[Editor’s note: the following is a short essay by Payam Ghorbanian. Payam was born in Tehran, Iran. He got his bachelor of science in Engineering from Zanjan University in Zanjan, Iran. He has been participating in liberal political activities and he was involved with some think tanks in Iran. He is doing research in the field of international relations and Iran’s foreign policy as an independent activist. He is now living in San Jose, California.
I cannot endorse this essay, but I am excited to post it because of its potential as a conduit for intercultural dialogue and exchange. I have left his essay largely intact, but did break up some of his longer paragraphs for clarity’s sake. Thanks to Payam for taking the time to write this.]
There is a narrow line between acting and having a reason and acting because of reason, reason is not merely the cause of the one’s acting. As Brain Fay said the having of this reason is the cause of agent’s acting and the reason does not explain the act, the act doesn’t occurred because of the one’s specified reason. After Boston bombing in the United States, Piers Morgan in his live show asked one of the Boston bomber’s friends to find out whether or not the bomber guy had any accent when he was speaking English. He probably wanted to give us a hint that the bomber might got involved in this disaster because of being teased by others around him. Morgan wanted to downgrade the threat of sinister ideology to personal reasons of bomber, which he was unsuccessful because of the friend responded: “no, not at all.”
Islamic fundamentalism has the holy goal to build or revive the Islamic nation the same as thousands years ago and to be able to run that nation with extremist religious rules in order to build the distinguished nation in order to beat the westernized nation in the judgment day. I have to mention that it is not actually only about Islam, all historical religions because of consequences of compacting with modernism and being frequently defeated have this potential ambition to draw the utopia for their followers, although now we are facing with Islamic fundamentalism which is the great threat for all modernized countries. Even though they are fighting with modernism, they constantly use the modern stuffs for getting to the final step like weapons, electronic connections, chemical bombs, internet, computer and etc. This battle would not end up if we just want to focus on a single aspect of it. On the other hand, if we are going to say that they are only a threat when they attack us or our allies, so we might be able to divide them into the good and bad and take an advantage of them for stopping the threat of wicked (but modernized) countries like Russia, China or even Bashar Al-Asad’s regime in Syria. It should be drawn by us as a red line.
Dokka Umarov is the person who is known for several attacks in Russia with the goal of reviving the Islamic State in Caucasus; being so closed to Al-Qaeda. Getting involved in Syrian war made him the one of the most dangerous rebel leaders for Russian nation. He also said he will prepare the maximum force to disturb the security of the Winter Olympics on February 7 in Sochi and now he has this ability to challenge president Putin. The last operation of terrorist group in Volgograd’s bombing killed 34 people on December 31, 2013. It is just the beginning of the wrong way, retaliation of rolling in Syria with the hands of terrorist group inside the Russia.
This upcoming Olympic is not just a regular event for Russia. It is a pose of pride, especially for Mr. Putin and maybe for all Russians to get their confidence back and show off the 40 billion dollar which has been spent for preparing of this event till now and it could be seen as a heritage of Putin’s presidency. After these recent attacks Mr. Putin said: we will tough and consistently continue to fight. He also has pointed his finger at the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) and call up for retaliation, which I think it is just more a threat, rather than a real action in order to prevent upcoming attacks.
When someone threatens you with an attack and at the same time someone else tries to blackmail you and offers you that if you want to prevent this attack you have to do something for me, it means that there is a connection between the person who threatens you and the person who wants to prevent the attack.
Prince Bandar Bin Sultan is the director general of Saudi Arabia intelligence agency from July 2012 until now and he was the KSA ambassador to the United States from 1983 to 2005. He was known for helping Bin Laden’s family to leave US after September 11. He consistently tried to get involve his country in Syrian crises and after found out that United States is not interested in taking military action in Syria, he prominently criticized Obama’s policy regarding the Arabian countries. He said: KSA would shift away from United States over Syria. He has been using millions of dollars of his country in Syrian’s war without getting anywhere and now this war is getting more predominated by dragging inside the Iraq as we have seen during the last month.
Bin Sultan has also tried to convince Russia to give up Al-Asad’s regime by offering them to control and stop Chechen terrorist groups during the winter Olympics and also by purchasing weapons from Russia worth of billions of dollars, as the news said. However, he was ultimately unsuccessful. Mr. Putin knows this rule that if you take just one step back as a result of being frightened by terrorist groups, finally you will be totally turned away. I am into every activity which stops Mr. Putin and China’s government and their ambitions to build the new evil empire but I never ever think about using terrorist groups in order to push them back. They are modernized countries which means they can be backed off by modern means.
The Saudi Arabia with the eternal sick king and hundreds of princes with the lack of any discipline over them seems like an oligarchy. Increasing oil price and powerful armies which has been supplied by United States would really inflate their egos without any financial structure. They really think they can get involved in the games of power. They are in the same path where the last king of Iran was which is going directly to the land of darkness and being unaware of what their people really want and finally overthrowing by them but in this case of Saudi Arabia it takes a long time because of the unfortified middle class but it will ultimately happen. Just take a glance to the Mohammad Reza Shah’s interview in 1974 with BBC he said: “I think our country in the next 10 years will be what you are today. In next 25 years; according to other people, I am not saying that, will be among 5 most prosperous countries of the world.” Several years after this interview, all these bubbles just busted and he could not or would not realize what his people, especially the middle class, are looking for maybe just a little bit of freedom.
Unfortunately the Saudi Arabia and several countries in the Middle East can be called as the ‘necessary dictatorship’. I just made up this word to explain my thought. At this time these regimes surpass far their people, any effort to change the regime will invite the extremists to the party so we obviously prefer to face with dictators instead of terrorists but these sorts of countries should be pushed forward by international union to start reforms. I really like the way that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has followed by opening the gates of the country to the foreign investors with the useful rule of “51 percent of a business must be owned by a UAE national.” This means involving the local people in the business and helping them to lift up instead of putting them down by giving them money occasionally. A person who owns a business will be much more conservative about the definition of Jihad. Now in KSA by the sinister ideology, minds are polluted. Hostility and animosity just spread out so we can tell it will be prolonged but it should start right now otherwise allowing these countries to use the extremists as a political weapon or even helping them in Syrian War will just ignite the worst catastrophe. Remember Al-Qaeda was supposed to fight with Soviet Union but now it fights with the free world and all aspects of that.