London, 17 Apr. (IPS) Some political activists and opponents of the Islamic Republic of Iran do not hide their fears that the United States may embark on a policy to disintegrate Iran. They suspect that the US intends to separate the oil rich province of Khouzestan from Iran and establish a small government in that region in its drive to control Middle-East oil. But is this fear realistic, or just part of the imagination of some Iranians?
As far as I know and read, there is no sign of even an implicit reference to such an idea in the official statements or among officials of the US. When I gave this reason to a leading politician in Iran, he responded by saying that “such an intention would not be publicly announced” by the US if they had such intentions. To which I responded then one may take this thought further and claim that the US might intend to destroy the whole planet!
With Mahmoud Ahmadi Nezhad’s team in the presidential saddle in Iran, it seems that the US has concluded that the only way to change the behavior of Iran is through regime change.
The reality is that as the most powerful country on this globe, the US has specific interests which it pursues, some through legitimate and other through illegitimate means. If we grasp US interests, which are expressly proclaimed through the national interest strategy of the White House, we can learn of its policies towards other countries around the world.
US policy towards Iran is very clear. It considers the Islamic Republic to be an obstacle towards the full recognition of Israel as a member state of the Middle East. Furthermore, it views some of the policies of the ideology pursued by certain Iranian leaders to be destabilizing, extremist, and advocating terrorism and fundamentalism.
So from the perspective of the US, any military or technological tool that can help Iran advance the above-mentioned goals is viewed as contrary to US interests and thus obliges the White House to confront it. In the past, the US pursued the policy of changing the behavior of Iranian leaders. But with Mahmoud Ahmadi Nezhad’s team in the presidential saddle in Iran, it seems to have concluded that the only way to change the behavior of Iran is through regime change.
The specific details of this US strategy or goal are not yet clear. Still what one can read from the reports in the American press is that the US is leaning on utilizing discontent among Iran’s ethnic groups to oppose the government in Tehran.
In other words, certain US circles believe that because some Iranian minorities are deprived of their natural rights, they have a strong reason to rise against the Islamic Republic. So it may utilize this discontent by promoting the idea of some form of federalism in Iran.
This idea however does not tantamount to territorial disintegration of Iran as it is implausible to believe that the US is so ignorant of Iranian domestic affairs and dynamics as to believe that the country can be disintegrated without a major bloody upheaval.
It is clear to any thinker that the separation of even a small part of Iran would make the whole Middle East a deep unstable region for years ahead and would bring about millions of deaths. No reasons exist to believe that the US aspires to permanently destabilize the region and victimize millions of innocent lives in the process. The human tragedy of the Balkans following the disintegration of Yugoslavia has demonstrated to the big powers that breaking up states destabilizes the new states and the whole region so much that it requires them to stay involved in the region indefinitely.
To say that the US does not have a disintegration goal for Iran will most likely be displeasing to many ears in Iran. If so, I would not view this anger to arise from their belief in the territorial integrity of Iran because those who advocate such conspiratorial theories are in fact helping promote this idea. And it is clear how. Through their advocacy of the disintegration of Iran, those few individuals, who also believe that a major power such as the US would support them, are in fact inviting other ignorant people to join them in their quest.
So in the absence of any real evidence for such scenarios, it is not in the interests of Iran to talk of such ideas which stem from the pure imagination of certain figures, because by claiming that the US would or does support such a disintegration, they are in fact providing spiritual and moral support to those few who genuinely may be wishing for such a break-up. ENDS IRAN DISINTEGRATION 17406
To say that the US does not have a disintegration goal for Iran will most likely be displeasing to many ears in Iran.
Editor’s note: Mr. Ahmad Zydabadi is an activist journalist and dissident associated with the outlawed, but tolerated nationalist-religious groups in Iran and as a prominent and influential reformist journalist, he had been arrested several times.
He contributed the above article to the independent internet daily “Rooz” (Day), posted on 10 April 2006.
Highlights and some editing are by IPS.
Contrary to what he says, news about some US “thinkers” are looking at the option of cutting the oil-rich Province of Khouzistan that borders with the Iraqi oil reservoir of Basra, now under the control of British forces and cutting all Iranian costal lines in the Persian Gulf from shipping is circulating.