A new leak just exposed John Kerry in the worst possible way. The leak came from Iranian foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif who claimed that then-U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry told him about some 200 Israeli covert operations in Syria.
Zarif revealed he was often kept in the dark about key issues as he was often outranked “sometimes to his embarrassment” by other Iranian officials. But he said “to his astonishment,” that John Kerry told him that Israel had attacked Iranian interests inside Syria at least 200 times during covert missions.
Kerry has previously been accused of colluding with Iranian leaders to hurt the Trump administration’s policies.
“John Kerry was ratting out Israeli covert operations in Syria directly to the Iranian foreign minister. Let that sink in. Wow,” said Noah Pollak of the foreign policy-focused Democratic Alliance Group.
The recording, described by the Times as “a conversation in March between Mr. Zarif and an economist named Saeed Leylaz,” was first leaked to the UK-based, Saudi-owned Farsi-language news channel Iran International, which is seen as hostile to Iran.
The recording suggests that Zarif, and others within the Iranian regime, might privately have been glad that the U.S. killed terrorist General Qasem Soleimani, leader of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, last year.
Zarif says “the United States delivered a major blow to Iran, more damaging than if it had wiped out an entire city in an attack,” the Times reported. “But he said some of Mr. Suleimani’s actions also damaged the country.”
(The attack on Soleimani was universally criticized by Democrats at the time, including then-candidate Joe Biden.)
Zarif also suggested that government matters in Iran are often dictated by the IRGC, and that Russia had worked with Soleimani to thwart the 2015 nuclear deal.
“In the Islamic Republic the military field rules,” Zarif said. “I have sacrificed diplomacy for the military field rather than the field servicing diplomacy.”
From Fox News:
Outside of Iran, Zarif’s comments could also affect talks in Vienna aimed at finding a way for Tehran and the U.S. to both come into compliance with Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.
Already, sabotage targeted Iran’s nuclear facility at Natanz during the talks as Tehran has begun enriching a small amount of uranium up to 60% purity, which edges the country closer to weapons-grade levels.
After the leak became public, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh did not dispute the tape’s authenticity.
He told journalists on Monday that the recording represented just a portion of a seven-hour interview Zarif gave to a well-known economist that was to be held for posterity by a think tank associated with the Iranian presidency.
Khatibzadeh called the release of the recording “illegal” and described it as “selectively” edited, though he and others did not offer opinions on how it became public. Zarif, visiting Iraq on Monday after a trip to Qatar, took no questions from journalists after giving a brief statement in Baghdad.