Steven Sahiounie, political commentator
The Middle East was recently brought to the brink of a regional war, if not a world war. Few analysts compare to Sabtain Ahmed Dar, a Pakistani geopolitical analyst, and expert on the Middle East. He is an author of two theses; “The Clash of Islam and Zionism” and “Pakistan and Global Game for a New World Order”. I reached out to him for understanding in this interview of timely importance.
Steven Sahiounie: In your opinion, why did the Trump administration kill General Soleimani at this time?
Sabtain Ahmed Dar: Firstly, the timing of the incident is significant. His assassination is merely a unit of US’ larger game in the Middle East that has been going on since 2001. The Head of the IRGC’s Quds Force – General Qassem Soleimani was intentionally assassinated by United States in Iraq. It was a provocation to incite sectarian violence throughout the Muslim world and simultaneously destroy Iran and Saudi Arabia détente to the strategic advantage of pro-Israel US foreign policy in the Middle East. Prime Minister of Iraq, Adil Abdul Mahdi provided details into the US assassination of Gen. Qassem Soleimani on 5th January; in which he said, he himself called Soleimani for an official visit to Baghdad for deescalating tensions between Iran and Saudi Arabia. Soleimani was about to receive de-escalation proposals from Saudi Arabia via Iraq. US Foreign Secretary Mike Pompeo allegedly supported the idea on a phone call with PM Mahdi amid PMF protests in Baghdad. Therefore, to destroy the peace initiative between Iran and Saudi Arabia, which could have led to the end of turmoil in the region, US framed Qassem Soleimani and assassinated him. According to me, Trump gave the orders of his assassination on the behest of Israel lobby in the US who are adopting the policy of divide and conquer to serve its strategic objectives of the New Middle East Project.
It is crucially important to understand the US-Israel war paradigm in the Greater Middle East in the context of New Middle East Project. Only by understanding the nature of this modern war paradigm, we will understand why it is important for US and Israel to keep a permanent divide in between Iran and Saudi Arabia at all levels of diplomatic negotiations and geopolitical engagements. Firstly, US’ New Middle East Project of Bush era was the brainchild of Israel lobby, neo-liberal globalizers of City of London and neo-conservatives of Washington D.C to use war on terror (read Islam) as a pretext to create New Middle East Orders to enhance the security of Israel. The blueprint of this project was designed and crafted by US Army Lt. Col. Ralph Peters in 2006; he redrew the map of Middle East on “Shia-Sunni Blood Borders”, where most of the Muslim states were disintegrated into ethno-sectarian fault lines. Secondly, to implement on this project, a policy of conventional and unconventional – hybrid warfare is required throughout the Greater Middle East. Therefore, US have been using hybrid strategies of war to subvert and sabotage the sovereignties of Muslim states by creating Saudi led Sunni bloc at one side and Iran led Shia bloc at one side. Thirdly, the ability to maintain secrecy and hijacking the “Pan-Islamic Model of Islam” for US-Israel backed mercenaries to frame it as terrorism; is part and parcel to deceive the masses through international media. They with their coalition, bomb the same mercenaries (based on Shia-Sunni war paradigm) through airstrikes which their rogue intelligence agencies are aiding and arming on the ground. Thus, setting up Qassem Soleimani in Baghdad, who was helping in eliminating confusions among Iran and Saudi Arabia, was essential to prolong the war to a point, until the remaining Muslim states are disintegrated from where Israel can expand its territory to its so-called promised land.
S.S. : Russia and Iran are two key players in the Middle East, how do you see their political relationship and do you think they will increase the cooperation against the US aggression in the Middle East?
S.A.D. : Russia and Iran are indeed key partners. In the context of political partnership, they reached to their zenith when amid US war on terrorism; Russia and China made Iran, an observer in Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in 2005 and a full member in 2006. It was the same time when US initiated its New Middle East Project for Israel. Since then, the previously western style Iranian military equipment and systems have been transforming into Russian ones. In 2010, when Iran refused to stop its uranium enrichment, UN put sanctions on Iran and Russia under the guise of international law also refrained from selling military equipment to Iran. This jolted Russo-Iranian partnership for a while until US instigated Syrian Civil War out broke and both Russia and Iran once again joined hands into the strange setting of Middle-east geopolitics to save Damascus from falling. Since 2011, Russia and Iran have been cooperating and Putin lifted the ban from Iran in 2015, which ended up in S-300 deal followed by $10 billion deal for Russian artillery, helicopters and other military equipment. These arrangements between the two convinced the strategists in Kremlin to include Iran in the Russian led Eurasian Economic Union (EEU). Iran also shares border with EEU member Armenia, making both countries as partners to fulfil the dream of EEU bypassing US dollar and thereby strengthening national currencies.
