Cold War in The Islamic World Saudi Arabia, Iran & The Struggle For Supremacy

In the Muslim World, there is ongoing rivalry in the shape of the cold war between Saudi Arabia and Iran. This rivalry series continued for a couple of decades and competing for influence in the Middle Eastern Region. Now these days, this conflict gains momentum not only in the public eye but also erupting at the international level like post-Arab-Spring that was erupted in 2011. Moreover, the roots of this hostility are much deeper between Tehran and Riyadh in an ideological conflict that is Shia-Sunni demarcation. This ideological demarcation was the back to the late 1960s and 1970s when the Shah of Iran tried to moderate Iran as the gendarme for the Persian Gulf. American President Richard Nixon once stated that” the cold war isn’t thawing; it is burning with deadly heat” though he described at that time in the context of US-Soviet context presently this statement is applying inappropriate manners in the rivalry between Saudi-Arabia and Iran. Meanwhile, these two formidable countries in the Middle East region have diverse histories like in Saudi’s perspective this conflict is on the basis of sectarianism but in Iran’s view, this is nothing but a clash between illegal monarchy and the own Islamic Republic of Iran. This toxic quagmire between two giants of the Islamic World is detecting the roots with the geopolitical composition for securing hegemony and the contemporary game between them is oil-fired. Nevertheless, we trace the hope of this Islamic cold-war likely to end at any time with positive vibes between Shia-Iran ideology and Sunni-Saudi-Arabia.

Broadly speaking, the Iranian-Saudi race in the contemporary scenario is relying on a socio-economic hybrid and dominance in surroundings. Meanwhile, Iran is expanding its boundaries in Syria, Lebanon, and Iraq for seeking influence while the super-active role of Saudi Arabia in terms of intervention in Yemen and destabilization of Lebanon. Another picture of Saudi-Arabia’s leadership efficiency is the isolation of Qatar at the international level. Another general view about these both Islamic giants is promoting proxy wars and military forces in the Middle East, Africa, and even in South-Asia. In the context of the cold-war between Tehran and Riyadh are sectarian shoot and coil histories for those who speak Arabic and others who speak Persian. If we take look at Saudi frame with their neighboring countries in religious differences, this difference provides the Wahhabism (wahhabi house) of Saud’s hostility to another ideology Shiassim. Thus, ruling elites of formidable Iran is complaining about the illegitimate rule of un-Islamic outfits and monarchy. However, Iran is also playing diplomacy and bordering militant forces like Hezbollah and also deploying Revolutionary Guards in the Syrian war with the back of Russia. This was done due to American president Bush’s sudden invasion in Iraq in 2003. Above all, at that time Iran adopting the policy of expansionism. Nonetheless, efficient leadership of Saudi-Arabia Mohammad Bin Sulman has responded in multiple directions in which he actively intervened in Yemen and also focused on domestic reforms in which he fared well foreigners and reopening of cinemas plus ending the restriction on women’s driving. These domestic reforms are contributing the Sulman’s positive image not only internationally but also Saudi’s strong profile.

The Middle Eastern is the region with oil-rich resources, therefore, multiple challenges and simple depictions even some deep-rooted difficulties existed with various patterns. There is a monumental task for capturing the conflicting relationship between Riyadh and Tehran in a single writing. This is not only the number of twists and deep turns in this conflicting saga but also because of multidimensional hostility between them. In the realist paradigm, actually this the struggle between two regional giants for the purpose of taking control of the Persian Gulf and even on the main part of the Middle East. However, we can say, it is the computation between the two competing religious ideologies and identities in the shape of Sunnism and Wahabism. Although, this ideological identity is immensely important in the context of hegemony because both rivalry states Iran and Saudi are contumelies battling to maintain their own influence and identity in the regime. They not only want to maintain their own ideological standards domestically but also want to promote in the international sphere. Thus, in a cold-war scenario number of threats posed due to losing grounds and these threats can become the cause of difficult survival in the regime. Additionally, these two hostilities are also competitors in the OPEC( organization of the petroleum exporting countries) where their same dimensions in economic composition and political endowments have left them for opposing each other’s interests. Moreover, with adequate capacity and highly economic crisis, Iran has been pursued historically favoring high demand and supply chains with higher quotas. Conversely, on the other side, Saudi-Arabia is playing petro-dollar diplomacy in the market for seeking strong influence. For this purpose, Saudi- Arabia is taking efficient steps with superior reserves and poor production cost and focusing on long-term share in the market. Owing to taking these efficiency measures, Riyadh wants to gain maximum profit immediately. For instance, the Iranian-Saudi rivalry is still ongoing because Iran’s support for Hezbollah is opposing Saudi’s interest and frustrate the further situation between both states.


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