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Realism…Finally - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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After the 2006 war in Lebanon, which took place in the wake of Hezbollah’s kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers and claimed the lives of nearly a thousand and two hundred Lebanese, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah came out in response to a Saudi statement at the time, which had described the war as a Hezbollah “adventure”, to say that: “you gamble on your reason and we will gamble on our adventure”.

After that the principle of realism or rationality was turned into an insult, thanks to the Iranian media machine and its affiliates in our region, it became synonymous with subservience and surrender. It was emptied of all its content like other terms that have fallen victim to the Islamists, Arabists, the resistance movement and others with false slogans. Realism became an accusation that could spell the end of anyone who adopted it, or a sign that they were agents of Israel or America, but now all has changed. These days realism has become an Iranian commodity, purely because of the situation in Syria! Today, quite simply, Iran has come out calling for a conference to be held on the situation in Syria, with Tehran saying that only those with “realistic positions” towards what is happening will be invited! Now, thank God, realism has become a necessity for Iran and its agents in the region, even though this same realism was considered a shortcoming in the past; a cause for condemnation towards all those who advocated it…Now Iran and its agents in the region have become realistic! But is there really any element of realism in all that Iran does in Gaza, Yemen, Lebanon, Iraq, Qatif in eastern Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Morocco, Egypt and so on? One might say that Iran must be a superpower in order to intervene in all these countries, but the answer is simple. Iran does not intervene to build, rather to destroy, exploiting sectarianism, its agents and terrorists. Sabotage is easier than building of course.

Therefore, the question now is what kind of realists, or rationalists, would answer Iran’s invitation to attend a conference on Syria? Anyone with an ounce of rationality will refuse to participate in a meeting that is purely intended to justify al-Assad’s crimes against the unarmed Syrians. Anyone who acts on the contrary has nothing to do with realism at all, which has now become a necessity for Iran.

The truth is that we must not only chastise Iran and Hezbollah for advocating realism today after cursing it in the past, but we should also chastise all those who believed them in our region, from politicians to intellectuals. Ever since the assassination of Rafik Hariri, through to the 2006 war in Lebanon, the Gaza war and other events in our region, we have read and heard shameful rhetoric from certain politicians and intellectuals who have justified Iran and Hezbollah, and al-Assad of course, and their crimes in the region. These intellectuals and politicians were deceived by the false slogans of the Iranian alliance, such as opposition and resistance, and unfortunately certain Saudi writers were among these intellectuals, both academic and non-academic. Should they not be ashamed of their populist stances now, especially as they hear Iran advocating realism when it considered it a disgrace in the past?

Thus the conference that Iran has called for today regarding Syria ought to be named the “conference for those implicated in the fall of al-Assad”, rather than a conference of realists, because Tehran’s allies, or those who believe them in our region, cannot be considered realistic or rational in any way.

Tariq Alhomayed

Tariq Alhomayed

Tariq Alhomayed is the former editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat. Mr. Alhomyed has been a guest analyst and commentator on numerous news and current affair programs, and during his distinguished career has held numerous positions at Asharq Al-Awsat, amongst other newspapers. Notably, he was the first journalist to interview Osama Bin Ladin's mother. Mr. Alhomayed holds a bachelor's degree in media studies from King Abdul Aziz University in Jeddah. He is based in London.

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