US injudicious and incorrect policies are the root cause of tensions in the Middle East: Iran

The Iranian Foreign Ministry has dismissed the “spiteful” anti-Iran remarks by the head of the US Central Command, saying Washington’s “injudicious and incorrect” policies are the root cause of tensions in the Middle East.


“The injudicious and incorrect US policies have been the main reason behind the volatile, tense and unstable situation in the Middle East region over the past decades and recent years,” Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Qassemi said on Saturday.

Addressing the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, General Joseph Votel, the head of the US Central Command (CENTCOM), alleged that Iran “aspires to be a regional hegemon and its forces and proxies oppose US interests in Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon, Gaza and Syria, and seek to hinder achievement of US objectives in Afghanistan and some Central Asian States.”

He added that the “wrong and meddlesome policies of US statesmen” have generated the current tensions in the region.

“These mistakes are themselves a product of US officials’ excessive demands and lack of correct understanding and perception of the strategic and sensitive region of the Middle East and a result of relentless support for the [Israeli] regime occupying Jerusalem al-Quds,” the Iranian spokesperson added.

He said allegations leveled by the US official against the Islamic Republic are merely an attempt to divert attention away from Washington’s role in the creation of terrorist groups.

Addressing the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday, General Joseph Votel, the head of the US Central Command (CENTCOM), alleged that Iran “aspires to be a regional hegemon and its forces and proxies oppose US interests in Iraq, Yemen, Lebanon, Gaza and Syria, and seek to hinder achievement of US objectives in Afghanistan and some Central Asian States.”

He claimed that Iran’s “influence is the most significant threat to Middle East Security.”

Qassemi said the unwise and malevolent conducts of the US are the root cause of the establishment of Takfiri terrorism and extremism and the emergence of terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda and Daesh are just a small part of the results of these policies.

The Iranian spokesman pointed out that even the US president, as the commander-in-chief of the country, had “openly, explicitly and repeatedly acknowledged and clarified [these policies] in the election campaign.”

In an interview in August 2016, US President Doland Trump reaffirmed his assertion that former US President Barack Obama had founded Daesh.

“No, I meant he’s the founder of ISIS (Daesh),” Trump said. “I do. He was the most valuable player. I give him the most valuable player award. I give her, too, by the way, Hillary Clinton.”

Qassemi added that the US is the biggest exporter and supplier of advanced weapons and military equipment to “certain governments in the region” and as such plays a significant and prominent role in the escalation of tensions, crises, warmongering, insecurity and political turmoil in some Western Asian countries.

The Iranian spokesperson said the consequences of such US policies can be clearly seen, monitored and judged by all the world.

– United States foreign policy in the Middle East –

United States foreign policy in the Middle East has its roots as early as the Barbary Wars in the first years of the U.S.’s existence, but became much more expansive after World War II. American policy during the Cold War tried to prevent Soviet Union influence by supporting anti-communist regimes and backing Israel against Soviet-sponsored Arab countries. The U.S. also came to replace theUnited Kingdom as the main security patron of the Persian Gulf states in the 1960s and 1970s, working to ensure Western access to Gulf oil. Since the 9/11 attacks of 2001, U.S. policy has included an emphasis on counter-terrorism. The U.S. has diplomatic relations with all countries in the Middle East except for Iran, whose 1979 revolution brought to power a staunchly anti-American regime.

Recent priorities of the U.S. government in the Middle East have included resolving the Arab–Israeli conflict and limiting the spread of weapons of mass destruction among regional states. More:

– List of modern conflicts in the Middle East –

This is a list of modern conflicts in the Middle East ensuing in the geographic and political region known as the Middle East. The “Middle East” is traditionally defined as the Fertile Crescent (Mesopotamia), Levant, and the Delta of the Nile and neighboring areas of Arabia, Anatolia and Iran. It currently encompasses the area from Egypt, Turkey and Cyprus in the west to Iran and the Persian Gulf in the east, and from Turkey and Iran in the north, to Yemen and Oman in the south.

  • Conflicts are separate incidents with at least 100 casualties, and are listed by total deaths, including sub-conflicts.
  • The term “modern” refers to the post-Ottoman period, in other words, since 1918.

