Iran: Syrian Ally to the Bitter End

(The Conversation-Australia) Shahram Akbarzadeh - Since its inception in 1979, the Islamic regime in Iran has presented itself as the true champion of the downtrodden Muslims in the Middle East. Yet its worldview has been knocked out by the Arab revolutions. When two pro-Western governments in Tunisia and Egypt were brought down by popular uprisings, the Iranian leadership was quick to claim credit by suggesting that the Arabs were finally following the Iranian model. But the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt has been adamant to emphasize its rejection of the Iran model. Soon other holes started appearing in the Iranian narrative of the Arab revolution. Libya and Syria were engulfed in the same social upheavals. In the Iranian version of history, Syria should have been immune to popular uprising. Syria's history of war with Israel and its confrontational relationship with the U.S. should have saved the Assad regime. The Iranian view of history forecasts an Islamist victory over the U.S. and its local allies. Because of this ideological underpinning, Iran cannot allow Assad to fall. The writer is deputy director of the National Center of Excellence in Islamic Studies at the University of Melbourne.

2012-08-13 00:00:00

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