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World Council for the Cedars Revolution

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Aug 20th
Home arrow News Content arrow Blog arrow Blog Items arrow Opinions and Editorials arrow What's Behind Iran's Warning to Syria?
What's Behind Iran's Warning to Syria? PDF Print E-mail
Written by Tariq Alhomayed Editor-in-Chief of Asharq Al-Awsat   
Wednesday, 04 March 2009

Tariq Alhomayed is the Editor-in-Chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, the youngest person to be appointed that position. Mr. Alhomayed has an acclaimed and distinguished career as a Journalist and has held many key positions in the field including; Assistant Editor-in-Chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, Managing Editor of Asharq Al-Awsat in Saudi Arabia, Head of Asharq Al-Awsat Newspaper's Bureau-Jeddah, Correspondent for Al - Madina Newspaper in Washington D.C. from 1998 to Aug 2000. Mr. Alhomyed has been a guest analyst and commentator on numerous news and current affair programs including: the BBC, German TV, Al Arabiya, Al- Hurra, LBC and the acclaimed Imad Live’s four-part series on terrorism and reformation in Saudi Arabia. He is also the first Journalist to conduct an interview with Osama Bin Ladin's Mother. Mr. Alhomayed holds a BA degree in Media studies from King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah, and has also completed his Introductory courses towards a Master’s degree from George Washington University in Washington D.C. He is based in London.
Tariq Alhomayed is the Editor-in-Chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, the youngest person to be appointed that position. Mr. Alhomayed has an acclaimed and distinguished career as a Journalist and has held many key positions in the field including; Assistant Editor-in-Chief of Asharq Al-Awsat, Managing Editor of Asharq Al-Awsat in Saudi Arabia, Head of Asharq Al-Awsat Newspaper's Bureau-Jeddah, Correspondent for Al - Madina Newspaper in Washington D.C. from 1998 to Aug 2000. Mr. Alhomyed has been a guest analyst and commentator on numerous news and current affair programs including: the BBC, German TV, Al Arabiya, Al- Hurra, LBC and the acclaimed Imad Live’s four-part series on terrorism and reformation in Saudi Arabia. He is also the first Journalist to conduct an interview with Osama Bin Ladin's Mother. Mr. Alhomayed holds a BA degree in Media studies from King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah, and has also completed his Introductory courses towards a Master’s degree from George Washington University in Washington D.C. He is based in London.

In a joint-press-conference with Syrian Prime Minister Mohamed Naji al-Otari, Iranian Vice President Parviz Davoudi called on Syria to be "more alert to the enemies' tricks." But the question is; who are these enemies?

Of course the answer will be quickly proposed that this enemy is Israel, but Iran did not warn Syria of Israel with such transparency during the Turkish brokered non-direct negotiation between Tel Aviv and Damascus. Iran did not even do so when there was talk of the possibility of direct negotiations between Syria and Israel, indeed the Gaza War made all observers forget the Syrian announcement of its readiness to enter into direct negotiations with Israel.

In which case why would Tehran give advice, and even more, a public warning, to Damascus now? And why has President Ahmadinejad decided to strengthen ties with Syria [now]? For of course it is no secret that Iran's warning comes at a time that Syrian foreign relations are experiencing a political breath of fresh air.

And so the political doors have opened to Damascus, both internationally and in the Arab world. There is the Saudi rapprochement, and it seems that the Egyptian coolness towards Syria is less than it was, while internationally it seems that Washington has begun with positive steps to test the waters with Syria, and things are progressing.

This is what is new in the Syrian relations with the Arab world and the international community, and it seems that this is what caused the Iranian Vice-President to speak out publicly, contrary to what we have come to expect of the shrewd Iranian policy of media caution with regards to commenting about Syria, or its [other] allies in the Arab region.

Iran's rush to publicly advise Syria of the "enemies' ticks" raises concern over the coming days with regards to the open [battle] fronts in Gaza and Southern Lebanon, especially with the arrival of the far-right into power in Israel. Whatever the Syrians intentions are regarding Arab reconciliation, or their international ties, in the end we must remember that Damascus has interests that it will do the impossible to honor. For with Damascus we are dealing with a government, and not an armed militia such as Hezbollah. This is why Damascus simply cannot afford four or eight years of sharp disputes with Washington, especially since there is a real wind of change with the arrival of Obama to the White House. There is also a new economic reality that Damascus and the Arab world cannot ignore, and stalemate now costs a heavy price.

Tehran is well aware of all of this and is concerned, therefore what is important with regards to the Arab reconciliation brought about by King Abdullah Bin Abdul-Aziz's speech during the Kuwait summit, and the international rapprochement towards Damascus, is not Syria's response, but Iran's.

We have known Iran's reaction to the easing of relations between Syria and the Arab world and the international community since the statement by the Iranian Vice-President, however the question is; what are the practical steps that Tehran will undertake in order to disrupt Arab reconciliation, and Syrian – American rapprochement.

That is what is important.



 
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