|The guards were originally formed as a people's army.|
The United States is expected to put Iran's elite military unit, the Revolutionary Guards, on its list of foreign terrorist organisations.
That would mean no American organisations could deal with it or its business operations. The State Department spokesman, Sean McCormack, refused to confirm or deny the reports, but said the Revolutionary Guards have been supporting militant groups throughout the Middle East.
Iran's Revolutionary Guards are incredibly powerful and influential - both in politics and the commercial world.
This revolutionary guard is totally different from what we founded. They have their own prisons, newspapers, propaganda, they are involved in mafia activities.
They were set up nearly 30 years ago after the revoltion at the request of Ayatollah Komeini. One of the founders was Muhsen Sazgara who is now an academic and poltical activist in the US.
The World Today asked Muhsen Sazgara exactly what he had in mind when he helped set up the organisation?
First broadcast 16th August.