At NCRI-US conference, security expert says Biden administration could support internal opposition in Iran

Mr. David Shedd, Former Acting Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, speaks at the “Policy Options to Address the Growing Iranian Threat – First 100 Days of Ebrahim Raisi” conference hosted by NCRI-United States in Washington , DC, December 15, 2021.

NCRI-US’s new book “IRAN: IRGC’s Rising Drone Threat; A Desperate Regime’s Ploy to Project Power, Incite War ”, presented at the“ Policy Options to Counter the Rising Iran Threat – First 100 Days of Ebrahim Raisi ”conference on December 15, 2021.

Senator Lieberman and Mr. David Shedd, joining Jonathan Ruhe, Professor Matthew Kroenig, Amb. Bob Joseph and Alireza Jafarzadeh at the NCRI-US “Policy Options to Address the Growing Iranian Threat” conference in Washington, DC on December 15, 2021.

David Shedd says the last thing you want to do is let go of the proverbial pressure on the Iranian regime.

We continue the pressure. Second… supporting the internal opposition… And third… keeping human rights issues at the forefront.

– David Shedd, Former Acting Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency

WASHINGTON, DC, USA, December 21, 2021 / – On December 15, 2021, the U.S. Representative Office of the National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI-US) held a conference in Washington, DC. titled “Policy Options to Counter the Growing Iranian Threat – First 100 Days of Ebrahim Raisi”. NCRI-US’s latest book “IRAN: IRGC’s Rising Drone Threat; The ploy of a desperate regime to project power, incite war, ”was presented by Alireza Jafarzadeh, deputy director of NCRI-United States, at the start of the conference. The book is available in all major bookstores as well as on Apple Books.

Speakers at the event were Senator Joe Lieberman, former Democratic Senator from Connecticut; Ambassador Robert Joseph, former Under-Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security; Mr. David Shedd, former acting director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, former special assistant to the president and senior director of intelligence and reform programs; Georgetown Professor Matthew Kroenig, Deputy Director, Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, and Director, Global Strategy Initiative, The Atlantic Council; and Mr. Jonathan Ruhe, Director of Foreign Policy of JINSA.

Mr. David Shedd’s remarks are below:

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to join you today on a very, very important subject. As my two predecessors on this august panel have already pointed out, and it is a very difficult act to follow.

I can tell you that there is no more interesting and priority subject than this to talk about Iran, its behavior, the position of the United States with its allies, and on time current in terms of the impact it has not only inside Iran, which others have already spoken so eloquently about and I’m sure other panelists will speak to later, but also in its close stranger and then its reach around the world in terms of promoting its intransigent policies.

As an intelligence officer, I also want to thank the NCRI, just as Senator Lieberman acknowledged. You are essentially an intelligence organization, collecting information at great peril in a despotic environment in which you can literally say take no prisoners when it comes to collecting on the UAV program and many other aspects that you are engaged in. . And then find a way to share that with the public and have this awareness created by the great work that you are doing in terms of raising awareness of the world regarding the activity of this despotic regime.

When I think about Iran and the motivations that I had even joining the intelligence services in the United States, it was really in 1979 and the hostage-taking which was a main motivation to dedicate my career for more. from three decades to intelligence and understanding of regimes like Iran and how to counter their activities. What I find fascinating in the background is that the Iranian regime, since 1979, has a very broad definition of what it considers foreign policy by being constantly on the offensive. And by being on the offensive, I mean they’ve taken matters into their own hands wherever they go, anywhere and anytime, and their reach is ubiquitous and ubiquitous to prosecute anyone who expresses their dissent. And to this end, it is well known that this regime for more than 40 years has continued to target dissidents abroad. He targeted journalists. And there is no end in sight in terms of supporting those who are ready to speak up and then become the butt of their anger.

