Al-Jazirah, Saudi Arabia, May 17

The survival of the mullah regime in Tehran will be impossible in the long run, so long as its formal objective remains to use all of its resources to fulfill the will of its founder, Khomeini, and reinstate the ancient Persian Empire.
I am not trying to suggest that the era of empires is completely over. This is a reality that one can hardly argue with, especially given the rise of the caliphate established by Islamic State.
I do, however, believe that [former] US president Barack Obama, for a mysterious reason that goes beyond me, saved the mullah regime from total collapse when he signed the catastrophic nuclear deal with Tehran. In doing so, Obama lifted the siege on Iran and provided its regime, which was very close to falling, with a $100 billion lifeline.
Whatever ideology is guiding the mullahs, their regime simply cannot keep up with the contemporary world. It stands against everything humanity stands up for today.
Even domestically, the people of Iran have realized that they have been led astray by their leaders for several decades. Internal grudges and anger are growing with each passing day.
This enormous Iranian public will eventually reach a boiling point that the regime will be unable to control. No matter how oppressive, cruel or coercive the mullah regime will be, it will eventually be forced to capitulate and collapse.
Needless to say, modern countries derive their political and military power from their economic power. The stronger their economies are, the more they can grow and develop, the more legitimate they are on the international stage, and the more they can withstand crises.
A look at the Soviet Union, which neglected its economic might and relied on socialism for its survival, will suffice to understand how failed economies can lead to political disintegration and collapse.
This is certainly the case in Iran as well. The mullahs can spend money spreading their ideology, ignore economic growth and impose their doctrine on others, without any hesitation to crush dissidents. Ultimately, however, their regime will be a failure.
Therefore, whether the mullahs admit this or not, Iran is on a direct trajectory to becoming a failed state. This tendency will only increase with time. Then, as many experiments in history have already taught us, the mullahs’ regime will collapse. It is simply a matter of time.
– Muhammad al-Sheikh

Akhbar Al-Khaleej, UAE, May 17

Will [US President Donald] Trump go to war with Iran? This is the most important question asked these days. The shortest answer is that he likely will not. Trump explicitly said that he does not want a war with Tehran, but wants to see the Iranian regime fall.
The Trump administration, despite the bellicose stance of influential figures in it like [Secretary of State Mike] Pompeo and [National Security Adviser John] Bolton, understands that more time is needed. A regime as strong as the mullah regime, which was established 40 years ago, takes time to be knocked down and defeated.
Furthermore, Trump understands that war would pose a problem on a number of fronts. Most notably, he wants to win a second term. If the coming presidential elections in the US were behind us, the prospect of a violent strike against Tehran would be much higher. Trump would have nothing to lose, as presidents usually think of their second term as a way to shape their international legacy before they leave office. Sometimes, presidents are forced to launch a war during their first term, as was the case with George H.W. Bush in Kuwait, and with his son in Afghanistan following 9/11. But the choice of war and intervention is often one a president turns to only [in a second term].
The situation with Trump is even more extreme. All of his energy and thinking focus on winning again, even more than in the case of his predecessors. This is motivated by personal reasons because Trump’s opponents insulted him and questioned his election, accusing Russia of helping him. To win again for him is therefore a matter of personal dignity, life or death, and he is unlikely to launch a war with Iran that could derail his campaign and be used by his rivals against him.
It is clear that the Iranians and their agents want to provoke Trump in order to push him to make thoughtless decisions that could hasten his departure from the White House and bring a Democratic president – who would be more favorable to Iran – back to power. But Trump is so far holding up strongly.A second reason Trump would avoid war is his deep political convictions, which are far more realistic than we want to admit. He is suspicious of the idea of large military interventions and prefers the idea of cooperation with allies. Syria is an example where he resisted the notion of military intervention to change political outcomes. He contributed to the elimination of Islamic State without spilling American blood. He also tried to convince his generals to withdraw quickly from Afghanistan. If Trump had been president in 2003, he probably would not have invaded Iraq, because he is opposed to interfering in internal affairs through military projects.
All of this brings us back to the first point: Does Trump want a war with Iran? The answer is no, but he wants to destroy the evil mullah regime until it breathes its last breath, without getting America’s hands dirty. He will therefore patiently wait until after the 2020 midterm elections before taking any action against Iran. – Mamdouh Mahini

