Sunday, September 2, 2007
Major shakeup in elite Revolutionary Guards executed by supreme ruler Ayatollah Ali Khamenei Sept 1 takes Iran a step closer to war
"In a special decree, Khamenei suddenly sacked Gen. Rahim Safavi and appointed Gen. Mohammad-Ali (Aziz) Jaafari, commander of missile forces, in his place as Revolutionary Guards chief.
Safavi was kicked upstairs as special security adviser to supreme ruler.
DEBKAfile’s Iranian sources disclose: Two years ago, Khamenei entrusted Jaafari, then commander of the corps’ ground forces, with charting a war strategy for the IRGC, the bulwark of the regime, to meet a foreign attack on Iran. His formal task was to set up the corps’ “center for strategy,” which would be given “unlimited national resources in case of a foreign military confrontation.
The new center was mandated to “draw up the new strategy and the necessary changes to ensure rapid an efficient transformation of the country’s civilian infrastructure and resources to military footing under the control of the IRGC.”
Our sources that Khamenei has now assigned his most trusted adviser in the elite corps with taking supreme command of the IRGC and carrying out the strategy he developed. This appointment takes Iran a step closer to armed conflict.
DEBKAfile’s sources note that the Revolutionary Guards bear responsibility for Iran’s national nuclear and missile programs. Last month, Washington indicated its intention to designate the IRGC as a global terrorist organization."