Observers of the Iranian situation can clearly see that Iran is not living its best days during this historical phase in the region and the world.
Iranian decision makers have not yet understood or comprehended that what’s happening today on the domestic, regional and international levels against Iran is not a conspiracy but it’s simply a natural result of the regime’s policies and strategies over the past four decades.
On the domestic level, the Iranian people have been protesting on and off despite all the oppression and the expansion of dictatorial apparatuses following the Green Movement in 2009. There are still protests which have spread to different cities instead of decreasing.
The people have reached a point where they realize that there’s no hope from the regime of the guardian of the jurist which they know it will never be reformed or amended.
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On the regional level – and with reservations over the clerics’ interferences in politics – we can notice three interesting cases in Arab countries which the Iranian regime has bragged that it controls their decision making process.
In Iraq, the highest Shiite marja (reference) in the country Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani issued a fatwa (religious edict) warning of corrupt people and of those who failed from among the political category that dragged the Iraqi state and the people to the abyss and allowed the spread of sectarianism and terrorism and looted all of Iraq’s fortunes.
Sistani also said that this category has direct contact with what he called foreign states, i.e. the Iranian regime that’s violating Iraq’s sovereignty and hijacking the political decision.
The size of the dispute between Sistani and the traditional reference he represents, and which maintains the spirit of the Shiite sect, with what the guardian of the jurist’s regime represents as a version of a political Islam version within the Shiite sect, and which does not have any real religious roots, is well-known.
Iranian regime will find itself alone before a world that’s uniting against it and against its policies and it will realize that the worst is yet to comeAbdullah bin Bijad Al-Otaibi
In Lebanon, many Lebanese citizens have complained about the political process in the country and voiced their rejection of Hezbollah’s hijacking of the Shiite sect and state and its monopoly of the Shiite representation by force, violence and threats.
Hezbollah has engaged Lebanon’s Shiites in uncalculated adventures and sent youths to be killed in battles which they have nothing to do with, such as in Syria and Yemen, and involved them in international crimes related to terrorism and drug trafficking. The attempt to end Hezbollah’s monopoly of the Shiite representation thus carries significant symbolism at this stage.
In Yemen, the Houthis’ fate has become semi-finalized on the short term. On the long term, it’s definitely finalized. The world is talking in details about the militias’ crimes, brutality, bloodiness and ideological stubbornness which have led to their political failure and incapability to engage in any political settlement. The fall of the Houthi model in Yemen is just around the corner and it’s only a matter of time.
Morocco has recently severed its ties with Iran – a move that was widely supported by Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries. Morocco’s decision is a natural result of the Iranian regime’s behavior and its military support of the separatist Polisario Front. Morocco has been well-aware of the non-sectarian political and cultural Shiism which Iran has been managing in the country.
However, the situation reached a decisive phase due to direct military support. Morocco’s rejection of the Iranian project in the region is a success to be added to many previous successes. Meanwhile, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel has documents which prove Iran has not stopped developing its nuclear program despite the deal it signed with the P5+1 group.
If this is proven right, it will undermine this bad deal which the Obama administration reached with the Iranian regime and which allowed Tehran to expand, play with ballistic missiles and threaten the stability of Arab countries, primarily the Saudi kingdom. If these documents are true, they will support the vision of the Trump administration towards the Iranian regime’s evil role in the region and the world and its threats against the future of the world.
On the international level, the world is heading in the direction of condemning the Iranian regime and confronting it with all the required force over its flagrant violations of international laws and its policies which support chaos, extremism and terrorism.
In this significant historical phase on the level of international conflicts, North Korea is headed towards openness towards its southern neighbors and is attempting to communicate with the world and end a period of decades when it represented a factor for instability in East Asia and the world.
Following serious threats of military escalation between the US and North Korea, the latter seems to be in a phase in which it’s responding to pressure and opening a new page. A meeting between the American president and the North Korean president is being arranged in the next few weeks.
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After mitigating North Korea’s crisis and international role, and after Trump unified his administration to make it more harmonious towards the Iranian regime – via the appointment of Mike Pompeo as Secretary of State and John Bolton as national security advisor – Iran seems to be living its worst days.
Meanwhile, Europe’s resistance in Britain, France and Germany has lessened as they begun to acknowledge the defects in the Iranian nuclear deal and to voice the importance of developing it upon pressures from the Trump administration, Saudi Arabia and Gulf countries. Iran’s days are thus headed towards what’s worse.
On May 12, Trump will announce his final position from the nuclear deal with Iran – a deal he described as the worst in history. The Iranian regime will find itself alone before a world that’s uniting against it and against its policies and it will realize that the worst is yet to come.
The new Saudi Arabia has worked hard to expose the threat of the Iranian regime and sought to besiege its destructive activities via political, diplomatic and military professional approaches which included both hard and soft power. The kingdom has also garnered major gains that are increasing with time, and it has associated these efforts and decisiveness with wisdom and patience.
This article is also available in Arabic.
Abdullah bin Bijad al-Otaibi is a Saudi writer and researcher. He is a member of the board of advisors at Al-Mesbar Studies and Research Center. He tweets under @abdullahbjad.