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It is certain that the American decision to designates Iran’s Revolutionary Guards a terrorist group has come too late. However, it came at a crucial time when Iran is preparing for a radical change in its regime and its internal and external policies, which gave an indication that the United States is determined to change the regime in Iran completely. The American move has also given more important indicator that the change in Iran is inevitable, and without this inevitability, Washington would not take such a decision.

Economic burdens and financial collapses

The repercussions of this decision on the Iranian interior have begun to emerge since day one, as many large and small companies in the region and the world began to cut their ties with all institution affiliated with the Revolutionary Guards to avoid US sanctions, while Iranian goods become stacked as no one was ready to buy it anymore, as well as a shortage of goods has took place in the Iranian markets which were heavily relying on foreign exporters to supply.

Thwarting INSTEX and a possible collapse of the Nuclear Deal

More importantly, this decision has heavily restrained the special financial mechanism launched by European countries for the continuation of trade relations with Iran, known as “Instex”, which was and still is for the nuclear deal as the last hope. The American decision to designate the Revolutionary Guards as a terrorist group means a complete ban over almost 70% of the Iranian economic sectors and companies, as the Revolutionary Guards dominate most of the country’s economy, meaning that any country that would deal with the companies or institutions of the Revolutionary Guards are going to be subjected to severe US sanctions, including the European countries,  which seek through this mechanism to keep Iran inside the nuclear deal. But it can be said that the US decision to classify the Revolutionary Guard as a terrorist organization has greatly weakened the option of Iran’s survival in the nuclear deal as the European countries will not be able to preserve the Iranian interests, and thus an expected collapse of the deal followed by waves of successive economic and financial collapses.

Military confrontations

It is expected that following this American decision, Israel will escalate its attack on Iranian forces in Syria, and it is not unlikely that there will be limited confrontations between US and Iranian forces in the region resulting in heavy losses incurred by the Iranian forces, stressing that Tehran will do everything in its power to prevent a major confrontation between Its forces and US ones to avoid a sudden fall of the regime and its Revolutionary Guards. Moreover, since the United States has never previously classified a military corps of a country as a terrorist organization, this would mean that Washington is determined to put pressure on the Iranian government, to the limit that it might have direct confrontation, if necessary, with the Revolutionary Guards.

This decision will have a great impact on the capability of the Revolutionary Guards, its course and the quality of its weapons, as well as its wide political, economic, security and intelligence roles it is playing at home and abroad. In addition, this decision will increase the difficulties for the activities of the Revolutionary Guard in all fields and will restrict and limit its relations with the rest of its agents in the region.

The heavy losses of Qatar and the rest of Iran’s agents in the region

In addition to the above, this decision will have positive impacts on combating terrorism in the region and the world, for what it has of great repercussions on the groups, organizations and regimes that have relations with the Revolutionary Guard, led by the Qatari regime, the Houthis, Hezbollah and sectarian militias in Iraq. This decision will also cut the ties between the Revolutionary Guards and those organizations, which have relied on Iranian support in their conflicts, regional wars and terrorist activities, and received assistance from it in all aspects.

Al Mezmaah Studies & Research Centre

April 16, 2019


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