Saturday, April 21, 2007

Russian Roulette and the War on Iran

Ulterior Motives of a Potential Iran War Profiteer—and Its Risks

by Ali Fathollah-Nejad

Global Research, April 21, 2007

"......But is that ‘talk of war’ made in the noble intention to prevent our world from a terrible, almost unique, disaster—or are their tangible interests behind that?......

While Moscow was the only major global power condemning the kidnapping of Iranian diplomats early this year in Northern Iraq, it sharpened the tone as it considered Iran’s seizure of British spies and its subsequent pursuit of its nuclear research activities despite the latest Security Council resolution a ‘provocation.’ A major commentator from Russia’s state news agency, RIA Novosti, even concluded that it is Iran that is ‘provoking’ a war......

Russia’s Secret Desires

A lot of evidence points to the fact that in the case of an Iran War, Russia is most probably the only strategic beneficiary of such a scenario. Of course, the United States’ decisive hold on the world’s fossil energy center is destined to provide it with the most powerful strategic leverage enabling Washington to prolong its global supremacy. But assuming the continuity of the neoconservatives’ false—if not amateurish—calculations of the outcomes of their foreign policy initiatives and the evanescent probability of the U.S. remaining the master of an unpredictable situation of a Middle East going up in flames, the profiteer of such a bloody quagmire can be sought elsewhere.

The world’s great powers—i.e. the European Union, India, China, and Japan—have nothing to gain, but much to loose from a war on Iran, as all-time record oil prices will blatantly undermine their highly oil-dependent economies. But Russia, an important oil-producing nation itself, would not be disinclined when such a case turns real.Being a major energy supplier for China and Europe, Moscow disposes one-fourth of the world’s proved reserves of natural gas (before Iran and Qatar) and six percent of petroleum. Therefore Russia’s role as an indispensable energy supplier will be strengthened as a result of war, moreover benefitting from increased world market prices for both petroleum and gas.....

Risky Roulette

But all this does not mean that Russia will be able to occupy a calm seat while making major economic and strategic gains from such a grueling fight. As an all-out war is highly probable, Russia could hardly remain for a long time a mere observer of a theater of war erupting at its Southern flank. As Caspian Sea abutters (above all, Azerbaijan and Georgia) might be roped in a war as they harbor U.S. military bases from where strikes could be carried out, amalgamation with other regional security issues in that geostrategically indispensable part of the world involving Russia cannot be ruled out. In this light, Russia’s interests in Transcaucasia and Central Asia can be jeopardized by U.S. military actions emanating from there. There are signs that American allies will get the green light to go for their interests in the region, which are predominantly in contrast to Russian ones......."

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