List of conflicts

Years Conflict Location Casualties
1902–1932 Unification of Saudi Arabia [a] Flag of the Second Saudi State.svg Emirate of Riyadh
Flag of Hejaz 1917.svg Kingdom of Hejaz
Standard of the Emir of Kuwait, 1956.svg KuwaitiEmirate,
Flag of Nejd (1926).svg Sultanate of Nejd,
Jordan Emirate of Transjordan,
Iraq Mandatory Iraq
Flag of Nejd (1926).svg Kingdom of Nejd and Hejaz
1914–1918 Middle Eastern theatre of World War I Flag of Persia (1910-1925).svg Persia
Flag of Egypt (1882-1922).svg Sultanate of Egypt
Flag of the Second Saudi State.svg Emirate of Nejd and Hasa
Flag of the Emirate of Ha'il.svg Emirate of Jabal Shammar
Flag of Kuwait (1915-1956).svg Sheikhdom of Kuwait
Flag of the Sultanate of Lahej.svg Sultanate of Lahej
Ottoman flag.svg Ottoman Empire
Flag of the Democratic Republic of Armenia.svg Armenia
Flag of Azerbaijan.svg Azerbaijan
2,825,000[3][4][5]–5,000,000[6] (Ottoman Empire deaths including civilians). 1,000,000–1,500,000[citation needed](Allied killed, wounded, captured or missing)
1918–1922 Simko Shikak revolt[7] Flag of Persia (1910-1925).svg Persia 1,000–5,500
1919 Egyptian Revolution of 1919[8] Egypt Sultanate of Egypt 3,000
1919–1923 Turkish War of Independence [b]  Ottoman Empire
 Soviet Union
1919–2003 Iraqi-Kurdish conflict [c] Iraq
Iraq Iraq
Flag of Kingdom of Kurdistan (1922-1924).svg Kingdom of Kurdistan
139,000–320,000 killed
1920 Franco-Syrian War Flag of Kingdom of Syria (1920-03-08 to 1920-07-24).svg Arab Kingdom of Syria
Flag of Syria French mandate.svg OETA
1920 Iraqi revolt against the British[9][10] Iraq Mandatory Iraq 2,050–9,000
1921–1948[l] Sectarian conflict in Mandatory Palestine  Mandatory Palestine 7,813
1923 Adwan Rebellion JordanTransjordan 100
1924–1927 Great Syrian Revolt (Druze War)[11] Lebanese French flag.svg Greater Lebanon
State of Syria
Flag of Jabal ad-Druze (state).svg Jabal Druze
Alawite State
1925 Sheikh Said rebellion.[12]  Turkey 15,000–250,500
1930 Ararat rebellion[13][14][15][16][17]  Turkey
Kurdish flag (Khoiboun).png Republic of Ararat
1933 Simele massacre[18]  Kingdom of Iraq 3,000
1934 Saudi-Yemeni War[19]  Saudi Arabia
Flag of the Mutawakkilite Kingdom of Yemen.svgMutawakkilite Kingdom of Yemen
1935 Imam Reza shrine rebellion[20]  Iran 151
1935–1936 1935–36 Iraqi Shia revolts  Iraq 500
1935 1935 Yazidi revolt[18]  Iraq 200
1937 Dersim Rebellion[21][22]  Turkey 40,000–70,000
1939–1945 World War II (including the Anglo-Iraqi War, the Syria–Lebanon Campaign, and the Anglo-Soviet invasion of Iran)  Iraq
Iran Iran
Lebanese French flag.svg French Mandate for Syria and the Lebanon
 Mandatory Palestine
1946 Egyptian Student Riots[23][24] Egypt Egypt 100–300
1946 Iran crisis of 1946[2][12][e]  Iran
 Republic of Mahabad
Azerbaijan people's government flag.svg Azerbaijan People’s Government
1948– Arab–Israeli conflict[f] Egypt Egypt
Flag of Hejaz 1917.svg All-Palestine Government
 United Arab Republic
 Syrian Republic
 Ba’athist Syria
 Palestinian Authority
1948 Alwaziri coup[2] YemenMutawakkilite Kingdom of Yemen 4,000–5,000
1948 Al-Wathbah uprising  Iraq 300–400
1952 Egyptian Revolution of 1952[2] Egypt Egypt 1,000
1953 1953 Iranian coup d’état[2][12][25]  Iran 300–800
