While many world nations remain under the impression that Washington and its regional allies in the Middle East – Saudi Arabia in the lead, are indeed conducting just wars in the region, fighting and opposing the rise of Wahhabi radicalism, it is really East they should be looking, as it is Iran which has risen a barrier and a bulwark against the cancer of this black plague.
For all its statements and promises, for all its officials engineered narrative and its corporate media flamboyant accusations against Muslims and so-called “enemy” Muslim nations, who more than the United States has contributed to both the rise and dissemination of ISIS?
To be perfectly accurate, while Washington provided political cover and military assistance, it is Riyadh which took care of the logistics: funding and networking its radical interpretation of Islam to better introduce the enslavement and subsequent balkanization of the Middle East and Central Asia.
This great game western imperialists and their puppet regimes have played traces back decades if not centuries, when the first seed of religious deviance was planted in the desert of Arabia at the turn of the 18th century, a mean to break the Ottoman Empire and collapse Islam’s pluralist foundations.
Saudi Arabia, the author of global Islamic radicalism and a close ally of the US, is interlocked with the western ruling establishment. How else explain why the largest US weapons sale in history was made to Saudi Arabia in 2011. Saudi Arabia’s connection to terrorism is universally acknowledged in academia because Saudi Arabia has funded and continues to fund the “madrassas” that indoctrinate people into fundamentalist thinking. The cradle of terror, the kingdom has bred radicals on an industrial level.
Up until the 1960s Wahhabism was largely confined to the Arabian peninsula, right until the moment the Saudi monarchy decided to give refuge to radical members of the Muslim Brotherhood fleeing persecution in Nasser’s Egypt. “A cross-fertilization of sorts occurred between the atavistic but isolated Wahhabi creed of the Saudi religious establishment and the Salafi jihadist teachings of Sayyid Qutb, who denounced secular Arab rulers as unbelievers and legitimate targets of holy war (jihad). It was the synthesis of the twain-Wahhabi social and cultural conservatism, and Qutbist political radicalism- that produced the militant variety of Wahhabist political Islam that eventually produced al-Qaeda,” wrote Ambassador Curtin Winsor.
The rabbit hole goes further down still!
Western powers’ link to terror as a weapon of mass destabilization in the pan-Arab world has been extensively documented by reputable personalities and researchers. In his writing veteran journalist Robert Dreyfuss has kept track of the long history of US and British covert dealings with the now-outlawed Muslim Brotherhood and other so-called Islamic groups against secular nationalist and Arab leftist groups that sought to undermine British and other western interests in the Middle East.
Said Ramadan, the Brotherhood’s chief organizer in the 1950s was documented by both Dreyfuss and Wall Street Journal’s Ian Johnson as having ties to western intelligence and being backed by the CIA. The Islamic right wing was an effective proxy against anti-imperialist and nationalist Arab leftism. Wikileaks reports from 2005 also showed that backing of Syrian opposition groups, including the Brotherhood, had begun under Bush.
America’s guilt before radicalism and terrorism is no longer open to debate, it has become a proven fact.
But if America is not fighting terror then who is?
However uncomfortable for well-thinking western nations, the answer is Iran.
No power in the region has been more intent on breaking terror’s back than the Islamic Republic – so much so that Tehran has already committed its men and weapons in Iraq, offering Baghdad its unconditional support in its most dire hour of need.
If not for Iran’s intervention and if not for Iran’s military impetus against ISIS, it is likely the Iraqi capital and more Iraqi provinces with it would have fallen under ISIS’ dominion.
Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Iran’s deputy foreign minister for Arab and African affairs best summarized today’s political dynamics and implications this July when he stated that extremist forces’ primary purpose in the Middle East had been to steal the wealth of Muslim countries and destroy the resistance front against Israel. He also insisted – rightly so, that terrorism would not exist in the Middle East if Muslim countries in the region were united.
This war against terror is really a war for independence – independence from neo-imperialism and independence from theofascism.
And while western powers continue to spew their poisoned propaganda against Iran, arguing that Shia Islam stands a threat to world stability, let us remember which alliances they have chosen over Iran: Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar, the Wahhabi-radical trinity!
And if in truth Iran does present a threat to neo-imperialism it is because its stands inherently opposed to any form of political and religious diktat. Let us remember that Iran’s republic was born in rejection of tyranny. To reclaim their freedom Iranians had to pay the ultimate price, rising a resistance against western hegemonic ambitions.
Iran’s message and policy ever since have been in support of political self-determination, not subjugation.
Just a the pan-Arab world is facing extermination by the hands of ISIS, Iran has been leading the real axis of resistance – From Lebanon to Yemen and Bahrain, voices have risen in denunciation of Wahhabism, calling for nations and communities to stand together against the real oppressors.
Where will you stand?
Catherine Shakdam is the Associate Director of the Beirut Center for Middle Eastern Studies and a political analyst specializing in radical movements, exclusively for the online magazine “New Eastern Outlook”.