Tuesday, October 6, 2009

A convicted torturer appointed as commander of Basij (Iran's paramilitary force)

Facts and figures:
Mohammad Reza Naghdi, born in Iraq (Najaf) in 1953, expelled from Iraq with his family in 1980, associated with Lebanon's Hizbollah; and a member of the Supreme Iraqi Islamic (Revolution) Council. (They dropped "Revolution" term in 2007. One of the founding members of the council, Abdul-Aziz Hakeem, a close associate of the IRI, is seen shaking hand with Bush in this picture.)

16 years ago, Khamenei the supreme leader appointed him as the deputy of intelligence office of Sepah's Quds Army. Shortly after this appointment he was granted the General status and moved to Intelligence office of Iran's security, and then promoted further to Iran's army (Ground forces).

In 1999, During Khatami's presidency, participated in a semi-coup against Khatami's reformist government, arresting 164 of of Tehran's mayors and employees, plotting assassination attempts against Abdullah Nouri (Khatami's Interior Minister) and Mohajerani (Khatami's Minister of Islamic Culture and Guidance), coordinating the attack on university dorms.

In 2000 Naghdi and a group of his "plain clothes" associates formed a group (Band-e Kabir, Great Gang) to "prevent social corruption" (read civic liberties). Breaking the law and accused of torture and condemned by court to 3 months of jail--a term he never served. Naghdi is alleged to have participated (together with Mohseni Ejei--Ahmadinejad's minister of Intelligence) in suspicious death of the judge who handled the Mayor's case (suffered cardiac arrest after Air-injection!).

It's noteworthy that the members of Band-e Kabir, were charged with several counts of breaking the law (including kidnapping and extortion using cold weapons and firearms and abusing their governmental credentials) and were prosecuted publicly--however Naghdi who was closely associated with the Leader's circle was spared. Instead of being prosecuted, he was promoted by Ahmadinejad in 2005 and was put in charge of "fight against drug traffic and money laundering"!! Of course, Ahmadinejad changed his mind after Naghdi exposes smuggling practices of one of Ahmadinejad's major financial supporters, removes him from "fight against drug traffic department" and the leader returns Naghdi to the army.

On Sunday, October 4th, the supreme leader appoints Naghdi as the commander in chief of Basij--the paramilitary organ responsible for Ahmadinejad's post-election blood bath ...


Pedestrian said...

I don't know what to say - there is nothing to say.

I just wonder: is K. scared of them too? who's controlling who here? (not that it matters in the outcome, I'd just like to know)

Mark Pyruz said...

Thanks for providing this brief biography, Naj. If you don't mind, I'm going to reference it over at Uskowi on Iran.

-Mark Pyruz

Naj said...

Mark, please do! I thought you are more IRGC-aware than me though, so I came over at your site for inspiration ;)


"che gooyam ke nagoftanam khoshtar ast, zaban dar dahan pasdare sar ast!" somethign like that!

Mark Pyruz said...

Hi Naj, yeah those IRGC heads are what we refer to as manly-men!

BTW, I am merely an IRGC "observer".

Hey, I could use some more of your help. Do you think you could ID the two clerics (and possibly the civilian) standing at the left-hand side of the following photo?


If you know, please comment at:


Thanks again,
Mark Pyruz