THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: Just as World War I and World War II had defined alliances and counter alliances, the same could be said of the war brewing in the middle east, which if escalated, threatens to become World War III.
The Axis Powers
President Bush originally defined the “axis of evil” as Iraq, Iran and North Korea back in his 2002 State of the Union address. Since then, one of those powers (Iraq) has been taken out, and now a third (and weaker) power (Syria) has taken it’s place. The Axis Powers of the looming WWIII are now Iran, Syria and North Korea. Let’s examine each one.
Iran is an Islamic theocracy run by religious mullahs. Since it’s violent revolution in the late 1970s, Iran has been the premier sponsor of worldwide Islamic terrorism. Virtually every Islamic terror organization in the world has links (directly or indirectly) to Iran. The country’s President serves more as a puppet mouthpiece for the ruling mullahs, and has little power of his own. Rest assured; what the President of Iran says publicly, is exactly what the ruling mullahs are saying privately -- or at least, he says what they want him to say. This is why the rambling threats of Iran’s president must be taken seriously. It’s not because he’s a madman (though he very well may be) but rather because he could not utter such threats if the ruling mullahs didn’t want him to. So anything he says, is an indication of what the ruling mullahs want. Of serious concern to the world community is Iran’s quest to manufacture their own nuclear weapons. A nuclear Iran would easily put atomic bombs within reach of Islamic terrorists, since Iran sponsors most of these terrorists anyway.
Syria is an Islamic dictatorship run by Iran. That’s right, Syria is Iran’s puppet state, used as a staging front for terrorist training and worldwide terrorist operations. However, it’s primary function is to serve as a beach point for terrorist operations against Israel. The government is run by Hezbollah (meaning “Party of Allah”), which is based in Syria and financially supported by Iran. In the early 1980s the Syrian based Hezbollah literally took over the government of Lebanon (a neighboring state) which strategically sits just north of Israel. From Lebanon, Hezbollah can stage terrorist operations against Israel, so they don’t have to be carried out directly from Syria. This allows Iran to fund and train terrorists in Syria, so they can carry out terrorist attacks on Israel from Lebanon. That way, when Israel strikes back against terrorists, it destroys targets in Lebanon, thus keeping the terrorists training camps in Syria free from attack. The Iranian-Syrian alliance serves as a powerful tool for Iran to continue to fund terrorist operations and yet maintain plausible deniability. Islamic terrorists are sponsored by Iran, trained and equipped in Syria, and then carry out operations against Israel from Lebanon. That way when Israel strikes back, it destroys targets in Lebanon, keeping Syria intact, and Iran completely out of the picture. Though virtually everyone in the world community has seen through this ploy, it still works very well, and has continued to work for nearly 30 years. Israel cannot strike at the source of their problem (Syria and Iran), without it appearing to be an act of aggression on Israel’s behalf and a violation of international law. Just to make a comparison; Iran also had a similar arrangement with another neighboring nation -- Afghanistan. From Afghanistan the Iranian government was able to fund and support terrorist training camps using the puppet Taliban government as a cover. From that arrangement, Osama bin Laden (founder of Al Qaida) was able to orchestrate terrorist operations around the world, including the bombing of the World Trade Center and Pentagon on 9/11/2001. Once the United States was angered enough to do something, Afghanistan served its purpose as a disposable puppet state while Iran remained safe behind a shroud of plausible deniability. The U.S.A. was powerless to do anything against terrorism’s real source (Iran) because without direct evidence, an attack on Iran would appear to be a violation of international law. This is how Iran uses puppet states to accomplish it’s goals, and Syria is probably the best puppet state Iran ever had. Without Syria, Iran’s terrorist operations against Israel become nearly impossible to carry out without a direct link back to the Iranian government. That is something the mullahs in Iran simply cannot afford at this time.
