World View: Iran's Statement on Syria Shows Signs of Desperation
- Iran's statement on Syria shows signs of desperation
- U.S. Marines land in Philippines after massive Typhoon Haiyan destruction
Iran's statement on Syria shows signs of desperation
Mohamed Javad Zarif being interviewed on BBC on Monday
A statement by Iran's foreign minister, Mohamed Javad Zarif, to a BBC
interviewer is so completely full of falsehoods that it sounds like
desperation. Zarif expressed outrage at terrorism and extremism by
Sunni jihadists, while totally ignoring 30 years of Iranian Shia
terrorism through the Revolutionary Guard Corp and through direct
funding of Hezbollah and other violent terrorist groups. Sunni
jihadists are now targeting Hezbollah, Iran's allies in Syria, and Iran
itself. Call it kismet, call it karma, or call it comeuppance, Iran
is now facing well-deserved retribution.
Zarif began the interview by parroting the usual line -- there is no
military solution, there has to be a political solution -- not mentioning that Iran is fully involved militarily in Syria.
Then, the BBC interviewer, Jeremy Bowen, asked about the role of
jihadists in Syria (my transcription):
That is a threat to all of us. The role of
jihadists, the role of extremists, these are a band of mobile
people, most of them non-Syrian, who are moving from Chechnya to
Afghanistan to Yemen, the [next] day to Iraq to Syria, and
wreaking havoc in all these countries. It's in the interest of
everybody to understand that extremists will not be able to be
contained in one country. If they give rise to extremism, this is
a fire that will engulf them and will burn them. We've got to
understand that extremism has no boundaries. Terrorism has no
boundaries. We need to collectively deal with them thru serious
measures to prevent them from wreaking havoc.
This is exactly the point that I've been making for months, except
that I place the blame squarely on Iran and Russia. Iran and Russia
have been supplying fighters and weapons to Shia/Alawite Bashar
al-Assad, who is trying to exterminate all the Sunnis in Syria. So of
course the Sunni jihadists from countries near and far are going to
flock to Syria to fight al-Assad. Are the Iranian and Russian leaders
so incredibly stupid that they didn't think that would happen?
Apparently so. But that's typical of the utter stupidity of
many politicians in many countries.
As I've said in the past, I believe that a tipping point has already
been reached in Syria, and that there's no way to stop the rising
sectarian conflict in the Mideast. With hundreds of thousands of
deaths, and many millions of refugees, the countries around Syria are
now so destabilized that there's no way to recover without a
At this point, Bowen said that the war in Syria has increased
Sunni/Shia tensions. He asked Zarif how serious this sectarian
tension is for the Mideast and the world:
I think it's probably the most serious security
threat not only to the region, but to the world at large. And I
think all of us, and Iran is committed to this and when I was in
Turkey with our Turkish friends, regardless of our differences
over Syria, we need to work together on this sectarian issue.
When I was in Iraq we agreed with the Iraqi friends that we need
to work together, that this was the single most important problem
that we all - we ALL face. And I believe we can work with
everybody in the region, with Saudi Arabia, with the countries in
the Persian Gulf, with other countries in the region, with others,
in order to contain this threat, because this -- some people have
fanned the animosity for short-sighted political
At this point, Bowen interrupted and said, "Saudis - you mean the
Saudis." Zarif was obviously talking about Iran's hated enemy, the
Saudis, but refused to say so.
The more that Zarif spoke, the more his words rang hollow.
Iran not only has NOT been working to "contain this threat,"
but in fact Iran has been the principal cause, along with
Russia, of the sectarian threat.
Iran's economy is on the ropes because of the international sanctions,
while Saudi Arabia has an almost unlimited amount of money to fund
anti-Assad fighters in Syria. (See "11-Nov-13 World View -- Saudi Arabia's plans for Syria intervention face many obstacles")
So now Zarif is whining that the Saudis have "fanned the animosity for
short-sighted political interests," ignoring that's
what Iran has been doing for years.
I'm talking about certain countries that have called
various names about Shia Crescent, and all of that -- this
business of fear-mongering has been a prevalent business. I think
we need to come to understand that sectarian divide in the Islamic
world is a threat to all of us. Nobody can benefit from it.
Nobody should try to fan the flames of sectarian violence. I
think we should all rein this divide, and rein it in, bring it to
a close, try to avoid a conflict that would be detrimental to
By this time, Zarif sounded completely desperate. Iran has been
fanning the flames of sectarian violence in Syria since the war
started 2 1/2 years ago, and now it's blown back on them. The
wealthy Saudis are gearing up for a fight, the bankrupt Iranians can't
compete, and Sunni jihadists are striking within Iran itself.
For 30 years, Iran has been funding and fomenting terror throughout
the Mideast and, through Hezbollah, around the world. Iran's
desperation is well deserved. Even worse, the survival of
the regime is at stake, with Iran in a generational Awakening
era and the younger generations getting very impatient with
old hardline geezers running the country.
The question is how much of a change in policy can be expected
from this desperation. The nuclear talks this past weekend
collapsed, but there also Iran seemed almost desperate to reach
an agreement that would get the sanctions eased.
There's a final word to be said about Hezbollah. The sectarian
conflict really spiked up last April when Hezbollah announced that it
would be invading Syria to fight on the side of al-Assad. Reports
indicated that Hezbollah leadership didn't want to intervene, but was
forced to by their masters, the Iranians. (See "27-Sep-13 World View -- How Hezbollah's reluctant foray into Syria changed the Mideast")
Analysts have noticed that, without any particular announcement,
Hezbollah withdrew from Syria a couple of months ago. This reflects a
change in policy of Hezbollah, but more so of Iran. That could be the
first sign that Iran is finally realizing the disaster that it has
caused working with Russia. BBC
U.S. Marines land in Philippines after massive Typhoon Haiyan destruction
The city of Tacloban in the Philippines, with a population of over 220,000, almost totally destroyed by Typhoon Haiyan
U.S. Marines landed Monday to bring food, water, generators, blankets,
mosquito nets, soap, underwear, and other critical supplies to the
survivors of Friday's deadly Typhoon Yolanda (called Haiyan elsewhere
in Asia), possibly the most powerful typhoon on record.
The nation is
used to typhoons, having had 20 or so already this year, but no one
was prepared for Haiyan, with 145 mile per hour winds and storm
surges as high as 20 feet. Haiyan killed over 10,000 people and
completely destroyed cities in its path. Almost 9.7 million people
A new typhoon, named Zoraida, will make landfall on
Tuesday, with top winds of 34 miles per hour but with plenty of new
rain to add to the misery. The U.S. is providing $20 million in aid
to the Philippines, and the aircraft carrier USS George Washington,
currently in Hong Kong, is making final preparations to deploy to the
Philippines and will arrive Wednesday or Thursday. President Benigno
Aquino III has declared a "state of calamity." Fox News and Bloomberg
KEYS: Generational Dynamics, Iran, Mohamed Javad Zarif,
Syria, Bashar al-Assad, Hezbollah, Saudi Arabia,
Philippines, Tacloban, Typhoon Yolanda, Typhoon Haiyan,
Typhoon Zoraida, Benigno Aquino III,
USS George Washington
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