- The Washington Times - Friday, August 25, 2000

New York City will have a rather interesting visitor next week. He is Mohsen Rezaii, former commander in chief of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps who on Oct. 21, 1991, said: "The day will come when, like Salman Rushdie, the Jews will not find a place to live anywhere in the world."

Mr. Rezaii is part of an Iranian delegation, headed by Sayad Mohammed Khatami, the country's puppet president, to a conference of the Interparliamentary Union to be held at the United Nations Aug. 30 through Sept. 1. The Clinton-Albright State Department has been selling Mr. Khatami as a "moderate" since his election on May 23, 1997. The real power in Iran is, of course, Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

In 1981 Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomenei, revolutionary founder of the Iranian theocracy, appointed Mr. Rezaii to his command post after he had organized the Guards Corps intelligence section. He was the Corps commander in chief for 16 years and is credited with a number of terrorist coups, including the following:

• The 1983 suicide bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut, which killed 243 Marines. Former Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger blamed the terrorist attack on "Iranians with sponsorship and knowledge and authority of the Syrian government." In a boastful and no doubt proud moment, Mr. Rezaii told an Iranian newspaper, Ressalat, (July 20, 1987): "Both the TNT and the ideology which in one blast sent to hell 400(sic) officers, NCOs, and soldiers at the Marine headquarters have been provided by Iran."

• The hostage taking in Lebanon is believed to have been entirely the work of Mr. Rezaii's Corps. A Kuwaiti newspaper, Al Qabas, wrote January 30, 1988: "Diplomatic sources in Beirut say that the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Commander in Chief Mohsen Rezaii constantly travels to Beirut. He has become the ultimate authority in anything related to the Western hostages. These sources add that all 17 hostages in Lebanon are under the complete control of Rezaii and Hezbollah."

• During the Iran-Iraq war, Mr. Rezaii's Guards dispatched children to the war fronts to act as human minesweepers. The children were forced to run on suspected mine fields. How many children were killed or maimed is not known but Iranian dissidents in this country say the tactics resulted in the death of thousands of children and students.

• As commander of the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, Mr. Rezaii called for the organization of an international Islamic army so as to prevent "the interference by superpowers in disputes among Muslim countries." To that end he formed the Qods (Jerusalem) Forces in 1989, whose main task was the planning and execution of terrorist attacks in Arab and Islamic countries.

• The National Council of Resistance, based on the Iran-Iraq border, charges that Mr. Rezaii is responsible for the massacre of 30,000 political prisoners.

With this kind of record, the question to be raised with the White House and the State Department is whether Mr. Rezaii should be allowed into this country even with a diplomatic passport and visa. This isn't quite your ordinary terrorist, as can be judged from Mr. Rezaii's declaration Oct. 21, 1991, in an Iranian newspaper, Kayhan:

"The Muslims' fury and hatred will burn the heart of Washington someday and America will be responsible for its repercussions." Secretary of State Madeleine Albright might call Mr. Rezaii's words overheated rhetoric but this man shoots to kill.

The parliamentary conference is going to be followed by the U.N. Millennium Assembly which opens Sept. 5. Mr. Clinton, like many other heads of state, is expected to attend the session. Should the president of the United States be in the same United Nations chamber with Mr. Rezaii, Iran's assassin in chief, who boasts that he is responsible for the death of 243 U.S. Marines?

Perhaps even the ever-optimistic Mr. Clinton might want to alter his sunny view of Iran. To send someone like Mr. Rezaii with his bloody terrorist record to New York, United Nations or no United Nations, is spitting right in the eye of the Great Satan.

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