Designating Iran’s Revolutionary Guard as Terror Group Could Jeopardize U.S. Troops

President Hassan Rouhani declared that the force's popularity would only surge in the wake of the designation, saying its members would be more "in the hearts of the Iranian nation" than at any other time in history

Iran US Sanctions
Vahid Salemi/AP

The White House was looking to shake things up when it designated Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps as a foreign terrorist organization. It worked, NBC News reports.

“American terrorists killed in bombing,” read a headline in Iran’s official Fars news agency, referring to an attack in Afghanistan that killed three U.S. servicemen. Iranian lawmakers dressed in military uniforms chanted "Death to America" during an open session of Parliament on Tuesday. And according to the country’s Mehr news agency, Parliament passed an emergency bill requesting that countries that arrest U.S troops should hand them over to Iran to face trial as terrorists.

Richard Nephew, a former director for Iran at the National Security Council who served as a member of the team who negotiated the 2015 Iran nuclear agreement — from which President Donald Trump has since withdrawn — said Trump's decision to designate the Guard as terrorists would most likely make American operations in the region “much more complicated.”

Trump called the designation an “unprecedented step” that “recognizes the reality that Iran is not only a state sponsor of terrorism, but that the IRGC actively participates in, finances, and promotes terrorism as a tool of statecraft.”

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