By Aram Mirzaei for the Saker blog
The wars in Iraq and Syria are entering a final phase as ISIL is about to end up where it belongs, history’s trashcan. ISIL as a fighting force is about to be destroyed and in Syria, Takfiri terrorists belonging to the Al-Qaeda linked Hay’at Tahrir Al-Sham are next up, yet peace is something still unimaginably far away for this conflict-ridden region. The reason is simple: as long as the true masterminds of Middle East’s suffering are live and kicking, the region will never see peace.
The Wahhabi crazies in Riyadh are already beating the drums of war again, despite losing the fights in Syria and Iraq, in addition to the debacle in neighbouring Yemen. Together with their Zionist masters in Israel, they are now about to target Lebanon, more specifically the Hezbollah resistance movement in a bid to “cut Iran’s hand in Lebanon” as Lebanese PM Saad Hariri said in Riyadh when he was kidnapped and forced by the Saudis to read a prepared statement, declaring his resignation. In truth it looked more like the Saudis were firing their puppet rather than a Prime minister of a sovereign country resigning.
Pressuring Saad Hariri to resign and confront Hezbollah marks a shift in Saudi policy. Riyadh has had a long tradition of mediating between rival factions in Lebanon, while supporting the central government, acting in the shadow of the U.S. With the rise of the eccentric Saudi prince Mohammad bin Salman, Riyadh has replaced this policy with aggressive political pressure and adversity. No longer is the kingdom acting in the shadow of the U.S. Riyadh is no longer supporting anti-Hezbollah parties covertly but is rather stepping up directly to confront Hezbollah, despite the concerns of even its regional allies. This shift in policy is directly related to the kingdom’s fears that Lebanon is slipping away from their hands as Hezbollah is growing stronger every day.
All this has the potential to plunge the region into chaos for no other reason than the impulse of Mohammed bin Salman who has launched a so called “anti-corruption” campaign in his own country against other Saudi royals and business leaders. The prince stands directly responsible for Yemen’s disastrous misery which has killed thousands and has brought the country to the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe. His decision to punish Qatar has only brought the country closer to Iran and firing Hariri only shows how his frustration is growing.
At a Cabinet meeting on November 15, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that such direct interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign country, and forcing someone to resign (referring to Hariri’s resignation) was unprecedented.
At the meeting, Rouhani addressed the Wahhabi kingdom, without naming the country specifically by saying, “Who are you, what power are you relying on in doing such things? How much do you think money can do?”
He added, “That a Muslim country in the region asks and begs the Zionist regime to bomb the Lebanese people is very shameful and embarrassing. We haven’t seen an Islamic country do such [a thing] in history, and this indicates that inexperienced figures have come [to power] in these countries.”
Meanwhile Iranian Foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi reacted by saying that Iran was hoping that Hariri would return home and help restore calm in Lebanon while on Nov. 6, Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif described Hariri’s resignation as bizarre and linked it to US President Donald Trump’s trip to the Middle East earlier this year as well as the October visit to Saudi Arabia by Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner.
Since then, a war of words has been flaring between the Wahhabi kingdom and the Islamic Republic as the adventurist Saudi prince stepped up his confrontational rhetoric with pathetic remarks and a bizarre analogy between Iran’s growing regional influence and Germany’s policies during the Hitler era. The Saudi prince was quoted as saying that “the supreme leader is the new Hitler of the Middle East. But we learned from Europe that appeasement doesn’t work”.
For the past two years, the Saudi prince has been setting the Middle East on fire, and at every front he has been losing, yet his delusions keep growing stronger each day.
Saudi Arabia continues to threaten Iran. Adel al-Jubeir on November 16 warned that Riyadh’s patience is running out in regard to Iran and that Saudi Arabia would respond to Iran’s animosity.
Meanwhile on the same day as Al-Jubeir’s threat, Israel’s military chief Lt. General Eizenkot gave an interview to a Saudi newspaper speaking about the ways in which Saudi Arabia and Israel could unite to counter Iran’s influence in the region. Eizenkot said Tel Aviv had no intention of attacking Hezbollah but would also not tolerate a strategic threat to its borders. This echoes Netanyahu’s recent threats about “not tolerating Iranian presence in Syria”.
The covert relationship that Israel has with Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states is no longer a secret. It is clear that the Saudi-Israeli unity regarding their common enemy, Iran and Hezbollah, will grow even stronger from now on as their relationship is taking a more overt character. This alliance will try to change the regional balance of power to Iran’s disadvantage. But what remains unclear is if these two criminal states will, despite their unsuccessful adventures in Yemen and Lebanon respectively have taught them any lesson at all? I remain doubtful as arrogance and impulse rules the day in Riaydh and Tel Aviv. Trump’s full backing of the Wahhabi prince’s ambitions has only served to inflate an already delusional mind and might push Riaydh to start another disastrous war in Lebanon.
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah claimed on November 10 that the Wahhabi kingdom had already appealed to Israel to strike Lebanon. On the same day, Saudi Arabia had ordered its citizens to leaven Lebanon, possibly in preparation for an attack. For Nasrallah, war is always imminent for Hezbollah even though the Syrian war is about to end with Assad still in power, and Iran growing more powerful than ever.
Despite all of Israel’s and Saudi Arabia’s threats, I still believe that any war in Lebanon will be fought between proxies as the case has been in Syria for the simple reason that Israel will not sacrifice its own soldiers for the sake of Saudi Arabia no matter how much of a common goal they have in trying to push back Iranian influence. Israel knows it has a lot of Arabs at its disposal, willing to do their dirty work for them. The Zionist-Wahhabis have used proxies before, and despite their shortcomings as a fighting force, the Takfiri crazies have seemingly unlimited numbers of cannon-fodder to offer, and with ample financing they are indeed a very dangerous threat to Lebanon. Also, Iran will never offer the U.S the perfect opportunity to intervene by making rash decisions such as intervening directly if Lebanon is indeed invaded by Takfiri proxies, so any U.S intervention must be preceded by a false flag similar to the “chemical attacks” in Syria. This is where Russia can step in with its political power to prevent a US aggression.
For Iran, there are several indirect ways of countering any Zionist-Wahhabi aggression against Lebanon, for instance, one option for Iran would be to mobilize its plethora of loyal popular militias and send them to Lebanon, a strategy well used in Syria and Iraq. This is highly possible especially now since the important liberation of Albukamal near the Iraqi border, which now gives the resistance forces control over the entire Tehran-Beirut highway. In Iran, officials seem convinced that any attack on the Resistance Axis will be targeting Lebanon rather than Iran since the enemy is wary of Iran’s missile capabilities, otherwise they would not be so eager to “negotiate a deal” regarding Iran’s missile program, something French president Macron recently express “concerns” about.
It is clear that Iran will do anything in its power to stop this aggression, this has been repeatedly mentioned in Iranian media and confirmed by several Iranian officials, including the IRGC’s top brass. The Iranian government seems confident of victory and has always declared that it will fight to the last man, and why shouldn’t it be confident? Recent polls show tremendous popular support among Iranians for its government’s military efforts in both Syria and Iraq. The Iranian people know what they are facing, a Wahhabi Takfiri kingdom that has shown what it desires to do with those it considers to be apostates (Shiites) through the wars in Syria and Iraq. The Iranians know what fate awaits them if they do not fight.
The question of a new Zionist-Wahhabi war in the Middle East is not about whether it will happen, but rather when it will happen.