Israel’s Mossad is suspected of being behind the killing of Iran’s top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. In November 2020, a convoy carrying Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Iran’s most prominent nuclear scientist, came under fire. He was killed with an artificial intelligence-assisted remote control machine gun.
Carrying out an assassination in such a surgical fashion against a moving target without any civilian casualties requires real-time intelligence on the ground.
After the killing, Iran’s intelligence minister, Mahmoud Alavi, claimed that two months earlier, he had warned security forces that there was an assassination plot targeting Mr. Fakhrizadeh at the exact location where he was shot.
Mr. Alavi said the person who planned the killing was “a member of the armed forces. We couldn’t carry out intelligence operations on the armed forces”.
But he indirectly implied the perpetrator was a member of the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC), Iran’s most elite military unit. If so, the agent would have to have been high up enough in the IRGC to have been able to brush off the warning and carry out the plan at the set date, time, and location.
Mohsen Fakhrizadeh is also known to have been a member of the IRGC.
Sources inside Tehran’s Evin prison security ward, where those who are accused of spying for foreign countries are held, have told the BBC there have been scores of high-ranking IRGC commanders held there.
The Iranian government does not publicize their names and ranks to avoid tarnishing the reputation of the Revolutionary Guards.
A former intelligence officer for the IRGC Quds Force (its overseas operations arm) has told the BBC foreign agencies have gathered evidence against a number of Iranian ambassadors and IRGC commanders.
He said it includes information about relationships with women, which he said could be used to blackmail those officials to force them to co-operate with foreign spies.
In late January 2018, in the dead of night, a dozen men broke into a storage facility in an industrial district, 20 miles (30km) from the capital, Tehran. Israel’s Mossad