Turning Tides in the Middle East.
‘Kyun ke saas bhi Kabhi bahu thi (Because a mother-in-law was once a daughter-in-law, too)’ has become an old narrative in today’s advanced era, where individualism is paramount. But not in the case of global politics. Iran and Israel both are trying hard to occupy a mainstream position in Biden’s administration’s eyes. Wait__ am I forgetting something? Yes, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Where does she stand in this tussle between Saas (mother-in-law) and bahu (daughter-in-law)? Is there any space left for her or not, as, White House has cleared it like a crystal that no phone call is planned when asked whether Biden intends to phone Muhammad Bin Salman or not. The filling gaps in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) on one side and the Israeli threats on the other, are making it harder to answer ‘on which side the camel will sit?’ Iran seems in hurry too. If you are not clear yet whether who is saas, and who is bahu, then just keep reading the article as we will directly jump in this discussion with some mature understanding of the politics going on in the region of the Middle East.
“I haven’t exploited the idea to prepare several operational plans in addition to existing ones which we [have] developed throughout the coming year,” said Aviv Kochavi, the Israeli Defense Forces Chief of Staff, last month. “The power to initiate them lies with the political echelon. However, the offensive options need to be prepared ready, and on the table.” He added. “They just talk. They are leading a psychological warfare and have practically no plan, no capacity, not able to start a war. Our armed forces are trained to defend Iran. The different maneuvers that we have done are signs that we do not intend to attack nor go to war but that we are serious in defending our country,” is how Mahmoud Vaezi, the Iranian President Chief of Staff, responded. Such statements must make it clear for you that both the states are playing the game as fair as needed for their national interests. The war between Tel Aviv and Tehran is orally hot but practically cold, as both the states are mighty enough and cost massive damage to each other. But they are not in any mode to attack each other, believe me, I am sure of it. Now you can pass a smile, what a game politics is and has been.
Still wondering, who is saas? Don’t hustle, you are almost there. United States has always planned for her interests first, which is a fair game in international relations. But then what does Biden mean by ‘America is back, Diplomacy is back?’ You are wondering right. The answer is simple but not objective. Biden intends to take the driving seat again that Trump was reluctant to take. ‘America is back’ means that American foreign policy will be designed in the framework of making the ‘New World Order’ a fair world order under America, as it was dreamed by the Americans back in 1991 when US was the sole supreme power on planet Earth. This has made Israel and KSA a little nervous as they are making efforts since the 1990s to isolate Tehran and the isolation of Tehran is definitely against the dreamed fair world order.
Now you might get it right that America is playing the role of saas, as that are her intentions and policies that matter most in the Middle East or in the globe so far. Many scholars might disagree with my thoughts as they claim that America is an unfair husband with multiple wives, though liberals and seculars are against polygamy. Hamara kya! let’s keep reading. So if America is the saas then who is the bahu? They can be multiple. In the light of the first phrase of the very article, Iran suits the title of a bahu, as she was once a power and civilization, a saas then and a bahu now, surprisingly reversed relation. But in today’s Middle East it seems that Tehran, Tel Aviv, and Riyadh all want to be Washington’s eye’s shining stars. Though Tehran manages to keep its ego high as it is facing sanctions for decades now and its people are also glued with leadership due to that very glue, but that does not mean that Iran never wanted negotiations with US. Even she wants it today to settle the scores on the table instead of the global chessboard.
Talking about bahu number two, Israel has always played the role of a brat towards the United States instead of an obedient bahu. This might be the reason that Washington has got rid of her all times mean and illegitimate insistences. The relation between the US and Israel is not easy to be termed saas and bahu alone, as Tel Aviv is a reliable watchdog too. In the midst of conflicts in the oil rich region of the world, Washington can trust no nation more than Israel to serve her purposes. Therefore, bahu will be a subjective relation of Tel Aviv with Washington, whereas a brat or a watchdog can be more objective ones.
Now, what rank Riyadh enjoys in the eyes of her saas? Definitely a bad one. Why? Because, Biden had adopted a bluntly open narrative against Saudi Arabia’s involvement in the assassination of a journalist, Jamal Khashoggi. Now if Riyadh wants to enjoy the same status as she enjoyed during Trump’s tenure, then she has to consult bahu number two, Israel, which she did. In a nutshell, it is hard to comment on anything in general as the pressure cooker of the Middle East is still to blast.
To conclude, Israel for sure is disturbing Iran psychologically, whereas Saudi Arabia seems pro-west as usual. But you cannot say that Iran is not making any efforts to getting near to America again. As I mentioned in the article that Tehran wants the sanctions to get softer and for that, it is ready to come on the table, but reluctant to initiate the negotiations as it has to do some face-saving too. But the attitude of saas may change towards any of the bahus with the passage of time, as interests lead the alliances.