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Support Iran Even if Guilty | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Morocco is fuelling ideological sectarianism and advocating sectarian racism, serving Zionist plots and undermining Islamic unity. This is how Iran systematically revealed that Morocco is diplomatically trembling in the face of Iranian power and expansionist ambitions – both geographical and sectarian – the latest incident being Iran’s position with regards to Bahrain. Morocco played its final and strongest diplomatic card onto the Iranian table, strongly objecting to Iranian diplomatic missionary work in Morocco, a country whose entire population are members of the Sunni sect, indeed whose entire population are members of the Al Maliki Madhab [Islamic school of thought] of the Sunni sect. Morocco is only one of a dozen Sunni states that are being targeted by Iranian influence, both political and religious, following the Iranian Revolution led by [Grand Ayatollah] Khomeini. By doing so Iran is adopting conventions of Western Colonialism used over the previous centuries, whereby religious missionaries are used as a step prior to political and economic colonization.

Due to its strong and systematic missionary work, Iran has been able to gain a foothold in a large number of Sunni states in Africa and South-East Asia whose population know as much about Shiite ideology as they do about Confucianism or Zoroastrianism. Iran is attempting to persuade the youth in these countries to continue their religious and academic studies at Iranian universities and Hawzas [religious schools] is in order to pave the way for Iranian influence and intervention after these students return [from Iran] to their home countries.

An Arab liberal and nationalist intellectual friend once told me that by continually warning against Iranian policy, and its missionary strategy, Arab politicians and intellectuals were ultimately serving nobody other than Israeli plots which weaken the Arab world by occupying it with a futile struggle that has only losers. I told him you would be right if it were the large Sunni countries such as Saudi Arabia or Egypt that were interfering in Iranian affairs, spreading their ideologies within Iranian regions, and igniting sectarian riots there.

If when speaking of this thorny issue, the region’s politicians and intellectuals want to warn against the spread of sectarianism in Sunni states by warning Iran of sectarian expansion in Sunni states. And so by spreading Shiite missionaries in these states this causes the destabilization of the unique and cohesive sectarian character of countries such as Egypt and other Arab countries in North Africa, subjugating them to sectarian strife as is the case with other Muslim countries such as Iraq, Pakistan and Lebanon. If Iran truly does not see nay difference between its own sect and the Sunni sect, then why does it undertake all of these missionary activities and interventions in Sunni states?

I cannot imagine any Muslim country giving as many warnings against sectarian strife while at the same time promoting it as Iran has. Iran is always singing the praise of Islamic unity in its official statements, political speeches, and its conference recommendations, the latest of which was held in Tehran in support of the Gaza Strip. Unfortunately it is also holding an axe in its other hand to demolish this unity and destroy its foundation, and so Iran has not left one Arab or Islamic country safe from interference in one way or another. Iran has occupied three Emirati islands, and allowed its second tier politicians to announce their claim of Bahrain’s [historic] subjugation to Iran, in addition to its missionary activity which has continued unabated since the Iranian Revolution. All of these contribute – theoretically and practically – to the demolishing of the foundation of Islamic unity, and the ignition of sectarian strife. However Iran, with intelligence and erudition has managed to convince some that those who sincerely warn of the consequences of Iranian sectarian policies are the true source of sectarianism.

We will stand up for Iran whether it is innocent or guilty. If Iran is innocent than we will not allow Iran to be abused by its enemies no matter what they claim, besides this, Iran’s stability is the stability of the region. As for standing up for Iran if it is guilty, this is to restrain Iran from committing further abuse, according to the famous [Arab] proverb. Therefore we will not tire of warning against the evil consequences of Iran’s missionary activity and its expansionist plots against Islamic unity. If Iran concentrated on developing itself then this would benefit its own people, second only to the benefit to the countries in the region.