North Korea seems like an unlikely ally in this evil Axis, but it is no less plausible than Japan’s alliance with Nazi Germany during World War II. The whole Korean peninsula was originally intended to be another 'communist utopia,' linked directly to the Old Soviet Union and the communist government of red China. But North Korea’s undeclared war with the United States during the 1950s put an end to those dreams. Since then North Korea has degenerated into a mere dictatorship which has completely raped its economy for military buildup. It can now boast of one of the largest armies in the world, with nearly 80% of its male population serving in its armed forces. This while the rest of the population starves. What makes North Korea the third ally in this Axis of Evil is its willingness to sell missiles, and possibly atomic weapons, to rogue Islamic states -- such as Iran. Once again, this puts atomic weapons within the reach of Islamic terrorists. North Korea’s recent saber rattling with the United States reflects just how desperate the communist dictatorship is.
The Allied Powers
Currently the Allied Powers consist only of the United States and Israel. The status of Europe’s involvement is currently undefined. Russia would prefer to stay out of this conflict if it can, but it is just as much a victim of Islamic terror as Europe and the USA are. Neutrality may be impossible in the long run. Sooner or later, Russia and Europe will have to choose sides. Russia will inevitably resist any kind of involvement for as long as it can. That is until some currently unknown circumstance forces the former superpower into the war. Europe will also attempt to remain neutral, but it may be unable to for much longer. Europe and Russia’s eventual role in the threatened conflict is still somewhat undefined. Right now the two biggest players of the allied powers are Israel in the USA.
Israel was formed as a secular Jewish state by the United Nations in 1949. After the Holocaust of World War II, and the Nazi genocide of 10 million people -- 6 million of which were Jews -- the State of Israel was formed as a refuge for Jews around the world. Almost immediately after its formation, Israel came under attack from all of its Arab neighbors. Two major wars defined the status of Israel today -- the 1967 War, and the Yom Kippur War of 1970. For security reasons, Israel was forced to occupy small regions of Jordan, Egypt and Lebanon. The Arabs who lived in those regions were told to leave, but the counties to which those Arabs belonged would not take them in. The largest Arab population was the Jordanians who lived on Jordan’s West Bank. Since Jordan would not allow them to leave the West Bank after it had been taken over by Israel, these Jordanians became isolated people without a country. They eventually took on the name “Palestinian” to describe themselves, and some of them (militants) have been fighting a guerilla-terrorist war against the Israeli government for the last 30+ years. These Palestinian terrorists have been funded by Iran via the Syrian puppet state and Islamic radicals in Egypt. For over 30 years, the nation of Israel has been defending itself from both Iranian-Syrian terrorism via Lebanon, and Palestinian terrorism from within its own boarders. The situation has finally reached a boiling point. Israel remains the only westernized nation in the middle east. It is the only middle-eastern nation that has religious freedom. It is the only nation that gives women equal rights. It remains as the only true friend and ally of the U.S.A. in the middle east.
The United States of America tried to avoid direct involvement in the middle east for decades. The only exception to this was the Gulf War back in 1991 when the U.S.A. was forced to liberate the nation of Kuwait from Saddam Hussein’s Iraq -- a dictatorship the U.S.A. propped up during the Cold War with the Soviet Union. But the bombing of the World Trade Center and Pentagon on 9/11/2001 brought an end to America’s passive involvement in the middle east. As a result the U.S.A. now occupies the nations of Afghanistan and Iraq after two wars to liberate those countries from their oppressive totalitarian regimes. This puts American troops in ideal locations on both sides of Iran to potentially stage a two-front war against Iran should the need arise.
Now we watch and wait, as events unfold in the middle east. Iran is supporting Syria while Syria stages terrorist operations against Israel from Lebanon. Israel strikes back against terrorists in Lebanon and threatens to attack Syria if Syria tries to help. Syria has vowed to help these terrorists while Iran vows to retaliate against Israel directly if Syria is bombed. The U.S.A. has accurately placed blame for Lebanese terrorist operations on Syria and Iran, while U.S. troops are poised to intervene in the conflict should Syria and Iran get involved. The world now stands at the precipice of World War III. God help us!