Saudis' Proxy War Against Iran

(Tablet) Joseph Braude - Several countries surrounding Iran are beginning to back the country's ethnic dissidents as a way of waging a proxy war against the mullahs. In Saudi Arabia, media and clerical elites recently mobilized to raise public awareness about the situation of Ahwazi Arabs, frame their cause as a national liberation struggle, and urge Arabs and Muslims to support them. Saudi donors are providing money and technological support to Ahwazi dissidents. Ahwaz as defined by Arabs is a territory the size of Belarus that borders Iraq to the west and faces Saudi Arabia across the Persian Gulf. Some estimates say it is home to 3 million Arabic speakers. The area contains 80% of Iran's oil reserves and nearly all of its gas reserves, as well as a nuclear reactor near the city of Bushehr. Saudis are also launching new Persian broadcasts to make their case against the regime to the Iranian population. In addition, they are providing more modest funding to non-Arab ethnics in Iran, as are two other neighboring countries. Meanwhile, Iraq's Kurdistan Regional Government now provides Iranian Kurdish opposition groups with a safe haven and the freedom to organize, train, and access Iran across its porous eastern border.

2012-11-14 00:00:00

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