Monday, December 8, 2008

U.S. proxy kills Iranian hostages, Saudis implicated

The Jundullah, a Pakistani-based militant group said to be secretly backed by the U.S., has reportedly killed more than a dozen kidnapped Iranian police officers. The men were abducted in June at a checkpoint in the province of Sistan-Baluchestan.

The Jundullah, translated as the "Army of God," was demanding the release of 200 of its members from Iranian custody in exchange for the hostages. The police officers were reportedly executed last Wednesday after months of the government refusing to give in to the demands.

According to several reports, the militant group, which claims to represent Iran's Baloch minority, has been covertly supported by the CIA and encouraged to launch attacks inside Iran.

"Some former CIA officers say the arrangement is reminiscent of how the U.S. government used proxy armies, funded by other countries including Saudi Arabia, to destabilize the government of Nicaragua in the 1980s," ABC News reported in April of last year.

According to a recent report by the Arabic website Nahrainnet, Saudi Arabia is assisting the U.S-backed covert operations against Iran.

"According to information obtained from sources in Peshawar, Saudi Arabia has been directly supporting Jundullah to carry out the hostage taking of Iranian police officers," Press TV reported, citing Nahrainnet. "The article claims Saudi Arabia and the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) have been using the 'proxy army' to destabilize the government in Iran."

The Iranian government has promised to deliver a "tooth-breaking" retaliation against the Jundullah for executing the police officers, suggesting the U.S.-Iranian proxy war may be heating up.

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