عنوان مقاله [English]
نویسنده [English]چکیده [English]
The Shia Crescent: Opportunities and Threats for the Islamic Republic of Iran, Arab Countries and the United States
Dr. Amir Mohammad Haji- Yousefi
After the American invasion of Iraq in 2003, it became certain that Iraq’s Shiite majority would dominate the future government if a free election was going to be held. In 2004, Jordan’s King Abdullah, anxiously warned the prospect of a “Shia crescent” spanning Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon. The idea was then picked up by others in the Arab world, especially Egypt’s President Mubarak and some elements within the Saudi government, to reaffirm the Iranian ambitions and portray its threats with regards to the Middle East. Examining the idea of the Shia crescent, the present article seeks to answer the following question: what are the main opportunities and threats of the idea of the Shia crescent for Iran, Arabs and the United States? The main argument is that the Shia rising will provide 1. Iran with a leverage to balance the United States in the Middle East while it may reinforce intra- Islamic cleavages in the Muslim world; 2. The Arab countries with a means to block Iran's hegemony in the region while encouraging the United States to discard its policy of democracy- promotion. However, it may cause more instability in the Arab world and strengthen the Zionist regime; and 3. the United states with increasing its pressure on Iran in order to change the Islamic regime there while causing more instability in the Middle East and strengthening the Islamic resistance to American hegemony.