The arrangement of effective elements in the debate over Iran’s nuclear case has now entered a new phase. The new round that has started chiefly between Iran and America is almost unprecedented in nearly the past three decades. Iran is planting defensive mines around itself and strongly resisting the political pressures, the psychological warfare and the military threats of the West and particularly America, and is making defensive threats.
Under the current circumstances, the Americans are taking special measures in Iraq by using the atmosphere of diplomatic tension in the region. They have been directing the movements of the Kurds in Iran’s border areas in a way that suits America’s interests.
There are whispers that they are trying to deploy troops in Georgia and the Republic of Azerbaijan with the intention of using the space of these two southern Caucasian republics against Iran. However, their request to use the Incirlik base and Turkey’s space against Tehran was apparently turned down by Ankara.
America’s presence in Afghanistan for a few years has provided a rather strong position against Iran. In Faw, Iraq, the United States has been giving the local people notices for population relocation, so that they could build a permanent military base there next to Khorramshahr and the Iranian borders. Britain’s presence beside America, in spite of the diplomatic denials in London’s Downing Street, takes the United States to the days before the war on Saddam Husayn.
The United States is showing with its political behaviour that it is trying to accept and even demonstrate the reality. By making nuclear threats against Iran, America has made it clear that it truly sees Iran as a serious opponent, because during the history of the Cold War and after that, the Soviet Union and China were the only two cases against which America suggested the possibility of nuclear conflict. All of the games of the past few years and especially the past few months have put the United States in a position from which it can reach a unique analysis of the issues. America is now considering and weighing the possibility of a military assault on Iran. The demonstration of Iran’s naval and air force armaments and Tehran’s proven advances in uranium enrichment up to over 3 per cent, which the Atomic Energy Agency confirmed as 3.6 per cent, have placed new circumstances before the United States.
The general feeling in Iran is not fear of war. Despite the strong traditional and internal desire for peace in Iran, studying Iran’s society shows that the Iranian people forcefully respond to any kind of threat or aggressive action and any effort to humiliate the Iranian nation. Iran has achieved true confidence in its technological potential in different scientific areas, especially in nuclear technology, which further strengthens its resolve to protect its independence. Obviously, everyone has noticed that the circumstances in the Middle East and even the balance of power have changed in favour of Iran. The importance of this matter is that the new circumstances, while consolidating Tehran’s positions in every aspect, undermine the positions of other countries like Pakistan and Israel and destabilize the special roles that certain countries like Egypt and Turkey have in the regional system and among the Middle Eastern governments.
To draw a final conclusion from the dispute between a country that is afraid of losing its military and economic power and a country that striving to survive among different elements and powers that are mainly accustomed to the rule of jungle, we can see that a confrontation between these two forces will endanger the national interests of many other countries and cause serious and great concerns for them. Right now the Russians are worried that the NATO is going to move its bases near the Iranian borders. Any development in favour of America will permanently undermine Russia’s position in the controversial and very attractive region of the Middle East. This means that Moscow, after having gone through the 80s, in its worst psychological state will have to deal with the United States and the global developments. Considering Islamabad’s unstable and agitated background and some pages of Iran’s nuclear dossier, the situation wouldn’t be very favourable to the Pakistanis either. The Chinese will lose a lucrative market and New Delhi will further realize the futility of the abrupt changes in its diplomacy vis-a-vis Iran and siding with the United States. From a security standpoint, the circumstances would not be favourable to Turkey either, because disruption of security in Iranian territory and confrontation with America will further deepen the lack of security in Turkey’s border areas and some parts of its internal geography. In Iraq, the new circumstances will basically speed up the developments, of course in a negative way.
Controlling this state of affairs would be much more difficult than messing up the security puzzle of the region, and this is exactly the conclusion that everyone has reached in Tehran and Washington. For this reason, they are trying not to lose control.
Iran’s national and international prestige is one issue and America’s desire to retain the traditional statue of “superior America” is another. What we see is a state of deep mistrust, which of course is understandable.
Iranian and American logics are defending and attacking, each based on their own data and attributes. Iran is relying on national unity, technological motives and a broad and strategic geography that provides control over extremely crucial passageways of energy, whereas America is counting on European allies, modern weapons and leaders riding a white-headed eagle.
Source: Keyhan website, Tehran, in Persian 21 May 06, p2, translation BBC.