A senior Iranian military official has accused the United States of carrying out the 9/11 terror attacks in 2001 in a bid to justify planned future wars aimed at 'ruling' Western Asia.
In an interview with Iran's state-owned Al-Alam television channel, Brigadier General Ahmad Reza Pourdastan, the commander of Iran's ground forces, said: "These wars [in the Middle East] and these threats stem from a comprehensive American strategy."
In the interview, dubbed in Arabic and translated to English by the US-based Middle East Media Research Institute, Pourdastan stated: "After the fall of the Soviet Union, the Americans felt that a new force was beginning to materialise, namely the union between Sunnis and Shias.
"The basis of this force was the blessed Islamic Revolution in Iran, this force is Islam, or the Islamic world.
"In order to prevent this force from materialising, the Americans did many things. The first thing they did was to plan and carry out the events of 9/11 in order to justify their presence in western Asia, with the goal of ruling it."
The Isis factor
Pourdastan also rejects the Islamic State (Isis) militants' claims that they are fighting for Islam and the Muslim community.
"If [Isis] tries to come within 40km of our borders, we shall confront them, and make them witness the might and capabilities of the Muslim soldiers," said Pourdastan warning IS against attacking Iran.
Pourdastan also warned Saudi Arabia against IS and said: "Personally, I feel that if Saudi cities were targeted by bombings and missiles, it would be difficult for the officials there to withstand this.
"Seeing that in the past, Yemen bought a variety of weapons that are now in the hands of the [Houthi] Muslims, they are capable of dealing lethal blows to Saudi Arabia."