Israel and Iran need each other

June 10, 2014 1:03 pm

When it comes to the Middle East and the relations between the countries within, everyone who even watches the news briefly knows that there exists a country called Israel, and another called Iran and that they are both rivals. If Israel and Iran were personified, they would be Batman and the Joker – but just take out all the morality from Batman.

Israel vs iranAll over the news, there are articles and reports about Iran and its nuclear programme. Choosing diplomacy over conflict, Iran and the United States are close to a deadline; a deal should be reached soon that, in theory, will make all sides happy. Israel is ever cautious of Iran’s nuclear capability and all too aware of the hate that Iran has towards it. Meanwhile, the Iranian regime is threatened by anyone or anything that is not its ally or follower, including the Saudi Arabians. And every now and then, Iran makes a statement about how it is able to destroy Israel.

On the day I write this, many Israeli publications including: Haaretz, Jerusalem Post, Ynet news and the Times of Israel are talking about the Iranian threat and keeping up with it. Haaretz, considered to be very liberal by Israeli standards, has an entire section called “Israel’s eye on Iran”.

From the comments that both of these countries make towards each other, one would think they are natural enemies forever bound to hate each other.

But in the world of political interests, were friends and enemies don’t truly exist it turns out that Israel and Iran need each other.

The fact that Israel is expanding and building settlements in response to the recent Palestinian Unity government is something it is not proud of. But in such times, Iran seems to be a convenient scape goat. Should Israel’s citizens start to criticise it or question its moves regarding the Palestinians, they can always point to Iran and the threat that it poses to scare them, at one point even distributing gas masks to civilians.

On the other hand you have Iran; a blend of democracy and theocracy. Although the people of Iran themselves are very diverse in their ideas (as with any other population), the government is ever conservative. Having one of the highest rates of the death penalty, and other issues that include treatment of women and some minorities, the Iranian government sends a strong message to anyone who dares deviate from the mainstream. It is also seen as a Shia Muslim country, and therefore is a threat to, and is threatened by, the Sunni Muslim authority of Saudi Arabia. Of course, the only authority Saudi has it gets from the fact that Mecca and Medina, the two holiest cities of Islam, are within it’s borders.

iran needs israelIn the face of all of this, when Iranians dare to rise against their own governments or when they start to question it, Iran also brings up Israel and the plight of the Palestinians as a distraction. And Iran is not the only country. Many pro-Palestinian Arabs who insist on defending the Syrian dictator, Bashar Al Assad, of his actions, do so because they insist he is truly anti-Israeli.

In the world of politics there aren’t really friends or enemies. There are only people who fulfil your interests or who go against them. And these interests could change – which is why politics can make strange bed fellows. The fact that Iran, a Shia Muslim government, is committed to helping Hamas, a Palestinian Sunni Islamist government, is an example of this.

Israel and Iran are not really enemies. Truly, they are thankful for each other’s existence. Because when a series of blunders happens, be it a high execution rate or expanding of settlements that angers almost all of the world – they can always rely on each other as subject changers.

When in doubt, bring the fear and anger out.


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