Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said today that the US feared Iran was drifting toward a military dictatorship, with IRGC seizing key political, military and economic positions in the country.
“That is how we see it,” Clinton said. “We see that the government in Iran, the supreme leader, the president, the Parliament, is being supplanted and that Iran is moving towards a military dictatorship” [NYTimes, 15 February].
Last week, the US imposed new sanctions against the commander of IRGC’s sprawling construction conglomerate, Khatam-ol Anbia, and four of its subsidiaries.
The Obama administration is working on a series of broader UN sanctions that would take aim at IRGC, publicly singling out the Revolutionary Guards’ vast array of companies, banks and the wide web of assets owned or controlled by IRGC.
Clinton’s blunt remarks in linking IRGC to the growing fear of Iran’s drift toward a military dictatorship were remarkable. In the past couple of years, a number of Iran analysts have also raised concern about the growing control of IRGC over the country’s political and economic institutions, a dangerous concentration of power in the hands of the armed forces.
UPDATE (Monday 15 February): As Secretary Clinton was leaving Doha, she voiced concern over the inability of the civilian leadership in Tehran to make their minds on the uranium enrichment policy.