Iran Warns about Consequences of Saudis' Divisive Policies

18 November, 2017, 03:51 | Author: Wade Massey
  • Saad Hariri

Describing itself as a friend to Saudi Arabia and Iran, China has bolstered its presence in the region by forging closer ties with both countries. But the Israelis are wondering whether the 32-year-old prince is up for such an ambitious agenda: He has, after all, not only removed Hariri and arrested dozens of Saudi princes and businessmen accused of corruption, but is also attempting to isolate Qatar, pressuring Egypt over the details of the Palestinian reconciliation agreement, and confronting zealous Saudi clerics at home. "We need to carry out a large, comprehensive strategic plan to stop the Iranian threat", Eisenkot told Saudi newspaper Elaph, according to the Jerusalem Post.

Lieutenant-General Gadi Eisenkot said that Israel was willing to share intelligence with "moderate" Arab states, to further their shared goal of countering Iran.

General Eisenkot's intervention comes at a dramatic but confusing time in Saudi and regional politics, in which Israel's response is expected to be key.

"Iran seeks to take control of the Middle East, creating a Shiite crescent from Lebanon to Iran and then from the Persian Gulf to the Red Sea", he added.

"We must prevent this from happening", he added.

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There used to saying in the Middle East: "If a dog barks in the Middle East, British intelligence is behind it". "On the other hand, we see Iranian attempts to escalate".

The Trump administration is eager to see Israel and Saudi Arabia, two U.S. allies, cooperating together. For example, last weekend, a missile supplied by Iran was launched towards Riyadh. We are also seeing a drop in support for Hezbollah and that is reverberating on the streets where we have seen demonstrations in Dahiya. Of its approximately 22,000 fighters, about 7,000 are fighting for the Assad regime and some 2,000 have been killed in the four years the group has been in Syria.

Speculation about a formal Israeli-Saudi alliance has been fuelled by the election of US President Donald Trump, a vociferous critic of Iran. This polarization, which has turned into a black hole, is more deeply affecting the region. It is not an inaccurate description, for it reminds us that regional conflicts can have global consequences. Israel has tried and failed in the past to force political arrangements on Lebanon - most famously with Ariel Sharon's 1982 war against the Palestine Liberation Organization. "On the other side Hezbollah and the Lebanese army are gathering information on our forces non-stop".

The rise to power of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has also led to a more forthright policy, as he looks to militarily confront what he sees as Iranian influence across the region, including in Yemen. "We have Saudi impulsivity backed by an American president who is equally impulsive".

It is very clear that the Saudi bombing of civilians and the use of starvation as a weapon of war are illegal under international law.

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