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July 16, 2015 No.
6108

Assad Regime, Hizbullah: Iran Nuclear Agreement Is Historic Victory For Resistance Axis, Surrender For Americans, Defeat For Saudis

The Bashar Al-Assad regime in Syria and Hizbullah in Lebanon, both of which are allies of Iran, were overjoyed at the announcement of the Iran-P5+1 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. They called it "a huge victory" for the entire resistance axis, and "an historic turning point" that would shift the balance of power in the region and globally.

President Assad sent a congratulatory letter to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei expressing his delight at the "huge victory" that he said was achieved thanks to Iran's steadfast position. The head of Hizbullah in the Lebanese parliament, Muhammad Ra'd, stated that the superpowers, humiliated and vanquished by Iran, were also forced to recognize Iran as a superpower, and added that the agreement opens a new page that will lead to changes in the global balance of power.

The Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar, which is close to Hizbullah, celebrated "the surrender of the West," led by the U.S., with a series of extremely anti-U.S. articles. For example, in an article titled "Death To America," Ibrahim Al-Amin, head of the Al-Akhbar board of directors, called on the oppressed Arab peoples to learn a lesson from the Iranian achievement and work to remove Western and American hegemony worldwide. Other articles in the daily also stated that the nuclear agreement strengthened Iran, transforming it into an influential power vis-à-vis other Middle East issues as well. One article even called on the Arabs to recognize the rise of "the era of Iran" in the region, and the waning of the "the black Saudi era."

Articles in the official Syrian press also called the agreement a major victory for the entire resistance axis, including Syria and Hizbullah, as well as a surrender by the U.S. and the West and a crushing defeat for Arab countries, primarily Saudi Arabia.

The following are excerpts from official responses by the Assad regime and Hizbullah, as well as articles in the Syrian press and the Hizbullah-affiliated daily Al-Akhbar: 

Hizbullah: Iran Has Humiliated And Vanquished The Superpowers; Global Power Balances Will Change

The head of Hizbullah in the Lebanese parliament, Muhammad Ra'd, discussed the agreement at a Hizbullah memorial service for its fighters, saying: "Iran has started a new page [in the history] of the world, with the agreement that it reached with the superpowers. We say in full confidence that what will happen after the agreement with Iran will not be like what happened before it. This is because many equations and balances of power [in the world] are destined to change. The world now recognizes a force [i.e. Iran]... that, during 11 years of negotiations, not just over the past two, succeeded in humiliating the world's ruling powers." He added: "Iran is now a superpower, and the [other] superpowers have recognized this. Today it is a strong and mindful country that can be trusted to play a role in reaching arrangements and dealing with crises of tension in our region. However, it will absolutely not recognize Israel, the entity that stole Jerusalem and Palestine, and no one can forget this. Iran has said this and is committed to it..."

Ra'd added: "The Iranian people were patient for 36 years, under a most criminal international siege. The entire world rejected it and besieged it, [but] it had the willpower for confrontation... Iran reached a phase where it [managed] to provide for itself, in agriculture, industry, technology, science, education, and culture, and to export its science, culture, art, technology, and industry. It became a superpower that is taken into account. All those who participated in the siege on it succumbed to [this reality], surrendered to Iran's will, and negotiated with it, in an attempt to preserve their honor, while recognizing its status, role, and effectiveness among nations. The world powers, represented by the P5+1 Group, which won World War II and distributed global influence among themselves each other, stood on one side of the [negotiating] table, while Iran stood alone on the other side, under the leadership of Sayed 'Ali Khamenei. [Iran] negotiated with them until they bent to its will, acknowledged its right to a nuclear program, and were forced to acknowledge [Iran's] importance and the importance of the role it plays - to the point that there are those who say that security and stability in the Middle East can only be achieved with Iran's cooperation..."[1] 

Pro-Hizbullah Daily 'Al-Akhbar': The West Has Surrendered To Iran

The day after the agreement was signed, the Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar, which is identified with Hizbullah, devoted large sections of the newspaper to this topic. The front page featured the Persian headline "[Yes] We Can" - a play on the famous Obama campaign slogan - which the daily claimed was a motto of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini dating back to the 1960s, when he began his struggle against the Shah's regime.

Articles in the daily celebrated Iran's victory in both the international arena against the U.S. and the West and in the regional arena against Arab countries, especially Saudi Arabia.


