Category Archives: Arab-Iran Rivalry

ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY BINYAMIN NETANYAHU BISHARA ASSAD C4I IRAN COUNTERTERRORISM EGYPT GREAT POWER RELATIONS HASAN ROUHANI HILLARY CLINTON HOT GLOBAL ISSUES FROM OTHER SOURCES INTELLIGENCE IRAN IRAN'S FOREIGN MINISTER IRAQ ISIS/ISIL/IS ISLAM ISLAMIC REVOLUTION OF IRAN ISRAEL JIHADISTS KING ABDULLAH OF SAUDI ARABIA LEVANT MIDDLE EAST MOHAMMAD JAVAD ZARIF PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA UNCATEGORIZED UNITED STATES US GLOBAL LEADERSHIP

Burying the Hatchet is the Precondition for US-Iran Rapprochement

by Ehsan Ahrari on August 13, 2015, No Comments

A lot of ink is being spilled analyzing the pros and cons of the recently concluded US-Iran nuclear deal between Iran and the 5+ 1 countries (4 permanent members of the UN Security Council and Germany), and there is ample show of emotions about this deal involving different actors. The Arab states are upset because they concluded that its successful implementation would lead to an era of US-Iran rapprochement in which Iran, more than the Arab states, would be the focus of America’s attention. The Israelis are mad because they see the emergence of a nuclear Iran in the distant future as a result of it. More to the point, Israel’s Prime Minister , Benyamin Netanyahu, envisions that deal as the first historical step toward bringing about an end to Israel’s own preeminence, related to its nuclear deterrence in the region. A study prepared for the RAND Corporation addresses precisely that point when it notes, “Nuclear weapons would probably reinforce Iran's traditional national secu
AFGHANISTAN ARAB AWAKENING ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY BISHARA ASSAD CHINA EGYPT EGYPTIAN ARMY GREAT POWER RELATIONS HASAN ROUHANI INDIA INTERNET REVOLUTION IRAN IRAQ ISLAM ISLAMIC REVOLUTION OF IRAN JIHADISTS MIDDLE EAST PAKISTAN RUSSIA STRATEGIC AFFAIRS OF SOUTH ASIA STRATEGIC AFFAIRS OF WEST ASIA UNITED STATES US GLOBAL LEADERSHIP

So Long, 2013; Welcome 2014…I Think!

by Ehsan Ahrari on January 2, 2014, No Comments

Happy new year to all my global friends and contacts! 2013 has been an okay year for the United States, in terms of its foreign policy in the Middle East and in the Asia-Pacific.  (more…)
ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY BISHARA ASSAD HASAN ROUHANI IRAN IRAN'S FOREIGN MINISTER ISLAMIC REVOLUTION OF IRAN ISRAEL KING ABDULLAH OF SAUDI ARABIA MIDDLE EAST PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA SHIA CRSCENT UNITED STATES

The US-Iran Interim Nuclear Agreement: Auspicious But Potentially Fragile

by Ehsan Ahrari on November 24, 2013, No Comments

The US-Iran nuclear deal of November 23, 2013, putting a temporary freeze on Iran's nuclear program, is likely to turn out to be the beginning of an historic development.  The most celebrated aspect of this agreement is that the top diplomats on both sides are now engaging in a highly intricate dialogue, instead talking at each other through the media. (more…)
ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY BISHARA ASSAD EGYPT GOLAN HEIGHTS HOSNI MUBARAK IRAN ISRAEL JIHADISTS KING ABDULLAH OF JORDAN LEBANON LEVANT MEGA CHAOS MIDDLE EAST PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA RISING POWER SHIA CRSCENT SYRIA UNCATEGORIZED

Is Obama’s Strategic Dilemma in Syria a Symptom of the Arrival of a Post-Superpower Era?

by Ehsan Ahrari on May 18, 2013, No Comments

The government of Bishara al-Assad, while predicted to have fallen many months ago, is hanging on, and is causing an agonizing dilemma on the part of the United States and Israel.  Both of them want to see the end of Assad's regime; however, neither of them wants to see Assad replaced by a nexus of Islamists and pro-AQ Jihadists in that country.  The sustained hesitation of the United States regarding Syria made John Kampfner of the Guardian wonder whether this is the first conflict of "the post-superpower era."  My sense is that Kampfner is not far off the mark, especially since the PRC is reported to be demonstrating a heightened interest in playing some role in the PLO-Israeli conflict. (more…)
ARAB AWAKENING ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY IRAN IRAQ ISLAM ISLAMIC REVOLUTION OF IRAN ISRAEL LEBANON NORTH AFRICA SYRIA UNITED STATES

