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Lesson for America? Iran Deploys Army to Secure Southeastern Border

© AP Photo / Vahid SalemiIranian army members march during Army Day parade at a military base
Iranian army members march during Army Day parade at a military base - Sputnik International, 1920, 21.04.2024
Opponents of the Washington establishment regularly call on the federal government to use military and national guard personnel to shore up security along America’s borders instead of sending troops around the world to secure the borders of other countries. In the meantime, one of America’s biggest adversaries is showing Washington how it’s done.
Iran’s Army has joined forces with the Border Guard Command (the Iranian equivalent to the US Customs and Border Protection Agency) to help tackle illegal immigration along the country’s southeastern frontier.
In an interview with local media on Sunday, Army General Amir Gholamalian, commander of the Southeast Regional Headquarters, said his forces in Iran’s Sistan and Baluchistan province have been assisting in the apprehension of illegal immigrants, detaining roughly 49,800 to date.
Gholamalian said the Army’s mission is being undertaken on a volunteer basis, and in accordance with Iran’s Constitution, which endows the Army with a responsibility to protect the country’s land, air and sea borders.
After their detention, illegal aliens are typically handed off to the Border Guard, with arrangements then made with the Foreign Ministry to deport them back to their home countries.
Pointing to the Army’s special responsibilities to the nation, Gholamalian said that “in any area where our people are in trouble and need the Army to be with them, we are with them,” whether it be assisting with border defense or helping in the construction of roads, or using its engineering equipment and expertise to mitigate and prevent floods, deal with earthquakes and health emergencies.
Iran has experienced a major spike in illegal immigration from neighboring Afghanistan in recent years following the collapse of the US puppet administration in that country in August 2021. In June 2022, Iran’s deputy interior minister for security and law enforcement estimated that there were as many as 4.5 million Afghans (both documented and illegal) living in Iran. Tehran has sought to establish dialogue with its neighbors to secure the expulsion of illegal aliens. Iran and Afghanistan share a 921 km long border. There are three official border crossings.
This frame grab from video shows the launching of underground ballistic missiles by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard during a military exercise, July 29, 2020. Iran's paramilitary guard launched underground ballistic missiles as part of an exercise involving a mock-up aircraft carrier in the Strait of Hormuz, state television reported Wednesday - Sputnik International, 1920, 19.01.2024
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The Iranian state’s readiness to use all resources at its disposal to ensure domestic security contrasts starkly with the US approach, which has tens of thousands of troops, sailors and airmen stationed in countries neighboring Iran, but is loath to deploy them at home on the border with Mexico to try to stem America’s immigration and drug smuggling crisis.

The Trump administration initiated a program in 2018 known as ‘Operation Faithful Patriot’ to assist Customs and Border Protection in dealing with illegal immigration, but the troop numbers have been modest, ranging from between a few hundred and a few thousand, and their deployment linked to specific administration policies.
More than a dozen states with Republican governors have moved to commit National Guard troops to the border with Mexico in recent months amid surging illegal immigration. However, their deployment has been highly politicized, with President Biden’s allies urging him to seize control of the Texas National Guard earlier this year after Guard units were deployed to block federal agents from processing illegal aliens.
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