Iranian politics goes military

The mullah's threats against those who veer from their view is a result of the military cult that prevents their being a normal state. Op-ed

Dr. Salem Al Ketbi, UAE ,

Iranian Parliament in session
Iranian Parliament in session

Iran’s mullahs are sectarian warlords in clerical robes. Since Khomeini’s revolution in 1979, the Iranian political scene has lived up to this reality. Iranian officials have spent the post-revolutionary years making threats to neighboring countries under the motto of the export of revolution, an expression of their suicidal tendencies and their need to fan crises.

Observers can no longer distinguish between the political and the military in these leaders. They all buy into an inflammatory military discourse. They brandish threats far from the usual political language. Politics rarely comes up on the Iranian stage.

Sometimes they address the West as pacifists. Sometimes too, when their troubles compound into a sense of crisis, the mullahs turn to the regional neighborhood and test the waters with soft yet ill-intentioned words.

No sooner had the UAE-Israel ties accord been announced than the mullahs posted their anger at this sovereign decision. Most of them describe it, diplomatically at least, as a “strategic mistake” of the UAE’s.

Some have even accused the UAE of treason, double-dealing and other word taken from the inflammatory and cynical vocabulary that we are used to hearing from the pretend supporters of the “resistance” who think of themselves as champions of the Palestinian cause.

Only yesterday, the deputy speaker of the Iranian Parliament for international affairs, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, uttered alarmist remarks. After normalization of the UAE with Israel, he stated, any Israeli aggression against Iran would put the UAE in the crosshairs.

In an interview with Al Alam TV, Abdollahian said: “Regardless of any considerations that the UAE might have had, firstly, the UAE might upset its security and stability, because wherever the Israelis are present, they upset security and stability."

"Secondly, the UAE is upsetting the security and the stability of the Persian Gulf with this measure.

"Thirdly, they are destabilizing the routes through which energy is transported from this region.

"Fourthly, they upset their relationship with the UAE.”

“From the moment the UAE announced that it was normalizing relations with the Zionist entity, any incident – covert or overt – that takes place in Iran or in the region, in which the Zionists are involved – the response will also be directed at the UAE.”

This kind of patronizing attitude raises many questions. To begin with, why is it that an MP expected to speak political language would make military threats against neighbouring states pursuing their sovereign right to link up with another state?

How can the UAE jeopardize its security by forging ties with another country unless the mullahs have something in store to deter the UAE from exercising its sovereign right?

And second, how do Abdullahian and others know that Israeli intelligence is behind any events in Iran? By what logic do they threaten to respond to the UAE without the slightest word back to the party supposedly plotting against their regime?

How can a member of parliament who is charged with international relations and diplomacy threaten a neighboring state simply for exercising its legitimate right to establish ties with another state for the betterment, security and stability of the people in the region?

Such is how the mullahs rule one of the Middle East’s largest and most populous countries. They harbor small-minded arrogance towards their neighbors while dreading making threats against Israel. They simply know that their security systems are infiltrated or severely affected by strikes and attacks by Israel and other countries.

They think they live alone in this world.
My view is that these statements are a direct response to the observers and experts who postulate that the mullahs’ regime has evolved from a revolution to a state. They confirm beyond a shadow of a doubt that ideological immaturity is creeping into the mullahs’ minds, making it difficult for them to act as a normal state that adheres to international law.

At lightning speed they slip into a sea of threats against anyone who disagrees with their standpoint. This is not so much a reflection of a revolutionary ideology as a result of the militia and organisation cult that holds sway among the mullahs all the way up and down the ladder.

They think they live alone in this world. The principles of good neighbourliness and the sovereign rights of states are strange to them. They move their sectarian weapons and militias in several Arab capitals, without the global collective standing in their way. And then they ramble on about strategic mistakes by others.

Dr. Salem Al Ketbi is a UAE political analyst and former Federal National Council candidate living in Abudhabi, with a Ph.D. in Public Law and Political Science from the Hassan II University in Casablanca for his thesis entitled "Political and religious propaganda and leadership through the social media in the Arab World."