There’s little doubt that Iran’s “deep state” struggle will intensify after a senior IRGC commander from the country’s “principalist” faction took responsibility for his country accidentally shooting down UIA-752 and thus exposing the “reformist” government’s previous efforts to cover up what happened, especially since his press conference revealed that the authorities were made aware of this accident right after it occurred and that the military’s earlier request for a no-fly zone which could have prevented this tragedy was rejected.
The No-Fly Zone That Never Was
A senior IRGC commander from the country’s “principalist” faction took responsibility for his country accidentally shooting down UIA-752, which was a mea culpa moment for Alt-Media which had hitherto largely repeated Tehran’s previously vehement claims that any such accusation of its complicity in this tragedy is “big lie…(a) psychological operation…adding insult to the injury of the bereaved families”. Commander of the IRGC’s Aerospace Force Amir Ali Hajizadeh was reported by RT to have “stated that the IRGC notified the authorities that it had likely hit the plane back right after the incident, yet this information was not disclosed to the public while the crash site was being investigated”, which is why he said that “neither IRGC nor the country’s military sought to hide the incident”. The “reformist” government, however, isn’t so innocent since it pushed the now totally debunked narrative that nothing of the sort transpired despite allegedly having been informed from the get-go about this accident. In fact, The Guardian reported on a twitter thread by Reza Khaasteh, a journalist with Iran Front Page news, who translated more of the commander’s comments during his press conference and shockingly revealed that he also said that “we had requested the establishment of a no-fly zone given the war situation. But it was not approved for certain considerations.” All of this deserves to be analyzed more in depth because it seems like the cover-up is much deeper than initially thought.
A Carefully Choreographed Stunt…
If Commander Hajizadeh’s claims are to be believed, and there’s no reason at this point to doubt them, then there’s a serious “deep state” struggle occurring in Iran at the moment which threatens the country’s stability at this very sensitive geopolitical time. In the author’s earlier piece titled “The US vs. Iran: Who Won & Who Lost?“, it was argued that Iran carefully choreographed its promised response to the US’ assassination of Maj. Gen. Soleimani, relying on the Iraqi Prime Minister’s own public acknowledgement that the Iranians informed him of their planned missile strike in advance, after which he in turn tipped off the US so that there wouldn’t be any casualties. Reuters later reported that Denmark, which had troops stationed at one of the attacked bases, was warned of what would happen a full six hours before it occurred, further adding credence to the author’s conclusion that Iran’s response was intended more for “face-saving” purposes at home and went to great lengths to ensure that the US wouldn’t militarily react. Commander Hajizadeh himself basically admitted this when he said that “We didn’t seek to kill. We sought to hit the enemy’s military machine.” Thus, there shouldn’t be any question that the attack itself was just an elaborate soft power stunt for mostly domestic political reasons since both the “reformist” and “principalist” factions didn’t want to risk provoking millions of patriots into the streets for protests had they not done something dramatic after Maj. Gen. Soleimani’s assassination.
That much appears to be clear for the aforementioned reasons, but what’s unknown is why the “reformist” government refused the “principalist” IRGC’s request to impose a no-fly zone which would have made this charade all the more “convincing”. It can’t be known for sure, but it might simply be the case that the “reformists” were so arrogant that the US wouldn’t militarily respond as a result of their tacitly coordinated action that they didn’t see the need to go that far and thus deprive the sanctions-beleaguered and cash-strapped state of valuable revenue from overflight taxes. If that’s the calculation that was made in ultimately deciding not to ground all flights over the country, then it would speak to just how economically desperate the country has become since the onset of the US’ unilateral sanctions regime and its threatened “secondary sanctions” against all violators. That, however, doesn’t explain why the IRGC would be at the ready to defend the country’s airspace per its duty if it was really convinced that no US counter-strike would be forthcoming and which supposedly contributed to its forces overreacting to the misidentification of an ascending civilian airliner as an incoming enemy missile. Considering that many flights were landing and taking off in the hours since Iran’s carefully choreographed stunt, as well as the fact that planes and missiles clearly give off different signatures to relevant military equipment, it’s all the more bewildering how this tragedy transpired.
Blood On Both Hands
Something clearly doesn’t add up. The “principalist” IRGC was obviously in on the “reformist” government’s game of indirectly coordinating a bloodless response to Maj. Gen. Soleimani’s assassination, yet this knowledge was probably kept on a need-to-know basis and therefore only known by the highest echelons of that institution. The lower rank-and-file manning its defense systems likely didn’t know about this and thus sincerely expected an overwhelming US response, so much so that one of their operators anxiously overreacted ten seconds after their equipment mistakenly identified a civilian airliner as a cruise missile and thus shot the plane out of the sky. That could have predictably been avoided by simply imposing the no-fly zone and going along with the charade in order to make it even more “convincing”, which would also have prevented any such accident from occurring. After all, Commander Hajizadeh did indeed claim that a no-fly zone request was submitted but it was ultimately rejected by the government, so the question comes down to why that decision was made and who should be held responsible. That fateful choice led to the deaths of 176 innocent people, eventually exposed the “reformist” government’s cover-up thereof, and resulted in bringing shame to the IRGC, to say nothing of drawing so much attention to the carefully choreographed response that it’s entire purpose has been defeated. Both factions have blood on their hands, but they’ll likely fight among themselves over who is guiltier as part of an opportunistic power play to put an end to their “deep state” struggle once and for all.
By Andrew Korybko
Source: One World