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  • Israel blames Iran after attacks on embassy staff

    Israel blames Iran after attacks on embassy staff | Reuters
    (Reuters) - Israel accused arch-enemies Iran and its Lebanese ally Hezbollah of being behind twin bomb attacks that targeted Israeli embassy staff in India and Georgia Monday, wounding four people.

    Tehran denied involvement in the attacks, which amplified tensions between two countries already at loggerheads over Iran's nuclear program, and accused Israel of carrying out the attacks itself. Hezbollah made no comment.

    In the Indian capital New Delhi, a bomb wrecked a car taking an Israeli embassy official to pick up her children from school, police said. The woman needed surgery to remove shrapnel but her life was not in danger.

    Her driver and two passers-by suffered lesser injuries.

    Israeli officials said an attempt to bomb an embassy car in the Georgian capital Tbilisi failed, and the device was defused.

    Israel had put its foreign missions on high alert ahead of the fourth anniversary this past Sunday of the assassination in Syria of the military mastermind of Hezbollah, Imad Moughniyeh - an attack widely assumed to be the work of Israeli agents.

    Israel is believed to be locked in a wider covert war with Iran, whose nuclear program has been beset by apparent sabotage, including the unclaimed killings of several Iranian nuclear scientists, most recently in January.

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blamed both Iran and Hezbollah, accusing them of responsibility for a string of recent attempted attacks on Israeli interests in countries as far apart as Thailand and Azerbaijan.

    "Iran and its proxy Hezbollah are behind each of these attacks," said Netanyahu, who dismisses Iran denials that it is trying to develop a nuclear weapon. "We will continue to take strong and systematic, yet patient, action against the international terrorism that originates in Iran."

    Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast rejected Netanyahu's accusation, saying it was Israel that had carried out the attacks as part of its psychological warfare against Iran.

    "It seems that these suspicious incidents are designed by the Zionist regime and carried out with the aim of harming Iran's reputation," the official news agency IRNA quoted Mehmanparast as saying.

    Israeli officials have long made veiled threats to retaliate against Lebanon for any Hezbollah attack on their interests abroad, arguing that as the Islamist group sits in government in Beirut, its actions reflect national policy.

    MOTORCYCLE ATTACK

    The New Delhi blast took place some 500 meters (yards) from the official residence of Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

    B.K. Gupta, the New Delhi police commissioner, said a witness had seen a motorcyclist stick a device to the back of the car, which had diplomatic registration plates.

    "The eyewitness ... says it (was) some kind of magnetic device. As soon as the motorcycle moved away a good distance from the car, the car blew up and it caught fire," said Gupta.

    The Iranian scientist killed in Tehran last month died in a similar such attack by a motorcyclist who attached a device to his car. No one has claimed responsibility for that, although Iran was quick to accuse agents of Israel and its U.S. ally.

    Israel named the injured woman as Talya Yehoshua Koren, who worked at the embassy and was married to the defense attache.

    "She was able to drag herself from the car and is now at the American hospital, where two Israeli doctors are treating her," an Israeli Defense Ministry spokesman said.

    Thailand said last month its police had arrested a Lebanese man linked to Hezbollah, and that he later led them to a warehouse stocked with bomb-making materials. Also last month, authorities in Azerbaijan arrested two people suspected of plotting to attack Israel's ambassador and a local rabbi.

    In a speech on January 24, Israel's military chief of staff, Lieutenant-General Benny Gantz, accused Hezbollah of trying to carry out proxy attacks while avoiding direct confrontation.

    "During this period of time, when our enemies in the north avoid carrying out attacks, fearing a harsh response, we are witnesses to the ongoing attempts by Hezbollah and other hostile entities to execute vicious terror attacks at locations far away from the state of Israel," Gantz said.

    "I suggest that no one test our resolve."

    Israel and Hezbollah fought an inconclusive and costly war across the Lebanese border in 2006.

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in a statement, condemned the attacks on Israeli targets: "The scourge of terrorism is an affront to the entire international community," she said. "We stand ready to assist with any investigation."

