Iran Seeks Interpol Prosecution of Neoconservatives Jack Keane, Reuel Marc Gerecht

Jack Keane, on left, and Reuel Marc Gerecht, on right.

Multiple news outlets in Iran are reporting that Iran has asked Interpol to prosecute former General Jack Keane (co-author of the Iraq surge) and former CIA operative Reuel Marc Gerecht on the basis of their open calls for the assassination of Iranian figures during a meeting of two House Homeland Security Subcommitttees on October 26.

From Mehr News:

In a letter to Interpol, Iranian National Prosecutor General Gholam Hossein Mohseni-Ejei has called for the prosecution of the U.S. officials, IRNA reported on Monday.


According to the online magazine Firstpost, at a session of the committee, Jack Keane, a retired four-star general who helped plan the U.S.-led occupation of Iraq, called for the assassination of the leaders of Iran’s Qods Force in retaliation for their alleged role in a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador to Washington, a claim vehemently denied by Iranian officials.

“Why don’t we kill them? We kill other people who are running terrorist organizations against the United States,” he said.

The other witness, Reuel Marc Gerecht, a former CIA officer who is now a senior fellow at the neoconservative think tank the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, told the committee, “I don’t think that you are going to really intimidate these people, get their attention, unless you shoot somebody.”

The article then goes on to report that Congressmen Peter King, Michael McCaul and Patrick Meehan signed a November 22 letter stating “that the U.S. should undermine Iranian officials and damage the country’s infrastructure through increasing covert operations”.

Fars News Agency claims that Interpol stands ready to help in the effort:

Iran’s Deputy Police Chief Brigadier General Ahmad Reza Radan announced that the International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) has promised to help Tehran prosecute the two former US officials who had called on the Obama administration to assassinate Iran’s top military commanders.

“The Interpol will take the steps for the prosecution of two Americans who sponsor terrorism,” Radan told FNA on Tuesday.

Fars also has more of Keane’s remarks:

Keane pointed to US allegations that the elite Quds Force of Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) took part in a plot to kill Saudi Ambassador Adel al-Jubeir in Washington and pushed for assassinating “Quds Force top commanders”.

The retired general said Washington should carry out “cyber-attacks” against “selected military and economic interests inside of Iran,” seize its assets, look into “denying their ships entry to ports around the world,” work to isolate Tehran’s central bank, and support Iranian dissident movements.

The article ends with a strong denial of Iran’s involvement in the Scary Iran Plot and warns that these calls for retaliation amount to a call for war.

You can read more on Keane’s background here on SourceWatch.  It’s probably enough to know about him that the Iraq “surge” was first discussed in an article he jointly authored with Fred Kagan.  Gerecht also is an unabashed neocon, appearing prominently on the old Project for a New American Century website and now with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and The Weekly Standard.

Just in case you might think that Iran invented these quotes from Keane and Gerecht, you can listen to audio of portions of their October 26 testimony in this report (warning, audio is autoplay; click on “transcript” button for the text) for Austrailian radio.

It will be very interesting to see if Interpol actually opens an investigation and publicly admits to having done so.  Outright calls for the assassination of public figures are quickly labeled as terrorism when directed against the US, but are just as quickly labeled patriotism when directed outward from the US.  I will keep an eye out for any further developments on this front.

Many years ago, Jim got a BA in Radiation Biophysics from the University of Kansas. He then got a PhD in Molecular Biology from UCLA and did postdoctoral research in yeast genetics at UC Berkeley and mouse retroviruses at Stanford. He joined biosys in Palo Alto, producing insect parasitic nematodes for pest control. In the early 1990’s, he moved to Gainesville, FL and founded a company that eventually became Entomos. He left the firm as it reorganized into Pasteuria Biosciences and chose not to found a new firm due a clash of values with venture capital investors, who generally lack all values. Upon leaving, he chose to be a stay at home dad, gentleman farmer, cook and horse wrangler. He discovered the online world through commenting at Glenn Greenwald’s blog in the Salon days and was involved in the briefly successful Chris Dodd move to block the bill to renew FISA. He then went on to blog at Firedoglake and served a brief stint as evening editor there. When the Emptywheel blog moved out of Firedoglake back to standalone status, Jim tagged along and blogged on anthrax, viruses, John Galt, Pakistan and Afghanistan. He is now a mostly lapsed blogger looking for a work-around to the depressing realization that pointing out the details of government malfeasance and elite immunity has approximately zero effect.
19 replies
  1. emptywheel says:

    @emptywheel: Actually, let me correct that–he’s got some control of IGRC. THey were sanctioned because of their role in the crackdown on (CIA-funded) opposition forces in 2009. I guess that makes it similar to the sanctions on Mugabe.

  2. jerryy says:

    OT, but related to the various tidbits about keystroke loggers, spying etc.

    A company called Carrier IQ has been getting slammed lately for software it has made available to cell phome companies that does track people’s usage, what, when, where. This has risen to the level of ‘official’ senator notice (Senator Frankin telling them they need to ‘fess up).

    Someone got curious and filed a FOIA with the FBI about it, and the FBI has been caught using this, but beyond saying their use is for ongoing investigative purposes, they are not admitting to anything and have denied the FOIA request.

