Preserving Assad Is a Top Iranian National Security Priority

(Foreign Policy) Aaron David Miller - The Atlantic Council's Fred Hof, formerly President Obama's special advisor for the Syrian transition, told me: "During two years' worth of track-two discussions with influential, non-official Iranians, I've been consistently told that preserving Assad personally is a top Iranian national security priority. Iran sees him as utterly compliant in supporting Iranian efforts to keep Hizbullah's anti-Israel missile and rocket force at a high state of combat readiness. Although the domination of Syria is, on its own merits, a hegemonic feather in Tehran's cap, the Assad-Hizbullah connection is deemed by Iran to be vital in a practical sense. The Iranians fear - perhaps with good reason - that with Bashar Al-Assad gone the regime will collapse, and that no successor would subordinate Syria to Iran in the way Assad has."

2015-05-05 00:00:00

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