In the wake of the attempted terror attack in Paris last month, Europe must take decisive action against Iran, or risk again being the target of terrorist attacks plotted by the Islamic Republic, two experts argued in an analysis published Wednesday at Real Clear Defense.
Benjamin Weinthal, a fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, and Toby Dershowitz, a senior vice president there, observed that despite the arrest of Assadollah Assadi, Iran’s ambassador to Austria, in the plot just days later “Austria’s leaders welcomed Iranian President Hasan Rouhani to Vienna. Rather than canceling his visit, they provided a military honor guard.”
Austria’s chamber of commerce even advocated for stronger commercial ties with Iran during Rouhani’s visit, despite the arrest of an Iranian diplomat accredited to Austria.
The push for strengthened ties between Austria and Iran was made even though Austria felt that Assadi’s role in the Paris terror plot was significant enough to ask Iran to lift his diplomatic immunity.
The European record of appeasing Iran, despite the setting for the Islamic Republic’s efforts to eliminate opponents, is a long one.
In 1992, one of Iran’s deadliest attacks in the West took place in Berlin. Several Kurdish activists were shot dead in the Mykonos restaurant.
At the trial for the killings, Judge Frithjof Kubsch accused Iran’s leadership of being behind the attack and described it as “an official liquidation measure ordered without a verdict.” Berlin’s prosecutor accused then-Iranian president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei of being behind the killings.
However, Germany only recalled its ambassador from Tehran and expelled four Iranian diplomats. Iran took the same steps against Germany.
Even though the assassins were given life sentences, German Chancellor Angela Merkel freed them in 2007. One of them, Kazem Darabi, “was greeted by senior Foreign Ministry officials,” when he returned to Iran. Another one of the killers, who was not captured, was rewarded with a Mercedes and cash by the regime.
Germany has not pursued an international warrant for then-Minister of Intelligence Ali Fallahian, who is suspected of ordering the attack.
Weinthal and Dershowitz argue, “If nothing changes, Iran will carry out more assassinations on European soil.” They conclude by urging Europe to come to terms with the United States and mount “a comprehensive international pressure campaign that compels Iran to shut down its terrorism, spy and assassination network.”
[Photo: Bundeskanzleramt Oesterreich / YouTube ]