And to that end, when I think of the actual assassination attempts in about five countries since 2015/2016 in Europe, the Middle East and even the Americas, I find that there is no sign of their diminishing. intends to go after those who oppose the regime and defend the values ​​to which Senator Lieberman and Ambassador Joseph have already referred. And to that end, I think the fraudulent election coupled with Raisi and Supreme Leader Khamenei’s role in supporting it will only get tougher in terms of continuing their opposition in their near stranger and everywhere in the world where she expresses herself. . And there is no limit to what they can use with the tools in their kit to do so.

Let me just highlight three things that I want to emphasize before I get very briefly into what to do in a response, to add to what Senator Lieberman and Ambassador Joseph have so eloquently shared in as part of a response to the Iranian regime, I fundamentally support. The number one problem is the asymmetric use of the technology supplied to Iran. Their ability, for example, and there is no better current example that you have provided to this wonderful report [IRGC’s Rising Drone Threat; A desperate regime’s ploy to project power, incite war] in view of the richness of it, the UAV drone program. This is a technology that has gone over the past two decades from being inaccessible by the vast majority of countries to very accessible in terms of both price and capacity to use drones. But this is just one of many examples in which the asymmetric nature of the technology that is available at market cost to a despotic regime that they can use to provide ubiquitous surveillance or, in some cases, even kinetic abilities as a result of this.

The second finding is the Internet, and Iran’s ability at a fairly high level of sophistication to use the Internet as a means of targeting people, whether through their drills and fishing attempts as well as disruptive attempts like we saw this with the case of Saudi Arabia and (Aramco) and their ability to pursue their opponents defined in such a way as to use the 1s and 0s to ubiquitously pursue them in this regard.

And the third observation I would make is their propensity, and that requires both sides of this equation, to make deals with what is emerging, and Senator Lieberman has spoken of this returning to more competition for the great powers, in this case, China and Russia. And the two regimes in the case of Xi Jinping in Beijing and Vladimir Putin in Moscow, which clearly do not share American values ​​or certainly traditional American values ​​of democracy and human rights, and the partnerships they establish and which have been on the nuclear file for a long time as far as Iran is concerned and the missiles file as well as for Iran, but it widens and deepens in the direction of those ties.

So how do you answer it? It occurs to me that the last thing you want to do is take the proverbial pedal off the pressure on the Iranian regime. And this idea that any form of sanctions lifting or sanctions relief will meet with a response of kindness, understanding and concessions from the regime is an entirely false premise that is not supported by any history, or form. So we keep the pressure on. And Alireza, you made that clear in your opening remarks.

Second, it is about finding ways, as Ambassador Joseph has already mentioned, how do you support the internal opposition so that the regime continuously focuses on Iran as opposed to exporting their activities. harmful, whether in Iraq, Lebanon, Syria and elsewhere in the world, so that they have to deal with the kind of internal pressures that have emerged from this opposition which, as you pointed out, Alireza, is more and more strong and more virulent lately. This is therefore an opportunity for the Biden administration to show its support for the internal opposition. And in doing so, one of the things that I would advocate vehemently for is to bring them satellite internet and access to outside information, because I think people aspire to be free and aspire to receive information from an outside world. way that is uncontrolled and unconstrained as the regime clearly wants to do.

And third, it is again about using international forums, but with the United States at the helm, to really keep human rights issues at the forefront and clearly place the regime in the crosshairs of the United States. one of the biggest human rights violators in the world right now, along with China and its treatment of Uyghurs and elsewhere, but certainly all in that category of country.

I look forward to questions from the audience, and with that, I’ll get back to you with those early thoughts at this point. And again, thank you for this opportunity.

These materials are distributed by the Representative Office of the Iran-United States National Council of Resistance. Additional information is on file with the Department of Justice, Washington, DC

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NCRI-US Hosts Conference “Policy Options to Counter Growing Iranian Threat” and Publishes New Book, “IRAN: Growing Threat from IRGC Drones”, Wash DC, December 15, 2021

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