Strategic Objectives of Saudi Arabia for Fanning Tension in Lebanon

2021/11/13 | Note, political, top news

Strategic Council Online- Opinion: Any effort aimed at economic collapse of the coalition government is at first stage a kind of investment made by Saudi Arabia for the next Lebanese election in March 2022. Hossein Sayahi, Researcher, International Affairs

George Kordahi, the person supported by Hezbollah who now assumes the post of the minister of information of Lebanon, took position towards the Yemeni war in a TV program and declared that the attack of Saudi Arabia to Yemen is a clear example of assault and Yemenis are also defending their own country.

Following this position, Saudi Arabia declared last week that she was going to stop imports from Lebanon and sent a message to the Lebanese ambassador to leave Saudi Arabia within 48 hours. The decision was followed and repeated by Bahrain, UAE and Kuwait.

This was the latest measure taken by Saudi Arabia in connection with Lebanon that many analysts have interpreted it not merely as a reaction to the viewpoints of the Lebanese minister but as a measure planned to change the regional balance particularly in competition with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

This is the case while the measure can intensify the spiraling economic crisis in Lebanon because Saudi Arabia and her allegiant regional countries are considered to be big markets for Lebanese made commodities, as the volume of imports to three countries of Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and UAE amounted to nearly $ 750 million in 2020.

Moreover, severance of relations with Lebanon may create increasing problems for 350000 Lebanese working in these countries.

Despite the efforts made by the Prime Minister and President of Lebanon to reduce tensions with Saudi Arabia and convincing the country to change her mind in connection with the severance of relations with Lebanon, Foreign Minister of Saudi Arabia has announced that the issue was far beyond the expression of an idea by a minister and the decision by Saudi Arabia was not made to react to the issue, but based on the situation that Lebanon was placed in.

He underscored that interaction between the two countries is neither constructive nor useful as long as the Lebanese government finds a solution to disentangle it from the present political structure of the country in which Hezbollah plays an instrumental role. In views of such expression of view, now one may ask the question what are the factors to cause Saudi Arabia make such a decision?

Hezbollah Upper-hand

As countries like Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Lebanon are said to be the regional field of competition between Saudi Arabia and the Islamic Republic of Iran, and in view of Iran’s support to Hezbollah and strengthening of political positions of Hezbollah within the recent years, Saudi Arabia has decided to practice a kind of balance change in this field. Now, Riyadh hopes to make a change through which the situation will lead to reverse to her interests at least in Lebanon.

Lebanon is a field competition in which Saudi household is not willing to have a little chance, like Yemen, for success. As mentioned earlier, the main problem of Saudi Arabia in Lebanon is Hezbollah supremacy over political foundations as well as its noticeable popular base in the country, an organization that is seen by Saudis as allegiant and valuable regional partner of Iran as their most traditional and the largest competitor.

In this connection, Joseph Bahout an expert on the Middle East at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace believes that Saudis know well that in relation to Lebanon they do not want just one thing; i.e. Iran’s influence in the country but they do not know what they have to do against such influence.

Despite the Sunni Muslims are the majority of population in Lebanon but after the assassination of Rafiq Hariri as her powerful ally in 2005, Saudi Arabia has not managed to create a noticeable influence through an integrated proxy ally in Lebanon so far, the influence that according to evidences, Iran has achieved by Hezbollah.

Thus, vis-à-vis Iran’s influence in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia has always adopted a policy to approach the central government and make effort to weaken Hezbollah’s positions in Lebanese political foundations. Now, in view of the recent failures, it seems that Saudi Arabia does not consider the continuation of such policy useful and has tried to weaken and or collapse the government of Lebanon which is seen by the country as strongly influenced by Hezbollah, the decision that pursues certain objectives and results.

From this point of view, any effort aimed at economic collapse of the coalition government is at first stage a kind of investment made by Saudi Arabia for the next Lebanese election in March 2022. Since Western countries have also expressed their explicit support to the next election to be held in due time, Riyadh believes that weakening of living sustenance and also economic collapse as well as political struggles in Lebanon may lead to  weakened position of Hezbollah and her allies among voters who enjoy to have the majority in Lebanon.

On the other side, Saudi measure to isolate Lebanon under relative dominance of Hezbollah may lead to a kind of agreement between Saudis and the Zionist regime on their common objectives; the two sides have common views on breaking Iran’s influence in Lebanon and also weakening Hezbollah’s circumstance, the situation that seems to be attractive but challenging for Saudi Arabia.

Approaching the Zionist regime, especially in regional security arrangements will cost a lot for Saudi Arabia, the costs that Saudi Arabia is not willing to pay because of her economic plans in 2030 perspective. Moreover, this will be unacceptable for the public opinions of Muslim societies.

Having remembered the unsuccessful experience to siege Qatar and also pressing Sa’ad Hariri to resign after his failure to confront Hezbollah in 2017, it seems that Saudi Arabia is unable to demonstrate a noticeable achievement in connection with Lebanon this time to change the regional balance in competition with Iran. However, the efforts made by Saudi Arabia to flex her muscle in Lebanon should not be taken easily.