1954–1960 Jebel Akhdar War[12] Flag of Muscat.svg Sultanate of Muscat and Oman 100–523
1955–1963 Cypriot intercommunal violence[26][27]  Cyprus 400–600
1956–1960 Yemeni-Adenese clan violence[2]  Aden 1,000
1958 1958 Lebanon Crisis[2][8][27]  Lebanon 1,300–4,000
1958 1958 Iraqi Revolution[2]  Arab Federation 100
1959 1959 Mosul uprising[2] Iraq Iraqi Republic 2,000–4,000
1962–1970 North Yemen Civil War[28][29][g]  North Yemen 100,000–200,000
1962–1975 Dhofar Rebellion[12]  Oman 10,000
1963 1963 Riots in Iran[12]  Iran 100
1963 February 1963 Ba’athist Iraqi coup[30]  Iraq 1,000
1963 8th of March Syrian Revolution[31]  United Arab Republic
1963–1967 Aden Emergency[32]  Federation of South Arabia
 South Yemen
1963 November 1963 Iraqi coup [30]  Iraq 250
1964 1964 Hama riot[33][34]  Syria 70–100
1966 1966 neo-Ba’athist coup d’état in Syria[12]  Syria 400
1970–1971 Jordanian-Palestinian Civil War[27]  Jordan 2,000–25,000
1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus[19][35]  Cyprus 1,500–5,000
1975–1990 Lebanese Civil War[36][h]  Lebanon 150,000
1976–1979 Political violence in Turkey, 1970s[37][38][39]  Turkey 5,000–5,388
1978- Kurdish–Turkish conflict (1978-present)[40]  Turkey
 Iraqi Kurdistan
1979 Iranian Revolution[41][42]  Iran 3,164–60,000
1979–1980 Consolidation of the Iranian Revolution[i]  Iran 10,171
1979–1983 Saudi Eastern Province unrest[43]  Saudi Arabia 182–219
1979 Grand Mosque Seizure[44]  Saudi Arabia 307
1979-1982 Islamist uprising in Syria  Syria 40,000+
1980 1980 Turkish coup d’état[45][46]  Turkey 127–550
1980 Sadr uprising[47]  Iraq 1,000–30,000
1980–1988 Iran–Iraq War[19][48][j]  Iran
1986 South Yemen Civil War[49]  South Yemen 5,000–12,000
1986 1986 Egyptian Conscription Riot[50]  Egypt 107
1986 1986 Damascus bombings[51]  Syria 204
1987 Iranian pilgrim riot (Mecca massacre)[52]  Saudi Arabia 402
1987–1988 ANO Executions  Lebanon
1989–1996 KDPI insurgency (1989–96)  Iran 168-503
1990–1991 Gulf War[36]  Iraq
 Saudi Arabia
1991 1991 uprisings in Iraq[47][53]  Iraq 50,000–100,000
1994 1994 civil war in Yemen  Yemen 7,000–10,000
1995– Islamic Insurgency in Saudi Arabia  Saudi Arabia 300
1998 Operation Desert Fox[26][27] (Iraqi no-fly zones)  Iraq 2,000
1999 1999 Shia uprising in Iraq[12][54]  Iraq 100–200
2003–2011 Iraq War[55][56][57][58][59][60][k] Iraq Ba’athist Iraq
Iraq Iraq
2004 Qamishli massacre (2004)[61][62]  Syria 30–100
2004–2014 Shia insurgency in Yemen[63][64][65]  Saudi Arabia
2004–2015 Iran–PJAK conflict[66]  Iran
 Iraqi Kurdistan
2006– Fatah–Hamas conflict[67][68]  Palestinian Authority
Flag of Hamas.svg Gaza Strip
2007 Nahr al-Bared fighting  Lebanon 480
2008 2008 Lebanon conflict  Lebanon 105
2009–2015 South Yemen Insurgency[69]  Yemen 2,100+
2009–2010 Iranian election protests[70]  Iran 72–150
2010–2015 Yemeni al-Qaeda crackdown[71][72]  Yemen 3,000+
2011 2011 Bahraini uprising  Bahrain 100+
2011-2014 Egyptian crisis (2011–14)[m]  Egypt 5,540+
2011– Yemeni Crisis (2011–present)  Yemen 9,000+
2011– Syrian Civil War[n]  Syria 250,000-470,000+
2011– Syrian Civil War spillover in Lebanon  Lebanon ~800
2014- Iraq War[n]  Iraq
2016– 2016 West Iran clashes  Iran
 Iraqi Kurdistan
2016 2016 Turkish coup d’état attempt  Turkey 270-350