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Iran’s Role in the Middle East: Continuity and Change

Iran’s Role in the Middle East: Continuity and Change
1st October 2008 ICSR Team
In Seminars

Speaking as part the ICSR’s look at radicalised regimes, Dr. Haim Koren, recently departed Director of Political Planning for the Israeli Foreign Ministry, presented an analysis of Iran’s position in Middle East politics in the past and present. Koren presented an illuminating view of Middle East history, fitting in battles between Sunni and Shia Islam, regional and tribal rivalries in recent centuries, and global power politics in the present day. Speaking through his own experience as an Israeli diplomat, Koren suggested that Iran’s motivations in seeking nuclear weapons and exerting control in Syria and Lebanon are part of a wider ambition of seeking Middle East hegemony, adding that cultivating a shared hostility toward Israel is a way for Iran to bypass many of the schisms between the Sunni/Shiite and Arab/Persian worlds.

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