(Part 2 of Will American Belligerence Against Iran Lead to War?)
After reading my article “Will American Belligerence Against Iran Lead to War?” https://countercurrents.org/2019/06/will-american-belligerence-against-iran-lead-to-war published in countercurrents, a colleague called me. He wanted to know if America will seriously attack Iran and if so when and the consequences for America, Iran and the region.
History is what is past, but it does not fail to provide a window into the future. Imperial American foreign policies are not indigenous; they are an extension shaped by the successes and failures of imperial Rome but more recently of imperial Britannia. Let us not forget that both empires do not exist for it is the nature of imperialisms to end.
Ignoring all other regional issues but only focussing on that of Iran, the country was ruled by the Qajar dynasty which according to Wikipedia was “officially the Sublime State of Persia, a royal dynasty, from 1789 to 1925”. The Qajars descended from the Oghuz (tribe) Turkmen (founders of the Ottoman Empire). The last of the Qajars was Ahmed Shah who ruled Persia from 1909-1925. He was deposed by an officer of the army Reza Shah Pahlavi. By royal proclamation in 1935, Persia became Iran (derived from Middle Persian Eran). The British and the Soviets had key geopolitical and economic (Britain controlled the Anglo-Iranian oil Company) interests in Iran.
In August 1941 war allies Britain and the USSR invaded Iran, arrested Reza Shah and sent him into exile. The British and Soviet authorities then permitted Reza Shah’s son, Mohammad Reza Shah Pahlavi to succeed to the throne.
As the sun began to set on the British Empire after World War II, it seceded interests in Iran to the United States under Mohammed Pahlavi, a pro-American puppet. For the British, it was important to cede their interests to the Anglo-American partnership rather than to a cold war rival, the Soviet Union. The American interests in Iran ended with an abrupt and unforeseen 1979 revolution. America, Britain and Israel are still licking their wounds from the loss. Their fear predominantly emanates from the belief that the revolution from the Islamic Republic of Iran will export its Islamic dogma across the region. Understandably so as it is having been happening following the Afghan and Iraq invasions towards the turn of the twenty first century. This fear is not only gripping the US and Israel but also the regional monarchies suffering from the same fear (Islam is anti monarchy).
After the brief history lesson in the above three paragraphs, I best tried to explain and lift the fog of the timing of the aggression against Iran. For Bolton, Pompeo and Netanyahu it is most important to build a “global coalition” (as opposed to the Warsaw Conference coalition) that includes not only the Arab monarchies but also Russia and China. America will seek their commitment not to provide support to Iran. In return, it’ll offer concessions. America has followed a pattern for aggression in the past offering sticks and carrots and it will, no doubt, follow it again in Iran’s case.
In my opinion Russia might agree, without being part of a coalition, if America and NATO would provide the guarantee to pull back from its Eurasian borders viz Ukraine. The national security advisors of America, Russia and Israel are convening in Jerusalem to likely form a framework that would conclude an agreement, not necessarily soon but over the next few critical months. Russia will also want a slice of the economic war pie by supplying limited arms to Iran. The interested reader may refer to the weblink https://www.theglobeandmail.com/world/article-russias-ties-with-iran-will-be-the-focus-of-the-upcoming-security/ article “US and Israel look to turn Russia against its Iranian ally”. I’ve provided a comment in my previous article on countercurrents.
Unlike Russia, China may prove to be a harder nut to crack as it has emerged as a political, military, technological and economic challenger to imperial America. However, the two Masters of Diplomacy, Putin and Xi Jinping may well be playing the Eurasian game in harmony as neither has any reason to trust America and more specifically Trump. Trump may agree to offer trade and tariff concessions to China, but will they be enough to satisfy Xi’s appetite, or will it demand Taiwan as it’s prize in return for Iran?
Moreover, most countries across the globe, including Russia and China, have lost their appetite for American addiction of applying sanctions, trade tariffs, embargoes, shredding international agreements and outright twitter lies. The world has no reason to trust the American leadership; neither does Iran. With the latest round of sanctions imposed on June 24 against Iran, President Rouhani said, “You sanction the foreign minister simultaneously with a request for talks”. He described the White House as “afflicted by mental retardation.”
Whatever transpires “behind the diplomatic scenes”, America is bound to lose patience and become trigger happy (cocked and loaded) If, by end of summer or mid fall 2019, it fails to form the global coalition. Under those circumstances America may, by a false pretext, launch a surgical strike against Iran hoping for a quick victory through air and sea blockade.
Regarding the consequences, both America and Iran are prepared to accept the eventuality- America’s survival as an empire, geopolitically and economically, while Iran is confident that with its geostrategic and military advantages, arsenal of ballistic missiles and help from its proxies in Yemen, Iraq, Hezbollah (in Lebanon) and Syria it could emerge as a regional power at the end of the war. Iran is confident that it can thwart an aggression. If prophecies in the three Abrahamic faiths are to be accepted, it’ll be a long war embroiling the entire region culminating in the biblical Armageddon (Malhama in Arabic or the Great War between good and evil). This war will be ideological – a war between theological and illogical supremacy.
Gulam Asgar Mitha is currently retired in Calgary, Canada having worked as a project, process and technical safety engineer in Canada, USA, Libya, France, Pakistan and Kuwait. He was born in Mumbai soon after partition immigrated with family in 1951 to Karachi. After schooling proceeded to USA for further studies and obtained Bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering and Masters in Economics.