An Iranian official just admitted responsibility for terror bombings that resulted in the death of over 200 U.S. service members.
According to Fox News, the admission has been made by Sayyed Issa Tabatabai, the representative of Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei in Lebanon.
Tabatabai made the admission during a recent interview.
The state-controlled Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA), according to Fox, tried to delete the interview, but the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) preserved it.
The bombings at issue here took place in Beirut in the 1980s.
According to the U.S. State Department:
On April 18, 1983, a suicide bomber detonated a one-half-ton pickup truck laden with 2,000 pounds of TNT near the front of the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, killing 63 people, including 17 Americans. It was the deadliest attack on a U.S. diplomatic mission to date,
Another attack of this kind was carried out on October 23, 1983, when, according to the department, "a suicide bomber drove a truck underneath the four-story building housing the U.S. Marine barracks and detonated 12,000 pounds of TNT." This attack claimed the lives of 220 Marines, 18 sailors, and three soldiers.
And, yet another attack was carried out in December 1983, but no lives were lost in it.
It has long been suspected that Iran and its chief ally - the Hezbollah terrorist organization - were behind the attacks. But, this has never been confirmed - until, perhaps, now.
Tabatabai, in the interview, seemed to claim responsibility, on behalf of Iran, for the attacks.
I quickly went to Lebanon and provided what was needed in order to [carry out] martyrdom operations in the place where the Americans and Israelis were. The efforts to establish [Hezbollah] started in [Lebanon's] Baalbek area, where members of [Iran's] Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) arrived. I had no part in establishing the [political] party [Hezbollah], but God made it possible for me to continue the military activity with the group that had cooperated with us prior to the [Islamic] Revolution's victory.
The bragging did not stop there.
With the victory of the Islamic Revolution [in Iran], Hezbollah was established [in the summer of 1982]. For two years, [Hezbollah's] military base was located in my home. "The group" [supporters of the Islamic Revolution] signed a contract declaring their willingness to become martyrs. Perhaps more than 70 [of them] signed this contract in my home.
Why Tabatabai made this admission now is unclear. But, it is clear, from the fact that Iran has taken the interview down, that Iranian leadership does not agree with Tabatabai's decision to make the admission. According to experts, this suggests that there is a growing strife among Iran's leaders.