IRNA – Editor of the Indian English magazine ‘HARDNEWS” believes that the Saudi Arabia and the Zionist Regime fear Tehran’s increasing influence in the Islamic World particularly in the Middle East and Qatar’s isolation by a Saudi led coalition is part of their game to counter Iran’s rise.
In an exclusive interview with IRNA here, Sanjay Kapoor said: “Iran is conscious of the contradictions in the Sunni sect that are contributing to the realignment in the Middle East. It realises the limitations of the Wahabbi influence that grew exponentially post the 1979 Iranian revolution. Iran, after the nuclear deal and return to the international order, will inevitably gain in influence and affluence. The Saudis and Israel fear Iran’s rise and justifiably so.”
“Israel’s militaristic leadership has been raising the bogey of Iranian threat whereas Iran has not been associated with any terror attack. They realise that if Iran manages to wriggle out of the US sanctions and the pressure the Saudi-led alliance has been putting on it, the power equations in the region will change dramatically.” He added
On the reaction of the major Muslim courtiers to Qatar’s isolation by the Saudi Arabia, the seasoned analyst of the world affairs said: “Iran and Turkey have come to the rescue of Qatar. President Hassan Rouhani decided to extend support to Doha and has been sending supplies there. With two major military powers on its side, it would not be easy for the Saudis and the United Arab Emirate (UAE) to snuff out Qatar, which has been an engine of growth in the region as well as in places like Palestine. Iran benefits enormously due to cracks that have emerged in the Sunni coalition. It has realised the fear that resides in the Saud regime after its failure to quell the Houthis in Yemen despite marshalling troops from all over the world.”
On the possibility of India being dragged into the West Asian crisis, he said: “During Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s recent visit to Riyadh, the King of Saudi Arabia, Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, testily asked him, “Are you with us or with Qatar?” Sharif was taken by surprise by this direct question from the Saudi king. Though India has asked for a constructive dialogue to resolve the crisis, it is a matter of time before Prime Minister Narendra Modi is asked the same question.”
Elaborating on the importance of the Saudi Arabia and UAE’s investments in India’s infrastructure sector, he said: “The Saudi Arabia and the UAE are the pivots of PM Modi’s Middle East engagement. He has had a fairly successful trip to Saudi Arabia where India was promised a whopping sum of $30 billion in infrastructure investment and related areas. The Saudis also promised India energy self-sufficiency of a kind that would not allow New Delhi to look elsewhere for any support. The UAE, which is part of the Saudi coalition against Qatar, too has promised $75 billion to India to build ports, airports and other civilian infrastructure, though these promises have not been realized so far.”
Terming the Qatar’s isolation as a result of the US president Donald Trump’s recent visit to the Middle East, Sanjay Kappor said: ‘The problem lies in the circumstances under which this anti-Qatar coalition came about. Though the US officials are trying to make light of it, the Saudis were emboldened to squeeze the tiny Qatar after the US President Donald Trump’s visit to Riyadh. Very plainly, President Trump endorsed the Saudi narrative on Iran and Qatar as the financiers of terror. Trump was so taken in by the young deputy Sultan and the Grand purchase of armaments worth $140 billion that he was willing to say anything about Qatar. One wonders whether he knew that the country hosts a US military base that houses 8,000 of its troops. After his Saudi trip, it became clear that Trump was truly a transactional president.”
“There is a video going around that shows Trump raving and ranting about these Gulf monarchies that exist due to the US support. He is telling his audience in the US that he would be getting trillions of dollars from these Persian Gulf States and creating jobs in his country,” he added.
Elaborating on the role played by the Zionist Regime in the emergence of the current crisis in the Middle East, Sanjay Kapoor said: “In this decision to isolate Qatar, besides Trump, the Saudis and the UAE also enjoy the support of Israel. On the face of it, all these countries are perceived by the Modi government as close allies. Modi, who will visit Israel soon after his visit to the US, could be drawn into this new power game that has violent implications. Trump could make a compelling argument that as India needs the oil from the Gulf it should also take care of its security. Modi could also come under enormous pressure from Trump to back off too from the burgeoning ties with Iran. It is possible that this trip to the US and Israel could reset India’s foreign policy in a manner not imagined yet.”
“The Saudis, who are seen to be leaders of the Sunni world, were most uncomfortable with Qatari swagger and decided to come down heavily on it after they found Trump happy to do anything at their bidding once he had the cheque in his hand.
Ostensibly, the reason for isolating Qatar was a piece of “fake news” that showed the tiny country supporting Iran, but the truth is that the Saudis too wanted to shake off any allegations about the monarchy being complicit in funding terror.”
“Just a few days before the British elections, Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn had requested PM Theresa May to release an explosive terror funding report which allegedly blames Saudi Arabia for supporting Islamic extremism in the Middle East. Trump, before his change of heart, had been extremely critical of the Saudis during the election campaign. He had promised to sort them out if he was elected but decided to do it differently – by pauperising the Gulf monarchies in lieu of support.” Sanjay Kapoor added.