Much Not Known About Iranian Weapons Found in Afghanistan
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service
BAGRAM AIR BASE, Afghanistan, April 23, 2007 In the last month, U.S. troops in Afghanistan have found weapons made in Iran, though how the weapons got there is a vexing question, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told servicemembers during a town hall session here April 21.
Marine Gen. Peter Pace told the troops he wanted to be very precise about what the United States “knows and what we don’t know” about the weapons.
“In the last month, we have intercepted in Afghanistan weapons that were made in Iran,” Pace said in response to a question. “(We) don’t know how they got here. (We) don’t know if the Iranian government knows they are here. We just know that weapons made in Iran are here.”
This is much different from what the United States knows about Iranian involvement in Iraq, he said. Members of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s Quds Force are shipping weapons to Iraqi insurgents and training Iraqi insurgents in Iran, and coalition forces have captured Quds Force members in Iraq.
“But we don’t know if the leadership in Iran knows about what is happening in Iraq,” he said. “Either they do know, or they do not know about what is happening in Iraq. Either way, it’s not good if their military is involved.”
The picture is less clear in Afghanistan, he said. U.S. and coalition partners are dealing with the Iranian government diplomatically, the chairman said. Afghan leaders also are bringing the subject up with their neighbor to the west, he added.