Amidst rising geopolitical tensions, the Iranian regime faces mounting challenges and growing international pressure. The recent drone attack on a ship in the Indian Ocean and the formation of a coalition against its proxy forces in the Red Sea have escalated the situation. As the world watches closely, Iranian officials are monitoring reactions and developments with heightened concern.
On December 23, 2023, Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian addressed the growing unease, stating, “We have made it explicitly clear to the Americans that the groups in question, including those in Yemen, operate based on their own judgment and interests. We have not issued any directives for their actions.”
Despite these assurances, a palpable anxiety has pervaded the regime’s stance since the early days of the Gaza war. This contrasts sharply with the confident assertions made by leaders of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) and representatives of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei during Friday prayers. While they maintain that the regime’s proxies align with its principles, there is an underlying fear that belies their claims of strength.
This fear is evident in the speeches of Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the commander of the Revolutionary Guards Air Force, who outlined the regime’s coalition, saying, “All factions of the resistance axis are united in their cause. We must pool our resources and coordinate our efforts to dismantle the Zionist regime, expel America and its allies, and establish a stable and secure Iran.”
As the crisis escalates, concerns about Iran’s potential role in the conflict have grown, particularly in the wake of the Hamas attack on Israel on October 7. Foreign policy analysts question Iran’s involvement in this assault. While American and Israeli officials assert no direct evidence linking Iran to the attack, some U.S. intelligence sources suggest that Iranian leaders themselves were caught off guard. Despite this, Tehran openly views Hamas’s success as a significant victory and has expressed unwavering support for the group.
The war with Hamas has already resulted in thousands of casualties, with no clear resolution in sight. Israel’s invasion of Gaza, coupled with Iran’s steadfast support for Hamas, has the potential to transform this conflict into one of the most devastating in the history of Israel and Palestine. Despite the destructive nature of the current battle, Iran perceives the ongoing war as an opportunity to achieve various strategic objectives.
Within the regime, analysts assessing the balance of power in the region and Iran’s social and political landscape are warning against the ‘catastrophic’ consequences of continued warmongering. Ahmad Zeidabadi, a member of the so-called reformist faction, expressed his concerns about the global consensus forming against the regime, stating:
“They want to implement the slogan of Gaza minus Hamas at any cost. If Hamas is removed, then Iran becomes the target. In my opinion, as long as the war continues there, the policy is to prevent its spread to Iran. However, this extensive war comes with heavy consequences… but afterwards, Iran will face extraordinary diplomatic and economic pressure.”
Zeidabadi, reflecting the sentiments of a faction within the regime, asserts that the regime is cornered in the warmongering crisis. He predicts that after Hamas, the regime will face intensified ‘extreme diplomatic and economic pressures’ if the war concludes without turning against the regime.
Recognizing the interconnected nature of Middle East developments, Zeidabadi paints a grim picture:
“The result of this strategy is the emergence of the Palestinian state, followed by severe pressure on Hezbollah, and a significant intensification of pressure on Iran. With our current internal situation—this level of dissatisfaction, this feeling of pressure—if added, it can make the situation very serious.”
Expressing concern about the volatile conditions in society and acknowledging being stuck in unfavorable historical circumstances, Zeidabadi adds:
“If the system truly fails, and the people become impatient, or the system demonstrates its inability, we will face a very dire situation. The worst-case scenario, often cited in our history as the Mongol attack, will pale in comparison. There will be no sense of security, a truly terrible situation that unfortunately, despite its gravity, is not being taken seriously.”
It is evident that, despite the regime’s apprehension about the repercussions of its actions in the Middle East, particularly in the ongoing Hamas-Israel conflict, the regime cannot distance itself from this self-created crisis.
As in an article the National Council Resistance of Iran (NCRI) wrote: “This strategic framework was chosen in response to the regime’s incapacity to effectively address the challenges of a progressive society post the anti-monarchical revolution. Hampered by its antiquated and archaic disposition, the clerical regime struggled to meet the aspirations of the Iranian populace, who yearned for democratic reforms, social liberties, and individual freedoms.”
Source » irannewsupdate