Iran: A Traditional and Vital Strategic Asset for the West in the 21st Century

Iran: A Traditional and Vital Strategic Asset for the West in the 21st Century

Since the Islamic Revolution of 1978 in Iran, successive American Administrations, Democrats, and Republicans alike tried to approach Iran, purely on the basis of the fact that, Iran is geographically, positioned in a vital strategic area of the World. This has been evident, and true throughout the history, regardless of whatever shape, the mosaic of international political system prevails. It was true, before oil issues, for different reasons during the nineteenth, and until the mid twentieth century’s imperial period. It has been true since the middle of the twentieth century until now in the post communism period in the beginning of the twenty first century, again, for emerging reasons. However, it is beyond the scope of this article, to expand further on the strategic significance of the landmass, Iran, between, the Persian Gulf, and the Caspian Sea, neighboring Russia during any prevailing international political environment.
In Western, and essentially the United States’ view the Persian Gulf plays an important strategic part, not only for the protection of oil supplies, but also, as a line of communication for defense, which there are many examples to show: Such as two wars in Iraq, 1990/1991, and 2003, and their aftermath crisis, the war of 2001 in Afghanistan, with its consequences in Pakistan, and now throughout the entire Middle East, the spillover of Al-Qaeda, to say the least, the crises in the Eastern Mediterranean-Middle East, and now, Syrian multidimensional war.
In Western assessments Iran can play its rational, and vital strategic role in the region at the beginning of the twenty first century.
As far as the West is concerned, as in the past Iran is the most powerful state in the Persian Gulf zone, with its industrialization, and population capacities, moreover, its political influence throughout the Middle East. Thus, cultivating closer economic and political ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran could be an asset to Western entanglement in the area.
Iran shows that, when all is said and done, diplomacy rather than force will be the only option. In this way Iran provides an important illustration of the changes in style of international diplomacy in a world that has evolved greatly since even a decade ago.
Key Words: Iran, Traditional and Vital Strategic Asset, Persian Gulf Oil Supplies, Middle East, Islamic Revolution, Diplomacy, Moussavizadeh

 

Notes:
1. D. YERGIN Shattered Peace: The Origins of the Cold War and National Security, (London: Penguin Books, 1990), p. 269.
2. Y.  ALEXANDER and A. NANES (Eds.) The United States and Iran: A Documentary History, (Maryland: University Publications of America, 1980), pp. 265-266.
3. PRO. London, PREM 11/725, The Correspondence and Papers of the Prime Minister’s Office, Sir Roger Stevens, the British Ambassador in Tehran, to the Foreign Office, top Secret, 19th March, 1954.
4. Y. ALEXADER and A. NAES, op. cit., p.275.
5. Department of State: Papers Relating to the Foreign Relations of the United States, (Washington DC, Annual). 1955-57, Vol. x. p.7, Foreign Aid and Economic Defense Policy.

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