    (Additional reporting by Krittivas Mukherjee, Annie Banerji and Arup Roy Choudhury in New Delhi, Zahra Hosseinian in Tehran, Ori Lewis in Jerusalem; Editing by Crispian Balmer, Mark Heinrich,
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  • #2
    If you think about it, there is no more proof of Iranian hands in this then there was Israeli's in the death of a few of their scientists. Speculations dont count.
    Fortitude.....The strength to persist...The courage to endure.

    Comment


    • #3
      "During this period of time, when our enemies in the north avoid carrying out attacks, fearing a harsh response, we are witnesses to the ongoing attempts by Hezbollah and other hostile entities to execute vicious terror attacks at locations far away from the state of Israel," Gantz said.

      Hezbollah is active in India and Georgia? Anyone think Iran has other proxies besides Hezbollah to carry out attacks? Or does Israel view this as another opportunity to blame Hezbollah without any actual evidence?
      Last edited by Dago; 13 Feb 12,, 23:27.
      sigpic

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Dago View Post
        Hezbollah is active in India and Georgia? Anyone think Iran has other proxies besides Hezbollah to carry out attacks? Or does Israel view this as another opportunity to blame Hezbollah without any actual evidence?
        Not Hezbollah, but it could have been out sourced to the Laskhar-i-Toiba.

        Cheers!...on the rocks!!

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by lemontree View Post
          Not Hezbollah, but it could have been out sourced to the Laskhar-i-Toiba.
          That is exactly what I was thinking. However with Georgia, I am not sure. Is Laskhar-I-Toiba active in Georgia also?
          sigpic

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          • #6
            Whoops............

            Bangkok blasts wound Iranian attacker, 4 others
            Feb 14, 8:52 AM (ET)

            By THANYARAT DOKSONE and TODD PITMAN

            BANGKOK (AP) - An Iranian man carrying grenades blew off his own legs and wounded four civilians Tuesday after an earlier blast shook his house in Bangkok, Thai authorities said. The explosions came a day after an Israeli diplomatic car was bombed in India - an attack Israel blamed on Iran.

            Authorities say it's unclear whether the Bangkok explosions were linked to the New Delhi attack, but Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said, "we can't rule out any possibility."

            Thai security forces found more explosives in a house where the Iranian man was staying in Bangkok, but the possible targets were not known, Police Gen. Pansiri Prapawat said.

            A passport found at the scene of one blast indicated the assailant was Saeid Moradi from Iran, Pansiri said. Authorities in Tehran could not immediately be reached for comment.

            Tuesday's violence began in the afternoon when a stash of explosives apparently detonated by accident in Moradi's house, blowing off part of the roof. Police said two foreigners quickly left the residence, followed by a wounded Moradi.

            "He tried to wave down a taxi, but he was covered in blood, and the driver refused to take him," Pansiri said. He then threw an explosive at the taxi and began running.

            Police who had been called to the area then tried to apprehend Moradi, who hurled a grenade to defend himself. "But somehow it bounced back" and blew off his legs, Pansiri said.

            Photos of the wounded Iranian showed him covered in dark soot on a sidewalk strewn with broken glass. He lay in front of a Thai primary and secondary school. No students were reported wounded.

            A dark satchel nearby was investigated by a bomb disposal unit. Pansiri said police found Iranian currency, US dollars and Thai money in the bag.

            Three Thai men and one Thai woman were brought to Kluaynamthai Hospital for treatment of injuries, said Suwinai Busarakamwong, a doctor there.

            Another Iranian was detained Tuesday night at Bangkok's international airport as he attempted to leave for neighboring Malaysia, said police commander Winai Thongsong. Authorities were interrogating the man, but it was not yet known whether he was involved in Tuesday's blasts.

            Last month, a Lebanese-Swedish man with alleged links to pro-Iranian Hezbollah militants was detained by Thai police. He led authorities to a warehouse filled with more than 8,800 pounds (4,000 kilograms) of urea fertilizer and several gallons of liquid ammonium nitrate.

