Editor’s Note: The first part of this article identified Iran as a key player in supporting Hamas’ murderous attack on Israel, and detailed the mounting reports and evidence to back this assertion.
While analysts suspect Iran played a role in Hamas’ coordinated assault on Israel, it is doubtful the Islamic Republic would act so boldly without a sense that its own security was assured. Russian patronage of Iran may have set the stage for the massacre of innocent Israelis by terrorists. And despite the protestations of White House spokespersons, President Joe Biden’s foreign policy may have been a factor in emboldening Iran to support Hamas in its deadly attack.
Israel Attack a Topic for Iran and Russia?
In August, Iranian representatives visited the Kremlin, ostensibly to discuss the Moscow-Tehran relationship and supplies of Iranian attack drones and other weapons to support Russia’s continuing combat in Ukraine. The “Iran Update” from the Institute for the Study of War explained:
“Brigadier General Kiomars Heydari — the commander of the Artesh Ground Forces — traveled to Moscow to discuss military cooperation with senior Russian officials … Iranian state media reported that Heydari will also visit various Russian ‘training, technological, and operational centers’ during his trip … Heydari’s visit to Moscow is part of the evolving military and security partnership between Iran and Russia. It is extremely rare for Artesh commanders to travel abroad, and CTP [Critical Threats Project at the American Enterprise Institute] has not previously observed Heydari visiting Russia.”
The Artesh are conventional Iranian forces, in contrast to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, which engages in special forces operations. However, the brigadier general’s rare visit to Moscow may have been an occasion to inform the Kremlin of a planned Hamas incursion into Israel, which would possibly inflame the region. Since Russia is involved in Syria, Iran may have wanted to ensure there would be no blowback to its support of Hamas’ actions in the Middle East.
Since Hamas intended to unleash the denial-of-services tactic – such as disrupting the internet and other communications – perhaps Heydari wished to consult with the Russians, who are masters at this type of hybrid warfare. It’s speculation, to be sure, but chaos in Israel would take the US eye off the Ukraine ball, if only temporarily.
White House Not Helpful for Israel
The White House seems to have given the impression that Tehran can engage in all manner of menacing behavior with few, if any, consequences. Furthermore, when the Biden administration came into office, one of the first things it did was give the Palestinians an aid package. “Republican Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn suggested that a 2021 decision to provide $235 million in aid to the Palestinians may have also helped fund Hamas, a group that is designated as a terrorist organization by the United States and the European Union,” Ewan Palmer wrote for Newsweek. To believe giving money to the Palestinians, expecting US taxpayer dollars to be used for humanitarian purposes, is blatant naiveté. However, it is typical of the Biden administration’s foreign policy.
White House officials continue to declare the $6 billion ransom-for-hostages payment the United States provided to Iran in September cannot be used for anything but humanitarian purposes. “I can clarify the facts: Not a single cent from these funds has been spent, and when it is spent, it can only be spent on things like food and medicine for the Iranian people,” Adrienne Watson, spokeswoman for the National Security Council declared on X (formerly Twitter). Among those who don’t believe that is the president of Iran. “President Ebrahim Raisi told NBC News’ Lester Holt in a recent interview that ‘we will decide’ how the money is used. ‘This money belongs to the Islamic Republic of Iran, and naturally, we will decide, the Islamic Republic of Iran will decide to spend it wherever we need it,'” according to Andrew Moran’s insightful reporting for Liberty Nation.
Nonetheless, White House talking heads continue to deflect, saying the money is Iran’s. Others disagree with that notion: “And no, the $6 billion was not ‘their money’ — no more than the roughly $25 billion that the Biden administration let Iran walk away with by ignoring sanctions,” senior editor David Harsanyi wrote for The Federalist. Additionally, money is fungible, and what Iran does with the Biden administration’s contribution is not hard to divine.
Then there is the recent revelation that at least one official embedded in the State Department may have been leaking information to Iran. No wonder the ruling Iranian mullahs view the US president as weak and feckless, and expect no consequences for active support of Hamas and other global terrorists. No major geopolitical events happen in isolation. The Hamas attack on Israel may have had several willing collaborators and some perhaps unwitting or naïve. It is essential to identify them all.