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March 13, 2006

Chavez Assisting Castro With Moving Offensive Weapons Into Cuba From Iran?

Topics: Iran

cu-iran.jpg If this story is true, it's one we need to be hearing much more about:

A secret agreement between Venezuela and Iran provides for the shipment of Iranian long-range missiles to Venezuela, where they will be transferred to Venezuelan-flag vessels for transport to Cuba. It is believed that Venezuelan oil tankers will be the method of shipment, thereby concealing the cargo from any prying overhead spy satellites or American aircraft. These missiles will give the Castro regime an offensive capability that, in essence, will affect the balance of power in the Caribbean, and pose a threat to the US.

This is bad enough, but factor in one obscure footnote from the original Cuban missile crisis: many intelligence sources believe that not ALL the Soviet nuclear weapons placed inside Cuba forty years ago were removed by the Russians. Provided that they have been properly stored and maintained, they could be the payload for the Iranian missiles. This gives new and dangerous meaning to the term state-sponsored terrorism. Would Castro rattle a nuclear sword at the United States? You bet he would.

The author of the piece, Kenneth Rijock, cautions that for those who believe this article to be unsupported allegations of a person with his own agenda, be advised that the Iranian-Venezuelan-Cuban missile connection was uncovered in 2004, and reported to agencies of the US government, by established intelligence sources operating inside Venezuela. They chose not to follow up on the information.

In January of this year, Frederick W. Stakelbeck wrote of the Iran-Cuba connection in his piece entitled, "The Iran-Cuba Axis."

(...) Given Castro's affection for nuclear weapons, it should come as no surprise to observers that the aging terrorist has befriended Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Just last week, (...) Ahmadinejad, a recognized anti-Semite and human rights violator, threatened unspecified retaliation against the West unless it recognized his own country's nuclear ambitions. "If they want to deny us our right, we have ways to secure those rights," he said in Tehran.

(...) Given Castro and Ahmadinejad's mutual distaste for the U.S. and Western-styled democracy, increased bilateral cooperation between the two countries presents serious national security concerns for the U.S. This month, Iranian Expediency Council Chairman Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani noted the importance of expanding Tehran-Havana relations saying both countries must come together to confront unilateralism of "the big power" -- an obvious reference to the U.S.

(...) In a disquieting development, Castro visited Tehran in November where he given sacred Islamic texts in Spanish and was invited by Iran's religious leadership to convert to Islam. "We spoke to Castro for several hours and I think we even almost managed to convince him to convert to Islam," said one source close to the meeting. "Castro is certain that the Cuban people are suffering from a lack of spiritually, and seems interested in Islam, above all the writings of Iranian leader Khomeini," the source said.

(...) But Castro's initial interest in Islam actually surfaced many years ago. Shortly after Ayatollah Khomeini's followers drove the Shah into exile in 1979, Castro dispatched Cuban envoys to Tehran to rekindle bilateral relations, professing his admiration for the "revolutionary role of Islam."

(...) Bilateral cooperation in the area of biotechnology research and production and the transfer of Cuban biological and chemical know-how to Iranian institutions, continue to attract Washington's attention. Of course, Castro has rejected allegations of involvement with Iran in the manufacture of biological and chemical weapons, saying that joint operations are instead devoted to eradicating hunger and disease on the impoverished island.

(...) In addition to biotechnology cooperation, Iran has used Cuba's electronic transmissions jamming expertise and the Chinese equipped electronic warfare base near Havana, to interfere with U.S. sponsored pro-democracy broadcasts into Tehran. Intelligence reports over the past year have also uncovered covert cooperation between the two countries in the development and testing of electromagnetic weapons that have the capacity to disrupt telecommunication networks, cut power supplies and damage sophisticated computers. During a time of international crisis, these "e-bombs" can be delivered by cruise missiles, unmanned aerial vehicles or aerial bombs to the U.S. mainland. Russian, Chinese and Iranian scientists are currently working side-by-side with Cuban scientists to develop these weapons for eventual use against the U.S. communications and military infrastructure.

In the context of these articles, this 2004 piece, "China Backs Iran Against The Great Satan," now sounds more prophetic than rant.

This looks like something worth much more of our attention than it appears to be getting.

'New populists' vs. the West


Hat tip - Stefi at Free Thoughts

Posted by Richard at March 13, 2006 11:48 AM

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