The Aging Revolutionaries Must Make Room for the New Ones

by Ehsan Ahrari on August 11, 2011, 1 Comment

Every revolution brings to the global limelight new ideas, and a new corps of leaders, who, by becoming successful in carrying out that revolution, prove to the world that the ideas and the regimes that they replaced were anachronistic and irrelevant.  The Arab awakening is one such revolutionary movement.  It is focused on ousting the aging (and not so aging) dictators and establishing democracy.  In the process, it is proving, among other things, that Hezbollah of Lebanon – a revolutionary movement of the 1980s – has become anachronistic. (more…)
ARAB AWAKENING ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY IRAN KING ABDULLAH OF SAUDI ARABIA MIDDLE EAST

Viewing the Arab Awakening From the Saudi Perspectives

by Ehsan Ahrari on June 23, 2011, No Comments

The Arab awakening's aspirations to bring about radical changes in the existing regimes is like a long nightmare for the Saudi monarchy.  The Saudi worldview is very much at home with the notion of autocratic rule, which allows little room for protests, political reforms, women's rights, or any other conception that challenges what now prevails inside the Kingdom.  The commitment to the Salafi tradition also remains predominant in this perspective, which does not allow much room for deviation from the Salafi tradition or liberal interpretation of Islam. (more…)
ARAB AWAKENING ARAB COLD WAR ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY EGYPT HOT GLOBAL ISSUES FROM OTHER SOURCES IRAN ISLAM ISLAMIC REVOLUTION OF IRAN KING ABDULLAH OF SAUDI ARABIA MIDDLE EAST MUAMMAR QADDAFI UNITED STATES

The New Arab Cold War: Monarchies Versus the Arab Awakening

by Ehsan Ahrari on May 27, 2011, No Comments

The old Arab Cold War was fought in the 1960s between the republican states who wanted to transform the Arab world through the use of pan-Arabism and the monarchies, which were opposed to that phenomenon. The latter envisioned the former as the "enemies," since the pan-Arabists were focused on overthrowing the monarchies. The leader of the republican camp was Egypt under Gamal Abdel Nasser. The leader of the monarchical camp was Saudi Arabia. The two camps fought a civil war in Yemen in the early 1960s. The bloody political change of Iraq in 1958, which permanently transformed Iraq from a monarchy into a republic, proved that the fear of the Arab monarchies regarding the republican states was not unfounded. Now, a new Arab Cold War is being fought once again under the Saudi leadership for the preservation of the monarchies. The "enemy" this time is the Arab Awakening, which threatens to sweep aside all autocratic regimes. Two Arab dictators – Zein el-Abideen Bin Ali and Hosni
ARAB-IRAN RIVALRY IRAN ISLAM ISLAMIC REVOLUTION OF IRAN KING ABDULLAH OF SAUDI ARABIA PAKISTAN STRATEGIC AFFAIRS OF SOUTH ASIA STRATEGIC AFFAIRS OF WEST ASIA UNITED STATES

The Politico-Cultural Basis for the Arab Fear of Iran

by Ehsan Ahrari on December 2, 2010, No Comments

Authoritarian regimes are notorious about keeping their real policies and the personal predilections of their rulers as state secrets.  Whenever they speak in public, their words are carefully chosen and they almost invariably do not reflect much about the real policies of their respective countries.  In this regard, WikiLeaks' disclosures about the Saudi perceptions of Iran and what measures the Saudi King wanted the United States to take against Islamic Republic are truly educational for students of current affairs, as well as for future historians.  King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia was reported to have advised General David Petraeus and the then U.S. Ambassador to Iraq, Ryan Crocker, that the United States should crush the head of the snake by attacking Iran.  He was referring to his fears about the potential emergence of Iran as a nuclear power.  King Abdullah, during a meeting with President Obama's Counterterrorism advisor, John Brennan, also expressed his deep apprehension of