In the context of cooperation against US aggression, firstly, I am not a proponent of this notion that Muslim states affected by US led subversion should indulge into great power politics at this time. Firstly, because inviting US rivals for military partnership is equal to inviting more trouble. Inviting Russia and China into military engagements means you are challenging the Hegelian inspired military order of the US Army and its coalition, which follows the dictums; such as “might is right” and “end justifies means” regardless of values and consequences for mankind. The case studies from US atomic bombings in Japan to the recent murder of Qassem Soleimani are proofs of it. US by no means, will accept the writ of Russia and China in their so called unipolar world. Secondly, the geographical position of Iran is also a security nightmare for great power politics pradigm; if Iran just blocks the Strait of Hormuz, initially a halt in stock markets, later an economic recession with consequence of a major war can erupt engulfing the entire world. Thus, putting the house of the Muslims in order by and only the Muslim states is crucial rather than engaging and raising stakes of the foreigners on Muslim lands. It is ideal that, Iran should only engage Russia into peace initiatives rather engaging Russia into war initiatives by the US.
S.S. : How do you see the present political situation between India and Pakistan?
S.A.D. : The present political situation between India and Pakistan is no different to that of February, 2019 when two indulged into a limited air war, which I dubbed as “The Three Days War”. The current regional scenario is no different to that of 1947, when India unlawfully annexed Kashmir from Pakistan. Throughout 1950’s and 60’s India did subversion with the help Soviet Union in East Pakistan and in 1971 successfully disintegrated Pakistan into two states. Similarly today, the same Indian subversion is going on in Pakistan’s largest province Baluchistan in an attempt to make it a separate state by arming and funding mercenaries. Therefore, it is leading the US-Israel model of war on terror from eastern hemisphere. India does not accept the reality of Pakistan and its surrounding states. And this issue cannot be understood by any intelligent mind in the world as long as it does not understand the ideology and strategic thought of India.
The origins of Indian strategic thought spawns solely from Hindu ideology. Similar to Israel’s claim to the holy land and Jewish claims to truth, Hindus also believe their history will not end until the Hindu claim to truth triumphs over the holy land of Bharat. On movement of history, Hinduism believes history moves in cycles and it has now arrived to a point where one cycle is about to end and another one will replace it with the Hindu golden age. India is the only state in the world for Hindus. And Hinduism believes that India is their only Holy Land, which they call it as Akhand-Bharat. A land, where only Hindus have the right to rule and exercise power. But the present geographical lines of India are not in line with the Hindu proclamation of Akhand Bharat and Hindu claim to the truth – Brahmin rule over the rest.
Hindus believe that along with Sri Lanka, Bhutan, Myanmar and Nepal; Muslim Maldives, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Sistan-Baluchistan region of Iran were all part of Akhand Bharat where Hindu gods and goddesses ruled Bharat. And in order to constitute the end of history and the Hindu claim to truth, secularism must be replaced by religious nationalism. This is why the idea of a “Dharam Yudh” (Hindu Holy War) to reabsorb these former territories of Akhand Bharat has been prevailing among Hindus since long ago. As long as this project is unfinished, Brahmin rule over the rest and the golden age of Akhand Bharat cannot be realized.
Only this explains why BJP aligned with RSS has taken away the special status of Kashmir, why the citizenship bill, why Indian Muslims along with Sikhs, Christians and Dalits are facing persecution, why India does not accept realities of its surrounding states, why India partnered with Aung San Suu Kyi against Myanmar Muslims, Why India partnered with godless Soviets to disintegrate East Pakistan, Why India partnered with US to gain strong foothold in Afghanistan and what recently she has been doing with Pakistan and Iran’s Sistan-Baluchistan. A nuclear Pakistan is the only state that is holding the entire region and small states of South Asia. Elimination of Pakistan from South Asian map will result in realizing the dream of Akhand Bharat and Greater Israel in the Middle East. This is why Israel surrounded by Muslim states shares common ground with India and it is her most potent ally in international relations. Therefore, normalization of political situation between India and Pakistan is not only unworthy of but also put one out.