            Israel and the United States at the time warned their citizens to be alert in the capital, but Thai authorities said Thailand appeared to have been a staging ground but not the target of any attack.

            Pansiri said that "so far, we haven't found any links between these two cases."

            Immigration police are trying to trace Moradi's movements, but initial reports indicated he flew into Thailand from Seoul, South Korea on Feb. 8, Pansiri said. He landed at the southern Thai resort town of Phuket, then stayed in a hotel in Chonburi, a couple hours drive southeast of Bangkok, for several nights.

            Bangkok's blasts came one day after bombs targeted Israeli diplomats in India and Georgia. The attack in India wounded four people, while the device found in Georgia did not explode. Iran has denied it was responsible.

            In Jerusalem, Israeli foreign ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said there was not yet any sign that any targets in Bangkok were Israeli or Jewish.

            Israeli police have increased the state of alert in the country, emphasizing public places, foreign embassies and offices, as well as Ben-Gurion International Airport.

            Thailand has rarely been a target for foreign terrorists, although a domestic Muslim insurgency in the country's south has involved bombings of civilian targets.

            ---

            Associated Press writers Jocelyn Gecker in Bangkok and Amy Teibel in Jerusalem contributed to this report.

            iWon News - Bangkok blasts wound Iranian attacker, 4 others
            Fortitude.....The strength to persist...The courage to endure.

            Comment


            • #7
              et al,

              It is probably a correct assumption that Hezbollah (the state sponsored Lebanese Shiite Terrorist Organization) is becoming a bit more active; and involved in serious recent incidents.

              It is pretty clear that, since the days of Ayatollah Ruhollah Musavi Khomeini (1902-1989), both Iran and Syria have provided substantial support and assistance that have complimented that which the Lebanese have given the organization.

              But in recent times, some of the actions attributed to Hezbollah, particularly outside the local region of origin, may actually be independent and autonomous engagements; not specifically directed by either the central head of Hezbollah --- or it's external benefactors (Iran and Syria).

              The fingerprint is unclear. Yes, Hezbollah appears to be involved; but it may be a bit premature to attribute the direction and targeting to either Iran or Syria (although it is possible).

              Most Respectfully,
              R

              Comment


              • #8
                "The Iranian protest note to Azerbaijan on Sunday asked the Azeri government to "stop the activities of the Mossad intelligence services in that country against Iran", Iran's Irna news agency said." BBC News - Azerbaijan in row with Iran over 'Israeli spies'

                Comment


                • #9
                  Might not be the Iranians. At least in the Indian case..

                  Attack similar to Jama Masjid blast

                  Excerpts:

                  Officials associated with the investigations claim if the similarities between the two incidents as any indication to go by, then the possibility of an Indian Mujahideen module being behind the blast cannot be ruled out.
                  Another similarity between the two incidents is that on both occasions foreigners have been targeted. While it was Taiwanese at Jama Masjid, it is Israeli diplomat on Monday. The strategy clearly was to embarrass India at a global level in both the cases.
                  Further, investigators feel that the IM may want to retaliate as its top cadres, the Darbhanga module, have been arrested in a massive operation by intelligence agencies both for terror cases in Delhi and Mumbai.
                  The Iranians would be stupid to create trouble in one of the few countries still buying large quantities of oil from them.
                  Last edited by Firestorm; 14 Feb 12,, 19:35.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Israelis: Iran Behind Bangkok Bombings, 'Coordinated Attacks' Around the World

                    By RICHARD ESPOSITO
                    Feb. 14, 2012
                    The failed bomb attack by an Iranian national in Bangkok today is just the latest in what Israeli officials say is "a coordinated series of attacks" that began in January, and includes Monday's attacks in India and Georgia, as well as a foiled attempt to assassinate the Israeli ambassador in Azerbaijan.

                    In Tuesday's bombing, an Iranian named Saeid Moradi was in a Bangkok house when a cache of explosives detonated, apparently by accident, taking off a section of the roof.

