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Iran’s Israel card

Feb 28,2017 - Last updated at Feb 28,2017

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Tuesday used the podium of a pro-Palestinian gathering in Tehran to call for liberating Palestine from the Mediterranean to the River Jordan.

While it is the not the first time an Iranian leader calls for the destruction of Israel, this time the Iranian supreme leader threatened Israel in response to his perception that there is a sort of a Saudi-Israeli rapprochement.

If anything, Iranian leaders are used to exploiting the Palestinian cause, using it as a smoke screen, to conceal their sectarian agenda in the Levant and the Gulf.

The Arabs are not oblivious to the most recent Iranian ploy.

In fact, a considerable majority of Arabs believes that the Iranians are using the Palestinians cause as a Trojan horse for their negative influence in the Middle East.

By appearing as embracers of the Palestinian cause, many Arabs argue, the Iranian leaders seek to cover up their “terrorist” acts committed in some Arab states.

Judging by Tehran policies, one cannot but conclude that top Iranian leaders are interested in nothing but empowering their proxies.

The Iranian people, on the other hand, makes it perfectly clear that their support for the Palestinians is genuine.

They refer to their support for Hizbollah and Hamas in their fight against Israel as a proof of their position.

Tehran wants everyone to believe that, unlike the Arab states, Iran matches its words by deeds.

High-ranking Iranian officials seek to set the record straight. The Iranian press is abuzz with analyses that link Tehran’s stand against Israel to the sanctions imposed on it.

I find it hard to fit Iran’s claim that it would stand up to Israel in its inexplicable sectarian policy in the region. 

Iran has not participated in a single war with Israel since 1948. On the contrary, Iran fought Iraq for eight years.

Besides, Iran sent militias to Syria to fight the Sunni majority and Iranian leaders have a hard time explaining how their negative interference in Yemen or Bahrain is within the context of standing up to Israel.

Iran’s pro-Palestinian propaganda is a source of annoyance to some Sunni Arab countries – chief among them Saudi Arabia – who see eye-to-eye with the Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu on Iran as a source of threat to regional stability.

To be sure, the source of threat in the Gulf is not Israel but Iran.

The Saudi words and deeds are directed at Iran. This explains much of Saudi policies in Yemen and Syria.

The Saudi foreign minister has used every possible international forum to paint Iran as a state sponsoring terrorism. The tug of war cannot be more obvious.

That being said, the truth remains that Iran fully employs the continued Arab-Israeli conflict and the impotence of the Arabs to force Israel to offer the minimum requirements for peacemaking in the context of its belligerent stand vis-à-vis the Arabs.

In fact, Iran would have invented Israel if the latter had not existed.

As a result, the Sunni Arab regimes need to engage in soul searching about their future policies towards both Iran and Israel.

 

 

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