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CIA Director Pompeo Lashes Out at Iran, Compares It to ISIS


On the eve of President Trump’s decision on the certification of the Iran nuclear deal, CIA Director Michael Pompeo lashed out Thursday at the Islamic Republic in a speech at the University of Texas, calling it “a thuggish police state” and a “despotic theocracy,” and comparing its ambitions to those of ISIS.

The hardline speech, delivered as the keynote at a national security forum in Austin sponsored by the university, is “setting the stage” for the Trump administration’s announcement on the nuclear agreement, expected Friday afternoon, said one senior U.S. intelligence official.

The president is expected to withhold recertification of the agreement, kicking the issue to Congress, which will have 60 days to reimpose the sanctions lifted after the nuclear deal was made. There are also reports the Trump administration may designate Iran’s Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist group. Iran has promised serious “consequences” if the IRGC, an elite military force that answers to the nation’s religious leadership, is named a terrorist group. In the past, the U.S. has listed IRGC officers and affiliates as terrorists but has declined to name the group as a whole.

Pompeo’s remarks gave no indication of whether the IRGC, officially the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, will be listed as a terrorist organization, but his remarks were, as the U.S. official said, “an aggressive indictment,” using unusually harsh language in describing its operations and Iran in general. – READ MORE

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