Since Russia invaded Ukraine, the Biden administration has been running out the clock, allowing the ruling Islamist mullahs of Iran to prosper from the war and emerge as the winners. According to a January 2022 report:
"[T]he United Nations has reported at least 6,919 civilian deaths and more than 11,000 wounded as a result of the war in Ukraine and estimates the actual figures to be much higher. Approximately 6.5 million Ukrainians are internally displaced, and about 5 million have fled as refugees to European countries. About 2.8 million Ukrainians are in Russia and Belarus, in some cases against their will."
The Iranian regime was, from the outset, in favor of the Russian invasion and praised Russia's decision to send troops into Ukraine. Since then, it has become a major weapons exporter to a global power – not limited to exporting just drones.
According to a recent report from Sky News:
"Iran has secretly supplied large quantities of bullets, rockets and mortar shells to Russia for the war in Ukraine and plans to send more, a security source has told Sky News.
"The source claimed that two Russian-flagged cargo ships, departed an Iranian port in January bound for Russia via the Caspian Sea, carrying approximately 100 million bullets and around 300,000 shells.
"Ammunition for rocket launchers, mortars and machine guns was allegedly included in the shipments.
"The source said Moscow paid for the ammunition in cash."
Iran's supply to Russia of drones and other weapons is, in addition, providing the mullahs with a great opportunity to perfect their drone and military systems as well as to profiting financially from the arms exports.
Iran's regime also reportedly sent troops to Crimea to assist Russia in its attacks on Ukraine's infrastructure and civilian population, and to increase the effectiveness of suicide drones. Even the White House admitted on October 20, 2022 that it had evidence that Iranian troops were "directly engaged on the ground" supporting Russia's drone attacks in Crimea.
Russia also reportedly wants to buy ballistic missiles from Iran, which has the largest and most diverse ballistic missile arsenal in the Middle East. The Iranian regime therefore should officially be considered an accomplice to Russia's war crimes.
Since the Russian invasion, according to Human Rights Watch:
"Russian forces have repeatedly carried out disproportionate and indiscriminate bombing and shelling of civilian areas. These attacks destroyed and severely damaged homes, businesses, schools, health care institutions, and other facilities. Over 2,700 educational institutions have been damaged, more than 300 beyond repair.
"These attacks have struck many hospitals, including at least one children's hospital in Chernihiv, a maternity hospital in Kharkiv, and a maternity ward in Vilniansk. As of October, the World Health Organization had confirmed more than 700 attacks on healthcare facilities, personnel, and vehicles, which killed at least 200 people.
"Many of these attacks on civilian areas have been with explosive weapons with wide area affects, including cluster munitions, unguided aerial bombs, and guided missiles."
The Iranian regime, probably because it knows that the Biden administration will not take any action, is ratcheting up its engagement and weapons exports to Russia. As US Representative Steve Scalise (R-La.) put it in May 2021:
"President Biden's leadership is non-existent. And you just mentioned a number of crises that we're seeing. The crisis at the border has become very evident. The President still won't acknowledge [sic] and go down to the border. Gas prices are through the roof, and people are now waiting in line. There was a major hack by Russia likely. President Biden doesn't want to confront that. You're looking at home prices, right now because of lumber prices going through the roof. An average home is over $36,000 more than it was a year ago. Look at what's happening right now with unemployment — eight million jobs are unfilled right now, and President Biden just ushered through a partisan bill to pay people billions of dollars not to work when eight million jobs are unfilled right now. We're paying people not to work, and they're borrowing money from our kids and our grandkids to do it. We've seen this on every front, and the economy is really in a delicate spot. We're seeing inflation starting to go through the roof. Our country is less secure. Look at what's happening around the world — the Middle East, Iran — who the President wants to let back into an agreement to get a nuclear weapon. [The Iranians are] helping funnel these bombs that are being shot into Israel. I mean where is the President's leadership on any of these crises?"
Dr. Majid Rafizadeh is a business strategist and advisor, Harvard-educated scholar, political scientist, board member of Harvard International Review, and president of the International American Council on the Middle East. He has authored several books on Islam and US Foreign Policy. He can be reached at Dr.Rafizadeh@Post.Harvard.Edu