Tehran's Support Crucial in Fighting IS

Tehran's Support Crucial in Fighting IS Tehran's Support Crucial in Fighting IS

In an article published on the website of Al Jazeera on Saturday, the writer comments If US President Barack Obama thinks he can fight the Islamic State (IS) group without Iran's help, he is mistaken.  

Massoumeh Torfeh has made the comment in reference to the plan that Obama set out on Wednesday to combat IS militants in Syria and Iraq through forming an international coalition which includes a number of countries in the region but excludes Iran.   

"Confronting extremism in Iraq and Syria would not be possible by simply enlisting Arab nations and Sunni support especially in light of the CIA report, which says the number of Islamic State militants is three times what was assumed before," the writer says, adding, "Iran's support is vital to ensure the cooperation of the Shiite majority in Iraq, as well as approval from Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. In support of the Iraqi government, Iran has already provided much military cooperation and recently arrested Pakistani and Afghan nationals passing through to join the Islamic State group in Iraq".

The article also said, "Another major advantage in having Iran on board is to reduce tension in the region between Iran and Saudi Arabia. With the rapid rise to prominence of the Islamic State group, threatening to occupy the holy sites of Karbala, Najaf, Medina, and Mecca, Iran and Saudi Arabia realized they have a common enemy. They could see that any further expansion may change the map of the Islamic holy sites. So both countries have had to swallow their long-standing enmity and accept limited cooperation."