Three months after Southcom commander Gen. John F. Kelly told the House Armed Services Committee that the United States needs to be “extremely concerned” about Iran’s expanding presence in the Western Hemisphere, the State Department has just informed Congress that Iran’s regional influence is “waning.”
The State Department’s assertions come in a two-page unclassified annex to a long-awaited classified report to Congress mandated by the bipartisan Countering Iran in the Western Hemisphere Act, signed into law by President Barack Obama late last year. It directs the secretary of state to “conduct an assessment of the threats posed to the United States by Iran’s growing presence and activity in the Western Hemisphere and submit to the relevant congressional committees the results of the assessment and a strategy to address Iran’s growing hostile presence and activity in the Western Hemisphere.”
Granted, the bulk of the report is classified, but it is not difficult to conclude that its tone is unlikely to diverge much from the unclassified annex — and that is deeply disturbing.
Especially when just last month an Argentine prosecutor added to the growing paper trail on Iran’s nefarious activities in the Americas by releasing a 500-page report detailing how Iran has systematically built a clandestine intelligence network throughout the region “designed to sponsor, foster and execute terrorist attacks.
Read the whole thing.
And don’t miss Iran’s Latin America Strategy