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CIA spying against Iran absolute act of war: Ex-US intelligence officer

File photo by AP

A former US intelligence officer has described the attempts by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) to destabilize Iran through a massive network of Iranian moles — just busted by the Iranian Intelligence Ministry — as “an absolute act of war.”

“This is an absolute act of war,” said former American intelligence linguist Scott Rickard during an interview with Press TV’s The Debate show on Monday.

He also pointed to other hostile US attempts against Iran, such as waging cyber warfare to blow up Iranian centrifuges through the Stuxnet virus in collaboration with the Israeli regime and Germany, among others.

Rickard said he was not at all surprised by the news of the latest exposure of American destabilizing spying operations against Iran.

He said that ever since Washington’s “systemic [intelligence] operation[s]” in Iran were disrupted by the 1979 Islamic Revolution, the US “has maintained a systemic nature whereby they’ve worked with everything from humanitarian groups like Amnesty International [and] journalist outlets like Newsweek.”

He then recalled how US-based Newsweek’s native Iranian journalist Maziar Bahari attempted to distort events during post-election unrest in Iran in 2009.

The former US intelligence linguist further praised Iran’s “incredible resilience” in face of what he referred to as persisting efforts “to demonize Iran” by “the American media, the American government, and their Western allies… while they’re maliciously attacking the country with acts of warfare on a constant basis.”

Also participating in The Debate show was the founder of the American Institute for Foreign Policy, Michael Lane, who attempted to justify the all-out US spying efforts against Iran aimed at destabilizing the country as a normal undertaking against an adversary, saying, “It would shock me if CIA was not involved in that kind of activity.”

Lane said he expected to see in “a very near future” that “one or more of Iran’s adversaries” would engage in other sorts of “cyber attack against the nuclear assets of Iran and even to degrade their military in certain circumstances.”

The remarks came hours after Iran’s Intelligence Ministry announced the destruction of an integrated network of spies inside Iran working on behalf of the CIA.

The ministry’s director-general for counterintelligence said Monday that Iran had captured 17 professional spies working for the US spy agency throughout last year and some of those arrested had been handed death sentences.

“The identified spies were employed in sensitive and vital private sector centers in the economic, nuclear, infrastructural, military, and cyber areas... where they collected classified information,” the unnamed official said in a statement.

The official said that the suspects were operating in key organizations and institutions mainly in the private sector.

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