Is Iran Helping Assad Crush the Syrian Revolt?

March 28th, 2011 at 12:04 pm | 5 Comments |

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According to Israeli sources, Syrian dissidents have reported some of the gun- and baton-wielding security personnel unleashed on anti-regime activists in recent days have been speaking in Farsi.

This is not in and of itself conclusive evidence of Iranian involvement. Syria has a large population of native Farsi speakers. So, for that matter, does Israel.

Still: “Syria is an Iranian acquisition, and it is clear that Iran is afraid that its investments will go down the drain.  So it has allowed for greater involvement than in other Arab countries,” Israeli Army Radio reported Foreign Ministry officials as saying.

The alliance with Iran has allowed Damascus to fight above its weight as a regional power player.

Assad, like his father and predecessor, has played a double-game with both his neighbors and the U.S., suggesting at times Syria could be “flipped” given the right inducements.

As Middle East expert Michael Doran has noted, “Syria has played this game of being both the arsonist and the fire department.”

All the while Syria has been extending — and capriciously yanking away — the olive branch, it has been calibrating the use of its client terrorist political organizations Hezbollah and Hamas in Lebanon and the Palestinian Territories according to immediate exigencies and longer range goals.

All the while it has been attempting to destabilize U.S. allies including Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia by way of lower-key intriguing and subversion,

All the while it has been hosting and training al-Qaeda recruits from throughout the Arab world and allowing the country to be used as a land-bridge for infiltrating them into Iraq.

And all the while Iran has looked on and nodded approvingly.

Syria has acted as Tehran’s reliable sword-edge in pursuing greater Shi’ite/Persian aspirations in a largely Sunni, largely hostile Arab world.

The loss of its only Arab ally would be more than just a temporary setback to the mullahs’ plans for redrawing the regional boundaries of power. A destabilized Syria or one where the regime is changed by the will of a people could administer a death-blow to Iran’s current strategic gamesmanship in the Middle East.

Which is why Israel’s warnings about possible Iranian participation in efforts to quell the Syrian uprising carry the ring of conviction.


Recent Posts by Tim Hodgson



5 Comments so far ↓

  • ottovbvs

    You mean like we are in Bahrain. They maybe helping the Syrians but this is called protecting the national interests as we do. As for this from Israel…

    [i]According to Israeli sources, Syrian dissidents have reported some of the gun- and baton-wielding security personnel unleashed on anti-regime activists in recent days have been speaking in Farsi.

    This is not in and of itself conclusive evidence of Iranian involvement. Syria has a large population of native Farsi speakers. So, for that matter, does Israel.[/i]

    It reminds me of those claims in Britain during WW 1 that Russian troops had been seen with snow on their boots

  • jerseychix

    You mean there is another country besides the US that tries to influence the internal policies of a neighboring state? Surely you jest!!

    The obvious answer is “of course”.

  • Elvis Elvisberg

    Is al Qaeda ghost writing Tim Hodgson’s columns?

    He has nothing but scorn for the Shia of Iran, suggesting that his sympathies may lie with the radical Sunni philosphy espoused by Osama bin Laden.

    This is not in and of itself conclusive evidence of al Qaeda’s involvement. The US has a large population of Iran critics. So, for that matter, does Israel.

    Still: it would be irresponsible not to speculate.

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  • larry

    Is Iran financing the Tea Party with the aim of destroying the US economy? There is no such evidence, but it’s something to keep your eye on.