Iran's New World Order

(Wall Street Journal) Jamsheed K. Choksy - Ahmad Khatami, a mentor to Iranian President Ahmadinejad, recently said publicly that the U.S. has to "regard Iran as a great power in the political sphere." The statement offers an important clue about the Iranian regime's mind set and ultimate goal. Its nuclear program, support for terrorism and stirring of anti-American sentiments are aimed at vaulting Iran to a position of global prominence. Iran regards acquiring a nuclear-weapon capability as a crucial step to achieving international stature. To craft this new order, Iranian officials are testing the limits of U.S. power and influence, seeking to show that both are limited to hollow words and ineffective deeds. Another way is by the support Tehran is extending to Hamas and Hizbullah; this is to thwart the U.S. and Israel and thereby become a player in the Middle Eastern peace process. The regime is also building strong diplomatic, economic and military ties with countries in Latin America to extend its influence to a region considered U.S. dominion since the Monroe Doctrine of 1823. The writer is a professor of Iranian, Islamic and international studies and a former director of the Middle Eastern studies program at Indiana University, Bloomington.

2010-03-02 11:08:40

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