Senator: US Should Designate Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps as a Terrorist Organization
Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) should be designated as a foreign terrorist organization, a Republican member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee said on Thursday.
Colorado Senator Cory Gardner made the comment in response to a question posed by The Algemeiner during a panel discussion on Capitol Hill — organized by United Against Nuclear Iran (UANI) and the Jewish Institute for National Security of America (JINSA) — about the future of US policy on Iran.
In his prepared remarks at the start of the event, Gardner said President Donald Trump had the support of Congress “to reject the failed policies of the past and begin putting pressure on Iran to cease its illicit behavior.”
The sanctions announced by the Treasury Department last Friday, Gardner noted, were a “great start.”
“We must continue to impose additional sanctions on Iran related to their illicit missile tests, support for terrorism and human rights abuses,” he said.
Furthermore, Gardner went on to say, “Every global company should shun this regime as a matter of decent business practices.”
Regarding the July 2015 nuclear agreement reached by Iran and six world powers, Gardner stated, “I believe the administration must immediately take steps to begin negotiating a better deal, as President Trump promised on the campaign trail. We must make the case clearly to the Europeans, the Chinese and the Russians that a nuclear Iran a decade or 15 years from now is not in the interests of the international community…Our new Iran policy must regain the moral clarity that the Iranian regime is a threat to the United States, to our allies and not a partner for peace and stability in the region.”
Also speaking at Thursday’s event was former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton.
Referring to the Trump administration’s declaration last week that it was “officially putting Iran on notice” about its recent hostile actions — including a ballistic missile test — Bolton said, “I think it means that the JCPOA [Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action] is about one heartbeat away from disappearing.”
“I don’t know what sort of broad political plan the administration has, but I don’t think it was accidental or just on the spur of the moment that [National Security Adviser] Mike Flynn made the comment about Iran being on notice,” Bolton said. “I think that’s a clear a signal as you can get that the administration understands what the game is.”
On Wednesday, the Washington Post reported that senior defense and intelligence officials had cautioned the Trump administration about the drawbacks of a potential executive order blacklisting the IRGC as a terror group.
Bolton said on Thursday that such a move should have happened already “ten years ago.”
“My view,” Bolton stated, “is it should be declared American policy to overturn the regime in Tehran, because that is the only way, ultimately, that we will get Iran to back off the pursuit of nuclear weapons…I don’t think it requires American military involvement. I think it requires support for the [Iranian] opposition. The regime is unpopular [in Iran], but it takes time.”
Watch a video of the full panel discussion below: