By Dr Shahid Qureshi: –
US – Iran ‘Tom & Jerry’ drama benefited many parties in the region and main beneficiaries are off course US and Iranian regimes lead by President Trump and President Hassan Rouhani. For example, according to reports over 1500 Iranian protesters were killed by the Iranian regime. “US- Iran crisis: Value of top arms firms rises by £14bn as US-Iran standoff fuels expectation of bumper weaponry orders. Global arms sales rose by five per cent to $420bn in 2018 — a near 50 per cent rise since 2002.
“In a tweet, the State Department quoted U.S. Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook as saying the Reuters report “underscores the urgency for the international community to punish the perpetrators and isolate the regime for the murder of 1,500 Iranian citizens.” reported VOA news on 23 December 2019.
Reuters’ death toll was much higher than the latest fatalities reported by British rights group Amnesty International, which said in a Dec. 16 statement that it documented the killings of at least 304 demonstrators by Iranian security forces in days of unrest that erupted on Nov. 15, 2019.
Iranian consulate in Iraqi holy city of Najaf was burnt down by the Iraqi protesters twice in one week. As a result of the Iraqi protests over 400 people were killed by the Iran backed regime in Baghdad. The Iraqi prime minister was forced to resign due to the protests against corruption, rising prices, no jobs and too much Iranian influence of Shia lead regime.
Iraqi protests were mainly due to economic conditions, the killing of Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani by the U.S. helped Israeli prime minister Netanyahu facing indictment for corruption and bribery, President Trump facing impeachment and Iranian regime facing protests due to rising food and oil prices. There was no apparent need for US and President Trump to kill Gen. Qassem Soleimani at this point as he was a die-hard supporter of US and Indian sponsored Northern Alliance supporter in Afghanistan against Taliban. He was running proxies in Yemen, Lebanon, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Gulf states all serving the US agenda to keep the Arabs on their toes and making arms dealers rich.
He threatened Pakistan with the Indian RAW lead terrorism inside Pakistan openly and harboring of active RAW – Indian Navy Officer Kulbhushan Yadave as a gold jeweler in the port city of Chabhar was part of this. Iranian Chabhar port is run by the Indian forces and Iran is working for an alternative rail and road route to Afghanistan and central Asia following US alternative Silk Road plan countering Chinese Belt and Road.
The staged tensions between US & Iran lead to the rise of share prices of US arms exporting companies into billions in various stock exchange. Cahal Milmo wrote on Friday, 10th January 2020, in the I News,
“US- Iran crisis: Value of top arms firms rises by £14bn as US-Iran standoff fuels expectation of bumper weaponry orders. Global arms sales rose by five per cent to $420bn in 2018 — a near 50 per cent rise since 2002.
The world’s largest arms manufacturers have seen their value rise by nearly £14bn in the wake of the assassination of Qassem Soleimani as the confrontation between the United States and Iran fuels expectations of lucrative new defence equipment orders.
Analysis by i shows that in the 24 hours after the assassination ordered by President Donald Trump, the stock market value of the world’s nine largest listed arms companies rose by $13bn (£10bn). By the afternoon that increase had risen further to $17.9bn (£13.7bn).
Lockheed Martin, the American conglomerate which is by far the world’s largest arms producer with showcase weaponry such as the F-35 fighter jet, saw its value reach an all-time high last Friday, increasing by $4.2bn in a single day to $116bn.
BAE Systems, Britain’s largest defence company and currently ranked as the sixth biggest in the world with the help of its key role in the Eurofighter Typhoon, saw its value rise by £256m.
Justin Bronk, a defence specialist at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) think-tank, told i: “There are still a large number of unknowable variables at play in terms of how this situation plays out. However, it is certainly likely to lead to [Gulf] states and possibly Israel to calculate on a more potentially belligerent Iranian threat in the coming year or two which tends to lead to great orders for high-end defence equipment.”
Defence and security remains a key part of Britain’s manufacturing sector, employing 374,000 people and contributing £78 bn to GDP, with 88 per cent of export earnings coming from aviation technology.
Britain is among the world’s biggest defence exporters and according to Government figures some 60 per cent of all sales – worth some £49bn – over the last decade going to the Middle East, a figure which in 2018 grew to 80 per cent”.
Shooting of Ukrainian Airline jet by two Iranian missiles and not closing the ‘air space’ raise serious question, if Iranian security establishment is capable of handling crisis situations in case of direct US attack and fire power? Iran should have close down its air space while it was firing missiles without war heads at US occupied bases in Iraq. Pakistan shut down its airspace during the tension with India and intelligence of Indians using a passenger plane as cover to attack in February 2019.
However, Iran has informed the Iraqis and US about the upcoming missile attack hours before to save American soldier’s lives in Iraq. President Trump reported ‘no one killed or harmed’ after the attack but now we know 8 US soldiers suffers from ‘nervous shock’ due to bangs and are being treated in Kuwait and Germany.
However, US has not fired a single bullet towards Iran or its obsolete 3rd generation Air Force as it helped the luxurious Arabs in UAE and elsewhere in line like ‘good boys’ worrying about fake Islands in sea and glass buildings an easy target of Iranian missiles. One can see that these pro India and Pro US ‘men of leisure’ have no will or strength to fight, hence paying protection money to ‘Don Trump and his boys in uniform’?
(Dr Shahid Qureshi is senior analyst with BBC and chief editor of The London Post. He writes on security, terrorism and foreign policy. He also appears as analyst on Al-Jazeera, Press TV, MBC, Kazak TV (Kazakhstan), LBC Radio London. He was also international Presidential election observer for Kazakhstan, 2019, 2016 and 2015, Azerbaijan 2018 and Pakistan 2002. He has written a famous book “War on Terror and Siege of Pakistan” published in 2009. He wrote his MA thesis on ‘Political Thought of Imam Khomeini’ and visited Tehran University. He is PhD in ‘Political Psychology’ also studied Law at a British University. He also speaks at Cambridge University and visiting professor in Hebe University in China.)
Views expressed are not of The London Post