July 15, 2015 cover of Al-Akhbar with the Farsi headline "[Yes] We Can" 

We Raise Our Voices And Shout "Death To America"

The head of Al-Akhbar's board of directors, Ibrahim Al-Amin, wrote in an article titled "Death To America" that the agreement between Iran and the superpowers was actually an American surrender to Iran. He added that the Arabs should understand that vanquishing the West, Israel, and the Arab regimes hostile to the resistance axis is now possible, and must act accordingly: "...We must learn this lesson well in order to stand against the global hegemonic order led by the West itself, which yesterday was forced to surrender to Iran. The important thing is that we reexamine the events around us and simply conclude that the age of Western hegemony over the world is waning, and that the independence of nations is within the reach of every oppressed person... We should state that we, in a small country like Lebanon, have succeeded over the past quarter century [since the fall of the Soviet Union] to thwart plans to transform the country into an obedient and pathetic servant of the new world order. We have managed to thwart the Israeli plan to occupy Lebanon, and have launched resistance that has become a role model, helping the residents of Palestine, Syria, Iraq, and Yemen to work against the forces of the West and their Arab allies...

"We must accept that we cannot continue to [act] ambiguously, seek arrangements here and there, and deceive ourselves only for the sake of appeasing the despicable West or the doomed Arab regimes for a drop of water. We must prepare for a new stage in the struggle, which will be based on the idea that the West, and America with it, are a capable force, but are no longer [an immutable] force of nature, and that removing this oppression has become attainable...

"It is no longer difficult to be rid of the hegemonic world order; it is no longer impossible to topple the Zionist regime in Palestine; and it is no longer tough to topple what is left of the Arab regimes of ignorance and failure. What Iran has achieved vis-├á-vis the West puts us back at square one, where we must raise our voices and shout at the top of our lungs a single slogan: 'Death to America.'"[2] 


Ibrahim Al-Amin's article "Death To America" 

'Al-Akhbar' Article: The Agreement's Military Facilities Inspection Clause Is Of No Practical Significance

Journalist Elie Chalhoub argued in an article in Al-Akhbar that the sanctions imposed on Iran did not prevent it from reinforcing its nuclear capabilities and that the newly reached agreement reinforced Iran still further. Enumerating Iran's achievements vis-à-vis the U.S. in the agreement, he claimed that "the events laid the U.S. bare and made clear to everybody the limits to its power," and that "the war option against Iran is completely off the table..."

Chalhoub noted: "Also the second option - sanctions - is of no avail and does not prevent Iran from developing its nuclear capabilities and expanding its influence in the region. Therefore, [the West] is left with no other option aside from engagement and mutual understanding [with Iran]. Furthermore, the agreement enjoyed an Iranian consensus in the framework of the red lines set by the Supreme Leader [Khamenei], has torpedoed every [American] wager to exploit it [the agreement] as a Trojan horse for creating internal fitna [within Iran between liberals and conservatives]...

"In the address by Sayyid Ali Khamenei the day before yesterday, it was clear that the conflict with the U.S. in the region would continue, and could even escalate. True, Iran agreed to supervision over all its facilities including the military ones and this according to the mechanism determined in the Additional Protocol of the nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty [NPT], but this is a very complicated mechanism that makes the [Iranian] 'surrender' of no practical significance...

"The agreement accomplishes two things: first, the international community cannot [henceforth] impose sanctions on Iran under any pretext whatsoever without running the risk that Iran will announce that it is renouncing its commitments under this agreement. Secondly, the agreement gives Iran greater room for action on the regional level, and equips it with [additional] capabilities that it will receive as a result of the lifting of the sanctions...

"With regard to the issue of [lifting] the sanctions, we are not dealing with a minor detail pertaining to money.. This will effectively bring $120 billion into the Islamic Republic [of Iran]. And when will this happen? [It is happening] at the peak of the financial crisis striking the world. Additionally, this measure will bring Iran back to working with [the international financial clearinghouse] SWIFT, and will remove the ban on trade with it [Iran], with all its implications for thousands of Western companies that are dying of hunger and [seeking] [just] such investment opportunities. This by itself will block the West from [eventually] escalating against Iran."[3]  

This Is The Age Of Iran; Arabs Must Coexist With Iran - Otherwise It Is Suicide For Them

Other articles in Al-Akhbar addressed the regional implications of the agreement, in light of the current Sunni-Shi'ite struggle in several arenas in the region, and struggles between the Iran-led resistance axis and the opposing Saudi-led bloc. According to the articles, this agreement improves Iran's standing and strength in the region, and recognizes its status.

Al-Akhbar columnist Nahed Hatter, a Jordanian national, wrote that the region was on the brink of an "era of Iran" to replace the "black Saudi era," and that the Arabs have no choice but to accept this reality. Not working together with Iran, he said, would be suicide for them: "Iran has earned its status as a regional power that controls the raging geopolitical conflicts in our area... The Iranians have received recognition of their central status on the issues of Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, and Yemen, with regard to the various geopolitical conflicts on borders, security, sectarianism, etc. The main thing is the clear recognition of the Iranian role in combating terrorism...

"Thus begins a complex - and possibly lengthy, but effective - political process between the Americans and Iranians, for mutual understanding on issues that are all Arab issues, and in which the Arab element is absent...

