A Twitter account attributed to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) claims to show Iranian soldiers in Lebanon near the border with Israel, the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) reported on Friday. In the tweet, published last week, the faces of the soldiers were obscured, but they had been published previously.
Previously, on December 17, 2014, a blog affiliated with the Iranian Army (newss.blog.ir) published the same photos with the soldiers’ faces unobscured, and several other photos, noting that they were taken in southern Lebanon in the Beqaa and Baalbeq region. The blog post was titled: “We are arriving… near the Mother of Corruption, the accursed Israel; soon we will pass over their bodies, Allah willing.” The photos’ date imprint, October 24, 2014, can be seen in these photos, and the original captions state “Uploaded @ Military.ir.”
It should be noted that Iranian officials have been implying for some time that Iran is extending assistance and has a presence in South Lebanon. On May 2, 2014, Yahya Rahim Safavi, a security advisor to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and a former commander of the IRGC, said that “Iran’s line of defense against Israel extends to South Lebanon, and our strategic defense depth extends to the Mediterranean and above Israel’s head [i.e., to the region north of Israel].” On September 16, 2014, IRGC commander Ali Jafari said that “the missions of the Qods Force [an IRGC elite unit] are [carried out] outside Iran’s borders. Assistance to revolutionary and resistance movements, and to the oppressed, takes place worldwide. If there will be need for assistance in Syria, Iraq or Lebanon, we will assist.”
انتشار رزمندگان سپاه پاسداران انقلاب اسلامى در مرز فلسطين اشغالى pic.twitter.com/stMp0hr7Rf
— IRGC Supporter (@IRGCnetwork) December 25, 2014
MEMRI points out that a Hezbollah-affiliated newspaper reported in October that IRGC troops were operating in Lebanon, south of the Litani River, in violation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1701.
Earlier this month Iran launched a “We love fighting Israel” social media campaign.
[Photo: TheSayedMohammad / YouTube ]