By Martin Love

Iran deserves credit and attention for trying

June 3, 2019

NORTH CAROLINA - Credit to Iranian foreign minister Javad Zarif and deputy minister Abbas Araghchi for their efforts to visit other countries and put forth ideas to ease Arab-Iranian tensions and develop proposals to eliminate differences between Iran and other Persian Gulf countries.

 The most interesting of these proposals is one that suggests a non-aggression treaty between Iran and its most immediate neighbors such as Kuwait, Oman and Qatar, which would be those states the most willing, at least, to listen to Iranian diplomats.

The Saudis, on the other hand, seem the most intransigent by far and the least willing partners to any de-escalations regionally, largely because the Saudis are either Trump Administration puppets, or vice versa, and because the Saudis perhaps have (erroneously) the most to “lose” by reducing hospitality towards Iran.

The concept of “loss” with regard to the Saudis is a curious one, and that it exists at all is telling. But of what? Loss with respect to its “alliance” with the U.S.? Loss with respect to its almost genocidal war on Yemen “rebels”, who are claimed to be allied with Iran in some fashion?

Loss with respect to their vaguely covert but still obvious (awkward) bedfellows, the Zionists, who are desperately attempting to neuter longstanding Arab hostility to an apartheid state that has treated millions of Palestinians, including millions of fellow Muslims, abysmally during and since the Nakba in 1948?

The Saud family dynasty has to be one of the most bizarre political creations ever, one that was originally underwritten by western powers and that largely because of a desire to control oil resources, the Petrodollar becoming the keystone to that control. It is anything but a democracy.

 It is a dynasty of paranoid freaks who are worse than poor representatives of Islam and who have created a Hell on earth of repression and barbarity against its own citizens who at the slightest signs of criticism, not to mention dissent, are literally subject to losing their heads. And no one can forget the dismemberment of Jamal Khashoggi, a writer for the Washington Post, last October, who was lured into the Saudi consulate in Istanbul.

One has to wonder what the Saudis are so fearful of and why they feel obliged to spend untold billions on U.S weapons. It must be because the Saud family is despised even within its own borders and feels obliged to sustain itself solely on the backs of U.S. and even Israeli approvals and arms. But the so-called “Arab street” across the Arab world does not approve, however quiescent it has been in recent years.

The mere fact that the Saudis have sort of signed on to the virtually stillborn “Deal of the Century” developed almost solely by Zionists like Jared Kushner and others in the Trump orbit, and which will NEVER be acceptable to Palestinians no matter how much they suffer, suggests that in time most all repressive Arab regimes will likely face a second major surge of revolt from the Arab street as was first witnessed in 2011, particularly in Egypt.

 Whether Arab or not, all countries, rich or poor, that rely solely on the projection or threat of military power are ultimately brought down, because they have no real friends or allies, just alleged mutual “interests” to maintain themselves. The U.S is no exception to this rule in the longer run, too. All such countries tend to bankrupt themselves both morally and financially.

For an observer from afar, the absolute greatest tragedy suffered by Muslims over the course of decades now of Western domination of the Mideast has been the failure of Muslims, whether Sunni or Shi’a, to unite as a single cultural bloc of mostly unified people to ward off predatory Western imperialism, which has done little but sow discord across the Middle East.

The U.S. continuously blasts propaganda about Iran or any other largely Muslim country that refuses to buckle to Western control as “terrorist” states whose primary aims are to create an absence of “peace” in the Middle East. So, if that’s the case, what is one to make of the fact that Iran, for example, has not gone on a military offensive for over 200 years and is calling, again, for mutual non-aggression pacts with its neighbors? Is this something countries do when they want to dominate or harm others, one must ask. No, of course not.

In any case, non-aggression pacts historically have not been that effective in warding off conflicts between nations, mostly because they have often been violated by one side or another, but that hardly speaks for not attempting to create them, as Iran is trying. This failure, it has been claimed, is because there has not existed an international system to enforce treaties or pacts.

 A fair example of the absence of enforcement is that the U.S., ought to have been sanctioned (just as Iran has been sanctioned) by the other signatories to the JCPOA when Trump, just over a year ago, canned U.S. participation in the accord. Why has the U.S. and Trump have not been sanctioned in some creative way? The only answer seems to be cowardice and fear of reprisals from the U.S., and meanwhile Iran has faithfully abided by the term of the accord all long.

While individual Arab states on the Persian Gulf see Iran somewhat differently, there has long been the problematic fact that Iran is a much larger country in terms of land mass and population. This alone has created some unease with neighbors but there is nothing Iran can do about this. Then there is the divide between Sunnis and Shi’as, which goes way back initially to the seventh century.

 The Iranian revolution in 1979 augmented sectarian differences and distrust between sects. But perhaps the biggest problem are the Israelis and Americans, who virtually depend on maintenance of what influence they have in the Mideast on Muslim division highlighted as division between Iran and neighbors. No question Arab Gulf states would probably not talk with the Israelis at all if ties with Tehran were improved. And as well, relations with the U.S. among Muslims generally would suffer as well…unless the U.S. got off its high horse of imperial domination.

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