"This is the era of Iran, that leaves behind the black Saudi era that has prevailed since the mid-1970s, that destroyed Egypt and later Iraq and Syria, and for whose destructive plans the Palestinians and Lebanese have paid a heavy price... The Arabs, with their various political trends, have no choice but to launch an initiative aimed at finding a new formula for coexisting with this [Iranian] era and benefiting from it:

"a. In the field of combating terrorism;

"b. To restore the importance of the Palestinian problem;

"c. To return to rehabilitation and development; and

"d. To establish a more rational and dynamic regional order.

"However, in order to maximize the positive aspects of this Iranian era and minimize its negative aspects for the Arab world, there are basic conditions [that the Arabs must meet], which are:

"a. To immediately cease the various forms of aggression against Syria and reach understandings with its legitimate [Assad] government in order to support its efforts to combat terrorism and restore the country; and

"b. To end the so-called Sunni program that is based on sectarian incitement and growing close to Israel at the expense of Iran.

"[This is] in order to rebuild the Arab order on the basis of mutual understanding among its traditional foundations, which are Syria, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia. This will create [a framework] for positive relations and cooperation with the rising Iranian force, while benefiting from redefining Israel as a common enemy; it will also bring about political and national solutions in Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon, Libya, and Bahrain.

"This is the only rational option to preserve the general interests of the Arab forces that are fighting each other. Will Saudi Arabia - and especially Saudi Arabia - understand this picture, or will it insist on committing suicide?"[4] 

Syrian Regime: An Historic Turning Point; A Victory For The Entire Resistance Axis

As noted, the Syrian regime of President Bashar Al-Assad also welcomed the announcement of the Iran-P5+1 nuclear agreement, and called it "an historic turning point" and a "victory" for the entire resistance axis. This was conveyed in Assad's letters to Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and to Iranian President Hassan Rohani, as well as in announcements by the Syrian Foreign Ministry and in articles in the official press and the Al-Watan daily, which is close to the regime. 

Assad In Letter To Khamenei: I Am Happy About Iran's Huge Historic Victory

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad wrote in a letter of congratulation to Iran's Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei: "I am gladdened by the huge victory that Iran achieved in reaching a final agreement with the [P] 5+1 on the Iranian nuclear dossier. In the name of the Syrian people and in own name, I congratulate you and the fraternal Iranian people from all my heart on this historic victory.

"This agreement was attained thanks to the steadfastness by the Iranian people, in all its elements, in the face of the oppressive sanctions... that the noble Iranian people transformed into an opportunity for reinforcing its independent capabilities and progressing in its research studies, in its universities and achievements until it reached the stage where the entire world recognizes these achievements.

"The signing [sic] of this agreement is a major turning point in the history of Iran, of the region, and of the world, and unequivocal recognition by the world's countries that the Iranian nuclear program is civilian in nature, that guarantees the national rights of your people and emphasizes Iran's sovereignty and political independence. We are most confident that Iran will continue with even greater impetus to support the just causes of the peoples and will work to institute peace and stability in the region and the world..."

In his letter to President Rohani, Assad wrote, inter alia: "We have no doubt that in the coming days, the constructive role that Iran played in supporting the rights of peoples and consolidating the principles of peace and amicable relations among states will gain impetus... Warm congratulations to you and the fraternal Iranian people on this historic achievement, which constitutes a victory for all lovers of peace and justice throughout the world..." [5] 

Victory For Iran, Syria And Hizbullah; Defeat For Saudi Arabia, The Great Satan

Waddah 'Abd Rabbo, editor of the Syrian daily Al-Watan, wrote on July 16, 2015 that the agreement was a major victory for the resistance axis of Iran, Syria, and Hizbullah, and a bitter defeat for Saudi Arabia. 'Abd Rabbo demanded that Saudi Arabia apologize to the whole world for the terrorism that for many years it had helped to spread:

"...Today is not as it was before. Saudi Arabia has been defeated. Its plan to prevent any closeness between Iran and the West has utterly failed, as have its attempts to destabilize Syria, Lebanon, and Iraq... Over the past years, Saudi Arabia has tried to bring about a conflagration in Iraq and Lebanon, and has spent tens of billions of dollars to spark sectarian fitna... to prevent the spread of Iranian influence that supports resistance in Lebanon, Iraq, and Palestine... This has failed thanks to the mighty stand of Syria, Hizbullah, and the Iraqis.

"Iran has never threatened Saudi Arabia or any other Arab country... The Iran-Iraq War, the Gulf War, [and the wars in] Lebanon, Iraq, and later Syria were carried out under the guidance and management of the U.S., which controls the minds, policies, and leaders of Saudi Arabia, who are mere puppets in its hands... The game is over, and Saudi Arabia and its media must admit defeat and begin trying to fix the unfixable...

