Explaining geopolitical components affecting the strategic linkages of countries Case Study: Iran and Iraq
Introduction In the complex world of our time and with the spread of security threats and the requirements for security, governments are bound to create coalition and alliance among themselves in order to achieve their goals better. Iran and Iraq are two neighboring countries with multiple intricacies and vicissitude relations. These two countries haven’t had a strategic bind with each other and reveal either as enemies or most optimistically, uncontestable competitors. Whilst during the history, they have suitable overlaps in various fields for alliance. This paper aims to analyze and explore the linking components of the two countries.
Theoretical Framework As Morgenta argues alliances are considered as the necessary functions of balancing power in multipolar systems and alliance is the most significant manifestation of power balance. Johnson explains strategic alliance as compromise among two or more companies or groups to follow a set of agreed goals, whilst their organizations remain independent. But the main issue of this study is to find the place of political geography and geopolitics in strategic alliance of countries. Geopolitics and geostrategic conditions and factors can also play role in creation or collapse of alliances. There are a set of political geographic and geopolitical factors involved in strategic alliance among countries that are used by the actors in convergence or strategic alliance. In geopolitical point of view, alliances can give a new meaning to the political borders drawn on the maps and diminish or eliminate some of the social and cultural limitations.
Research Method This study has been done through descriptive-analytic method. The data and required information were collected by the library method and was subject to analyze by descriptive-analytical method.
Research Findings There is a broad range of political geography and geopolitical factors involved in strategic linkage of Iran and Iraq.
Iran and Iraq have a single-product economy and they are significantly affected by changes and transitions occur in the oil market. But in the field of strategic linkage, this problem can be at least the messenger of collision and convergence: Considering that they both countries need huge financial resources for their reconstruction and development; both will be interested in OPEC policies to maximize oil revenues.
Iraq is one of the countries with very short coasts compare to its territory. This fact caused to determine the geostrategic shortage of appropriate access to the sea for Iraq. Undoubtedly, Hydro-polytechnic is another geographical component with an increasing significance. In order to meet the increasing demands of providing the citizens with fresh water, Iran will be required to imply more control over its waters. This action will face the dozens of villages in Iraq at risk of destruction.
Metaphor of “Mortar” for role of the cultural and social sphere in the strategic linkages between countries might be appropriate, due to the depth of their effects on the nation’s bodies. Iran and Iraq have lots in common; however, their transition from potential to actual depends on the national goals of Baghdad and Tehran. Neighboring countries of Iran and Iraq, as well as other regional and transnational actors influencing regional transformations, have different attitudes toward "Appropriate Iraq and Iran", considering political, security and geopolitical components. Sometimes, there are overlaps among these attitudes and strategies and they are often contrary and even contradictory to each other.
The importance of the external environment in determining global politics is undeniable. The external environment implies the effective powers on the world politics; that is powers whose strategy defines discourses governing world politics.
Discussion and conclusion In search of role of geography and geopolitics in linking the two countries, it seems the lack of strategic alliance between the two countries is due to geopolitical perceptions and mental images of decision-makers. Despite common factors like religion, ethnicity and foreign threats, the political components- mainly foreign ones- in the historical periods prevented the establishment of unity and convergence between the two countries. Historically, at the beginning of Iraq's independence, while similar in the political system and the bloc of world power, none of the two countries carries problematic ideologies that threaten the survival of each other's regime. When the political linkage between the two countries shifted to the darkness of Arab nationalism, along with a kind of left-wing ideology represented by Baghdad, it darkened the political alliance between the two countries, which was resolved later by the Algerian treaty. In the second half and along with the Iranian revolution, pursuit of Shiite ideology leading by Tehran caused Baghdad's reaction and continued until the end of Saddam's time. But now is the time which seems both countries have aligned political and more he interests and reasons for the strategic alliance of nations have been created.
Article Type:
Research/Original Article
Journal of Applied Researches in Geographical Sciences, Volume:18 Issue: 48, 2018
21 - 39
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