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Source: The Telegraph

Sep 25, 2023

Iran poses an existential threat to the West

The Tehran regime is not just a problem for its own citizens and Israel. We should all fear this theocracy

By Jake Wallis Simons

On Tuesday, the Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi, nicknamed “the Butcher of Tehran” for executing more than 30,000 political prisoners, was allowed to address the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Aside from Israel – its ambassador was bundled out after staging a one-man protest – no democracy spoke out.

It was an ironic way to mark the anniversary of the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, believed to have been killed by the regime’s morality police. The country remains in turmoil, with thousands of youngsters risking their lives by expressing their anger at her death and their desire for freedom. Hundreds have been killed.

The spectacle at the UN forms an apt metaphor for the West’s absurdly soft approach towards the Islamic Republic. Iran already holds one of the vice-presidencies of the UN General Assembly; unbelievably, in November, it will take up the chair of the UN Human Rights Council Social Forum.

Outside the UN buildings in New York, emboldened members of the Iranian delegation – one of whom allegedly led the 2011 storming of the British embassy in Tehran – threw their weight around. One told a journalist: “I really like that your hand is trembling. You’ll all be trembling like this for the rest of your lives. All the enemies of the Islamic Republic of Iran must tremble.”

Recently, the Biden administration has been finding creative ways to quietly lift many sanctions in what analysts suspect amounts to an informal deal that allows Iran to remain as a nuclear threshold state.

In August, the US released $6 billion into Iranian coffers to secure the release of five Americans. Flushed with cash to fund its mischief-making overseas, the theocracy now operates in the knowledge that if it ever runs short, it can always resort to kidnap, at a going rate of $1.2 billion per hostage.

The Western diplomatic class has long underestimated the millenarian cult at the heart of the Islamic Republic.

Tehran’s rulers are bent on ushering in the apocalypse; their ambitions focus on realising a prophecy of world war starting with Israel, out of which a messianic figure known as the Mahdi will emerge. This is a theological mania on a par with Islamic State.

The Iranian regime is the foremost threat to security in Britain. For years, thugs from the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) have bullied and threatened dissidents on our shores, on some occasions with guns.

Last year, the director general of MI5 revealed that Iran’s “aggressive intelligence services” had started launching terrorist attacks on our soil, attempting to assassinate 10 British residents in 2022. In February, the head of counter-terrorism at the Met disclosed that 15 abduction and murder plots by the IRGC had been foiled.

Security minister Tom Tugendhat confirmed Jewish Chronicle reports that Iran was tracking prominent British Jews as “preparation for future lethal operations”.

Yet the Foreign Secretary continues to block attempts by the Home Office to blacklist the IRGC as a terror group, hindering the dismantlement of their UK infrastructure. James Cleverly, it seems, places diplomacy above security.

He is not alone in that. Back at the UN, the preoccupation is not with Iran but with Jews. Infested with Israelophobia, the institution has no fewer than seven bodies devoted to scrutinising the Jewish state, while its Human Rights Council is mandated to discuss Israel at every single meeting.

No other country is treated in this way. Least of all Iran.

Yet if the Ayatollahs go nuclear, the Jewish state is simply first in line for the evil that will come for us all.

On Tuesday, only Jerusalem’s ambassador took a stand against the Butcher of Tehran. When will the rest of the West wake up?

Jake Wallis Simons is the author of ‘Israelophobia: The Newest Version of the Oldest Hatred and What To Do About It’, out now

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