The Iranian Revolutionary Guard is behind a plan to create a statue depicting the U.S. sailors who were captured by Iran in January surrendering. It is to be a “tourist attraction” according to Commander Ali Fadavi.
Iran’s hardliners are under pressure after the successful negotiation of the nuclear agreement and the victory of the relatively moderate allies of President Hassan Rouhani in last month’s elections.
The construction of the statue would fit with a pattern of provocative behavior intended to show the Guard are still a major player inside Iran.
Earlier this month the Guard test fired two ballistic missiles with the words “Israel must be wiped out” written on their sides in Hebrew. Joe Biden, the US vice president, was visiting Israel at the time of the launch.
The statue is likely to be built on Kharg, a small Iranian island in the Persian Gulf not far from where the sailors were captured.
The monument could feature as a stop for travelers on the Rahian-e-Nour, a semi-mandatory pro-regime pilgrimage that takes visitors to historical spots from the Iran-Iraq war and extols the virtues of the Iranian military.
Commander Fadavi is head of the Revolutionary Guard’s own naval force, which is separate from the main Iranian navy. As well as a military force, the Guard owns a vast economic empire inside Iran.
The Guard report directly to the Supreme Leader and not to the elected president.
Western media is still trying to spin that Iranian parliamentary election as some kind of victory for the “moderates.” In fact, a majority of seats went to the hardliners, with those who are slightly less crazy making gains in urban areas, especially Tehran.
I wonder if President Obama is even going to go through the motions of lodging a protest about this statue. In his eyes, no humiliation is too great as long as his precious nuclear deal remains in force. The ballistic missile launches show that Iran will continue to test the U.S., pushing the envelope further every time. Tehran will continue to play Barack Obama like a fiddle until either he leaves office, or someone becomes president who knows how to stand up to the cowards.
A version of this piece also appeared at The American Thinker