The Iranian government directly ordered an act of terrorism in the Americas after being frustrated in its secret nuclear ambitions, a former chief of Argentine intelligence tells FOX News in an exclusive interview.
Miguel Angel Toma, the former head of the Argentina's intelligence service, tells FOX News' Dan Senor that the Iranian government directly ordered a terror bombing on a Buenos Aires Jewish community center in 1994. The interview will air on Saturday at 9 p.m. ET on FOX News Channel.
Toma's investigation into a Middle East-style terrorist bombing targeting Argentinean Jews found that the orders for the attack were given at the highest levels of the Iranian government in response to the ending of secret nuclear and missile agreements between Iran and Argentina.
On March 17, 1992, a homicide bomber drove an explosive-filled truck into the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires, killing 29 and injuring hundreds more. Two years later, on July 18, 1994, an attack on a Buenos Aires Jewish community center killed 85.
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"The attacks in the '90s against the Jewish community center and the Israeli embassy brought up many distinct questions because they came from many thousands of miles away and obviously were plotted from many thousands of miles away," Toma told FOX News.
Responsibility for both bombings was pinned on Hezbollah, but Toma's investigation into the community center bombing found the decision for that bombing came straight from Tehran.
The Iranian President at the time, Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and members of the Iranian Supreme Council of Security met in Mashhad, Iran, on Aug. 14, 1993 to plan the second bombing, Toma said.
"It's a mistake to think those operations do not reach the highest levels of the Iranian government," Toma told FOX News. "They study them at the highest levels case by case."
Arrest warrants were issued for nine Iranian officials and Hezbollah leaders, but they all remain at large.
Iranian involvement came as a shock for the South American nation, which had enjoyed active trading with Iran to the tune of $400 million in the 1970s and '80s.
"During the '80s the government of Argentina signed agreements with them in the areas of technological investigation with the purpose of a nuclear and missile programs," Toma said.
The replacement of Argentina's military dictatorship soured the nation's relationship with Tehran. In 1989, a new civilian government headed by Carlos Menem took power and cancelled nuclear and missile development treaties.
"We never thought in Argentina this would be a factor for determining a terrorist attack," Toma told FOX News. "We found out that later after the two bombs exploded in Buenos Aires."
"Iran: The Ticking Bomb," a FOX News documentary exploring Iran's support of global terrorism, its pursuit of nuclear weapons and its proxy war with the United States, airs at 3 p.m. on Oct. 6 on the FOX News Channel.