Iran to Try British troops with Espionage

At least that’s what they’re claiming. We’ll see if they have the nerve to follow through with it.

FIFTEEN British sailors and marines arrested by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards off the coast of Iraq may be charged with spying.

A website run by associates of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the Iranian president, reported last night that the Britons would be put before a court and indicted.

Referring to them as “insurgents”, the site concluded: “If it is proven that they deliberately entered Iranian territory, they will be charged with espionage. If that is proven, they can expect a very serious penalty since according to Iranian law, espionage is one of the most serious offences.”

The warning followed claims by Iranian officials that the British navy personnel had been taken to Tehran, the capital, to explain their “aggressive action” in entering Iranian waters. British officials insist the servicemen were in Iraqi waters when they were held.

The penalty for espionage in Iran is death. However, similar accusations of spying were made when eight British servicemen were detained in the same area in 2004. They were paraded blindfolded on television but did not appear in court and were freed after three nights in detention.

Iranian student groups called yesterday for the 15 detainees to be held until US forces released five Revolutionary Guards captured in Iraq earlier this year.

Al-Sharq al-Awsat, a Saudi-owned newspaper based in London, quoted an Iranian military source as saying that the aim was to trade the Royal Marines and sailors for these Guards.

The claim was backed by other sources in Tehran. “As soon as the corps’s five members are released, the Britons can go home,” said one source close to the Guards.

Iran is facing a lot of pressure and is being backed into a corner. With the five Iranian guard members captured, the general with information on Iran’s nuclear program that has gone missing, and now the UN Security Council unanimously voting for sanctions, Ahmadinejad may be bound to do anything.

Allahpundit has been following the situation.

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  • bryanD

    They’ll be charged, evidence entered into the record, and freed as a goodwill gesture.

  • I certainly wish there was some way to avoid an eventual war with the rotten regime in Iran. But even Scripture makes it very clear that a major war with Iran(identified as Persia) is a definate upcoming event at some point in the future.

    Iran doesn’t help themselves much when they abduct persons as hostages. I doubt Britain wants another 444 crisis likle the Iranians put the U.S. through in 1979-1980. But whether diplomacy can work with this outlaw regime is highly questionable.

  • ryan a

    whoa.

    not good. it would be incredibly stupid of iran to go any further with this. hopefully the saner minds prevail and push to release the brits.

  • kim

    It would be interesting to see what faction did the arresting and is now pushing the trying. Ahmadinejad’s position may be even more precarious than it was before the UN’s action.

    Could be desperation. Remember, the mullahs are not mad.
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  • kim

    The Iranians did this a couple of years ago, but released the Brits after just three days. Now they may be hostage to the 5 Rev. Guards captured in Iraq. Dunno.

    Dunno what’s going on in Paki, either, but it’s interesting. Just a coupla days ago I thought the tribesman were after the al Qaeda Arabs, OBL among them, a la the Sunni tribesmen recently in Anbar. Now, not so sure, there seems to be schism in al Qaeda/Taliban. I say, it’s Nomad’s Land.
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  • drjohn

    There was a time this crap would not tolerated.

    Teddy Roosevelt would not “negotiate” with someone who kidnapped your guys.

    Had they any sense, the Brits would not beg for their release.

    Demand it.

    Then just sink an Iranian boat one day.

    Then, the next day, sink another.

    And another.

    Until the men are released.

    If they harm any of them, blow a hole in Qom. Take out the most precious of temples.

    They’ll get that message.

  • Allen

    Well, as much as Carter was such a wimp, he did tell the Iranians that if one hostage was killed, the US would nuke them. That is why they never killed any of our hostages.
    However, no it’s the Brit’s turn to figure out what to do. And I’m sure the US will be dragged into it and in the end be blamed for it.
    Bush should denounce the Iranian action, and say it is between the Brit’s and Iran, however we will back the Brits.
    That should get the Iranians attention, they are not only screwing with one decent power, they will also be screwing with a huge power.

    Drjohn,
    Don’t stop with Qom, take out several places.

  • “Iran to Try British troops with Espionage”

    I hear that French troops taste better with espionage, but then the aftertaste leaves much to be desired.

    I think Kim meant to say “Iran to CHARGE British troops with Espionage”.

    And Allen I agree with you, America WILL be dragged into it and in the end be blamed for it.

    I’m sure the “Blame Bush” crowd is already working overtime.

  • Murphy

    If all else fails, hit Iran with a big hammer.

  • kim

    Poor Sully’s cognitively dissonant with the left’s love affair with Islamofascism. Yes, I know he’s a wingnut; so he tells us.
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  • kim

    Well, yeah, James Lewis at the American Thinker, yesterday, had some of the same thoughts about Ahmadinejad being reined in by the sane ones, plus a lot of other interesting ideas, in his article, ‘Did Mahmoud Blink’. That makes this kidnapping even crazier. Whaddya bet the kidnapping is an increasingly deranged Ahmadinejad trying to force something?
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  • 914

    U mean they have trials without beheadings in Iran??

    why dont the Iranians ship them here? The judges r way more liberal and u can be on CNN and have a book deal and everything?

    Just ask Joe plame?

  • Mike, “try” also means “put on trial,” as in “tried by a jury of his peers.” It’s an acceptable usage.

    J.

  • drjohn

    Don’t stop with Qom, take out several places.

    Yes, but Qon is the command center. That’s is the place from where Ahmedinejad takes his orders. From the mullahs.

    Take them out and it’s over.

  • Old Coot

    Well, as much as Carter was such a wimp, he did tell the Iranians that if one hostage was killed, the US would nuke them. That is why they never killed any of our hostages.

    Allen: Can you provide a link that supports that statement? Thanks in advance.

  • metprof

    I heard Shumer is calling for a senate committee investigation of a possible link between Rove/Cheney and this kidnapping.

  • Allen

    Old Coot,
    I don’t have a link to his statement. But if you remember when this happened, most of this country wanted us to go to war. Granted Carter was not one of the best Presidents, and did screw up a lot, he (my thinking) did the right thing at that time.
    One of the members of the Senate Intelligence Committee(I can’t remember which), after the 444 were released, let it slip that is what Carter, through the embassy handling our affairs there, told the Iranians. This is the same embassy that helped a couple of US embassy people get out of Iran.
    I have, on occasion, heard other people mentioned it, so weather it’s true or not, I honestly cannot say. But I think it is true, otherwise why didn’t they kill some of the embassy guards?
    If I remember correctly they were in on the murder of the CIA head of station, so killing people wasn’t new to them.

  • SCSIwuzzy

    Allen,
    You are full of something, and it smells rather like a septic tank.
    You probably think Reagan invented crack…

  • Allen

    SCSIwuzzy,
    No, you just don’t know what you are talking about, it’s that simple. But it’s common knowledge among people who lived thru those times. And the Iranian’s were scared shit less of Reagan. They knew that if they didn’t release the 444 hostages, shit would rain down upon them.

    And you should know what a septic tank is, you get all your meals from it. No, Ronnie didn’t invent crack, he invented the Iran/Contra problem. But you probably don’t remember that because the fumes from your meals have messed up your gray matter.

  • With the liberal, cut-and-run, we-really-don’t-support-the-troops-even-though-we-claim-otherwise, gutless Democrats in charge in Congress and Blair already announced the pullout of British troops…

    it’s no wonder why Iran feels embolden. They know nothing will be done to stop them from doing stuff like this.