ISLAMABAD (ENN/ MD) A media outlet close to Iran’s Revolutionary Guard released a video that threatened the capitals of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates with missile strikes — the bellicose comes in response to the attack on a military parade in Iran on Saturday that killed 25, including Guard personnel and children.
The Revolutionary Guard is a hardline military answerable only to Ayatollah Khamenei, Iran’s Supreme Leader and thus out of control of the country’s moderate President, Hassan Rouhani. Humiliated by the Saturday attack — which was claimed by the Islamic State as well as a militant Arab group in Iran that the country alleges is propped by Saudi and its allies — the Guard has vowed “revenge”. That Saudi’s Prince Mohammed likens Khamenei to Hitler (“he makes Hitler look good”) doesn’t help.
If Rouhani fails to meet Trump or his team at the ongoing UN General Assembly, and the US sanctions come to cripple civilian life in Iran, the Guard may use the excuse to vent its frustration. An attack on any of the US ally will also help divert its citizens’ attention from the protests in the country; of late civilians across the country have marched onto the streets in protest against economic woes and the strict Islamic rule, among others.
Trump’s reported wish to topple the regime in Iran (his lawyer this week said sanctions will lead to a “successful revolution”) will only make matters worse.
Yet, Iran may not fire missiles at Saudi or UAE, or even Bahrain, experts say. The consequences could be worse considering calmer heads are in short supply at the world stage these days. But the Guards could target key (read important to Saudi or US) areas in Iraq or Syria.