It was expected that Iran would seek alternative options to confront the effects of US sanctions. Of course, Iraq is one of Iran’s favorite destinations, not because of its geographical proximity, or because of the equal relations other countries follow in their relations, but because Iran considers Iraq as its backyard and there are people there who would serve Tehran with pleasure, motivated by religious ideology. Here is the danger of building regimes on religious and sectarian backgrounds as it is evident in the sectarian political mind, which controls the structure of the present Iraqi regime, which is prepared to provide all the economic demands of Iran, even at the expense of the needs of the Iraqi people.

Under the pressure of US sanctions on Iran, Iranian president Hassan Rouhani paid an official visit to Iraq yesterday. This visit was not like any normal ones that heads of state usually make to other sovereign countries, but a visit to collect Iraqis money and pressure their government to sign unfair agreements in order to save Iran’s economy from the deterioration caused by the consequences of US sanctions, which have almost dried up Iran’s financial resources, thanks to some ports it uses to derive revenues and pump exports.

Given the depth of the crisis in Iran and its need for substantial funding to offset collapses and meet future obligations, it can be said that Iraq, which Iran views as an inexhaustible treasure, will not be able solve the problem for the miserable situation it is experiencing, amid a rampant corruption and political instability, hence, Iran’s reliance on Iraq will be fruitless.

The money that Iran plans to plunder from Iraqi oil revenues will be leaked by the corruption of the ruling elite and will only reach Iran to be used to cover the costs of buying and silencing its allies and agents in Iraq.

Although the Iraqi people, with the long history, have nothing to do with what is going on and they have their priorities and difficulties that affect the basic infrastructure sectors such as electricity, water and infrastructure, however, the Iranian lobby continues to halt Iraqis from solving their crises so that Iraqi funds can continue to be pumped into Iran, in exchange for services that Iraq’s oil and lucrative revenues would have been able to accomplish and produce alternatives and stop wasting the Iraqis’ money on Iran’s failed regime.

For decades, since the mullahs took power in Iran, they have been translating their hatred of the Arabs through their destructive actions in Iraq, to the bitter war that erupted with the aim of exporting the Iranian revolution to the region by force. And after the withdrawal of the United States from Iraq, Iran found a foothold in the Iraqi scene, and continued its war against the Iraqis in other ways, foremost of which through looting Iraq’s wealth and supporting militias loyal to it there.

Now Rouhani is visiting Baghdad after he was preceded by Foreign Minister Javad Zarif who prepared sham agendas and agreements between the two countries, intended to legitimize the plundering of Iraqi wealth and make the people pay Tehran the price of the light in their lamps. This is only one of the agreements that expose the corruption of the ruling elite in Iraq, while revealing the magnitude of Iran’s terrible exploitation of Iraq.

It is known that Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif had resigned and has been complaining about violating his powers and stealing his role by the generals of the Revolutionary Guard, mainly by Qasem Soleimani, who boasts of his military tours in areas under the Iranian influence. No one knows in what mood or spirituality Zarif went to Baghdad to prepare for Rouhani’s visit and whether it was his broken spirit following the violation to his powers, has caused him to commit a diplomatic error, which was reported by the media, when he thanked the Iraqi government for not complying with the US sanctions against his country!

This dilemma, which Iran wants to implicate Iraq in, Iraqi politicians are rushing with great sympathy towards it, with motives can only be described within the system of religious and sectarian allegiance, at the expense of defending Iraq and committing to put the interests of its people in the forefront.

Al Mezmaah Studies & Research Centre

marsh 12, 2019