Early this week, Tehran deployed in southern Iraq and southern Iran contingents of Revolutionary Guards Corps of suicide fighters in anticipation of an American attack on Iranian soil.
Those units were posted to fight off a possible US Marines landing in southern Iran. Tehran believes the American force will be assigned with destroying RG bases and infrastructure in the south and sabotaging the oil wells and installations of Iranian province of Khuzestan.
The RG fighters were dropped by helicopter in southern Iraq on June 24 and 25. Their task will be to launch suicide attacks on US and British bases and command posts in the region the moment Iran comes under American attack.
Also in anticipation of a showdown, Tehran announced Tuesday at only two hours notice the rationing of gas for Iranâ€™s private motorists to 100 liters per month. Protesters started torching gas stations Wednesday.
For lack of refining capacity, the oil-rich country imports 40% of its gasoline needs and oil products. Tehran sharply reined in private consumption to free up reserves for the armed forces in case of war and keep power stations and water supplies running in an emergency.
DEBKAfileâ€™s military sources report that these two steps in three days attest to the certainty of Iranâ€™s government and military that a military confrontation with the US is around the corner.
The British Sun newspaper first disclosed the Iranian troop thrust into southern Iraq Monday, June 25, reporting: â€œIt is an extremely alarming development and raises the stakes considerably. In effect, it means we are in a full war with Iran â€“ but nobody has officially declared it.â€
DEBKAfileâ€™s military experts add: In effect, the Iranian military incursion of Iraq is the fourth military invasion of foreign territory underway in the Middle East at this very moment. None are officially admitted.
27 Jun 2007