Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Iranians In Iraq


JAKARTA, Indonesia - A top U.S. general said Tuesday there was no evidence the Iranian government was supplying Iraqi insurgents with highly lethal roadside bombs, apparently contradicting claims by other U.S. military and administration officials.

Gen. Peter Pace, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said U.S. forces hunting down militant networks that produced roadside bombs had arrested Iranians and that some of the material used in the devices were made in Iran.

“That does not translate that the Iranian government per se, for sure, is directly involved in doing this,” Pace told reporters in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta. “What it does say is that things made in Iran are being used in Iraq to kill coalition soldiers.”
Meanwhile, Iraq seems to understand that it doesn't really matter whether the government's involved or not, they need to be stopped (along with foreign terrorists):
Iraq announced plans on Tuesday to close its borders with Iran and Syria and lengthen a night curfew on vehicles in new emergency measures to try to curb unrelenting violence in Baghdad.

The measures were unveiled during another day of bloodshed in the capital in which a suicide bomber blew up a truck rigged with explosives near a Baghdad college, killing 18 people just a day after bomb blasts ripped apart two crowded city markets.

They are the clearest sign yet from Shi'ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki that an offensive against militants who are tearing Iraq apart is picking up pace.

Update, 5:30 pm -

I wonder if Pace was privy to this when he made that statement:

Austrian sniper rifles that were exported to Iran have been discovered in the hands of Iraqi terrorists, The Daily Telegraph has learned.

More than 100 of the.50 calibre weapons, capable of penetrating body armour, have been discovered by American troops during raids.

The guns were part of a shipment of 800 rifles that the Austrian company, Steyr-Mannlicher, exported legally to Iran last year.

The sale was condemned in Washington and London because officials were worried that the weapons would be used by insurgents against British and American troops.

Within 45 days of the first HS50 Steyr Mannlicher rifles arriving in Iran, an American officer in an armoured vehicle was shot dead by an Iraqi insurgent using the weapon.

Over the last six months American forces have found small caches of the £10,000 rifles but in the last 24 hours a raid in Baghdad brought the total to more than 100, US defence sources reported.

Gee. I'm sure the Iranian government had nothing to do with purchasing 800, $20,000 rifles. That's just spare change to terrorists who live in caves.

What's a $20,000 rifle look like you ask. This: