Posted by Karmel Melamed
The last week has seen an upsurge of violence and terrorism in the Middle East with Syrian forces continuing to kill innocent civilians in Syria, mass suicide bombings in Iraq and terrorists in Gaza continuing to randomly launch rockets into southern cities in Israel. Many news pundits have claim the “Arab Spring” is the reason for the increased violence in the region, but these talking heads have failed to see that the real and sole culprit behind the violence is Iran’s fundamentalist Islamic regime! The Islamic Shiite clerics controlling Iran have been funding and arming militia groups in Iraq loyal to them to create unrest in that country, so Iraq’s quasi-democracy will remain weakened so that Iran can gain control of that country. The Iranian Revolutionary Guard for the past several months has been pouring in technology and weaponry into Syria to help Assad’s henchmen murder Syrians calling for his ouster. As if the Iranian mullahs’ weren’t causing enough chaos in the region, they have tried their best to divert the world’s attention for the slaughter in Syria by calling on their terror proxies in Gaza to launch new missile attacks on Israeli civilians. The hope of the Iranian clerics is to have Israel launch a full scale invasion of Gaza and release some of the world’s mounting pressure on Assad’s regime that is teetering on collapse.
Yes, of course when there is chaos in the Middle East the Iranian government’s leadership can rest easy knowing that they can hold onto their influence and power in the region. Yet what the Iranian mullah’s have underestimated this time is the will of the people in Syria seeking freedom and not stopping until they have overthrown the Assad regime. At the same time it seems as if the Israeli government has had a measured response to the attacks from Iranian backed groups in Gaza, but not played into the Iranian hands with an over-the-top offensive. Lastly the entire free world and the Arab world seem to be behind the people of Syria yearning for freedom and not behind Iran who continues to fuel this hellish fire in that country. The Iranian clerics know that if Assad’s Syria fails, not only will they loose their main foothold in that part of the Middle East, but they will be humiliated from a public relations standpoint in the eyes of the world and the people of Iran for backing Assad. So the stakes are high for Iran in Syria and the desperate Iranian clerics are trying to pull out all the stops to prevent Assad’s demise.
One is left wondering when the Obama administration and the current State Department will finally come out to call to attention Iran’s current push for violence and terror that has engulfed the Middle East? Is there any “hope” Obama will call for real “change”— that is, regime change in Iran? The violent events of the last week that has been fueled on by Iran’s clerics are only further proof of the need for that the regime to be deprived of nuclear weapons and to be totally uprooted from power before plunging the Middle East into a full scale regional war.
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August 21, 2011 | 12:31 pm
Posted by Karmel Melamed
Late last week after nearly three months of the Syrian regime slaughtering its innocent civilian population for protesting for new freedoms, The International Criminal Court, based in The Hague finally announced its decision to bring charges of war crimes against members of the current Syria government led by Bashar al-Assad. While leaders in the Arab world and the West are praising the actions of the International Court regarding Syria, many journalists familiar with the region are wondering why the International Court has not brought similar war crimes charges against leaders of the Iranian regime and its Revolutionary Guard for their role in the recent Syrian slaughter of innocents? In the last month the Western news media has briefly mentioned the hi-tech intelligence, military personnel and financial support Iran’s government has lent Assad during the past several months. Recent news reports have also confirmed that Iran has sent special military sniper teams to Syria to kill individual protest leaders marching in the streets of Syria during the holy month of Ramadan.
No doubt Iran’s involvement in the bolstering of Assad’s regime and its ability to hold onto power by killing Syrian civilians is grounds enough for the International Court to hold the Iranian government leaders criminally accountable. Yet we see and hear nothing from the International Court regarding Iran’s own war crimes and sponsorship of terrorism in the region. I am frankly not surprised. Back in 2009 when the Iranian regime’s thugs killed and imprisoned thousands of innocent protestors within Iran who were marching against the fraudulent elections, the International Court said nothing about the regime. Again last month when the International Court charged members of the Iranian-backed terrorist group, Hezbollah, with the crime of killing Lebanon’s late President Rafik Hariri, the court failed to implicate Iranian leaders who directed and funded Hariri’s killing from Tehran. Again and again it is disheartening to see the international community fail to hold Iran’s current regime and its depraved leadership accountable for their criminal actions.
What is particularly disappointing to see is the lack of foreign policy leadership from the Obama administration regarding the current situation in Syria and Iran’s involvement in the suppression of individual freedoms in Syria. From the beginning of his term in office President Obama naively believed he could sway Assad to the West and negotiate a “peace with Israel” by diplomatically engaging Assad’s regime in Syria. The Obama administration failed miserably in their policy regarding Syria, by not only sending a U.S. ambassador to Syria but also called Syria’s Assad a “reformer”. One is left wondering why on earth Obama would reward a dictator in the Middle East who has forged strong alliances with Iran and done everything to undermine peace in the Middle East. Today we see the results of the U.S. administration’s failure regarding Syria when the Syrian people and the Arab world having been demanding Assad’s removal for slaughtering innocent protestors in Syria. For the past three months the Obama administration has remained silent and failed to call for Assad’s removal. (It was not until a few days ago when Obama issued a statement calling for Assad’s removal). Instead of moving quickly to diplomatically and economically isolate Assad’s regime, Obama has been slow to move against the Syrian dictator. As a result, Assad was granted valuable time with Iran quickly moving to bolster its Arab ally with intelligence gathering, protest-hardened manpower as well as materiel to quell demonstrations and badly needed financial aid— therefore possibly saving the day for Assad. The Obama administration has more importantly failed to realize the simple notion that Iran can and will do anything to support Assad’s regime and its terror proxy, Hezbollah in order to expand its influence and power in that portion of the Middle East. The Iranian mullahs know very well that without Assad in power in Syria, they will loose their foothold in the area and have difficulty directly funneling money and armaments to Hezbollah. While political analysts and pundits may argue that Assad’s removal may usher in a more radical Islamic regime in Syria, its seems more likely that the people of Syria, if allowed, would choose a government that would not be as friendly to Iran after seeing the horrid support the Iranian government has shown for Assad. Likewise Hezbollah would no doubt be tremendously weakened with its only lifeline from Iran being choked off by a new regime in Syria opposed to Iranian hegemony in Syria and Lebanon.
Lastly, what continues to surprise me is the hypocrisy of the Iranian government leaders who support the “Arab Spring” in countries like Egypt, Tunisia and Bahrain— but at the same time they oppose the same calls for freedom within Iran itself and other Arab nations such as Syria where Iran wishes to continue its influence and reign of terror! In the end the U.S., Europe and the International Criminal Court need to also hold Iran’s current government leadership criminally liable for their involvement in the war crimes in Syria. Failure to hold all parties, including Iran who is involved with the Syrian slaughter accountable for war crimes not only makes a mockery of international laws, but reinforces the belief among ruthless dictators worldwide that they can get away with whatever they wish.