Iranians shout slogans during a protest in Tehran, Iran, against President Donald Trump, May 11, 2018.
(photo credit: REUTERS/TASNIM NEWS AGENCY)
Iran’s Tasnim News issued a special report on Wednesday highlighting the US decision to hold a conference in Manama, Bahrain on June 25-26 aimed at supporting the Palestinians. According to the Iranian media analysis, the meeting is actually a form of “anti-Palestinian plot.” The discussion in Iranian media symbolizes wider concern in Tehran over the US push for an Israel-Palestinian agreement working closely with Gulf Arab states.
Tasnim termed the Bahrain event a form of “Arab betrayal” and that the US was trying to get Riyadh to use “petrodollars” to “sell Palestine.” The article highlighted the weakness of Bahrain’s Sunni monarchy and that Saudi Arabia is the main supporter of Bahrain.
The report notes that the US is seeking to end the Palestinian refugee issue and the weakening of the Palestinian Authority and Mahmoud Abbas.
“The meeting presents the deceptive image of peace through prosperity,” Tasnim notes. It claims that the Saudi government is plotting against the Haram al-Sharif (Temple Mount) and that it is willing to give up on demands for Israel to end its “occupation” of Jerusalem.
“Trump is proceeding along two avenues, the political and economic sphere,” the analysis claims. It notes that Trump ended support for UNRWA and recognized the Golan Heights as part of Israel. “The Manama summit shows that the US, Zionists and Arab regimes believe they can, through economic prosperity for the Palestinians, get them to give up their destiny and legitimate rights.”
Iranian media quotes Israeli media in critiquing the plan and concludes that “the US government has lost any influence in the Palestinian community… according to Zionist analysts the US promises will never be profitable since pumping money into humanitarian aid purposes will never resolve the conflict.” The meeting will have no effect on the Palestinians, Iranian media predicts. “No compromise or conspiracy has been able to prevent the Palestinians from fighting and jihad to retrieve their land.”
Fars News also ran an article on Wednesday that predicted that up to “100,000 Zionists will be killed in Third Lebanon War.” The article, which claimed to be based on Israeli media, sought to highlight the Hezbollah threat to Israel. It argued that more than two million Israelis would have to seek shelter in any upcoming conflict. It also sought to highlight that the improvement of Hezbollah’s missiles would challenge Israel’s air defense.
Taken together, and with other articles in which Iran claims that the “Israel lobby in the US is pushing for war with Iran,” it shows how closely Tehran is following developments in Israel. The general agenda of Tehran is to prevent the Bahrain meeting from achieving anything and Tehran is likely seeking to encourage Palestinians not to work with the US administration. In addition, Tehran wants to show that its Hezbollah ally has leverage over Israel through threats, even as it believes Israel is pushing the US towards conflict with Iran. In short, what Iran is saying is that if the US pushes Iran, then Iran will push back using Hezbollah.