Blame it on Iran!

THE US-Iran standoff seems to have made a new turn with British officials warning the world of a possible American strike against Teheran, according to a UK daily. Apparently, General Petraeus is expected to push for a military campaign against Iran not because of the Ahmadinejad regime’s latest efforts to upgrade its nuclear programme, but because of its alleged support to militias in Iraq.

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Published: Mon 7 Apr 2008, 10:01 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 3:54 PM

The US has been accusing Teheran of aiding and abetting militia attacks on the Iraqi forces and US troops in the country. In fact, the British daily quotes an official as saying that Iran is waging a war in Iraq and that the world would be wrong if it assumes that the US won’t be able to fight “a war on two fronts”. In other words, if we go by the Whitehall assessment, a military strike against Iran is apparently ‘imminent’ and the recent spate of militia attacks that threaten to refute US claims of peace in Iraq could provide the casus belli.

Just when the divide between American lawmakers over the situation in Iraq seems to be widening, such claims of Iran fuelling unrest in the war-ravaged nation could be used as a means to bring the sparring groups together to support the campaign against Iran. As British officials quoted by the daily put it, General Petraeus had already declared that the rockets launched in the Green Zone against the US troops were provided by Iran thereby breaking the promises made by Teheran to Baghdad about withdrawing its support to militias.

On the other hand, officials in Iran have confirmed that the country played a vital role in brokering peace between the Iraqi government and Moqtada Al Sadr. They have reiterated that Iran is playing a mediator’s role in the standoff between the Iraqi government and militia forces like Sadr’s group. In fact, following President Ahmadinejad’s visit to Iraq, a new phase in the relations between the two countries seems to have begun.

With the latest bout of violence in Iraq, the US should desist from beating war drums. The Bush administration can certainly find better ways of handling the new developments in Iraq instead of putting the blame squarely on Iran.

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