We’ve been following the astounding operation run in Washington, D.C. here (April 7), here (April 8), and here (by John, also April 8). Today I want to add the memorandum in support of the continued detention of the accused operators, Arian Taherzadeh and Haider Ali (embedded below). John commented on it in the third linked post. Please pause over the text of the memorandum and the photographs included in it.
I want to make a few points in the form of bullet points that reiterate and add to what we have had to say.
• These two men were not acting on their own. This was an operation run by a foreign intelligence service against the agency that is to secure the lives of our elected leaders.
• The two men succeeded in bringing four Secret Service agents and one DHS officer into their net.
• The object of the operation remains unstated and unclear. One can only infer that the object was to compromise national security and/or threaten the personal safety of American official in some serious way.
• One of the two bragged about his relationship with the Pakistani intelligence service, but I wonder if he was trying to impress his interlocutor. The memo is silent about the context. It is not clear whether his statements are to be taken seriously.
• The connections to Iran seem more realistic to me, but that is just a guess based on the travel documents and travel history. The government has identified at least four entry/exit stamps from Mashhad International Airport in Mashhad, Iran.
• Michael Doran links to this Daily Mail story and comments that the two were likely Iranian agents. One of the four Secret Service agents receiving free rent from them was assigned to Vice President Harris’s security detail. According to the Daily Mail’s unnamed sources, another was on the presidential protective detail and regularly traveled with President Biden on Air Force One.
• This operation must have cost a relative fortune.
• The men do not appear to be wealthy. Indeed, the court has appointed lawyers to represent them based on their alleged lack of resources.
• The papers filed so far indicate that the men are American citizens, but we are left to wonder if they are native born or naturalized. What is their country of origin?
• The government must have gotten busy tracing funds that have made their way into the accounts of defendants, but there is no mention of such evidence in the unsealed FBI affidavit or in the detention memo.
• On the face of the facts set forth in the FBI affidavit and the detention memo, one has to wonder about the stupidity of the four Secret Service agents are. They have been placed on administrative leave. Will they be coming back?
• Defendants’ scheme was detected by luck in the course of an investigation conducted by a United States Postal Service Inspector. You have got to be kidding me.