News On Iran & Its NeighboursIraqANALYSIS-Saudi fears Iraq chaos is strengthening Iran

ANALYSIS-Saudi fears Iraq chaos is strengthening Iran

-

Reuters: Saudi Arabia fears the Iraq conflict has sapped America’s ability to guarantee Gulf Arab security and breathed new life into the threat from Iran, according to analysts. By Andrew Hammond

RIYADH, Jan 26 (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia fears the Iraq conflict has sapped America’s ability to guarantee Gulf Arab security and breathed new life into the threat from Iran, according to analysts.

The war toppled Saddam Hussein, once seen by Washington and its Sunni Arab allies as a bulwark against the influence of Shi’ite Iran, and replaced his minority Sunni Muslim regime with a coalition dominated by parties from Iraq’s Shi’ite majority.

The Iraqi Shi’ites, some allied to Tehran, have consolidated their power, and fighting between Sunni insurgents and Shi’ite paramilitaries has driven the country to the brink of civil war.

Saudi Arabia fears the violence spreading over its own borders. Its own Shi’ite minority is concentrated in the oil-rich eastern region near Iran and Iraq.

Saudi policy wants to ensure that the U.S. security umbrella in the region remains in place to protect the world’s biggest oil exporter from radical and envious neighbours, Western diplomats in Riyadh said.

“Even more so now because of Iraq — there is increased Iranian influence in the region,” one said.

In addition to 134,000 troops in Iraq, the United States maintains a significant military presence in Kuwait, Qatar and Bahrain, which houses the U.S. Navy’s Fifth Fleet.

“The bottom line is that the Saudis are more loudly sending signals that they do not want the U.S. to retreat in haste” from Iraq, said analyst Neil Partrick of the Economic Intelligence Unit.

The United States accuses Iran of planning a covert nuclear weapons programme. Iran denies this.

“The disinclination to … ‘give’ Iraq to Iran could yet see a direct U.S.-Iranian confrontation as events in Iraq bring them into direct fighting,” Partrick said.

Latest news

Iran Regime’s Oil Revenue Supports Terrorism

On August 2, John Kirby, the US National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications at the White House, stated...

From Flash Floods to Socioeconomic Crises, Iran’s Regime Leaves Destruction in Its Wake

During the trial of Hamid Noury, one of the Iranian regime’s perpetrators in the 1988 massacre, the victims and...

Iran’s Regime Faces a Critical Infiltration Crisis

One of the main challenges faced by the Iranian regime over the past couple of years is the top-level...

Iran: The Unseen Threats of Reviving the JCPOA

In a recent announcement, the Iranian regime has admitted that is considering building a new ‘research reactor’ at its...

Iran Regime and Its ‘Sweet Cake’ for the People

In a so-called ‘ceremony of honoring’, introducing the commander of the Sarallah Corps of Kerman province, the Iranian regime’s...

Iran: Poverty Will Increase Protests Despite Regime’s New Repression Plans

These days, the Iranian regime is faced with rallies and strikes of different unions related to livelihood challenges, from...

Must read

Iran oil exports fall more in June, sanctions bite

Reuters: Iranian oil exports are falling further in June...

Iran’s president nominates fourth oilman

Iran Focus: London, Dec. 04 – In the latest...

You might also likeRELATED
Recommended to you