DOHA: What is going on in Iraq poses a serious threat to the security of the Arab Gulf states, says a former Iraqi vice-president who has been based here for quite some time.
The goings-on in Iraq and a missile attack by the Iraqi Shia militia group, Al Battat, which is backed by Tehran, on a wedding party in a border area of Saudi Arabia recently, reflect the changing balance of power in favour of Iran and Syria, said Tareq Al Hashemi. Coupled with what is happening in Bahrain, clearly shows that the security of the GCC states is under threat, he said.
“This is all a game plan to divert the attention from the true nature of the conflict in Iraq, which is essentially political. But it is being painted as sectarian by describing Sunnis as terrorists.”
Al Hashemi told Al Sharq in an interview conducted by its Editor-in-Chief, Jaber Al Harami, recently that the above game-plan was a brainchild of the notorious axis (Iraq’s Shia regime led by Nouri Al Maliki, Iran and Bashar Al Assad of Syria).
The ploy is to turn Iraq into a threat to the security of the GCC states instead of being a frontline state dedicated to the region’s (GCC) defense (against Iran) that it (Iraq) always has been. “They are now trying to turn Iraq into a problem for the security of the whole Arab world.”
“Today, everything is crystal-clear: Iranian aircraft are carrying weapons to Syria through Iraq.”
Shia militias from Iraq loyal to Iran’s supreme leader are fighting in Syria to defend Al Assad’s forces, and making the people of Syria suffer.
Most important of all, Iraq’s wealth is being used to help Iran offset the negative impact of the sanctions. The wealth is being used to back Hezbollah.
Al Hashemi said that recently he got information from Iraq that Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki was creating militant groups among GCC citizens to destabilise the GCC states.
“This is a joint conspiracy of Al Maliki and Iran. I informed the people concerned but was disappointed with their response.”
“A recent statement by the commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards that they would at no cost abandon Syria, for it was a country in the frontline of Tehran’s defence.”
“So, my question is, what happens to the (historical) status of Iraq as a state that has been on the frontline of the defence of Arab Gulf countries?” said Iraq’s former vice-president.
“The GCC states should always treat Iraq as a buffer state key to their security. If Iraq collapses, the conflict therein would spill over into this region. This is for sure.”
Famous Qatari columnist Dr Mohamed Al Musfir, meanwhile, said in one of his latest writings that, based on Iran’s directives, Nouri Al Maliki had managed to create the terror outfit of the ‘Islamic States of Iraq and Syria’ (ISIS) to provide the necessary backup to the present warfare in Iraq’s Al Anbar province.
“The aim of the ISIS is to crush everyone who is opposed to the hegemony of Iran in the region and the Shia control of Iraq.”
They want Syria to wrestle with the tangled issue of sectarianism the way Iraq has been for more than 10 years now, said Al Musfir.
In his address in Karbala recently, Al Maliki said that Karbala is Qibla (direction which Muslims turn to in prayers). “We are all Hussain’s army and we are fighting Yezid’s army. There is a sea of fire between us (Shias) and them (Sunnis).”
“The imams all over the GCC should raise this issue of the axis of Iran-Iraq, and Syria (in their Friday sermons),” said Al Musfir. “The Iranian imams talk openly against Sunnis (in their sermons).” Izzat Al Ibrahim, the secretary-general of Baath Party in Iraq who is a former associate of Saddam Hussein and still wanted by the US, said in an interview on the phone to Egypt’s Al Ahram published on January 7 (the first interview given to the media since the American invasion of Iraq) that Saudi Arabia today was the citadel of resistance against all the conspiratorial efforts to demolish the Arab identity.
“Had Saudi not been making those efforts Iran would be having unquestioned hegemony in the region,” said Al Ibrahim.
“I appreciate the Saudi stand of supporting the people of Syria and the regime of Bahrain and those of other GCC states, and the Iraqi people and their revolution and the revolution in Arab Spring countries.”
The Iranians want to make Iraq the base to launch attack on the GCC countries, mainly Saudi Arabia, he said. Eyad Al Alawi, another former vice-president of Iraq, in an interview published by the local Arabic daily Al Watan, said Iran wanted to destabilise the region.
Iran’s plan is to dominate the Arab world. Its constitution makes it mandatory for all Iranians to learn Arabic, said Dr Mohamed Al Rumaihi, a famous Kuwaiti columnist. “They want to Iranise Islam.”
The Sunni rebels fighting the Shia regime in Iraq are led by former associates and army commanders of Saddam Hussein. “So it’s not a sectarian warfare in Iraq,” said Jihad Al Khazin in a column published in London’s Al Hayat newspaper. The Peninsula