Al-Madina, Saudi Arabia, May 18

Four decades have passed since the Iranian Revolution of 1979, 40 years in which many waters passed under the bridge of the Arab Gulf, leading to widespread changes in our region. Despite these changes, however, one thing has remained unchanged: the expansionist ideology of the Iranian regime.
Since February 1, 1979, the people of Iran have been robbed of their freedom. Their money has been nationalized and appropriated for wasteful propaganda campaigns, under the Wilayat al-Faqih, throughout the entire world.
Thankfully, this indoctrination campaign, despite all the resources being poured into it, will not succeed, because it contradicts the most basic principles of Islam: peace and good brotherhood.
A long-term strategic goal of the Iranian regime is to become the dominant force and the most influential country in the Middle East, from Iraq to Morocco. The mullahs have not relinquished this aspiration.
Despite being boycotted by nearly every country in the world, the belligerent Iranian regime is still promoting itself as the official guardian of Shi’ism. It states that it is the ultimate protector of the interests of the most vulnerable Shi’ites around the world.
To play this card effectively, the mullahs frequently use terms and slogans of emotional resonance, such as “Islamic unity” and “Islamic solidarity.”
Worst of all, the Iranian regime tries to deceive Arab Shi’ites by portraying the supreme leader as their ultimate religious leader, who must be followed and obeyed even at the expense of betraying one’s own country. This is the most effective means by which the Iranian regime has succeeded in sparking sectarian strife between different groups in the same country.
This creates a state of fear and confusion that helps give rise to extremist ideology. This is the strategy on which the Iranian philosophy is based.
Iran supports, without limits, well-known terrorist groups such as Hezbollah, the Quds Force, the Houthi militias and al-Qaeda, all of which fuel conflict and spew hatred in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Gaza, Afghanistan, Somalia, Eritrea and Nigeria. In all of these places, Iran’s influence is a source of concern and tension for the government and a major impediment to development.
In the four decades that have passed since the rise of the mullah regime, and despite facing harsh sanctions, Iran has continuously harmed its neighbors. In doing so, the regime has proved that terrorism and aggression are an integral part of its ideology. To defeat this ideology, we therefore have to fight the Iranian regime.
– Mohammed al-Baladi

Asharq al-Awsat, London, May 18

All possibilities with Tehran are currently on the table. It is possible that we will witness a massive military campaign against Iran, a limited and targeted attack, or no strike whatsoever.
However, regardless of how the current standoff between Washington and Tehran evolves, there is no doubt that the mullah regime will eventually fall. Just as Saddam Hussein and Muammar Gaddafi disappeared from the world arena, the Iranian leadership, consisting of Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani, will eventually be crushed. There is no way to circumvent this reality.
Every extremist regime we’ve witnessed in history ended up collapsing after it exercised enormous aggression. The ability of such regimes to survive and maintain their stability rests on their willingness to deploy force and violence against others. Once they engage in this kind of behavior, it only gets worse. Rarely, if ever, can the wheel be turned backward.
Therefore, there is no reason to believe that the mullah regime in Tehran will act any differently. Just as the Hitler regime fought until its bitter end of self-destruction, so, too, the Iranian regime will fight to its death.
For too many years, the countries of the Middle East have swallowed the bitter Iranian pill, for fear of facing war with Tehran. But now this scenario seems inevitable.
If we look at the mullahs’ previous modus operandi, we can see that whenever they faced external pressure, they only toughened their positions. Some have suggested that this is due to the ill-advised American policy devised by President Donald Trump or National Security Adviser John Bolton. Others point fingers at Israel as the culprit. But the reality is very different: The Iranian regime, ever since the days of former US president Jimmy Carter, has sought to deploy violence in order to promote its political goals. This has been the case regardless of which president was sitting in the Oval Office.
Instead of inventing conspiracy theories, we would be better off looking reality in the eye and understanding that the Iranian threat against stability in the Middle East is likely the most serious threat to our region today. The mullah regime in Iran has proven its evilness time and again. Its actions in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen are a clear case in point. Those who defend Iran live in deep denial.
It’s time to muster the courage and stand up to the regime in Tehran. Otherwise, we will pay a heavy price for our complacency down the road.
– Abdulrahman al-Rashed

Source » jpost