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

LATEST CONTENT

The impact of recent Turkish elections on the political future of the ruling party

Strategic Council Online—Opinion: Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the President of Turkiye, on the same night that he won the second round of the presidential elections in May 2023, told the crowd of his supporters, “We love Istanbul, we started our journey to this city, and we will continue it.” At the same time, he wanted to take back the Istanbul Municipality from the rival and kept repeating that we will take back Istanbul. Erdogan referred to the Istanbul Municipality, which his party lost in 2019 elections of this metropolis and the economic capital of Turkiye, to his Republican opponent, Akram Imamoglu.
Siyamak Kakaee—Researcher of Turkiye affairs

Netanyahu’s Internal Challenges

Strategic Council Online – Opinion: The increasing trend of political and security “challenges” in the Zionist regime is one of the “important consequences” of the Gaza war.
Hamid Khoshayand – expert on regional issues

An Analysis on Dimensions of European Support for Ukraine

Strategic Council Online – Opinion: In the wake of the war in Ukraine, which has affected the international community, especially Europe, the leaders of the three EU member states, France, Germany, and Poland, recently agreed to increase efforts to purchase and produce weapons in Ukraine.
Hossein Sayahi – International Researcher

An Analysis of the Recent Elections in Turkey

Strategic Council Online—Opinion: Turkey’s March 31 local elections, which ended with the opposition’s victory and Erdogan’s party’s defeat, is considered an important “decisive point” in the future of Turkey’s domestic and foreign policy developments.
It determines the fate of several important political issues, in addition to the election of mayors and local managers for the next five years.
Hamid Khosayand – expert on regional issues

The strategy of the Israeli regime to get rid of the defeat in Gaza

Strategic Council Online-Opinion: It has been about six months since the Israeli regime attacked the Gaza Strip in October 2023. In the initial weeks and months of the attack, many analysts believed that the Israeli regime, based on its usual practice in wars after the Palestinian intifada, would agree to a truce and end the war after inflicting multiple casualties and damages.
Mohammad Mehdi Mazaheri—University professor

Europe’s confusion over the war in Ukraine

Strategic Council Online-Interview: An expert on European issues said that on the second anniversary of the Russian army’s attack on Ukraine, the leaders of the governments of Canada, Italy, and Belgium, along with the head of the European Union Commission traveled to Kiev to express solidarity with the people of Ukraine, and during this trip, the Italian Prime Minister signed a 10=year defense-security agreement with Ukraine. After signing a similar agreement with Kyiv, Canada’s Prime Minister promised more than $2.25 billion in financial and military aid to the Ukrainian authorities this year. Earlier, France and Germany had signed similar defense contracts with Ukraine.

Consequences of the escalation of militarization in the South Caucasus

Strategic Council Online—Opinion: In recent months, we have seen Armenia and Azerbaijan strengthen new military-security arrangements. The two countries are developing military and security relations and exchanges with European and extra-regional countries within an “escalating process.” Strengthening the weapons arsenals, reviewing membership in some military pacts, and increasing military purchases are among these measures.
Barsam Mohammadi- Expert of regional issues

Loading

Últimas publicaciones

The impact of recent Turkish elections on the political future of the ruling party

Strategic Council Online—Opinion: Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the President of Turkiye, on the same night that he won the second round of the presidential elections in May 2023, told the crowd of his supporters, “We love Istanbul, we started our journey to this city, and we will continue it.” At the same time, he wanted to take back the Istanbul Municipality from the rival and kept repeating that we will take back Istanbul. Erdogan referred to the Istanbul Municipality, which his party lost in 2019 elections of this metropolis and the economic capital of Turkiye, to his Republican opponent, Akram Imamoglu.
Siyamak Kakaee—Researcher of Turkiye affairs

Netanyahu’s Internal Challenges

Strategic Council Online – Opinion: The increasing trend of political and security “challenges” in the Zionist regime is one of the “important consequences” of the Gaza war.
Hamid Khoshayand – expert on regional issues

An Analysis on Dimensions of European Support for Ukraine

Strategic Council Online – Opinion: In the wake of the war in Ukraine, which has affected the international community, especially Europe, the leaders of the three EU member states, France, Germany, and Poland, recently agreed to increase efforts to purchase and produce weapons in Ukraine.
Hossein Sayahi – International Researcher

An Analysis of the Recent Elections in Turkey

Strategic Council Online—Opinion: Turkey’s March 31 local elections, which ended with the opposition’s victory and Erdogan’s party’s defeat, is considered an important “decisive point” in the future of Turkey’s domestic and foreign policy developments.
It determines the fate of several important political issues, in addition to the election of mayors and local managers for the next five years.
Hamid Khosayand – expert on regional issues

The strategy of the Israeli regime to get rid of the defeat in Gaza

Strategic Council Online-Opinion: It has been about six months since the Israeli regime attacked the Gaza Strip in October 2023. In the initial weeks and months of the attack, many analysts believed that the Israeli regime, based on its usual practice in wars after the Palestinian intifada, would agree to a truce and end the war after inflicting multiple casualties and damages.
Mohammad Mehdi Mazaheri—University professor

Europe’s confusion over the war in Ukraine

Strategic Council Online-Interview: An expert on European issues said that on the second anniversary of the Russian army’s attack on Ukraine, the leaders of the governments of Canada, Italy, and Belgium, along with the head of the European Union Commission traveled to Kiev to express solidarity with the people of Ukraine, and during this trip, the Italian Prime Minister signed a 10=year defense-security agreement with Ukraine. After signing a similar agreement with Kyiv, Canada’s Prime Minister promised more than $2.25 billion in financial and military aid to the Ukrainian authorities this year. Earlier, France and Germany had signed similar defense contracts with Ukraine.

Consequences of the escalation of militarization in the South Caucasus

Strategic Council Online—Opinion: In recent months, we have seen Armenia and Azerbaijan strengthen new military-security arrangements. The two countries are developing military and security relations and exchanges with European and extra-regional countries within an “escalating process.” Strengthening the weapons arsenals, reviewing membership in some military pacts, and increasing military purchases are among these measures.
Barsam Mohammadi- Expert of regional issues

Loading