Iran’s new elite army chief had Lebanese terror ties    Wed. 24 Aug 2005


Iran Focus

London, Aug. 24 – The new commander of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) Ground Forces was involved in terrorist activities in Lebanon during the 1980s, analysts say.

Revolutionary Guards brigadier general Ahmad Kazemi was appointed on Saturday by
Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to head the IRGC Ground Forces. Kazemi closely worked with the new Defence Minister Mostafa Mohammad-Najjar in Lebanon.

In a ceremony on Wednesday to mark Kazemi’s new post, the IRGC commander, Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi, acknowledged the general’s past activities in the Guards’ Lebanon Force.

“I am better informed than anyone of General Kazemi’s record of sacrifice, valour, and courage; from his presence in southern Lebanon and difficult battles in Kurdistan to his presence in the frontlines of the eight-year [Iran-Iraq] war” the news agency ISNA quoted Safavi as saying.

Before being appointed commander of the IRGC Ground Forces, Brigadier General Ahmad Kazemi was the commander of the IRGC Air Force. In that position, Kazemi was responsible for the production and development of Shahab missiles.

“The [IRGC] Air Force under the command of General Kazemi underwent serious development, and today the Guards Corps has the potent missile force of the Middle East”, Safavi said.

Iran has successfully tested the Shahab-3, which has a maximum range of 2,000 kilometres and can hit all cities in the Middle East.

In late July,
Iran announced that it had fully developed solid-fuel technology in producing missiles, a major breakthrough that increases the accuracy of missiles.

Kazemi was also responsible for research and production of the Shahab-4 missile with a projected range of 3,000 km. Analysts say that
Tehran is working round-the-clock to enhance the range and accuracy of the Shahab missiles which is capable of carrying a nuclear warhead and reaching the heart of Europe.