BY: Morad Veisi
English translation of this report is exclusive to Iran Briefing
Iran Briefing : Major General Mohammad Ali jafari, the commander-in-chief of the Revolutionary Guard, has recently appointed Brigadier General Mohsen Kazemeini as the new commander of the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard. In his new post, Brigadier General Kazemeini has succeeded Brigadier General Hossein Hamedani. The question, however, is who is Mohsen Kazemeini, the new commander of the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard, and what is his previous record?
Brigadier General Mohsen Kazemeini is a Single-star General who formerly served as the deputy commander of the Revolutionary Guard for operations. Since the summer of 2009, at the peak of unrest in Tehran, he was brought from Khuzestan to Tehran. As the commander of the Revolutionary Guard for operations, his main duty was to prepare operational plans for possible confrontations. He is fifty years old and originally from Kashan. In 1980 he became member of the Tehran-based Mohammad Rasulallah Army of the Revolutionary Guard , and he has been currently appointed to lead it. He, along with other forces of the Mohammad Rasulallah division, was sent to Lebanon in 1982 on a mission to fight against Israel under the commandership of Ahmad Tavassolian.
He was not a high ranking commander of the Revolutionary Guard during the 8 year war between Iran and Iraq. However, he was appointed to lead the Khuzestan-based Vali- Asr division of the Revolutionary Guard following the war.
Who Kazemeini has seceded?
Brigadier General Mohsen Kazemeini has succeeded Hossein Hamedani, the former commander of the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard. Hossein Hamedani is a member of and indeed founder of the Hamedan-based division of the Revolutionary Guard. Hamedani is a war veteran and has been serving the Revolutionary Guard for more than 32 years. He was among the Revolutionary Guard’s commanders who led “Bazi Deraz,” an operational zone in western front, and has compiled his memoirs in a book entitled Brother, It Is a Duty. He later became the commander of Ansar-al-Hossein, Hamedan-based division of the Revolutionary Guard. He was a staunch foe of Mohammad Khatami during his presidency in the mid-90s, and was among the twenty-seven commanders of the Revolutionary Guard who wrote threatening letter to Khatami. Till three years ago when Hossein Taeb was leading the Basij Militia , he was the deputy commander of the Basij militia.
He was appointed to lead the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard in the winter of 2009 when Tehran was engulfed with massive unrest following the 2009 disputed presidential election. He is on the sanction list imposed by the international community against Iran.
Responsibilities of the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard
The main duty of the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard is to protect the capital, the regime’s center of political power, against any kind of uprising, coup, unrest, foreign and internal threats.
The Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard operates within the geographical boundaries of Tehran, which includes Shemiranat, Ray and Tehran itself. The 27 Army of Mohammad Rasulallah is the most important military unit operating under the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard. Of course, all the military units of the Basij militia of Tehran are operating under the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard. Operating alongside the Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard, Sayyed ol-Shohada division of the Revolutionary Guard is tasked to enforce security in cities like Bumehen, Rudehen, Varamin which are located on the outskirt of the capital, Tehran. City of Karaj, which has recently become the capital of Alborz state, has its own division of the Revolutionary Guard which is known as Imam Hasan Mojtaba division of the Revolutionary Guard.
Military-security Ramifications of Changing the Commander of the Tehran-based Division of the Revolutionary Guard
Changing the high ranking commanders of the Revolutionary Guard, like the commander of Tehran-based division of the Revolutionary Guard, is not merely a military affair, but it is dependent on political, security and military circumstances. The reason for that lies in the politico-security significance of Tehran for the regime.
Moreover, changing the high ranking commanders of the Revolutionary Guard, contrary to the regular army, is not dependent on issues like retirement or periodical replacement. The Commanders of the Revolutionary Guard are being deposed or appointed as the regime adopts new military-security approach depending on the kind of foreign and domestic threats it is facing.
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