low voter turnout in February’s parliamentary elections, and Ebrahim Raisi, known for his role in the 1988 massacre of 30,000 political prisoners, is the regime’s judiciary chief. This line-up is no signal of a regime gearing for talks.

#Trump’s situation is so disaster; in international arena, catastrophe of Covid management & racist arson inside the US. His team has no choice but to portray false successes for him. The exchange of prisoners is not the result of negotiations & no talks will happen in future.
— علی شمخانی (@alishamkhani_ir) June 5, 2020

And why doesn’t Iran follow North Korea’s lead of entering talks with the U.S. and kicking the can down the road? Quite simple. Pyongyang has the bomb. Iran does not, thanks to decades of revelations made by the Iranian opposition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), especially the August 2002 exposure of the Natanz uranium enrichment site and the Arak heavy water reactor. Ever since, Iran has been involved in a cat-and-mouse game with the international community in its ongoing drive to obtain nuclear weapons while claiming to only seek peaceful nuclear energy.
All in all, Iran’s is now desperately hoping for Trump to somehow lose in November or at least for the Democrats to gain control of Congress, making Trump a lame duck president for at least two years. This is highly unlikely, to say the least.
Tehran giving in to talks with Washington will portray a very weak image of the mullahs’ regime inside the country. This will without a doubt leave the mullahs’ regime very fragile in the face of an increasingly restive population that is described as a powder keg. The next round of nationwide uprising will dwarf the November 2019 protests that swept over 140 cities across Iran. This is the Iranian regime’s main concern.

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Iran claims 225 killed in November 2019 uprising, opposition says at least 1,500

After six months of denial, Iran’s interior minister says up to 225 people were killed during the November 2019 protests following a petrol price hike imposed by the ruling regime to help compensate a devastated economy, according to reports on Sunday, May 31.
Officials in Iran have yet to issue an overall death toll for the unrest and refuse to provide any names. The timing of this acknowledgement is of no coincident. Knowing the world is focused on developments inside the U.S. and the global coronavirus pandemic, Tehran has chosen now to make this announcement with hopes of putting a lid on the actual death toll and bringing an issue to an end.
It is worth noting that the Iranian opposition National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI) was repeatedly issuing statements with updates on the number of protesters killed, injured and arrested by the Iranian regime’s authorities during the November 2019 uprising. After a string of similar reports, the NCRI reported on December 16 that over 1,500 protesters were killed by the regime’s security forces.
Riot police disperse protesters against increased gas prices on a highway in Tehran, Iran, on November 16, 2019. Nazanin Tabatabaee/West Asia News Agency, via REUTERS
One week later, on November 23 Reuters issued a special report also indicating over 1,500 protesters were killed, citing three officials inside the Iranian regime’s Interior Ministry.
“About 1,500 people were killed during less than two weeks of unrest that started on Nov. 15. The toll, provided to Reuters by three Iranian interior ministry officials, included at least 17 teenagers and about 400 women as well as some members of the security forces and police,” the report reads.
Did Iran authorize three Interior Ministry officials to talk to Reuters and provide the 1,500 count to help keep a lid on the actual number of protesters killed and at least bring a political end to the NCRI reports? Quite possibly.
Now after six months of denial, at a time when the world is focusing on the global COVID-19 pandemic and the U.S. is engulfed in domestic developments just four months from the November 2020 presidential election, Iran’s regime considers this the perfect timing to issue a report with numbers far below that of the NCRI and Reuters, and even less than that of Amnesty International’s 304 death count report. From the regime’s perspective, this will bring a desperately needed end to this ordeal.
However, scenes of the November 2019 massacre launched by the regime against peaceful protesters will never be forgotten. Just recently, the U.S. Treasury Department sanctioned Iranian Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli and other senior law enforcement officials in connection with serious human rights abuses.
“The Iranian regime violently suppresses dissent of the Iranian people, including peaceful protests, through physical and psychological abuse,” said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin.

