Saturday, September 5, 2015

Iran can be an Asset for the United States

September 3, 2015
By Saeed Qureshi

On September 2 president Obama secured enough Democratic Party votes “to prevent a resolution of disapproval of the Iran’s nuclear deal”. This development is being termed as president Obama’s victory against the Republicans who are irreconcilably opposed to the deal and want it to be rescinded.

 The swing of nearly 8 democrats came after their dialogue with senior diplomats from Britain, China, France, Germany and Russia who categorically told their American counterparts that “their nuclear agreement with Iran was the best they could expect and the five world powers had no intention of returning to the negotiating table.”

President Obama was instrumental in the signing of a comprehensive agreement (JCPOA) on the nuclear program of Iran between Iran and the five permanent members of Security Council (United States, Russia, China, France, United Kingdom) plus Germany and the European Union. It was inked in Vienna on 14 July 2015. 
 But more daunting challenge for president Obama and the Democratic Party was to win support for it at home turf. President Obama surmounted both these hurdles with amazing success which would bind Iran to not fabricate an atomic weapon and stop or scale down its nuclear wherewithal for making an atomic bomb. In return the debilitating economic and trade sanctions and stifling embargoes on Iran would be gradually lifted.
Although Israel and Saudi Arabia were on the same page in opposing the nuclear deal for different reasons yet the United States and the five leading world powers ignored the concerns or opposition of both these countries for a more sublime outcome which was to draw commitment from Iran and subject her to stringent conditions from further bolstering her nuclear know how for an ultimate goal of making an atom bomb. 

It is impossible for Iran to wriggle out of that treaty and surreptitiously keep advancing her nuclear capability as sanctions and embargoes could be instantaneously re-imposed. Iran in that situation would be rendered a pariah state and isolated from the rest of the world.

Israel should be doubly felicitated and satisfied that she would be  immune from a dreaded possibility of Iran making a nuclear warhead that if used could decimate Israel and erase her from the surface of the earth although in that dreadful cataclysmic situation Iran would also suffer an irretrievable annihilation for ages.

It is heartening that better sense has prevailed both on Iran and big powers including United States to broker and finalize a deal that saved the world from an unimaginable catastrophe inflicted either by Iranian nuclear bombs or even that of Israel of the United States in retaliation.

In a broader perspective the world could witness another atomic nightmare after the destruction of Japanese cities namely Hiroshima and Nagasaki during the second world by United States by dropping atom bombs. And those bombs were much smaller and fabricated from a primitive nuclear technology.
President Obama’s historic and watershed accomplishment in finalizing the nuclear deal between Iran and the western powers plus United States ought to be reciprocated by Iran through an expression of goodwill and friendship. 

The Iranian Nuclear deal can be utilized for opening a new chapter of cordiality and mutually fruitful friendship between the two countries which have been the closest and most fraternal allies before the advent of the Ayatollahs’ Islamic regime in January 1979.

 Americans must understand that Iran has the potential of being a far more useful ally of the United States than Israel. Israel has always been a liability for United States while Iran can be an asset.

The lifting of economic and trade sanctions on Iran would help revive her mauled economy and open her to the outside side world. The Iranian oil once again would start flowing into the international markets and could stabilize the oil and gas price worldwide. The United States can import Iranian oil and gas on much competitive prices.

Yet a redeeming feature and outcome of this remarkable deal possibly could be that the Ayatollahs’ regime scale down its fanatic exuberance towards United States and in due course a moderate and even a democratic political set up could come up. 

The Iranian people could also travel and interact with the rest of the world with the lifting of the international and domestic restrictions on traveling. Thus the Iranians closed and dogmatic society may open to the outside world.

The world would be a better place if peace can be restored in conflict ridden regions of the Middle East and Afghanistan. Iran can play a crucial role in brokering peace in the troubled Middle East as well in Afghanistan where a sizable number of Shias live. Iranian leverage in Iraq and Syria and Lebanon can be hugely instrumental in dousing the leaping fires of unrest and bloody conflicts now raging for over a decade or so.

With her trained army of about one million fighters Iran can be extremely useful for warring parties fighting against the ISIS in the Middle East and may be helpful to turn the tide against the rebel Islamic militants. Iran can also rein in Hezbollah in Lebanon for toning down their hostility towards Israel.

Iran has enormous influence in the Central Asia’s caucuses or the liberated countries beyond Afghanistan. For durable peace in Afghanistan the inevitability of Iran cannot be blinked away. Pakistan and Afghanistan alone cannot bring about a lasting peace and the advent of a new era of reconstruction in Afghanistan without the involvement of a powerful regional power Iran. 

The Central Asian states would also enormously benefit from a relationship of friendship between Iran and the United States for their reconstruction and tapping of hidden natural resources.

The Uzbek and Tajik mostly allied to Iran by virtue of common Shia faith had been a formidable part of the anti-NATO and anti-west forces in Afghanistan. Their sizable number is also part of the Taliban still at war with the foreign forces stationed in Afghanistan: the bulk of which come from the United States. Iran can help in ending the insurgency and incursions of the Uzbek and Tajik insurgents and that would be a big step towards diminishing civil war in Afghanistan. 

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