Iran's Friend in America

Amir Taheri on how the Barry administration provides aid and comfort to the Iranian regime:

…The Tehran regime’s mouthpieces in the media and universities emphasise the cooling of US-Israel relations under Barack Obama and insist that Washington has realised that its support for Israel has become too costly. Perhaps the most recent significant diplomatic success scored by Tehran came last month when a UN conference called by President Obama to set the world on the road to nuclear disarmament failed to call on Iran to stop its nuclear programme. Instead, it called for a nuclear-free Middle East, thus linking Israel’s reported nucear weapons to Iran’s controversial programme.

Tehran has succeeded in dragging non-Arab states, notably Turkey, a former ally of Israel, and Malaysia into conflict with Israel, and is working on others, especially Pakistan and Indonesia, in the hope of creating a pan-Islamic front. The Turkish Prime Minister visited Iran last month to seal a nuclear deal.

Tehran has other reasons to be happy with its strategy of confrontation. It has ended the Israeli-Syrian peace talks by threatening to withdraw its substantial economic support for President Assad’s increasingly fragile regime. Tehran’s bullying has also forced Qatar, Oman and the United Arab Emirates to stop normalising relations with Israel.

Egypt’s decision last week to lift its blockade of Gaza is presented by Tehran as another example of how Muslim public opinion could achieve “victories against the Zionist enemy”. Tehran’s immediate goal is to appear as leading the international campaign to lift the Israeli blockade which, if it happens, will be presented as another sign that the tide of history is turning against the Jewish state. Assuming a high profile in the conflict with Israel has three key advantages. First, it helps divert attention from the Khomeinist regime’s domestic problems. Next week, opposition parties plan mass demonstrations calling for an end to what they describe as “despotic rule”. The regime hopes that images of its flotilla of jihad defying the “Zionist enemy” would present the opposition as “enemies of the resurgent Islam”…

Believing that its potential adversaries are weak and indecisive, the Khomeinist regime appears determined to push the region to the edge of war and, perhaps, beyond.

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