Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Opinion (Julian Borger): Surprising partners among Tehran's layer of alliances

When Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, vowed this week to hit back at American interests around the world if Iran was attacked, it was no empty threat.
More than at any time in the life of the Islamic republic, Iran is positioned to inflict significant pain on the US and its allies in many places at the same time.

US stumbling in the Middle East has strengthened and emboldened Iran. On top of an array of patron-client relationships with powerful Shia groups, like Hizbullah in Lebanon, the Badr brigades and the Mahdi army in Iraq, Tehran has built a new layer of alliances with some more surprising partners among the Sunni jihadists. It has forged a relationship with Hamas in Gaza, and even appears to have developed links with the Taliban.

Read the rest at the Guardian