No biggie. Iran just stole a billion euros in coronavirus aid

About a week ago, John posed the question, where is Ayatollah Khamenei while his country sickens under the weight of the pandemic? Well, it turns out he’s been busy with other things.

I’ve yet to see this story mentioned even once on CNN this week, which is really quite shocking when you consider all of the implications. While news out of Iran is often hard to come by, it’s no secret that it’s one of the countries being hit the hardest by the global coronavirus pandemic. The death toll there is nearing 2,000 with more than 20,000 confirmed or suspected cases of infection. And those are just the numbers their government is releasing. Intelligence sources inside the country indicate that the real totals are almost certainly far higher.

The country isn’t exactly up to speed with much of the west in terms of medical infrastructure, so the people of Europe decided to band together and send more than a billion euros in aid to help them during this time of crisis. And what did the Mullahs who run the country do to thank the Europeans for their charitable largess? They pocketed the money and hoarded the supplies for themselves, of course. What else would you expect them to do with it? (Free Beacon)

Iranian regime officials stole more than $1 billion meant to help the country’s people fight the spread of coronavirus, according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

European countries intended for more than $1 billion in aid to go to the Iranian people, who have been ravaged by the virus. But American officials say regime leaders instead pocketed the money to protect themselves from the virus as it spreads throughout the population. This includes hoarding medical supplies that were meant to aid Iranian citizens.

Iran has been among the hardest hit by the virus, and its government’s response has drawn international criticism, especially from the Trump administration. Secretary of State Pompeo accused Iran of mass corruption as the regime continues to spread propaganda, including accusations that the United States manufactured the coronavirus and is using its tough global sanctions campaign to prevent Iran from accessing medicine and humanitarian aid.

The details of this report are stunning. Anyone with access to Iranian state television can see the government lying to its own people, insinuating that the United States developed the coronavirus in a lab to use as a weapon against them. They lie about the current sanctions, blaming those policies for the lack of medicine and medical supplies in Iran when, in reality, all the sanctions have exceptions for such humanitarian aid.

Meanwhile, Secretary Pompeo released some additional intelligence showing that the Iranian government is hoarding masks, gloves and sanitizer for themselves or selling those products on the black market rather than delivering them to the people. Iran has also refused to discontinue airline flights to and from China, almost certainly contributing to the rapid spread of the disease to the point where it’s now completely out of control there.

The Iranian regime remains incredibly corrupt, dishonest and cloaked in secrecy. They’re allowing their own people to die while their leaders hide away and hoard needed supplies. And they continue to blame all of their woes on the Great Satan. (That would be us… the people actually trying to solve the problem.)

But the fact is, most everyone who pays any attention to international affairs already knew all of this about Iran’s government. Much like North Korea, Iran’s government spends its money on trying to develop their nuclear weapons programs instead of caring for their own citizens. Perhaps our European allies and the reasonable members of the United Nations should take this news into account in the future. Aid to Iran should probably be limited to actual food and medical supplies and only be delivered if it can be directly distributed on the local level. And stop sending them mountains of cash if you know that it’s only going to be stolen. Hopefully, the United States finally learned a lesson about that after the pallets full of billions of dollars in American cash disappeared down that rathole during the Obama administration. Europe should learn from our previous (poor) example.