First explicit US charge: Iran’s RG Qods Brigade helped plan January Karbala attack which left five American soldiers dead
US military spokesman Brig. Gen Kevin J. Bergner also accused Tehran Monday of using the Lebanese Shiite Hizballah as a proxy to arm and train Shiite insurgents in Iraq.
He disclosed that captured insurgents had admitted senior officers of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards al Qods unit, in charge of terrorist operations abroad, had had pre-knowledge and supported the attack on the Karbala governate compound by assailants posing convincingly as American soldiers.
Gen. Bergner disclosed a senior Lebanese Hibzallah operative, Ali Mussa Dakdouk, captured on March 20 in southern Iraq, was liaison between the Iranian al Qods and a breakaway wing of the Shiite cleric Moqtada Sadr’s Mehdi Army militia. That group, which is led by Qais al-Kazaali, carried out the Karbala attack.
Before his capture, Dakdouk had been engaged in training and organizing Iraqi “special groups” which were taken to three camps near Tehran to train in attacks, bombings and kidnappings. He acted for the Iranians who preferred not to come into direct contact with their Iraqi recruits.