"The Iranian agreement is a victory for Iranian diplomacy over three decades, but is also a success for all Syrians, without whose steadfastness and vigilancethis agreement would not have been reached in its current form.

"The Vienna agreement is a crowning moment for the steadfastness of Syria and Hizbullah, and is a mark of honor pinned to the chests of the families of the martyrs in Syria and Lebanon... The victory of Iran is the victory of Syria and the entire resistance axis... From today onwards, Saudi Arabia will have no choice but to recognize its defeat and to apologize to the peoples of the region and the world for the terrorism, the killing, and the destruction it has senselessly caused them.

"Many believe that the main victim of the Vienna agreement is Israel, but Saudi Arabia is the true Great Satan in the region. That is the truth."[6] 

The Agreement Is A Victory For The Iranian-Syrian View

Dr. 'Amran 'Abd Al-Latif, editor of the official Syrian daily Al-Ba'th, wrote that the nuclear agreement proves that Syria's strategy is right, and that its opponents - Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Turkey - are wrong. He also called on the Arabs to benefit from the agreement: "The Syrian position was to quickly express faith and optimism regarding this agreement... The letters [sent] by President Assad to Khamenei and Rohani embody Syria's positive and practical strategic view regarding this new turn to be taken by international relations as a result of the agreement - which stems from political and diplomatic discourse for conflict resolution, as opposed to supporting terrorism, extremism, and accusing others of apostasy. This view will prove, in time, that the governments that supported the plot against Syria will, one by one, enter a path of isolation and failure, leading them to helplessness and despair...

"It is our duty as Arabs to hasten to reap the benefits of this agreement, and not to divert Arab worries away from Zionism and towards our Iranian friends and brothers. Yes, it is our duty to look positively at the coming Western rush towards Iran, which reality has proven is a good and successful actor that has succeeded, on its own, in dialogue with the superpowers. There is no fear that those who succeed in such dialogue will sell [their] sovereignty, resources, justice, and duties.

"Therefore, we are optimistic: First, in light of the concern of those [i.e. the Israelis], and second, because it has been proven that our strategy is strong and practical."[7] 

Obama Realized That Iran Would Not Relinquish Its National Pride; He Will Soon Learn The Same About Syria

Bassam Abu 'Abdallah, an international relations lecturer at Damascus University and a columnist for the Syrian daily Al-Watan, claimed that the forces of resistance, led by Syria and Hizbullah, had played a part in the Iranian achievement. Just as Obama realized that there was no point fighting the Iranian nuclear program, because it is a matter of national pride that Iranians would never relinquish, he would also realize that there was no point fighting Syria and its regime, because it too is a matter of national pride.

He wrote: "Those who observe and follow the Iranian nuclear negotiations cannot help but feel tremendous respect and esteem for Iran's steadfastness and for the resistance and willpower of the Iranian people and its leadership, leading up to the announcement of the historic agreement. [This agreement] was also achieved thanks to the forces of the resistance axis led by Syria, with its heroic people, proud army, and great sacrifice, and thanks to the resisting, honorable, and heroic Hizbullah.

"Obama has recognized that the nuclear achievements of the Iranian people have become a matter of national pride from which there is no turning back, and that they are achievements for which all Iranians paid a price, and so no one is entitled to bargain with them. Based on Obama's new American view regarding Iran, which led to this historic agreement, can it be said that it will apply to other issues in the region, primarily Syria? The answer is yes... [because] the main headline of the bitter battle [in Syria] is 'national pride'..."[8] 

Iran's Success Inspires Other Countries Who Seek To Break Free Of Subordination To The West

Fares Riyadh Al-Jiroudi, a columnist for the Syrian daily Al-Watan wrote: "...The strategic importance of the announcement [of a nuclear agreement] does not stem from the [technical] nuclear details or from Iran's entry into the nuclear club... but rather from the fact that after 35 years of trying to impose isolation, siege, and indirect wars on it... Iran has forced the West to acknowledge it as a major force and an important factor in the international community... while Iran has not abandoned the political slogans it touted during its [Islamic] revolution, which led to the harsh historic confrontation with the West...

"This has massive implications, and opens the horizons for aspiring third-world countries that seek to break free of the burden of economic and political subordination to Western countries..."[9]

Endnotes:

[1] Elnashra.com, July 16, 2015.

[2] Al-Akhbar (Lebanon), July 15, 2015.

[3] Al-Akhbar (Lebanon), July 15, 2015.

[4] Al-Akhbar (Lebanon), July 15, 2015.

[5] Al-B'ath (Syria), July 15, 2015.

[6] Al-Watan (Syria), July 16, 2015.

[7] Al-Ba'th (Syria), July 15, 2015.

[8] Al-Watan (Syria), July 16, 2015.

[9] Al-Watan (Syria), July 16, 2015.