Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Iran Should Avoid Tension in the Persian Gulf

Iran Should Avoid Tension in the Persian Gulf
Ali Asghar Kazemi
April 13, 2011 

Tension is the last thing we need in the Persian Gulf. While the whole Middle East and Northern Africa is engulfed in a critical crisis situation and almost all states are alarmed for their very survival, the Islamic regime in Iran should avoid entering into verbal disputes with its neighbors that could be escalated to a real conflict.
Recent exchanges of acrimonious statements between mid-level officials in Iran, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait and others are ominous signs of rising hostilities in the region. Perhaps Iranians do not really mean to aggravate the situation by their harsh responses to unfriendly words coming from the Persian Gulf states. But, these latter, fearing Iran’s intentions seem to take these threats seriously. Such misapprehension could lead to an unwanted conflict which eventually will usher the doors for non-regional powers to enter in the quarrel.
There is no doubt that for many reasons Western powers will take such occurrence as a good opportunity to straighten their perennial grudge with the Islamic regime once for all. Indeed, as I mentioned elsewhere , the case of Libyan military intervention under the UN Security Council Resolution is a bad sign for this eventuality.
Whether we like it or not, in the eyes of many states in the world, Iran has become a source of threat to the peace and stability in the region and the international community has a duty to contain its ambitions at all costs. Thus far, the Security Council has issued four important resolutions under Chapter VII of the UN Charter devising harsh sanctions against Iran’s nuclear endeavor without much success. Iranian defiance is like a contemptible slap to the face of the United Nations which could have grave consequences.
The heightening of tension between Iran and the Persian Gulf states, if not contained vigilantly, could give a good and legitimate pretext to foreign powers, especially the United States, to seize the opportunity to bring a defiant state to its knees. This could lead to the destruction of important strategic and economic assets of Iran with huge human and material losses.
We hope that high decision makers in Iran avoid escalating the tensions with our neighbors and refrain intermingling in the internal affairs of other states which could create grave consequences at this particular juncture for the fate of the Islamic regime and the future of Iranian people. /

* Ali Asghar Kazemi is professor of Law and -International Relations in Tehran-Iran. Students, researchers, academic institutions, media or any party interested in using all or parts ‎of this article are welcomed to do so with the condition of giving full attribution to the author and the ‎Middle East Academic Forum. ©All Copy Rights Reserved.‎

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