Intel Director Exposes Iranian Government’s Role in Funding and Inciting Anti-Israel Protests in the US

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Top U.S. intelligence official warns that “actors linked to Iran’s Government” are funding and inciting anti-Israel demonstrations on U.S. territory in an “increasingly aggression” campaign.

Avril A. Haines, Director of National Intelligence, issued a warning to U.S. Citizens on Tuesday about “concerning Iranian activities” and how Iranian government actors had sought to “opportunistically exploit” anti-Israel protests.

She said that Iran is increasing its foreign influence efforts. They are trying to stir up discord and undermine the confidence of our democratic institutions. This has been seen in previous election cycles. “They continue to adapt and change their cyber and influence efforts, using social media platforms as well as issuing threats.”

Haines said that, in recent weeks Iranian officials have tried to exploit anti-Israeli demonstrations by using a playbook familiar to the U.S.

She said: “We’ve observed Iranian government actors posing online as activists, encouraging protests and providing financial support to the protesters.”

She added that “Americans who are being targeted may not know that they are receiving or interacting with a foreign government” when they interact online with actors and accounts they don’t personally know.”

Haines said that Iran will “likely continue to rely” on its intelligence services, as well as online influencers based in Iran, to promote the narratives.

For months, anti-Israel demonstrations have been erupting on college campuses across the nation. Some say they are in support of Hamas’ brutal attacks against Israel — a terrorist group supported by Iran. Some protest Israel’s retaliatory strikes in Gaza.

In a bizarre spat, Hamas denied Tehran’s claims. Tehran claimed that the attack was revenge for Qassem Solimani being killed during the Trump administration.

A report released by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies in November revealed 15 Iran-backed armed groups operating across the Middle East with “incestuous ties” to Tehran and working to “force multiply” the country’s opposition to Israel and the U.S.

Bill Roggio is a senior fellow and co-author at FDD. He says that the “root” problem facing the U.S. in the Middle East stems from “an Iranian regime which has nothing but hatred towards the United States.”

Roggio stated that confusion will continue until the administration starts to clarify.

He said that “the American public does not understand these types of wars” because the American government was willing to negotiate a deal with Iran based on Iran being treated as a responsible member of the international community.