    My, oh my.

  3. nomolos says:

    If Interpol, any other law enforcement agency or in fact the International court, had any interest in prosecuting the criminal bastards known as the government of the United States (and Israel, that made up country) they would have done so a long time ago.

    Iran has every right to request prosecution of the two low lifes and the bastards should be shipped to Iran for prosecution as far as I am concerned., or they could do what the CIA and Mossad do…just assassinate the buggers.

  4. nomolos says:

    @MadDog: If The BIg Zero decides he needs a “jolly good war” to be re-elected a war we will have. Death, murder and mayhem means nothing to the USACorp criminals.

  5. MadDog says:


    “…Also, Crown Prince Nayef and Iran’s Minister of Intelligence and Security had a meeting yesterday.”

    High on the list of likely topics of that conversation would be the Scary Iran Plot, doncha think?

  6. emptywheel says:

    @MadDog: Dunno. I sort of think the Saudis know theater when they see it. I’m also cognizant of the fact that the Saudis are supporting Pakistan as it gets chilly with the US, the Iranians have their own interests in Pakistan, and there’s oil in them hills.

    We believe the alliances in the Middle East are fixed; I think that’s naive.

  7. scribe says:

    Keep in mind, people, that Interpol does not go off and arrest people. They don’t have cops with badges that say “Interpol” who go jet-setting after international criminals, yadda yadda. Rather, it serves more as a clearinghouse and communications network for serving arrest warrants and such. Thus, if Country A has an arrest warrant out for Defendant Smith, who is in Country B, Interpol is used to facilitate arresting Smith in Country B pursuant to A’s arrest warrant. Needless to say, making any such arrests in Country B depends on Country B’s police and judiciary co-operating with Interpol and Country A.

    We saw something similar (though I’m not sure whether Switzerland is a member of Interpol, it doesn’t really matter for the purposes of this example) happen with Roman Polanski. There was a long-standing arrest warrant out for him after he skipped California for Paris. He travelled freely within Europe (making at least one movie in Germany, also an Interpol member, for instance) for about 30 years until it became in the interests of the Swiss to (cooperate with Interpol and) arrest him pursuant to that California warrant. That, you’ll remember, happened (purely by coincidence, of course) about the time the Swiss and the USG were trying to work through that embarrassing thing involving Swiss banks (Phil Gramm’s USB prima inter pares), money laundering, tax evasion and violations of Swiss bank secrecy. Once that had been resolved, Polanski was released.

    So, IMHO, this is all show and no blow. Keane and Gerecht have more to worry about from bad egg nog than an Iranian warrant.

  8. joanneleon says:

    I don’t understand it. Neocons (and it’s hard to know who exactly falls into that category anymore) won’t be happy until we are in a full scale war with Iran. But that would destroy this country, IMHO. So why would they keep pushing for it?

  9. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Aggressive war and support for terrorists. Brutal, illegal, requiring execution of remote extrajudicial penalties when “they” do it. It is statesmanship when members of congress and “former” spies and generals do it, and worthy of censorship when bloggers point out the unsupportable hypocrisy of it. Little wonder the PTB invent propaganda such as “they hate us for our freedoms” to defend the hypocrisy.

  10. Jim White says:

    @earlofhuntingdon: I’m nearly finished reading “Manufacturing Hysteria” by Jay Feldman. This has been a really eye-opening book that has carefully chronicled the various bouts with hysteria our country has had since the early 1900’s. What stands out is that although there are various bogeymen (Germans in WWI; Reds in the 20s and then again in the 50s;Mexicans during the Depression; Japanese, Germans and Italians in WWII) at various times, the sequence is always the same. The dangerous group is pointed out and then remarkable levels of repression are brought into play ostensibly to control these groups. A “bonus” for those whipping the hysteria, though, is that the repressive surveillance and warrantless arrests with violence also always resulted in hippie-punching even before there were hippies.

    All of which is a long preface to the observation that yes, we bloggers are likely see increased, rather than decreased censorship because we dare point out the hypocrisy of those who wish to fan the hysteria over Iran.

  11. Kris says:

    pretty sure them saying what american should in the foreign policy arena s an act of free speech. even if their ideas suck. if Iran had proof that they actively carried out these plans then they should call interpol but until then it’s just alot noise.

  12. Kathleen says:

    Neocons & the GOP National Security Debate
    Share / Recommend – Comment – Permanent Link – Print – Saturday, Nov 26 2011, 6:32PM

    Comments on the influence of neoconservatives on GOP foreign policy establishment.
    Former Dick Cheney chief of staff and now Heritage Foundation vice president David Addington dropped his strong aversion to the public spotlight and offered one of the questions to GOP presidential candidates at the national security/foreign policy debate last week sponsored by CNN, the Heritage Foundation and the American Enterprise Institute. AEI adjunct visiting fellow and former Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz also offered a question as did several other prominent neoconservatives.

    Clearly, the foreign policy wing characterized by Richard Lugar, Chuck Hagel, even Henry Kissinger deserves endangered species status.

    I shared some thoughts on the resurrection, yet again, of neoconservatives in the foreign policy establishment on The Rachel Maddow Show. Clip above.

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