Protesters in support of Palestinians in Gaza and pro-Israel counter-protesters scuffle during demonstrations amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) in Los Angeles, California, U.S. April 28, 2024.

Tehran Propagandist Advocates Mobilizing US Students Into New Hezbollah

Thursday, 05/02/2024

A pro-government ideologue in Iran says the Islamic Republic can use the potential of pro-Palestinian protesting students at US campuses to form a new proxy group in America.

“I think the potential to repeat in the US what the Islamic Republic did in Lebanon is much higher. Our Hezbollah-style base in the US is much larger than what we have in Lebanon,” said University of Tehran professor Foad Izadi in an interview with Iran’s state TV.

Iran played a major role in the foundation of the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hezbollah in the early 1980s. Since then, the group has been involved in attacks against Israeli and American targets in the Middle East and elsewhere.

Izadi urged the Iranian government to engage “on an operational level” with protesting students in the US and try to “recruit connections and build networks” among them. “We are watching the demonstrations and we like what we see, but it should not end with this,” he stressed.

The commentator called the pro-Palestinian students “our people,” further saying that “if tensions between Iran and the US rise tomorrow or the day after, these are the people who should take to the streets to support Iran.”

On Wednesday, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei voiced support for pro-Palestinian protests at American campuses.

“Despite the extensive efforts of Zionists and their American and European supporters, the issue of Gaza remains the top global concern. Protests against the crimes of the Zionist regime in American universities and their expansion to European universities are signs of the continued sensitivity of public opinion worldwide to the Gaza issue,” he remarked.

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