Saudi Arabia, Iran, and Gulf Geopolitics: The Case of Iraq

  • Banafsheh Keynoush


Despite initial hesitations about Iraq’s invasion in March 2003, Tehran quietly felt blessed by it. Saddam Hussein’s quick downfall removed pervasive fears in Iran about his alleged arsenal of weapons of mass destruction. Tehran could also now influence Iraq’s new developments. That prospect, as I witnessed in Tehran at the time, encouraged its politicians to reject feeling concerned by the war drums in Washington which called for attacking Iran. In the wake of Iraq’s invasion, Tehran in fact turned down Saddam’s secret overtures for an alliance against Washington, and encouraged the Iraqi clerics, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani and Ayatollah Abd al-Aziz al-Hakim, to aid Washington to work with the underrepresented Iraqi Shi‘is.


Saudi Arabia Gulf Cooperation Council Arab State National Security Council Boundary Dispute 
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© Banafsheh Keynoush 2016

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  • Banafsheh Keynoush

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