Alwaght- The French President Emmanuel Macron's first visit of the Persian Gulf region to take part in opening ceremony of Louvre Abu Dhabi museum was not without sidelines. During his surprise visit to Saudi Arabia, Macron made anti-Iranian comments.
Talking to the Sky New Arabia news network, the French president took aim at the Iranian missiles program, claiming it to be source of “extremely strong concerns.” He added that there is a need to discuss with Iran its missile-related activities.
"It's not about showing any naivety towards Iran, it is about standing beside our allies, in particular the United Arab Emirates. But it is also about not having a diehard policy that could create imbalances or even conflicts in the region," the French leader was quoted as saying.
He earlier made similar claims against Tehran, including in September United Nations General Assembly when he talked to the CNN, calling the Iranian missile developments as posing a threat to the whole region, and suggesting that he wanted to open negotiations immediately on what happens after the limitations to the nuclear accord begin to be lifted in 2025.
Macron’s remarks echo stances taken by other European leaders who, while expressing support for the 2015 nuclear accord, lay worries at the feet of the Iranian missiles. For example, during a phone call, Prime Minister Theresa May of Britain and Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany agreed to remain firmly committed to the nuclear deal.
"They also agreed the international community needed to continue to come together to push back against Iran's destabilizing regional activity, and to explore ways of addressing concerns about Iran's ballistic missile program." May's spokeswoman noted.
They further said that the program is contrary to the security interests of Europe, adding that they were ready to closely work with the US and other partners on the issue.
All these comments by the European leaders signal that Europe is eyeing to raise the missile program as a new challenge with Tehran, two years after decade-long nuclear question ended in a deal.
EU and US in full coordination
Europe’s triggering of the Iranian missile plan comes in line with the American policies. The EU and US relations have been negatively affected after Trump’s assumption of power. He controversially showed support for the British exit from the EU, known as Brexit. He also showed backing to the split tendencies within the common market Europe. And moreover, adopted a soft tone in dealing with Russia. All these drove a wedge in the relations of the old allies on the two sides of the Atlantic. But security, military, economic, political, and ideological bonds between the two make the European governments have the back of Washington's policies on the major international cases. The Western leaders' convergence of approach Iran's missiles program is explainable through this logic.
Opening new case against Tehran
The Western propagandistic campaign against the Iranian missile developments is part of plans to pave the way for a new scenario. Seeing the nuclear issue a closed case, the US-led West is trying to open a new path of confrontation of the Islamic Republic. All of the reports made by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) as the only reference watching the Iranian nuclear program confirm the Iranian nuclear program is peaceful. On the other side, Europe by approving Iran deal, officially dubbed Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), is politically stripped of excuses to continue blackening campaign against Tehran nuclear activities. In these conditions, the missile program provides the West with a scope to stage new controversy with Tehran.
Iran’s defense enhancement legitimate and necessary
The recent postures of Europe and the US against the domestically-developed Iranian missiles comes while Tehran’s boosting of its defense capabilities is rated logical and legitimate within the framework of the international treaties and conventions. Tehran argues that its military spending is far behind the huge military purchases of the neighboring countries that buy Western arms. Very recent example is Saudi Arabia that in May signed with the US a huge deal of arms worth $100 billion. Over the past few years, other Arab countries reached similar deals of military purchases with Washington to develop their military potentials. The UAE, for instance, sealed a deal in 2008 with the Americans to acquire Patriot missile defense systems.
So, while the other regional countries are in sustained effort to bolster their military strength, the Islamic Republic finds it highly logical to shore up its defense might. With arms sanctions imposed on it over the course of the past decades, Tehran moved towards designing domestic defense mechanism and deterrence network, including work on promoting its missile defense.
The West raises its voice in questioning of the Iranian missile development while it turns blind eye to the Israeli resistance to international calls to join the Non-Proliferation Treaty as well as development of a large arsenal of nuclear warheads, something not only posing threats to the regional security but also setting up roadblocks ahead of international peace efforts.
The anti-Iranian Western, and specifically American, belligerence has no sight of ending, something frequently highlighted by the Iranian officials. Their problem is originally with the very Islamic Republic that is opposed to colonialist and domineering policies across the world. Nuclear case was closed but this marked no end to their anti-Iranian attitudes. The West now questions Iranian missile program, and there is an expectation that if this case is concluded, they will bring forth another issue. Westerner powers want a submissive Iran, similar to such countries as Saudi Arabia and its allies. The West wants a milk cow, as Trump put it referring to the Arab sheikhdoms that have wealth of oil, which is valuable as long as it gives milk. The West is angry with Iranian questioning of the global arrogance. This has been the Western governments' nature for hundreds of years, and so they are expected to continue anti-Tehran pressures and hostility.