Iran defector has emerged as key U.S. intel asset

Written by Reza Kahlili on July 19th, 2012

World News Tribune

Special to WorldTribune.com

Tuesday, July 10th, 2012

WASHINGTON — An Iranian defector has become a leading asset in the U.S. intelligence community.

The defector, known by his pseudonym, Reza Kahlili, has been deemed the leading expert on Iran for the CIA and other U.S. intelligence agencies.

Officials said Kahlili, a consultant to the intelligence community, Defense Department and Congress, has provided critical insights into the thinking of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard, which oversees foreign espionage, including in the United States.

Reza Kahlili

“If you’re going to take this issue seriously, the one person you have to consult with and read his writings is Reza Kahlili,” House Homeland Security Committee chairman Rep. Peter King said.

Former and current U.S. intelligence officers said Kahlili was determined to be a genuine defector from IRGC. They said Kahlili has
provided the CIA with a penetrating look inside IRGC and the Iranian leadership.

“I thought I knew a lot about Iran until meeting with him,” King said in a recent radio interview.

Said to be in his mid-50s, Kahlili has been a frequent contributor to the U.S. media and a speaker to government agencies and think tanks on Iran. A resident of California, Kahlili has repeatedly called for a Western campaign to help the opposition overthrow the mullah regime in Teheran.

Iran, determined to complete its nuclear weapons program, has become a threat to the U.S. homeland, Kahlili said. He has argued that IRGC has established a sleeper network in the United States that tracks dissidents and helps select targets for attacks by Teheran.

“Thousands of terrorist cells consisting of the most loyal are placed throughout the world, and they believe Iran will be a key player in creating the circumstances for the coming,” Khalili wrote in an article for the U.S. website World Net Daily in April.

Peter Vincent Pry, a former CIA analyst and now director of the privately-funded Task Force on National and Homeland Security, said Khalili has become the leading analyst of Iran in the United States. Pry said Khalili has been particularly valuable in explaining the messianic doomsday ideology held by the Iranian mullah leadership.

Khalili has asserted that Iran already has two nuclear warheads acquired from the former Soviet Union nearly 20 years ago. He said Teheran was also believed to have obtained a neutron bomb from North Korea, Iran’s leading ally.

“They have very detailed information about sensitive sites such as bridges, railroads, airports, military bases, power plants, nuclear sites, water plants, railway stations,” Khalili told the New York Times.

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