Former French President Jacque Chirac, according to a State Department cable, said that "It would be very risky to isolate Iran totally.... experience proves that the USA embargo benefits only the extremists".
In Syria, America could find itself becoming more bogged down in the conflict if its military targets IRGC forces in line with how the U.S. wages strikes against other entities in the country placed on the FTO list. The IRGC also caused casualties to U.S soldiers in Iraq by providing roadside bombs to its proxies. The larger implications will be diplomatic and political, complicating Middle East discourse for both Iran and the United States for years to come. Countries, companies and individuals that do business with the IRGC and the many enterprises it controls are supporting what Mohsen Sazegara, a founding member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and now a USA -based dissident described, according to the Council on Foreign Relations, as "something like the Communist Party, the KGB, a business complex, and the Mafia". He said the organization was at the "forefront" of national defense and claimed the "vice and deceit" of American officials "will return boomerang on them". The 1983 Beirut bombings that left over 240 U.S. Marines killed in their barracks was carried out by the Lebanese Hezbollah, a terrorist group sponsored, trained and funded by the IRGC from day one. U.S. sanctions on a wide number of groups and individuals demonstrate the difficulty of isolating and punishing those directly supported by Tehran without having a more detrimental and wider impact on innocent parties. The IRGC oversees the Iranian regime's ballistic missile program.
Either way, the new sanctions do not fundamentally alter the reality of existing sanctions.
The designation, however, could significantly complicate US military and diplomatic work, notably in Iraq, where many Shiite militias and Iraqi political parties have close ties to the Guard. Various Trump officials, to that end, were none too keen by the decision, claiming that retaliation would follow against U.S. intelligence officers and troops.
This designation ends the façade that the IRGC is part of a normal military.
In the immediate aftermath of Trump's announcement, Tehran risibly declared the U.S. military to be a terrorist entity.
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However, while the Quds Force is the tip of the IRGC's spear, it is far from being the entire spear.
US President Donald Trump designated Iran's Guards a foreign terrorist organization on Monday - an unprecedented step that will raise tensions in the Middle East.
It is the first time the United States has labeled another nation's military as a terrorist organization. To left-wing and nationalist forces who endured these purges, Khomeini and the IRGC hijacked their revolution, subverting it into something perversely contrary to popular aspirations for freedom from tyranny. Each time there was unrest - such as in the late 1990s, 2009 and early 2018 - it was the IRGC that bloodily crushed all manifestations of dissent.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani waves to journalists next to a portrait of supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei (R) at the end of a press conference in Tehran on June 13, 2015.
The decision against the "official army of Iran. was incomprehensible", he said. It is IRGC figures like Soleimani who call the shots.
AIPAC called the IRGC "the principal instrument of the Iranian regime's policy of global terrorism and regional aggression." . It bans any American from doing business with the group. Businesses and institutions in Iraq and Lebanon will be forced to distance themselves from IRGC entities if they want to retain their worldwide connections.
The designation means any IRGC assets in the United States can be frozen.