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Raisi Uses Partisan Infighting to Cover Systemic Corruption
Amid increased feudal infighting, Ebrahim Raisi’s administration claims to take care of luxury houses and organizational villas in the possession of senior managers of the previous government.
According to the official news agency IRNA, Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli owned a villa with an area of 1,803 meters and 684 meters in the Niavaran area, North of Tehran. In a letter to Interior Minister Ahmad Vahidi, Azizullah Fazli, a legal deputy at the presidential office, requested that the property be evacuated.
During Raisi’s presidential campaign, Iranian state media tried to portray Ebrahim Raisi as a champion in the fight against systemic corruption but instead, he has installed more relatives and associates to important positions.
UPDATE: 9:00 AM CET
Officials Blame Fire Outbreak for Temporary Disruption of the Internet in Tehran and Karaj
On Friday, March 4, the Internet was cut off in large areas of Tehran and Karaj due to what officials called a “fire outbreak in the Telecommunication Complex of the Islamic Revolution”, also called LCT inside Iran.
According to the official news agency IRNA, Mehdi Salem, head of the Ministry of Communications’ public relations center, claimed that the cause of the internet outage was “due to a power outage and a fire at the LCT’s power plant”, which was quickly repaired and the backup system quickly replaced.
The Islamic Revolution Telecommunication Complex” (LTC) is the main supplier of telecommunications infrastructure that controls the Internet bandwidth in Iran. The fire in the company cut off the internet of many public and private companies, as well as ordinary citizens who operate from operators such as Hamrah Aval, Mobinent, Shuttle, and Zeitel.
⚠️ Confirmed: A major internet disruption has been registered in #Iran with high impact to Tehran and other regions; real-time network data show a collapse in connectivity amid reports of a fire at a key telecoms datacenter 🔥📉
📰 Report: https://t.co/g0evT7Zw8E pic.twitter.com/Zdhif8L4NK
— NetBlocks (@netblocks) March 4, 2022
It is not yet clear whether the cause of the fire in the infrastructure company’s power plant was related to a new cyber attack or the regime’s malign agenda to cut off the Internet in the country. In recent months, the strategic facilities and centers of the Iranian regime, including the main TV and radio stations, fuel distribution system, the gas station network, and the railway, port, and shipping network, have faced major disruptions but the regime is also fiercely trying to shut down the world wide web to block the free flow of information in the country.
Tehran Is the Biggest Threat to Regional Security – US General
“Iran is the biggest threat to regional security, and the US will do everything possible to prevent it from securing nuclear weapons,” Gen. Kenneth MacKenzie, commander of the US Central Command said on Friday, March 4.
According to the CENTCOM commander, countries such as North Korea and the Iranian regime, despite all the threats they pose against US national security, are not on par with Russia and China.
General MacKenzie also cited the activities of Tehran-backed militias in the region as one of the threats, adding that it might not be possible to stop all activities of these proxy groups, but that the main task of the US forces was to prevent them from expanding in the region.
With or Without Internet, Regime Change in Iran Is Inevitable
Iran’s state-run daily Kayhan, a mouthpiece of supreme leader Ali Khamenei, displayed a telling reaction to the failure of the regime’s plans to restrict the internet and replace it with a state-controlled system. The regime calls its initiative the ‘Cyberspace Users Rights Protection Plan.’
“While many countries around the world have enacted laws in the field of cyberspace, the plan to legalize cyberspace met with a thought-provoking fate that needs to be explored,” the paper lamented.
The reference to “thought-provoking fate” is a clear admission of the regime’s failure, which intended to hand over control of the internet to repressive forces and intelligence organizations, primarily to prevent future protests. Clearly, the regime’s main concern about open access to the internet was never the spread of “vulgarity or fraud” or “immorality” or “bad lessons for students”
Read more: Iran News in Brief – March 4, 2022