West Trying to Undermine Interactions between Iran and Russia
Monday, April 10, 2017
Seyyed Ahmad Hosseini
Senior expert and analyst of political and international issues
As time goes by and following early months of US President Donald Trump’s term in office and also after Britons’ vote for getting out of the European Union, the two Anglo-Saxon countries have now more time to boost and expand their relations with countries in this region. From their viewpoint, while many countries, and even some Western states, are experiencing economic hardships and problems, a legendary and uncivilized wealth has accumulated in this region, which surpasses the capacity of regional countries to consume it and in some cases, it even works as a source of threat and instability. Therefore, they argue, a solution must be found for this problem.
Naturally, it is not possible for Western countries, especially the two old allies, that is, the United States and the Great Britain, to openly try to take away the great wealth accumulated in this region by extorting regional countries. Therefore, in order to do this, they need to observe special requirements and follow special formulas, so that, this measure could be taken in a decorated manner in order to make it look more acceptable to regional countries. Under these conditions, world powers can achieve their goals through a strategy which has four main pillars:
A) Introducing Iran as a factor of instability
Despite the conclusion of Iran’s nuclear deal with the P5+1 group of countries, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), which put an end to claims about the fictitious threat posed by Iran’s nuclear activities, the issue of Iran and its regional role is still a focus of attention for world powers under such pretexts as the country’s missile power and its regional clout. As a result, during past months, American and British officials have been regularly putting stress on this issue by using such keywords as Iran’s destabilizing role in the region, and have been trying to establish this literature in the region and the world in order to promote their strategies in its light.
Naturally, in their effort to depict Iran as a source of threat, these two countries need a source of support, which would be able to bring all regional countries under its umbrella in the face of this threat, and this is exactly a starting point for measures, which are currently being designed and promoted.
The important point is how division of labor has been done between world powers and their regional allies such as Saudi Arabia, which has allowed the latter countries to assume independent responsibility for the first time and play a different role compared to the past in the face of a new rival, which is Iran.
B) Depleting strategic potentials of the region
In line with efforts made as well as political, media, and security atmosphere created at various levels so far, the next part of measures to be taken by global powers is to assume responsibility for security of vulnerable countries in the region through proposing various military, economic, cooperative, and collaborative packages in addition to forming alliances.
This cycle will become more complete and more effective when the possibility of interaction and dialogue between Iran and Arab countries of the region, including Saudi Arabia, is reduced to a minimum and replaced with a new situation of bilateral suspicion and differences. Under these conditions, regional countries will see themselves isolated in a strategic deadlock with the sole apparent way out of that deadlock being close and unbridled cooperation with the Western block, topped by the United States and the UK, as well as forming a clear alliance with Israel.
C) Maintaining areas of crisis
Despite their outward claims as well as political and military maneuvering, maintaining areas of crisis and conflict, including in Syria and Yemen, is the best option for the United States and the UK to achieve their strategic goals, because it practically keeps various actors busy with one another without any one of them being able to overcome the other. Under these conditions, multifaceted goals of the aforesaid states can be achieved by increasing the cost of crisis for such countries as Russia and Iran, on the one hand, while having leverage to keep rich Arab states of the Persian Gulf concerned, on the other hand, in order to make them sign hefty economic, trade and other agreements.
D) Imposing sanctions on and keeping Russia busy
The Russian Federation is one of the influential and effective countries, which is currently facing special conditions in its foreign policy as a result of the aforementioned situation. Although the country’s new policy in the Middle East has been successful and it has been able to boost its maneuvering room in regional and international politics through its role in Syria, Moscow has not been able to meet its ultimate goals in this process.
For example, Moscow’s effort to boost its potentialities in the faceoff with the United States under the country’s new president has proved largely unfruitful. As a result, the issue of Russia has been so highlighted and become so sensitive in the realm of domestic US policies that there are no prospects for any improvement in Russia's interactions with the West in the foreseeable future.
Under these circumstances, keeping Russia limited in its current borders, increasing the cost of implementing the country’s Middle Eastern policy, bringing about change inside the country by questioning its current strategy, and activating terrorist and secessionist elements to carry out terrorist attacks such as a recent bomb attack in St. Petersburg metro, have been recognized as good steps to prevent Russia from gaining access to the region’s market and other accumulated potentialities.
Despite all speculations about the United States foreign policy under Trump’s administration, Washington has become more aligned with London in order to get hold of the riches of countries in the Persian Gulf region. In its effort to do so, the United States has been magnifying threats emanating from Iran’s regional role and is pushing regional states in a direction that they would have no other options for boosting their foreign relations, except for Washington and London, to choose from.
In this situation, although West’s allies in the region will be ultimate victims, they have been implementing part of the West’s strategy and have been taking steps to undermine Iran’s interactions with its neighbors as well as with such partners as Russia. Therefore, understanding this situation and making plans for handling it will need more care and vigilance on the part of Iran.
*Source: Iranian Diplomacy
*These views represent those of the author and are not necessarily Iran Review's viewpoints.