S.S. : Do you see more escalation between Washington and Tehran or the two sides will calm down and sit on the negotiation table?
S.A.D. : I am seeing more escalation because Israel lobby from the back door will continue to provoke and trigger US administration in a military conflict with Iran, regardless of whether Democrats or Republicans are in the White House – it really does not matter as long as AIPAC, US Media and Fed is privately owned and run by Zionist bankers. The setting that I have been carrying since ten years in my mind to analyze Middle East geopolitics has never failed me – one only has to know who’s who in the game. And the game is for Israel and its quest for promised Holy-land that stretched from River Nile to River Euphrates. It is not the Americans across the Atlantic who want war with Iran; it is Israel in Middle East who wants war and has profound influence on the power structure of western civilization. Rest of the CORPORATOCRACY to gain access to oil and gas in the Middle East is aimed at serving the pockets of MNC’s, stooges and pawns in the game.
The drumbeating of war in the Gulf has become global trend in the past few months. The Strait of Hormuz is most arguably the most significant oil chokepoint in the world because more than 21 million barrels per day flow through it. That is equal to almost ¼ of global petroleum consumption. Enigmatically, Oil tankers have been destroyed; Iran and Saudi Arabia are pitted against each other. US surveillance drone had been shot down by Iran’s Revolutionary Guard (IRGC) in June, 2019. Missiles had targeted Saudi installations and Basra sites since last year. Saudi Arabia blamed Iran for an attack on the kingdom’s oil facilities. The US hypocritically supported Saudi Arabia against Iran. US instantly came with its naval armada and 2,500 troops in the Gulf which has escalated economic pressure and building a scenario of a conventional attack against Iran.
Now immediately after killing Soleimani, there is a report on US planning to send 3,000 additional troops to the Middle East from the 82nd Airborne Division as a precaution amid rising threats to US forces in the region. Recently, the leaders from around the world gathered in Israel on 24th January for Fifth World Holocaust Forum, and the central point of PM Natenyahu’s address to his allies was to convince the world to unite against Iran. If this is not pointing to more escalation than what will?
S.S. : Iraqi government asked the US army to get out of Iraq, will the US leave the country or we will see rise in resistance movement?
S.A.D. : While we are discussing these issues, Iraqis in millions are marching and protesting on the streets against the illegal occupation of US armed forces. There is no other liable solution to peace in Middle East as long as foreign armies are illegally occupying the Muslim lands in the name of war against terrorism. I am seeing rise in general resistance movement, because today regardless of being Muslim (Shia Sunni) or Christian, every Iraqi is demanding that US along with its coalition must immediately leave their country. But I highly doubt it that US would conform to the demands of Iraqis. As explained in the aforementioned analysis, it is because of long term and phased out Israel’s Greater Holy-Land Project that US armed forces along with NATO are still residing in Iraq (the significance of River Euphrates).
Iraqis will eventually have to realize that they must not solely rely on Shia Islamic revivalism rather a true Islamic revivalism free from any Sunni or Shia creed. This is will jolt the entire hybrid strategy of US and Israel in the Middle East because the objective of Iraqis would become to protect the nationalist paradigm of Iraq not Shiite Pan-Imamat or Sunni Pan-Caliphate models – which both have been hijacked by US strategists to frame it as terrorism through their mercenaries. This way minority in Iraq such as Christians would also join hands with the Muslim and with “An Algerian Model of National Movement” they can create a resistance which can bring US and its coalition to its knees. The efforts of Afghan Taliban against US in Afghanistan and the national efforts of Pakistanis (including Shia Muslims, Sunni Muslims, Christians, Sikhs and Hindus) against US hijacked “Imamat and Caliphate Models” to frame them as terrorism through their mercenaries are the perfect and most recent examples of this new phenomenon in counter insurgency strategy.
Sabtain Ahmed Dar is a Pakistani geopolitical analyst and a visiting fellow to several think tanks. He is an author of two theses; “The Clash of Islam and Zionism” and “Pakistan and Global Game for a New World Order”. His area of study is Middle East and South Asian geopolitics.