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From an ex-CIA spy: US must exploit new split in Iran's Revolutionary Guard

A serious split is developing within Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard. The West must leverage that split in support of regime change before the Islamic Republic successfully tests nuclear weapons.

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Members of Iran's paramilitary Basij force, affiliated with the Revolutionary Guard, attend a rally in front of the former US Embassy in Tehran on Nov. 25, 2011.

AP Photo/Vahid Salemi

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A serious split is developing within Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard, with one faction favoring the overthrow of the dictatorial regime. This presents a window of opportunity for the West to support regime change before the Islamic Republic successfully tests nuclear weapons. Once the regime has those nuclear bombs, that opening will be much narrower. 

Iran has tried hard to show strength in the face of sanctions aimed at pressuring Tehran to quit its suspected nuclear-bomb and missile development programs. Iranian leaders are now flexing their military muscles in the strategic waterway, the Strait of Hormuz, threatening to shut it down and choking off a major part of the world’s oil supply.

The regime has long tried to scare the West from taking any action against it, by threatening the world’s security and stability. However, behind its mask of strength and unity, big cracks are beginning to show.

Ever since entering politics, the Iranian supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has been a vengeful politician who rarely trusts anyone. Sources reveal that after the Nov. 12 explosions at the Guard's base west of Tehran, many Guard members, including commanders and even officers at the supreme leader’s office, have been arrested and are under investigation.

On that day, Mr. Khamenei, along with many other high-ranking Iranian officials, was supposed to be present at a ceremony at the explosion site. The massive blast not only rattled Tehran more than 20 miles away but shocked the regime’s hierarchy, which saw it as a covert operation to take out the supreme leader and his cronies.

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