On Brink of Radical Coup

Tehran sources report that Iran’s hardline supreme religious leader, Ali Khamenei, is plotting a military coup in Tehran to coincide with the onset of the American attack on Iraq. This is reported by DEBKA-Net-Weekly‘s sources in Tehran.

With reform legislation beginning to go through the Majlis and mounting student protest against the condemnation of a liberal academic, Khamenei has decided to draw the line on the Khatami presidency and purge the regime of liberals and reformists.

An operational coup command team is secretly in place under the leadership of Revolutionary Guards (Pasdaran) commander Lt. Gen. Yahya Rahim-Safavi and his deputy Mohamad Baqer Zolghadr, and a group of extremist fundamentalist clergyman headed by Ayatollah Mesbah Yazdi.

Since late last week, this panel has been meeting daily in the role of an operational command.

Our sources report some of the team’s decisions:

— To gradually detain all of President Khatami’s close aides (already begun).

— Roughly 8-10 days before the US assault, Khatami will be liquidated (as DEBKA-Net-Weekly reported last week) in a manner that shifts the blame away from the Revolutionary Guards and their controllers – possibly a staged road accident or assassination by a dissident, like a Mojaheddin Khalk member.

— The coup leaders will then impose military rule over Iranian cities.

— Opponents of the Islamic hardliners figuring on lists under preparation at the moment will be put to death on charges of spying for America or Israel. This will be a bloodbath of many thousands. It will send a brutal message to the Muslim world that, while the Arabs support the American attack on Islamic Iraq, Iranian revolutionaries are striking a blow in defense of Islam.

— The Majlis, where reformist deputies are in the majority, will be dissolved and un-Islamic media shut down.

The preparations made by Khameini faction’s for their radical putsch explain the massive withdrawals in recent months of Iranian precious metals, mainly gold and silver, deposited in banks in the Far East, (Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia ) , Europe – Germany, UK, France, Italy, Spain and Denmark – and the Gulf emirates including UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Even secret accounts in Lichtenstein, Luxembourg and Jersey have been cleaned out.

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