In a testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last month, the U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who's made several Middle East visits since she took office, pointed to a new strategy the U.S. plans to pursue in the region. There's "a new strategic alignment in the Middle East," she said, adding that the new approach the U.S. will adopt in the wake of the deteriorating security situation in Iraq will focus on separating "reformers" and "extremists"; referring to Arab Sunni states as centers of moderation, while placing Iran, Syria, and Lebanon's Hezbollah "on the other side of that divide."
She argued that the Islamic Republic and Damascus have already "made their choice and their choice is to destabilize."
Rice's message was quite clear; i.e. Syria, Iran and Hezbollah are the enemies and Sunni allies, including Saudi Arabia, who fear that Iran could disturb the balance of power in the entire Middle East region as well as inside their own country, Jordan and Egypt, are U.S. friends.
key players behind the U.S. redirection of policies in the region in general, and war-torn Iraq in particular, as the New Yorker columnist Seymour Hersh put it, are Vice-President Dick Cheney, the deputy national-security adviser Elliott Abrams, the departing Ambassador to Iraq (and nominee for United Nations Ambassador), Zalmay Khalilzad, and Prince Bandar bin Sultan, the Saudi national-security adviser. Rice is also believed to play a key role.
According to Hersh, attempts by the Bush administration to control the growth of Shia influence in the Middle East include funding "violent Sunni groups".
In one of his most recent articles, Hersh, a longtime investigative reporter and author, who forced the Abu Ghraib prison scandal out into the public after uncovering a report by Major General Antonio Taguba listing criminal abuses at the prison, states that the U.S. has been "pumping money, a great deal of money, without congressional authority, without any congressional oversight" to support covert anti-Shias operations in the Middle East to disrupt the spread of their influence and hegemony in the region.
The new approach has definitely made the possibility of military confrontation between the U.S. and Iran highly likely. It is also expected to fuel the sectarian strife in the Middle East, which deteriorated noticeably following the tensions Washington instigated in Iraq first day it invaded the country nearly four years ago, alleging it's on a noble mission to plant the flag of liberty.
How far would the U.S. go to ensure Shias never rise to power, is what Hersh stated in his article, saying that the U.S. funds to anti Shia operations in the region have reached the hands of groups linked to Al Qaeda.
Hersh said that American, European, and Arab officials told him that the Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and his government allies allowed aid money to reach the hands of emerging "radical groups", believed to have links to Al Qaeda in the country, in the Bekaa Valley, and around Palestinian refugee camps in the south, in an attempt to fight and get rid of Hezbollah.
Washington has portrayed its support to what it describes as "democratic" governments as an example of President George W. Bush's belief in "democracy", a democray that brought unexpected destruction to Iraq and resulted in the death of hundreds of thousands of civilians.
The U.S.'s alleged support to what it calls liberal and democratic governments, like that of the Saudis and President Mubarak or Fouad Siniora, is the best concrete evidence of its new, unwise, and dangerous policy, it'll be pursuing in the Middle East in the coming years.
After failing to use diplomacy or even war to achieve its goals and ensure extended hegemony, the U.S. is choosing to aid gangs and "extremist groups" to aggravate the strife between Sunnis and Shias, and make sure that Shias never gain power or influence that would endanger its agenda.
islamonline.comGüncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16