World View: Iran Pledges Undying Support for Syria's al-Assad Regime

World View: Iran Pledges Undying Support for Syria's al-Assad Regime

This morning’s key headlines from

  • Iran pledges undying support for Syria’s al-Assad regime
  • Ankara strongly condemns Iran’s threats against Turkey
  • Greece and Israel form a ‘strategic’ relationship
  • Plans for military action in Mali reflect change in Tuareg alliances

Iran pledges undying support for Syria’s al-Assad regime

Saeed Jalili (PressTv)
Saeed Jalili (PressTv)

Describing the Syria conflict as “a conflict between the axis ofresistance on one hand, and the regional and global enemies of thisaxis on the other,” Saeed Jalili, a senior aide to Iran’s supremeleader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei met with Bashar al-Assad in Damascus onTuesday and pledged to continue Iran’s support for the al-Assadregime, and warned that its enemies would be the next to shed blood.By the “axis of resistance,” Jalili meant Syria, Hizbollah, Iraq andIran. By the “regional and global enemies,” Jalili meant the U.S.,Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar. Things have been going badly lately,for both al-Assad and for Iran. The al-Assad regime is being plaguedby repeated defections by Sunni officials, leaving only al-Assad’ssmall Alawite minority in control. And Iran is trying to deal withthe kidnapping of 48 Iranian tourists over the weekend by Syrianrebels who claim that they’re not tourists at all, but members ofIran’s Revolutionary Guards. So Iran’s pledge can be viewed as eithera sign of desperation, or a pledge to do better. Al-Jazeera

Ankara strongly condemns Iran’s threats against Turkey

Turkey’s Foreign Ministry issued a strongly worded rebuketo Iran’s threat of violence against Turkey:

“We strongly condemn statements full of groundlessaccusations and exceptionally inappropriate threats against ourcountry by some Iranian officials. It is unacceptable andirresponsible that Iranian officials in various posts continue totarget our country through their statements, although Turkey’sprincipled foreign policy is known to everyone.”

The Syrian conflict has been the worst nightmare for Turkey and itsPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. When Erdogan took office severalyears ago, he promised a policy of “zero problems” with his neighbors.The Gaza flotilla incident, in which nine Turkish citizens were killedin a confrontation with Israeli forces, caused a rift between Turkeyand Israel, who weren’t really very close to start with. (From June,2010: “1-Jun-10 News — Wide condemnation of Israel over Gaza flotilla”) But al-Assad andErdogan WERE very close at one time, and friendship has now turned toenmity. Erdogan had hoped to have a strong trading relationship withIran. That relationship was never really close because the twocountries were competing for influence over the Arabian peninsula.But now that relationship has turned to enmity as well. Zaman (Ankara) and Ynet

Greece and Israel form a ‘strategic’ relationship

The Speaker of Greece’s Parliament referred to the deepening tiesbetween Greece and Israel as a “strategic choice”:

“The cooperation between our two countries is not aproduct of circumstances; it is a strategic choice for peace inthe region, for the use of the natural wealth they have and forcooperation in energy, tourism and culture.”

In the USA, a Congressman has formed the CongressionalHellenic-Israeli Alliance, a new caucus to focus on the relationshipbetween the United States, Greece, Israel and Cyprus. Kathimerini

Long-time readers of Generational Dynamics are aware that for the lastsix or seven years, I’ve been talking about the prediction, derivedfrom generational theory, that in the coming Clash of Civilizationsworld war, China, Pakistan and the Sunni Muslim countries would be onone side, with the West, India, Russia, Iran and Israel as thetrend that supports this prediction.

Plans for military action in Mali reflect change in Tuareg alliances

Officials from the African Union, European Union and United Nationsare meeting in Bamako, the capital of Mali, to make final plans todeploy a military force to Mali, where al-Qaeda linked Islamists havetaken full control of the north, about two-thirds of the country. Thecurrent situation in Mali has been a major unintended consequence oflast year’s intervention in Libya. The military intervention againstMuammar Gaddafi transformed Libya into the world’s largest source ofillicit weaponry, following Gaddafi’s collapse. Battle-hardenedethnic Tuaregs, who had fought in support of Gaddafi, took possessionof these weapons and came back to Mali after the war and took controlof the north, calling it the independent state of Azawad. But theTuaregs were overpowered by the Islamist terror group Ansar Dine(Defenders of Faith), linked to Al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb(AQIM), who are now extremely well armed, thanks to Libya.Furthermore, Ansar Dine has betrayed moderate Muslims by destroyinghistoric shrines in Timbuktu and other big cities. The Tuaregs havenow recanted their claims for an independent state of Azawad, and areagreeing to ally with the regular Mali army and the incoming militaryforce. Morocco and France are leading the fight to get agreement on amilitary intervention, as they believe they’re the most likely targetsof terrorist attacks by Ansar Dine and AQIM. VOA and Foreign Policy in Focus and The Africa Report

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