'Iranian Chaos' in Bahrain
23 August 2016
By Salman Al-dossary
While ink is still wet on the order stripping Shi'ite cleric Isa Qasim of
citizenship, Iran rushed into proving Bahrain's sovereign decision right. At
first, the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs fiercely defended Qasim and
condemned the ''arbitrary'' decision, after that it was Iranian Parliament
Speaker Ali Larijani who said that Bahrain had doomed its regime to a fatality
by withdrawing Qasim's citizenship, considering it an ultimate crime against
Doing Bahrain another favor, IRGC's major general Qasem Soleimani, notorious
for leading sectarian bigoted militias in Iraq and Syria, directly threatened
an armed bloodthirsty ''resistance'' showing up in Bahrain, both motivated by
the Qasim incident and violence.
Not only do those declarations prove Iran's wanton interference in the affairs
of neighboring countries, but they also define its unwarranted policy for
openly supporting armed movements. Once again Iran operates unlike any other
country in this world.
''For by your words you will be acquitted, and by your words thou shalt be
condemned,'' — the Bahrain administration would thus acknowledge the great
service given by its Iranian peer.
Although I do not believe in the method of stripping anyone from citizenship,
and that the measure should not be hackneyed, the principals on humanitarian
rights decree that one cannot overlook a person backed by a foreign government
and who supports chaos in his or her own country.
Should Bahrain release Qasim, after knowing that he purposely incites strife
among its citizens, violates the law and compromises civil peace? Should the
Manama government corroborate political reform at the cost of overlooking
Despite citizenship being a duly right which everyone must take into
consideration, no one is above the law. The security and safety of a nation
and its people are forever an ultimate priority.
Isa Qasim headed a foreign-led religious organization which violates national
constitution and law, abuses other sects in Bahrain, strikes social elements,
and targets national unity. Hence the decision on stripping Qasim's
citizenship is part of Bahrain's strategy on fighting terrorism.
All attempts on distorting Bahrain's image, forging facts and downplaying its
counterterrorism efforts must be drawn to a stop. Not for the sake of saving
Bahrain itself, as much as it is to protect the whole region from the daily
strain of terrorism it faces.
With the world becoming a fertile ground nurturing loud contradictions, some
countries sought opportunity in Qasim's loss of citizenship to accuse Bahrain
of inciting sectarian strife, violence, and compromising the nation's best
interest. The accusations are quite politically strange, given the principals
of national loyalty were unheeded. The same Western countries criticizing
Bahrain for stripping the citizenship of a person, who proved to be inciting
violence and hatred, have a history in revoking the citizenship of those who
had earned it, after sensing the slightest danger against their national
security. Exercising rights of sovereignty was without hesitation.
It is as if Western countries are alone allowed to lecture humanitarian rights
and principals, without even allowing others any justification, while
alternatively – when it's the West's turn- all is fair in the name of fighting
terrorism and protecting national security and stability.
It is time for the Manama government to rest assured. It is not obliged to
either explain or clarify its decision to strip Isa Qasim from his
nationality, especially after Iran has provoked a so-called ''revolution'' in
the Kingdom of Bahrain. Iranian stances play the best defense to Bahrain's
Salman Aldosary is the editor-in-chief of Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper.