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By Donald Lambro
Growth spikes are little more than trend-free anomalies
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Matthew Levitt
"A closer look at Hezbollah" (Commentary, Sept. 12), the otherwise informative review by Joshua Sinai of "Hezbollah: The Global Footprint of Lebanon's Party of God," written by Matthew Levitt, confuses one important matter.
With its enormously unpopular involvement on the side of President Bashar Assad in the Syrian civil war against the regime's primarily Sunni opposition, the Shiite-based Lebanese Hezbollah now finds itself facing the most severe existential crisis since its creation in the early 1980s.
With the White House closer to launching a surgical military strike on Syria, questions swirl over the extent to which such an attack could trigger a wave of terrorism directed at the U.S. and Israel.
On Sunday, a regional group will try to reach Jews in and around Washington, D.C., to help forge a greater sense of community and throw some education into the process.
Iran's nuclear ambitions may loom large, but lurking in the shadow of President Obama's highly anticipated visit to Israel this week is a protracted and secretive war already being waged between Jerusalem and Tehran.
Iranian officials on Wednesday acknowledged providing military assistance, including missile technology, to the Hamas militants in the Gaza Strip.
The CIA's operations in Lebanon have been badly damaged after Hezbollah identified and captured a number of U.S. spies recently, current and former U.S. officials told the Associated Press. The intelligence debacle is particularly troubling because the CIA saw it coming.
The Bush administration's decision to designated Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), the elite military arm of the radical Islamist regime in Tehran, as a "specially designated global terrorist" (SDGT) organization strikes a huge blow against one of the world's most deadly jihadist groups. The IRGC, through its longstanding relationship with Hezbollah, has the blood of hundreds of Americans on its hands — among them the 241 American servicemen who were killed in the Oct. 23, 1983, bombing of the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon. In essence, SDGT designation will treat the Revolutionary Guards, who are heavily involved in obtaining nuclear weapons technology and supporting terrorist organizations, much the same as the Cali and Medellin drug cartels, making it possible to move relatively quickly to seize the organization's business assets — which are substantial. Federal officials said that the IRGC would become the first military branch of a national government to be included on the terrorism list — which generally consists of non-state actors.
Hezbollah ("Party of God" in Arabic) has multiple identities, Mr. Levitt writes.
Iran "maintains a network of intelligence agents specifically tasked with sponsoring and executing terrorist attacks in the Western Hemisphere," Mr. Levitt wrote.