The Crisis In The Middle East

[op-ed snap]The U.S. is weakened by Soleimani’s killing


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Not much.

Mains level: Paper2 - International relations


Targeted killing of powerful Iranian Major-General could have done more bad than good for the U.S.

Series of events after the assassination

  • The Iraqi parliament voted to expel the U.S. troops stationed in Iraq and deny them access to its airspace, land or water.
  • Pro-Iranian groups could attack across the region where thousands of U.S. troops and official personnel are stationed.
  • Soleimani’s assassination has awakened the deep strain of Iranian patriotism.
  • And Iran is not alone.
  • In Beirut, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah called Soleimani the “glue that held the Resistance Axis together”.
  • The U.S threat of striking “52 Iranian sites” did not win the U.S. any support on the international stage.
  • Even the Europeans, otherwise steadfast with the U.S. in these sorts of adventures, hesitated.
  • Arab League’s Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit expressed concern over the situation and asked for calm.
  • This is the same man who had, only a few weeks ago, accused Iran of sowing chaos in the region.
  • It is likely that China and Russia will table a resolution at the UN that calls for calm as well as criticises the U.S.
  • This will certainly be vetoed by the U.S.

Desperate and irrational policy

  • Till now the U.S. has not been able to extricate itself from its illegal war against Iraq.
  • That war provided a massive advantage to Iran not only in Iraq but also across the region.
  • This is what terrified two of the U.S.’s allies, Israel and Saudi Arabia, both of whom pressured Washington to increase its threats against Iran.
  • S. create the conditions for the rise of the worst kind of violence in Iraq, and later Syria
  • It also weakened the strategic position of its allies.
  • No attempt by the U.S. to regain its authority has worked.
  • The U.S. policy against Iran and Iraq appear desperate and irrational.


  • The U.S recklessness has isolated it further and deepened anxieties amongst its increasingly isolated regional allies, Israel and Saudi Arabia.

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