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Digital Archive International History Declassified

October 10, 1979


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    Information of KGB USSR to CC CPSU International Department regarding the impact of the situation in Iran on Afghanistan
    "Information of KGB USSR to CC CPSU International Department," October 10, 1979, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, Notes by O.A. Westad at TsKhSD, f. 5, op. 76, d. 1355, ll. 17-20.
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The Leadership of Iran on the External Security of the Country

According to KGB information, in August in Teheran a secret meeting was held with the participation of representatives of the Prime Minister, the Ministries of Foreign and Internal Affairs, the Intelligence and Operational Administrations of the General Staff, Gendarme and Police Administrations of the General Staff and the Staff of the "Corps of Defenders of the Revolution," with the goal of studying issues which touch on the security of Iran. It was noted that the USSR and the USA, which have their own interests in this region, are worried about the victory of the Islamic revolution in Iran. It is presumed that the USA might resort to a direct military threat and realization of a blockade. But in the event that Iran will not take sharp steps which hurt the USA, and will obstruct the penetration of the Soviets, this will ease the position of the USA.

Evaluating the policy of the USSR in relation to the Iranian regime, the participants in the meeting came to the conclusion that insofar as strengthening the Islamic republic will lead to a weakening of the position of the regime in Afghanistan, exert a certain influence on the Moslem republics in the USSR and will be "a brake in the path of penetration of Communism in the region," the Soviet Union "will not turn away from the ideological struggle and efforts to put into power in Iran a leftist government." It was stressed that with the aim of weakening the Islamic regime the USSR might organize "provocational" activity among Irani Kurds, Azeris, Turkmen, Baluchis, support leftist forces, create economic difficulties, resort to a military threat on the basis of the [Soviet-Iranian] agreement of 1921.

It was noted that Afghanistan is not in any condition to undertake military actions against Iran. However, border conflicts are not excluded. In addition, Afghanistan is in need of economic assistance from Iran, which might soften its position.
The positions of Iraq, Turkey, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia were also analyzed.