Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Roles of Iran's Revolutionary Guard

Heshmat Alavi is an activist who writes for a wide variety of publications. Here, he writes in Al Arabiya about Iran’s Revolutionary Guards. The thrust of the article is an argument favoring the designation of the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization. The value for students of Iran's regime is in the description he makes of the Revolutionary Guard's roles in the regime. Are his numbers reliable? verifiable?

Why Iran’s Revolutionary Guards deserve to be blacklisted
If the Iran Revolutionary Guard Corps [IRGC] is blacklisted, this very important entity for the Iranian regime will be placed under the following restrictions according to US laws:

- All IRGC assets in the US will be subject to confiscation
- No US citizen of company, or sister company, are authorized to engage in goods or service transactions with the IRGC
- US banks are banned from financial transactions with the IRGC
- The US can confiscate or inspect ships and boats belonging to the IRGC in international waters

The IRGC is considered the main pillar of the mullahs’ regime, in charge of pursuing Tehran’s policy of domestic crackdown and exporting terrorism abroad…
IRGC Commanders
The IRGC is a large economic powerhouse. There are no exact statistics of the budget or revenue the IRGC enjoys through its economic activities. There is no doubt, however, that the IRGC, along with its long slate of entities and affiliated organizations, has an in-depth presence in all aspects of Iran’s life. This includes the oil and gas industry, communications, major construction projects, transportation, power projects and imports.

Experts estimate the IRGC is in control of around 20 to 40 percent of Iran’s economy. The IRGC runs 812 companies registered inside the country and abroad…

Currently, the IRGC is involved in 1,700 government contracts… These contracts have transformed the IRGC into the largest economic force not only in Iran, but across the Middle East… Reuters reported the IRGC empire has an annual sale of $10 to $12 billion…

The IRGC has been the main element behind oppressing social rallies and protests. The 2009 uprising was quelled only after the IRGC was dispatched into the city streets…

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