It is the near future. The Middle East has been shaken by violent upheaval. A bloody stalemate takes hold in Libya. A power struggle has developed in Egypt between the military and the Muslim Brotherhood, which has increased pressure in Jordan. The same is true in Yemen. Morocco, Algeria, Bahrain, Iraq, Kuwait and Oman have also seen growing unrest, with violent clashes. Egypt’s chaos has led to Hamas effectively controlling the Sinai, deploying guerrillas and rockets on Israel’s vulnerable Negev border. Tensions are high in Korea, while socialist Venezuela, faced with serious domestic troubles and buoyed by its alliance with Iran, is taking an aggressive stand against the U.S. These developments have had a debilitating effect on global markets. Oil is over $100 a barrel, while commodity prices have soared in the Middle East, stoking the upheaval.
For Iran, this growing crisis provides both danger and opportunity. The danger comes from growing unrest within, as the pro-democracy movement increasingly challenges the Mullahocracy. The opportunity comes from the developing global situation. Israel is effectively surrounded, with the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank forming a unity government with Hamas and Jordan unstable. With interests in the Middle East, Asia and Latin America under threat amidst growing economic turmoil, the U.S. global position is highly vulnerable. By contrast, Iran’s position has strengthened. With a naval base on Syria’s Mediterranean coast, unopposed transit for its warships through the Suez Canal and establishment of a missile base in Venezuela, Teheran has increased its military reach considerably.
Pages: 1 2