We know that Israel has many detractors in the Middle East. We know that Palestine is one of them because of territorial, historical, and cultural issues, and that Hamas, the de facto ruler of the Gaza Strip, indicated this week that it does not recognize Israel as a state. The same is true of Hezbollah, the Lebanese political-military organization that seeks the disappearance of Israel: “Our fight will end only when this entity ceases to exist. We do not recognize any agreement with Israel, no ceasefire, nor have any peace agreement,” said its 1985 manifesto.
Behind these two organizations, the drums of war in Iran can be heard. Iran, the main enemy of the United States and Israel, strongly supports Palestinian independence and is the founder of Hezbollah. Is Iran behind Hamas attacks on Israel? So far, Gaza has assured that neither Tehran nor Hezbollah helped plan Saturday’s coup.
Where did this conflict between Israel and Iran come from? Before 1979, the countries enjoyed good relations, with commercial collaboration and political relations. But that year, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last Shah of Persia (the title given to Iranian monarchs), was overthrown in Iran. Reza Pahlev maintains close ties with the United States, so Israel’s friendship goes hand in hand. However, after the fall of the Shah, a Shiite Muslim revolutionary regime was established against American imperialism and Israeli Zionism. The tension is high.
Iran’s new leaders see the United States and Israel as immoral and a threat to Islam and the nation’s security. In addition, Israel supported the Shah during the Iranian revolution, so the current leaders strongly reject the Jewish state.
The creation of Hezbollah
In 1982, Israel invaded Lebanon. Iran then sent the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, a branch of the army, to Lebanon to support Lebanese and Palestinian forces facing Israel. Over time, these forces became Lebanon’s largest army, Hezbollah, with parliamentary representation in Beirut.