As the Syrian government’s brutal crackdown on anti-regime protestors intensifies and President Bashar al-Assad faces increasing criticism from allies, many are watching Iran’s response. Will the isolated Islamic Republic support its important friend until the end or distance itself from the Syrian regime’s sinking ship?
According to Iranian-Israeli Middle East analyst Meir Javedanfar: “[t]he moment the Iranian leader realises that Assad’s situation is not salvageable, he will leave him.” Javedanfar says that the break will happen behind the scenes while the Iranian government continues its supportive posturing publicly.
In an August 14 Guardian article Javendanfar writes:
Khamenei will not commit political suicide by staying with Assad until the last moment. Doing so would be very damaging for the regime’s interests. Iran is becoming more isolated every day. It does not need a new enemy in Damascus in the event of Assad’s fall, especially when this could impact on its ability to supply weapons to Hezbollah through Syrian territory (not to mention relations with Hamas and Islamic Jihad, which it conducts through its offices in Damascus). It could also lose access to its economic interests in Syria.
Read the entire piece here.