Nov 16 – Gorgan, N #IranHorrific video shows security forces shooting at point-blank range & using what appears to be an ax against a young man.
This shows the brutality & desperate nature of a regime facing the wrath of a restive nation.#IranProtestspic.twitter.com/p3pckxg8Zc
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) November 24, 2019

Hassan Shahvarpour Najafabadi, Commander of the IRGC’s Vali Asr Base in Khuzestan province during the IRGC’s violent suppression of protestors in Nov 2019. In this province & Mahshahr alone, the IRGC killed at least 100 protestors in 3 days.

The scenes became horrific as regime security forces opened indiscriminate fire into crowds of protesters, killing men, women and children. This footage from is from the Saveh road located southwest of the Iranian capital Tehran. Scenes of protesters shot by the regime’s security forces opening fire. A man is heard saying four people were killed in this scene.

Shiraz was described as the epicenter of the Iranian people’s uprising against the mullahs’ regime. It was also probably the city where regime forces showed the utmost brutality. This footage is from November 18, 2019.
WARNING – DISTURBING FOOTAGE

The smaller cities surrounding Tehran were also scenes of major protests. Regime officials were ordering security forces to open fire and even shoot at point blank range, knowing the protesters were only just a few kilometers away from rallying towards sensitive regime headquarters in the capital Tehran.
This footage is from the city of Shahriar on November 16, 2019.

And regime forces resorted to unspeakable brutality. This footage is dated November 16, 2019, from the city of Karaj, located west of Tehran.
WARNING – DISTURBING FOOTAGE

WARNING – DISTURBING FOOTAGE
Recently obtained videoNov 16 – Karaj, west of Tehran, #IranGolshahr districtA protester shot & killed by the regime’s security forces.At least 450 were killed in recent #IranProtests.The actual number, unfortunately, could be far higher. pic.twitter.com/F3FpM4iGj3
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) November 28, 2019

Saveh, another city located southwest of Tehran, witnessed scenes of security forces opening direct fire at protesters as demonstrations continued over the gasoline price hike.

On May 20, 2020, the U.S. administration further indicated its insistence on standing alongside the Iranian people and not tolerating the regime’s dreadful human rights violations.

10)May 20, 2020—U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on the Trump administration’s maximum pressure campaign targeting the Iranian regime with sanctions, including targeting officials violating human rights. pic.twitter.com/XEkBXQS7Gw
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) May 20, 2020

The Iranian people support sanctions against the mullahs’ regime ruling Iran. Listen to this internet taxi driver recording a message on March 25 saying specifically, “”Please do not provide any money to the Islamic republic. Not a single rial [Iranian currency] reaches the people. Please do not lift the sanctions from the filthy mullahs… That is exactly what they want.”

March 25—Internet taxi driver in #Iran
“Please do not provide any money to the Islamic republic. Not a single rial [Iranian currency] reaches the people. Please do not lift the sanctions from the filthy mullahs’ republic. That is exactly what they want.”#KhameneiVirus pic.twitter.com/lzsZ61rByM
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) March 28, 2020

Even when the regime’s own state-media ask ordinary people about U.S. sanctions and their conditions, the answers provided are quite interesting, to say the least. This young man specifically points the finger at the mullahs’ regime and the ongoing financial corruption and embezzlement plaguing the country.

The Iranian people understand very well that U.S. sanctions also prevent the regime from funding the Assad regime & terrorist groups across the Middle East.
Iran’s regime has been known to prop the murders Assad killing machine in Syria along with numerous other terrorist militia extremist groups checkered across the Middle East (Credit: FDD)
Mark my word: The at least 1,500 innocent Iranians killed by the mullahs during the brave November 2019 uprising did not die in vain.
I’ll end this piece with this footage. This is just one reason we, the Iranian people, will never forget the regime’s massacre back in November 2019. The scene is indeed painful and heartbreaking. But justice will be served.

The brother of a young man killed by the regime during the November #IranProtests.
His mother on Instagram:”When we miss him, we have no choice but to look at his picture. Who can understand the pain of losing you…”
Boy says: “Dada,” short for “dadashi” meaning “brother”… pic.twitter.com/EAICKx9xvc
— Heshmat Alavi (@HeshmatAlavi) December 16, 2019

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