When peaceful anti-regime protests began in Syria 15 months ago, they were met with unmitigated violence by the government of President Bashar al Assad.
The death toll in Syria has now climbed to more than 10,000. Recently, close to 200 civilians -- many of them women and children -- have been found murdered in separate massacres, including one in the town of Houla and another in the village of Qubeir.
While countries around the world have expressed shock and dismay at the regime’s brutality, President Assad’s long-time ally Iran has continued to support Assad’s bloody assault on his people with military and technical assistance, as well as moral support for the slaughter.
Last month, Ismail Gha’ani, deputy commander of Iran’s Qods Force, openly admitted to having “a physical and a non-physical” presence in Syria.
That Iranian presence is a matter of deep concern. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has said that Iran’s activities could help contribute to the violence in Syria turning into a civil war, driven by sectarian divides, which could then lead to a proxy war in the region: “You have Iran deeply embedded in Syria,” said Secretary Clinton. “Their military are coaching the Syrian military. Their so-called Qods Force ... is helping them set up these militias, these sectarian militias. ... You have Turkey very worried on the border and you have. . .[the] Jordanian government worried.”
With economic and financial sanctions, the United States has specifically targeted Iran’s Qods Force, the Iranian Law Enforcement Forces, and Iran’s Ministry of Intelligence and National Security for their support of the Syrian Government and its repressive actions against the Syrian people, along with their support for terrorism worldwide.
The Iranian regime’s assistance to its ally Assad has contributed to innocent blood being shed in Syria. All civilized nations and people agree that the brutality taking place there must stop.