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Iranian Assassination Attempts on U.S. Soil Go Unpunished
The Ayatollahs have directed the murder of Rushdie, Alinejad, Bolton, and Pompeo.
By Joseph Puder
The Islamic Republic of Iran, and the Ayatollahs who run the regime did it once again, violating American sovereignty in an attempt to murder an American citizen on US soil. The latest victim, author Salman Rushdie, was stabbed 10 times and critically wounded on Friday, August 12, 2022, while he was about to deliver a lecture at the Chautauqua Institution in Western New York state. Rushdie’s injuries included a damaged liver, and he is expected to lose an eye.
Rushdie’s assailant, Hadi Matar, 24-year old originally from southern Lebanon, followed up on the fatwa issued originally by the Ayatollah Khomeini, Iran’s Supreme Leader in 1989, following the publication of Rushdie’s novel “The Satanic Verses.” Khomeini ordered Muslims everywhere to kill Rushdie and offered millions of dollars on his head. The novel was objectionable to Khomeini because of its portrayal of Islam and the Prophet Mohammad.
The horrific violent attack on Rushdie inspired and incited by Iran should have shocked all Americans and deserved an immediate condemnation of Iran and US withdrawal from the nuclear talks in Vienna. Ironically the Iran-appeasing leaders of Britain and France, and their press, immediately identified the Iranian regime’s responsibility for the attack on Rushdie. The similar Iran-appeasing Biden administrations response to the assassination on American soil was somewhat muted. Secretary of State Antony Blinken issued a statement, calling the assassination attempt “despicable,” and accusing Iran of having “invited violence against Rushdie for generations,” and that the Iranian “state-affiliated media recently gloated about the attempt on (Rushdie’s) life.” While uttering the obligatory words, the Biden administration did not offer to take severe action against the Ayatollahs regime in Tehran. The apparent reason is fear that tough words or better yet, retaliatory action against Iran might derail the nuclear talks.
And yet, the assassination attempt on Rushdie is part of a series of criminal acts perpetrated by agents of the Iranian regime in the US since the end of July 2022. It follows the attempted murder of Iranian native journalist Masih Alinejad in Brooklyn, New York, and attempts to kill the former Trump administration officials John Bolton, former national security advisor, and Mike Pompeo, former Secretary of State.
American mainstream news outlets such as the New York Times and the New Yorker, have asserted the motives of Rushdie’s attempted assassin, Hadi Matar, are unknown. But, it’s clear that Hadi Matar sought to fulfill the three-decades-long Iranian campaign to kill Rushdie. Matar’s own admission and clear evidence suggests that he is a devotee of the Supreme Leader of Iran, and a supporter of Hezbollah. In his Facebook profile, Matar has a photo of the Ayatollah Khomeini, who issued the fatwa ordering the murder of Rushdie, as well as the photograph of the current Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who has affirmed the death sentence against Rushdie. According to Al-Arabiya columnist Makram Rabah, Hadi Matar, a dual Lebanese-American citizen was indoctrinated into Khomeini’s brand of Shia-Islam and its Lebanese chapter – Hezbollah.
Makram pointed out that “Rushdie’s stabbing might be brushed aside by the so-called liberal West and the Biden team. It is particularly true of those heavily invested in pushing through the Iran nuclear deal. They continue to whitewash crimes committed by the Iranian regime and its satellites. They are deemed inconsequential.” Makram added, “Yet, Hadi Matar or what he stands for is at the crux of Lebanon and the region’s dilemma. Iran is permitted to continue to run its terror project, and with it, push many countries it occupies further into the abyss. It is a disaster in the making if action is not taken to reign in Iran’s violent expansion.”
Iranian officials vowed to revenge Soleimani’s death, and last year US intelligence reported they discovered Iranian officials planning an assassination attempt against American ambassador to South Africa. Brig. Gen. Esmail Ghaani, replaced Soleimani as the commander of the Quds Force. In commemorating the second anniversary of Soleimani’s death, Ghaani said, “We will get revenge that you will not forget for the rest of your life.” He was referring to former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Ghaani added, “All the criminals are on the scene, from the criminal US president to all of those behind the crime of the assassination are under our magnifying glass. We don’t have the style of the US criminals, with our divine power; we have our own style of revenge.” Lest we forget, Soleimani was responsible for thousands of American soldiers’ death in Iraq, and elsewhere.
The brazen attempt by an Iranian operative and a member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) Shahram Poursafi, also known as Mahdi Rezayi, to kill John Bolton and Mike Pompeo on American soil is now being handled by the US Department of Justice. But what exactly is the Justice Department or the Biden administration doing to stop Iran’s terror on American soil, not to mention elsewhere, such as the Middle East? Other than warnings by the US, which makes little impression or impact on the Ayatollahs, nothing has been done to punish Iran. White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan reaffirmed the Biden administration’s commitment to protecting individuals in the US from the threats of violence and terrorism. He stated that “Should Iran attack any of our citizens, to include those who continue to serve the US or those who formerly served, Iran will face severe consequences.”
Salman Rushdie is an American citizen attacked brutally by an agent of the Iranian regime on American soil, so what exactly are the severe consequences Iran will suffer? The Biden administration is still eager to go through with the nuclear deal, and lift the sanctions imposed on Iran that will provide the rogue Iranian regime with billions of dollars. It refuses to even hint of a military option, and declines to consider regime change in Iran, or support for the armed opposition groups in Iran, including the Kurds, Arab-Ahwazis, and the Balochis.
Frankly, there is no difference in the intent by the Iranian regime to murder Rushdie and the Saudis’ handling of Jamal Khashoggi. Thankfully, Rushdie didn’t die whereas Khashoggi did. The Saudis apologized for the murder; the Iranians on the other hand, blamed the victim. But the contrast is not just between the two regimes, it is also in how the liberal mainstream media covered the events. The Saudis were blamed for months in the press, and the Biden administration shunned Riyadh. President Biden had to swallow his pride and go to Riyadh to beg for Saudi increase of its oil output to lower gasoline prices in America. Iran is attempting to kill Americans in America, and the press and the administration being at best vague about Iran, fearful of jeopardizing the nuclear talks.
With the White House intent on reviving the nuclear deal, large segments of America’s political and media elites seem bent on erasing reality in favor of a fantasy that a peaceful Iran will emerge after the deal and will be integrated with its neighbors. What happened on stage in Chautauqua, NY, should be a warning that whether there is a deal or not, the Iranian regime will continue to pursue violent means, and use religion for its political ends.
Joseph Puder, a freelance journalist, is the Founder and Executive Director of the Interfaith Taskforce for America and Israel (ITAI). He is a regular contributor to Frontpage.