An Update from CUFI Action Fund
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In this week’s Action Update, we’re going to highlight Iran’s malicious activities throughout the Middle East and around the world. But first, read this Newsweek op-ed, from our Director of Public Policy and Strategy, discussing the need for the Biden administration to increase the United States’ response to Turkey’s malevolence and outlining the threats that Turkey poses to diplomacy and national security.

Iran’s Malice in the World

According to reports, Israel’s foreign intelligence service, the Mossad, has foiled several Iranian terror attacks aimed at killing Israelis traveling to several African countries. This news comes on the heels of October reports that Iran had sought to kill Israelis visiting Cyprus.

Iran’s efforts to attack Israelis are not terribly new. And Iran has taken the kitchen sink approach in its murderous quest. From cyberattacks to providing terrorist groups like Hezbollah and Hamas with rockets and other munitions, Iran has made clear that killing Israelis is central to the regime’s twisted ideology.

The latest news indicates that, thank God, Israel seems to be one step ahead of the Islamic Republic’s henchman, as does the fact that while we’ve learned of these thwarted attacks, it is likely that there are others we’ve never read about. Fundamentally, we can all assume that every day Tehran is seeking to kill Israelis, so everyday that goes by without reports of a successful attack is a good day.

Iran’s Malice in the Middle East

While Israelis seem to be Iran’s primary target, Tehran’s bloodlust goes well beyond the Jewish state. On Sunday an Iran-backed terrorist organization (commonly referred to in the press as a militia) launched a suicide drone attack aimed at killing Iraq’s democratically elected Prime Minister.

The three explosive filled drones hit their target, but the Prime Minister escaped unharmed. Several of his bodyguards were wounded.

Iran has been stepping up its conflict with those Sunni Arab nations in the region – from Saudi Arabia to the UAE to Iraq – by using proxy forces such as the aforementioned “militia.” This is Iran’s m.o.: sow misery wherever possible, hide behind proxy forces to avoid a direct confrontation, but above all else, attack those who do not share the Islamic Republic’s specific worldview – which is basically everyone.

Iran’s Malice at Home

Given Iran’s approach to the world and it neighbors, it should come as no surprise that the regime regularly engages in appalling human and civil rights abuses within its own borders. Most recently, an Iranian newspaper that deigned to blame Iran’s Supreme Leader for Iran’s immense poverty was promptly shutdown by authorities.

The extent to which Tehran’s tyrants terrorize their own people cannot be overstated. And that is why we believe that any agreement with Iran should be comprehensive, addressing not just the nuclear issue, but also Iran’s support for terrorism and the regime’s human rights abuses.

The Iranian leadership feels differently. They recently announced that they’ve now increased their stockpile of 20% enriched uranium to more than 463 pounds. At the same time, they’ve told the Russians that the free nations trying to engage the Islamic Republic should be “realistic” in future nuclear talks. In a nutshell, the Iranians are making clear that President Biden’s stated ambitions of a “longer and stronger” agreement with Tehran are dead on arrival when talks between the world powers and Iran are set to resume later this month.

As such, the only question that remains is who will stand strong and who will buckle. The Biden administration actually holds all the cards. The Iranian people are not fools. They know who is responsible for their country’s economic woes and they do not like living under the tyranny of the regime in Tehran. If President Biden refuses to capitulate to Iran, he will empower the Iranian people and maximize the likelihood that the region can avoid war. But if Mr. Biden fails this test, the consequences will be gruesome and far reaching.


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