The continuing persecution, imprisonment, murder and torture of non-Muslims is now well-documented and visible on a daily basis. In particular, Christians, Jews, Yazidis, Kurds, Hindus and Baha'is are victimized under Islamist rule. This issue requires attention and correction, but it is not the only threat that is coming from these tyrannical state and non-state actors.
Islamist organizations are dispatching their agents beyond their borders, to the West, particularly the US, in order to monitor, threaten, and terrorize non-Muslims.
Recent reports from European refugee camps indicate that radical agents and spies, including from one of the most powerful Islamist establishments, Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), have infiltrated Europe, in part to monitor Christians, particularly those who have fled their nations out of fear of torture, imprisonment and persecution.
IRGC leaders and its intelligence services have frequently boasted about having agents and spies in Washington, DC and other Western capitals. The IRGC's major affiliates are the elite branch of the Quds Force and Basij, an ideological militia group.
One of the core missions of the IRGC, like other Islamist establishments, and as stipulated in Iran's constitution, is to safeguard Islamic as well as revolutionary values (including anti-Semitic and anti-American principles) in their homeland. The other key mission which is also clearly stipulated in its constitution, is to export Iran's Islamist ideology, and actively ensure the continuous infiltration and expansion of Islamists values throughout the world. That is why the IRGC established a special force, the Quds Force and Basij, with a publicly-announced mission of becoming engaged in extraterritorial operations -- religiously, ideologically, militarily and politically.
It is critical to point out that the Islamist mission of radical Muslim organizations anywhere in the world is not limited to their city, country, or region. This is because they do not recognize "man-made" nation-state systems; they do not recognize boundaries and governments. They believe that the whole world, since its inception, is in reality the divine possession of Islam. They believe that states, particularly Western governments, have taken their Allah-given lands, eternally belonging to Islam; and that non-believers have wronged their God, Allah, by misrepresenting Moses, Abraham and Jesus to create false religions such as Judaism and Christianity. They believe it is their sacred mission to recapture, by any means, everything -- the universe – which they believe has been taken from them.
"By any means" can include suicide attacks that slaughter hundreds, even thousands, of people, including Muslims; endless incitement to violence among strangers and neighbors, and all available ways of manipulating soft power.
These Islamist spies usually come to the West, and particularly the US, under various guises; these include seeking education, engaging in research, or for health-related purposes. They target specific US embassies, universities, research centers, or hospitals to obtain visas. Many people point out that these individuals also seek the assistance and sponsorship of the Iranian regime's assets in the US to facilitate their process. Their ability to present themselves as ideal candidates for help creates the appearance of safety; meanwhile, their intentions may be to cause widespread harm.
Mohsen Dehnavi, for instance, was recently deported by US border officials. Dehnavi happened to be an Iranian military agent; an active and high-ranking member of the Basij; previously, head of the student branch of the Basij at Iran's Sharif University; a loyalist to Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Iranian regime, and had personally received gifts from Khamenei.
US border officials recently deported Mohsen Dehnavi, an Iranian military agent who is an active and high-ranking member of the Basij paramilitary. He was previously head of the student branch of the Basij at Iran's Sharif University (pictured above, photo by Behrooz Rezvani/Wikimedia Commons).
The life-long slogan of members of Basij is, "Death to America" and "Death to Israel". A dedicated member of the Basij will closely monitor non-Muslims and do absolutely anything to please the Islamist Supreme Leader. There is no act of violence too great for the Basij. Those who commit murder are considered heroes of their faith. The Basij and the IRGC's goal is violence, and the destruction of anyone with a belief different from their own.
How was this man even able to obtain a US visa?
In a surprising and rare move, US border officials did not automatically accept this Iranian's US visa as a green light to enter the US. If it were not for their questioning and taking a second a look at his background, he would be operating freely in the US -- with consequences that could have been tragic.
The question is: How many people like him already are already operating freely in the US, as IRGC officials repeatedly claim? An extremist Muslim Basiji such as Dehnavi has been charged with the mission of safeguarding Islamist values, suppressing dissidents, and closely monitoring non-Muslims, primarily Christians. When Dehnavi was blocked at the Boston airport, many pro-Iranian regime agents in the US resorted to various methods, including turning to mainstream liberal media outlets, in an attempt to ensure his entrance into America. They devised a fake narrative of injustice and depicted this high-ranking Basiji military agent as an innocent man who should be allowed into the US. Their goal was to manipulate the hearts of Americans, who would be willing to fight for this man's cause and welcome him with open arms to the country that his organization has vowed to destroy.
Through steady, gradual infiltration, Islamist organizations create Islamist militias and proxies. The entrance to the US of Islamist agents, spies, and sympathizers with extremist institutions, such as Iran's regime or the Muslim Brotherhood, should not be taken lightly; it should be monitored closely on different levels by US officials, consulates and embassies. Having an impressive resumé, having a scholarship or fellowship from an American institution, or even claiming to have defected from an Islamist organization does not mean that it is safe to hand someone a visa and allow him into the country. In addition, as above, even having a visa should not mean that border officials cease investigating -- closely and meticulously -- a person's background for a second time.
Otherwise this trend is sure to grow -- exponentially.
Dr. Majid Rafizadeh is president of the International American Council on the Middle East. He is a Harvard-educated Iranian-American political scientist, business advisor, and author of "Peaceful Reformation in Iran's Islam". He can be reached at Dr.Rafizadeh@Post.Harvard.Edu.