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So that the Iranian Crescent Doesn’t Become a Full Moon

So that the Iranian Crescent Doesn’t Become a Full Moon

Thursday, 12 September, 2019 - 08:15
Salman Al-Dossary
Salman Al-Dossary is the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.

Whenever Saudi Arabia warns of the danger of another Hezbollah clone in Yemen, a negative and hesitant reaction resounds from the West and considers the warning an exaggeration.

Many Western especially European governments, think that such an idea is not only difficult, but impossible to happen.


However, the US special envoy to Iran, Brian Hook, in an opinion published by the Wall Street Journal, sounded the alarm over Tehran’s attempt to replicate the Lebanese experience in Yemen, warning that the world must face Iran’s ambitions; otherwise “the Iranian Crescent will soon enough become a full moon.”


Undoubtedly, Hook rang the alarm bells to all those who are incapable of dealing with Hezbollah, in the wake of its transformation into a frightening reality that threatens the stability of the region and the world.


The menace of the new version of the Yemeni Hezbollah will be more hostile and more threatening to European countries - given Yemen’s strategic position at Bab al-Mandab, the passageway of around 15 percent of world trade – if Saudi Arabia does not hinder the Iranian plan of the Houthis’ taking over Yemen to rule it under the pretext of legitimacy, and later under the force of arms. This is exactly the strategy of Hezbollah, which some European governments designate as terrorist, but are forced to deal with as part of the Lebanese government.


If Hezbollah has been the spearhead of the Iranian project in the region for more than 30 years, then Tehran is preparing the Houthis to be its new alternative, not only as the most powerful tool against the Kingdom, but also as a force against the United States and its allies.


The biggest evidence is that when Tehran wanted to respond to the United States sending a group of aircraft carriers and air force bombers to the Middle East, justifying its move with an “imminent threat from Iran,” we did not see the reaction coming from Iran itself, or its militias in Iraq. It didn’t come from Hezbollah either, which is well equipped and on alert, but from the Houthis that stepped up their attacks on the Kingdom as Washington’s biggest ally. The attack on a Saudi oil pipeline was undoubtedly a clear Iranian message to the West regarding its oil supplies from the Kingdom.


The Iranian strategy in shifting its attention from Hezbollah to its counterpart in Yemen depends mainly on several tactics, most notably Tehran’s development of a new form of hybrid warfare that will help it continue to confront its adversaries away from its borders.

Moreover, Iran is seeking to invest in the Houthis, after transforming them into another Hezbollah, in order to use them in such a confrontation.

In its early days, Hezbollah did not act as an official agent of Iran, as it is doing today. Iran is planning to have the same gradual relationship with the Houthis.


Just as the world downplayed the danger of Hezbollah in Lebanon until it became a reality burdening the Lebanese, the Iranians are also planning to do so and to repeat the same experience.


When Saudi Arabia is attacked because of its war against the Houthis, a fact gets overlooked: Riyadh is hindering a greater threat to the world than that of Hezbollah in Lebanon, not to mention that the Kingdom is carrying out its responsibilities with regards to preserving its national security.

What if the Houthis were on the borders of France, Germany or Britain? Will the Europeans be watching them while Iran is cloning a new version of Hezbollah near them?! Certainly not.

Saudi Arabia will also not allow the Iranian crescent to become a full moon on its border one day.

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