                    Thai police say that Moradi, wounded by the explosion, tried to flag down a cab on the street. "He was covered in blood, and the driver refused to take him," said Police General Pansiri Prapawat.

                    Moradi then allegedly threw a grenade at the taxi and started running. When he tried to hurl a second grenade at police, the bomb bounced off a tree. It exploded near Moradi and took off his legs. Police will interview him as soon as they are able in order to determine what he was plotting to attack.

                    Four Thai nationals were injured in the explosion. After the incident, Thai police detained a second Iranian national who was attempting to fly from Bangkok to Malaysia.

                    Israeli officials told ABC News "we don't know" what Moradi's intended target was "because he was caught."

                    A spokesman for Israel's foreign ministry has said there is no sign yet that Moradi's alleged targets were Jewish or Israel. Defense Minister Ehud Barak, however, placed the blame on the Iranian government. "The attempted terror attack in Thailand proves once again that Iran and its proxies continue to operate in the ways of terror and the latest attacks are an example of that," said Barak

                    According to Israeli records, one of the most serious of the coordinated wave of attacks came in January, when three Azerbaijani nationals were intercepted before they could attack Israeli ambassador Michael Lotem and a rabbi and a woman at the Chabad center in Baku, the capital. In the 2008 Mumbai attack, terrorists invaded the Chabad center in Mumbai and killed the rabbi, his wife and four hostages.

                    Israeli officials say that three people have been arrested and they were in direct contact with Iranian intelligence. According to the Israelis, the suspects had been promised 150,000 U.S. dollars on completion of the assassination of the ambassador.

                    At the homes of the suspects, local police allegedly discovered drawings of the Israeli embassy, information on the Israeli diplomatic vehicles and specific information on the ambassador.

                    Ambassador Lotem told local media in Azerbaijan Tuesday that Iran's "direct involvement" in both the Indian and Bangkok bombings "is non-disputable."

                    On Monday, a motorcyclist placed a sticky bomb on a minivan belonging to the Israeli embassy in New Delhi, India. Four people were injured in the explosion, including the wife of a diplomat and her driver. A bomb placed on an Israeli car in Tblisi, Georgia failed to detonate and was defused.

                    In January, Thai police arrested a Lebanese-Swedish national will alleged links to Hezbollah, Iran's Lebanese affiliate, who led them to a cache of explosive material. Days prior to the arrest, Israel and the U.S. had both advised travelers to be wary of attacks on areas frequented by foreigners.
                    Of course, Israel almost has to say this, regardless of whether they think this or not
                    Meddle not in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with ketchup.

                    Abusing Yellow is meant to be a labor of love, not something you sell to the highest bidder.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Dreadnought View Post
                      Police who had been called to the area then tried to apprehend Moradi, who hurled a grenade to defend himself. "But somehow it bounced back" and blew off his legs, Pansiri said.
                      that's when you know it's not your day

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        This is somewhat disconcerting. It is understandable when nations pick on each other's spies and scientists, but when diplomats start being fair targets, it starts becoming a bad precedent.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          AFAIK, back in the days killing the messenger (the diplomat) was an act of aggression and a start of war.
                          No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

                          To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Doktor View Post
                            AFAIK, back in the days killing the messenger (the diplomat) was an act of aggression and a start of war.
                            That is my fear. Now Israel is saying they know who the perpetrators are and they are vowing to revenge. Suddenly no country is now safe as long as you host one of the protagonist ambassadors. Not good, not good

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Quds forces operate globally.

                              Originally posted by Dago View Post
                              "During this period of time, when our enemies in the north avoid carrying out attacks, fearing a harsh response, we are witnesses to the ongoing attempts by Hezbollah and other hostile entities to execute vicious terror attacks at locations far away from the state of Israel," Gantz said.

                              Hezbollah is active in India and Georgia? Anyone think Iran has other proxies besides Hezbollah to carry out attacks? Or does Israel view this as another opportunity to blame Hezbollah without any actual evidence?

                              Comment

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