Informed foreign policy and economic experts rightly fear one gathering threat today even more than genocidal attacks by the purported Islamic State and its shadowy network of affiliates: the possibility that Russia, an ever expanding power, could one day provide military and diplomatic cover to Iran as that nation contrives to topple the monarchy in Saudi Arabia, and subsequently extends control by force over other energy-rich Arab kingdoms, including United Arab Emirates, Qatar, Kuwait, and Bahrain.
Potent danger in warming ties between Russia and Iran
Russia and Iran each have far longer histories as independent nations than America does–over many centuries, they have been enemies, rivals, and friends. In recent months, and particularly since 2008, ties among Russia and Iran have strengthened for defensive reasons, to blunt pressures emanating from the United States and from the European Union.
Going forward, Russia’s potentially muscular protection for Iran (whose Muslim population chiefly are Shia) is particularly irksome for Saudi Arabia, where a majority of the populace is Sunni–no series of workshops or teach-ins will soon reconcile this doctrinal schism.
Worse, given Iran’s demonstrated propensity to meddle throughout the Middle East since 1979, Russia’s growing support for Iran may accelerate attempts by Iran to de-stabilize the energy-laden, eastern province of Saudi Arabia, where a substantial proportion of the population is Shia.
Given recent events in Yemen, where Iranian-backed Houthi rebels quickly seized control over large portions of a country touted as a success story and strong ally by the Obama Administration as recently as last September, Saudi officials watch Russia’s engagement with Iran, America’s retreat from the Middle East, and America’s fomenting of regime change since 2008 everywhere except Iran with profound concern.
Events move swiftly and seemingly catch the Obama Administration by surprise. Were another uprising to occur inside Saudi Arabia, emboldened by Russia and Iran, America’s influence across the Middle East and Western Europe could morph into a mirage in a matter of days.
Russia, Iran, and newly conjoined energy exporters could significantly curtail production, raise prices, change payment terms and potentially create an alternative, resource-backed currency, thereby lessening demand for the U.S. dollar, for the Euro, and for the Japanese Yen, each of whose value is supported solely by empty promises.
In the financial mayhem that ensued as investors finally grew to appreciate the scale of the West’s many vulnerabilities, Russia likely would assault the highly leveraged financial system, accelerate attempts to dismember the European Union, and even seek to neuter the trans-Atlantic military alliance.
Is President Obama prepared to deter or even respond to expanded aggression by Russia and by Iran?
Existential danger in trusting the inept Obama Administration
Proving that he cannot understand why radical Islamist jihadists are a metastasizing cancer upon humanity, or that Iran and Russia now pose monumental dangers to the free world, Barack Obama demonstrates yet again in an op-ed piece published this week in the Los Angeles Times that he is incapable of telling friend from foe.
Do we truly believe a ready consensus would emerge to back our lame duck President in the massive, multi-lateral ground operation required to restore a semblance of order in Gulf monarchies, fighting Iran, a nation of 81 million, and Russia, a nation of 142 million?
Unlike the resounding victory that liberated Kuwait in 1991, after spending trillions of dollars and destroying tens of thousands of lives, neither political party in America has subsequently found a strategy to alter events positively in Iraq, a nation of 33 million persons, or in Afghanistan, a nation of 32 million.
Moreover, judging by simultaneously arrogant, ignorant and ineffective responses to foreign and economic policy challenges since 2008–the answer is certain to disappoint.
Fundamental weakening of America and the Free World
American voters can be forgiven for election results in 2008–we should have known better in 2012.
Whether it was President Obama’s slip in revealing to Russia’s Dmitry Medvedev that he could show more favoritism towards Russia following re-election, the many scandals that only his supporters ignore, or Barack Obama’s continuing reliance upon a raft of plainly incompetent senior advisors, Americans across the full spectrum of beliefs would be wise to dig beneath the surface of any assertions made by our government, and demand answers to tough questions.
Why does the Obama Administration appear to embrace Iran, while simultaneously trammeling Israel?
Reports suggest that senior Obama operatives have been engaged in back channel negotiations with Iranian counterparts, possibly including Ali Akbar Velayati, Iran’s foreign minister from 1981 to 1997, who has been personally implicated in the worst terrorist attack in the history of Argentina.
With little concrete to show for all their efforts cozying towards Iran, most of which are shielded from public view and from Congressional oversight, the Obama Administration acts distant towards Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who, without doubt, has proven himself a staunch and steadfast ally of America.
Who can defend the proposition that Iran’s existing government is a responsible peace partner? Numerous verifiable facts suggest otherwise, from its status as a state sponsor of terror for its ties with Hezbollah to its ever–expanding influence in Latin America.
In considering the conduct of United States’ foreign policies since 2008, the American public and especially the mainstream press have not done enough digging into the backgrounds, the supporters, and the associates of Barack Obama, and of senior advisors such as Valerie Jarrett to understand their qualifications, their true allegiances, and their guiding affiliations.
Without explaining how the Obama Administration grew to promote the activities of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, or decided to topple the Libyan government; without understanding what truly happened in Benghazi just before the American election of 2012, whether American taxpayers funded organizations that may have transformed to become the Islamic State and other rising opponents, President Obama expects the American people to jump aboard a new, hastily-constructed plot. This one requires sending aid to unspecified “moderate” rebels in Syria, countenancing Iranian inroads into Iraq, and episodically attack some “extremists,” without even considering seriously what ideology animates our enemies. Worse, with no believable evidence and every reason to doubt, Americans and important allies are also going to be asked, if nothing changes soon, to let Iran come closer to joining the nuclear club.
Undoubtedly, Russia and Iran are moving aggressively into the power vacuum created by President Obama’s destructive and incoherent semblance of a foreign policy. These nations will have no trouble killing as many enemy fighters for the Islamic State as they can find, which, perhaps, is some solace. The leadership of Russia and of Iran certainly understand that Sunni extremists are not likely to abandon jihad for material recompense in the form of some sort of job, green or otherwise.
When the end of Pax Americana comes, and it may come soon, those of you who still believe Obama Administration pronouncements will only have yourselves to blame–as was so poignantly explained years ago in the classic comedy Animal House, it is dangerous to trust supposed experts without verifying that they hold valid qualifications.