President Trump certainly seems to have struck a nerve — given Tehran’s over-the-top response to reports he’s about to designate the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist group.
“If the news is correct about the stupidity of the American government . . . then the Revolutionary Guards will consider the American army to be like Islamic State,” declared the group’s commander, Gen. Mohammed Ali Jafari.
Trump reportedly will make the designation as part of a new strategy that’s to start with decertifying President Barack Obama’s deeply flawed nuclear deal.
It’ll hurt Tehran where it counts: The Guard controls some 15 percent of Iran’s gross domestic product. Its tentacles stretch into such key sectors as oil, gas, telecommunications and construction.
All of which will become danger areas for foreign companies looking to invest and do business in Iran.
Shortly before leaving office, Obama loosened Treasury Department rules banning investment with the Revolutionary Guard. Now, as Eli Lake noted last week, those companies will run a significant risk of doing business with a terrorist organization — with all that implies.
The Guard, after all, uses its business end as a cash cow to fund its activities abroad — including funneling money to such terrorist allies as Hezbollah and Hamas.
Until now, Washington has targeted components and individuals within the Guard — but not the organization itself.
Ironically, this comes amid reports Iran has started cracking down on the IRGC over corruption and profiteering.
Trump’s action will further drain the corps’ economic resources and limit its ability to fund terrorism abroad. No wonder its leader is making angry threats.
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