Iran, Iraq and Syria are thoroughly enmeshed
By Carol Devine-Molin
For those seeking to negotiate the intricate and confusing plethora of information coming out of Big Media on the Iraq circumstances, I simply say this: Keep the navel gazing on the Iraq Study Group minutia to a minimum. Instead, look at the Big Picture. Whenever the "Inside the Beltway" bunch is spewing their conventional wisdom on the Sunday morning talk shows and obsessing about any given study or blue ribbon commission, it's clearly time to stop examining the "micro" details, pull back, take a big breath, and start looking at the "macro" dynamics. Rule of thumb: Conventional wisdom is bound to steer you down the wrong path. More to the point, don't let the liberal mainstream media (MSM) pull you into their disorienting labyrinth of gobbledygook.
As an aside, observing the "Drive By" MSM over time and deducing what's really going on has become something of a sport for Conservatives. History repeats itself: It's reminiscent of the steady stream of propaganda – masquerading as news - put forth by the Soviet Union for domestic purposes. Amazingly, the regular folk were able to watch and listen to the Soviet drivel, and, with experience, read-between-the-lines and come to some semblance of accuracy. It's an acquired skill. Likewise, many Conservatives are fairly adept at reading through the machinations and manipulations of the partisan media (MSM) and figuring out the real-deal. The long and short of it is they correctly "interpret" the source. But I digress.
Regarding Iraq, here's the nitty-gritty that needs to be underscored: Syria and Iran have been working hand-in-glove all along to stoke the fires of sectarian violence in Iraq. Syria has been aiding and abetting al-Qaeda and the Sunni Ba'athists, while Iran has been funneling tremendous assistance to al-Sadr's Mahdi Army and other Shia factions. In the parlance of the streets, Syria and Iran have been playing both sides against the middle. They're squeezing Iraq in a vise. Why? Because they have no desire to see a stable government – a democracy no less – emerge in the Middle East. The originally envisioned "new Iraq" (as conceptualized by Bush et al.) would have created a wave of democratization, a synergy so-to-speak, in the region that would have directly challenged Islamo-fascism and the further development of terror groups. So the motives of Syria and Iran to thwart the new government in Iraq are twisted, but quite understandable.
As to resolving the profound violence that continues in Iraq, we essentially have a regional problem on our hands. Ultimately, troublemakers Syria and Iran must be stifled. The Iraq Study Group's floated a total of 79 recommendations, described by some as "underwhelming" and "impractical", which includes an emphasis on a new diplomatic offensive with Syria and Iran for the purpose of stabilizing Iraq and ridding it of violence. Please note that we tried back-channel efforts with Iran in recent times – to determine if we could lay the ground work for talks – which proved unsuccessful.
Let me see; we're now asking the perpetrators of violence in Iraq to help us calm the situation there. Well, what would constitute incentives for Syria and Iran? Iran certainly has a stake in Iraq; Iran wants a big chuck of it. That being said, Iran just might "help us out the door" in Iraq, so that it can turn around and grab the southern portion of Iraq for itself. And Syria wants to return to the occupation of Lebanon so that it can soak it of its wealth, in addition to getting back the Golan Heights (which it lost in the Six Day War) from Israel. Silly me, now we have the incentives and the basis of negotiations with these thugs! Remember, when you negotiate with lawless regimes, they're the ones that fundamentally benefit. At the very least, they're being provided with a legitimate forum and a certain level of cachet so that they can lie and manipulate with impunity, blame the US and sway world opinion.
That being said, the MSM and the "talking heads" are currently giving short-shrift to circumstances that are conspiring to re-jigger the equation in the Middle East. Iran - which will not be deterred from obtaining nuclear weaponry - is due to get its comeuppance. It's inevitable; it's a fate accompli because of Iran's intransigence on its nuclear ambitions. Whether it's Israel alone, Israel with America, or Israel, America and a small coalition, Iran will come under attack. Besides Iran's refusal to suspend nuclear activities, its sins are many including its: a) role as the foremost supporter of terrorism, b) role in orchestrating substantial violence in Iraq, c) suppression of its own populace, d) menacing of Israel and the US, and e) threats to use the oil supply as a weapon. Moreover, neighboring nations such as Saudi Arabia and Jordan are extremely concerned that the terror and violence in Iraq will spill over into their territories, triggering a regional war among factions. Iran and Syria are creating quite a few enemies because of their selfish and reckless activities in Iraq. However, its felt that once Iran is dealt with, Syria will just slither away.
Clearly, the Iranian peril is not dissipating; rather, it's escalating. Just in the past few days, Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad stated that his nation is installing three thousand centrifuges in efforts to expand nuclear fuel production. There's no denying that Iran's defiant leaders – enmeshed in an apocalyptic death cult - are moving ever closer to acquiring nuclear weaponry. Moreover, Iran refuses to back down from threats against Israel and America. When Israeli intelligence estimates that Iran is on the threshold of going nuclear, Israel will undoubtedly strike against Iran's nuclear facilities, whether the US or others are prepared to join in the action or not.
Carol Devine-Molin is a regular contributor to several online magazines.
Get weekly updates about new issues of ESR!