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July 19, 2013

Marking The Anniversary Of Hezbollah’s Bombing In Panama

Today marks the 19th anniversary of the deadly terrorist bombing of a commuter airliner flying from Colón to Panama City, which killed all 21 people onboard, including 12 Jews.alas-chiricanas-iran-hezbollah-panama

The anniversary comes one day after the more well-known terrorist attack on the AMIA-DAIA building in Buenos Aires, Argentine, in which 85 people were kill and hundreds more wounded.

Over the years, both attacks have been tied to the government of Iran and Hezbollah operatives. The bombing of Alas Chiricanas Flight 00901 over Panama is believed by both Panamanian and American authorities to have been carried out by a Hezbollah suicide bomber.

A May 2013 report by Argentine General Prosecutor Alberto Nisman accused the Iranian government of masterminding and sponsoring both the AMIA and Alas Chiricanas bombings, and the Lebanon-based Shiite terror group Hezbollah of carrying out the attacks.

Iranian officials who have been red-listed by Interpol for their suspected involvement in the AMIA case have avoided arrest. In May 2013, ADL reported on two candidates running in Iran’s presidential election, Mohsen Rezai and Ali Akbar Velayati, who have links to the AMIA attack.

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May 23, 2013

Two AMIA Bombing Suspects Run For Iran Presidency

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Ali Akbar Velayati and Mohsen Rezai

As the presidential election in Iran approaches in June, it is noteworthy that two candidates with links to the 1994 attack on a Jewish center in Argentina passed the regime’s vetting process and are standing as candidates for president of Iran.

The two individuals, Mohsen Rezai and Ali Akbar Velayati, have been accused of planning the Argentine Jewish Mutual Association (AMIA) Jewish center bombing in Buenos Aires, which killed 85 people and injured over 250.

Rezai, a former commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), is sought by Interpol for his alleged involvement in the case. He is currently the Secretary of the Expediency Council.

In 2006, when Velayati was Iran’s Foreign Minister, Argentinian authorities accused him of approving the AMIA bombing. He has also been accused by German authorities of planning the 1992 “Mykonos Assassination” attacks in Berlin that killed several Iranian Kurdish leaders.

This is not the first time suspected individuals linked to the AMIA bombing have run for president of Iran. In 2009, Rezai ran against current Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and lost.

Under the presidency of Ahmadinejad, Ahmad Vahidi, who is also on Interpol’s Most Wanted List, was named Iran’s defense minister in 2009. Vahidi has been accused by Argentinian officials of helping plan the July 1994 attack.

In early 2013, the Iranian and Argentine governments signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that would bypass Argentina’s judicial system and set up an international Truth Commission to investigate the bombings. While the Argentine Senate gave its approval in February, President Ahmadinejad only approved the measure on May 19 by sidestepping a vote in the Iranian parliament. The MOU stipulates that the agreement must be submitted to each country’s respective legal bodies for approval.

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April 19, 2013

Profile Of Boston Bombers Emerges

Even as the manhunt for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev continues, a portrait of him and his brother, Tamerlan, the alleged perpetrators of Monday’s Boston Marathon bombing, has begun to emerge.

Based on social media profiles apparently belonging to them, the brothers were interested in militancy, Islam and Chechnya, a region in Russia.

The two reportedly came to the United States as refugees in the early 2000s, perhaps a couple of years apart, after fleeing the violence in the Caucasus.  Both appeared to maintain close ties to their ethnic homeland. The younger brother, Dzhokhar, included the seal of his hometown soccer team as the background of his Twitter account. The older, Tamerlan, expressed his hope for Chechen independence and included books about Chechnya about on his Amazon wish list.

The brothers were also practicing Muslims, posting messages about Islam and Ramadan on various social media profiles. There is an indication that Tamerlan may have had a more radical streak, reflected in his YouTube playlist featuring videos by a radical cleric living in Australia and videos about joining an Islamic army to help establish a Caliphate as well as a playlist on “Terrorists” (the videos of which had previously been deleted by YouTube).

A more complete profile on the brothers can be found here: Social Media Profiles Shed Light on Brothers Accused in Boston Marathon Attack.

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