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Who needs the Pan-Arab massacre?

Viacheslav Matuzov, President of the Society of Friendship and Business Partnership with the Arab Countries

Source : | 08 Apr 2013

Viacheslav Matuzov, President of the Society of Friendship and Business Partnership with the Arab Countries is interviewed by about the situation in the Middle East and the geopolitical consequences of the Arab Spring.

Today, we see the Arab countries turned into hot spots as if by instruction. What has really happened in the Arab world? Have the plotters of the “Arabellion” got what they wanted?

According to my work experience in the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, as well as in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Soviet Union and of Russian during a considerable period of time, I can say the serious problems that the Muslim world is facing now have not come out of nowhere. They have emerged as a result of the new political movements and technologies of the 21st century that were skillfully used by the foreign politics of the leading world powers. In the beginning of the new century, these countries are facing crucial challenges due to various generic and more particular causes. The accumulated problems of internal development and the impact of political factors have lead to crucial changes in the government of several Arab countries. The Arab countries formed historically the core of the Islamic world and bore the essential burden of the confrontations between the Islamic world and those political powers that saw the Middle East as one of the most important geopolitical and economical actors and tried to gain control over it as a center of international communication between the East and the West and as well as over its natural resources.

The Arab world is the land of the main Islamic sanctuaries - Mecca and Medina, in addition to the Al-Aqsa Mosque in East Jerusalem. The dispute over Jerusalem has escalated dramatically after the foundation of the State of Israel. The Middle East has always been kept in focus by the world powers and has been one of the first items that appeared on the international agenda of political and diplomatic negotiations.

I can remember the following example: since the Soviet era, the relations with the United States as with the leading world power were given a priority because the development of these relations decided about war and peace and the destiny of the mankind.  However immediately after the Soviet-American relations, on the second place there always came the relations with the Arab Middle East, as one of the most important world regions close to our borders, and the Palestinian question.

The Arab Middle East has always been a major geopolitical melting pot, and the bridge between the East and the West. Furthermore, the Arab world is the source of the energy resources that are crucial for the world economy.

After the attack of 9/11 when two sky scrapers of the WTC were smashed the US proclaimed that after the global victory over communism, the arch-fiend is the Islamic world as the source of international terrorism. The relations with the US have also crucially deteriorated in consequence of the confrontations with the government of the Islamic Republic of Iran since 1979. In 2003 the US troops invaded Afghanistan and Iraq without the UN Security Council mandate. But the resistance movement against the invasion in Iraq and Afghanistan has lead to negative consequences for the US. A network of organizations like Al-Qaida and Ben Laden emerged. Ben Laden had actually been sent as an agent of the US intelligence to combat the Soviet presence in Afghanistan.

The military and the political authorities of the US are deeply concerned how to overcome the wave of anti-Americanism in the Muslim world. In 2004 and 2005 they elaborated plans with immediate participation of the US military intelligence. This project was designed to fight the anti-American moods in the Islamic world, as these moods were considered a threat to the economic and political interests of the US, and in the first place - the interests of the global corporations. In the beginning of 2005 a plan of modification of the US foreign politics in the Islamic world was elaborated. Major specialists of political technologies and leading PR-agencies from Great Britain and the US participated in its elaboration. With the help of global corporations like Boeing, MacDonald’s, Rothschild Corporation, leading American, European and Arabic high education institutions, they developed a sophisticated 5 year action plan called Business for Diplomatic Action intended for the Arab world; this project coordinated by the United States Department of State and the CIA has been financed from extra budgetary sources.

Until December 2010 a vast preparation work was accomplished. It was aimed at realization of the elaborated agenda. The US educational institutions and the US airways responsible for transportation of thousands of students and middle level managers from the Arab world took part in this groundwork. They were prepared in the best educational institutions of the West, such as Harvard, universities of Great Britain, France and Western Europe. Thus, global corporations together with the world class political technologists accomplished.. I could say.. a giant project of brain washing. The whole project was based on the following idea: USA has vast economic resources in the Arab world. These resources must be transformed into political advantages.

After the attack of 9/11 America obtained a rather negative image in the entire world of Islam. This needed to be changed. What was suggested to make this change a reality? The situation could only be rendered by using those corporations and economic structures that already existed in the Arab world and supplied it with all vital necessities. This mechanism was put into action during six years with the only goal - to bring to power in all countries of the Arab world new people unconditionally devoted to the national interests of the US.

Since January 2011 we observe the domino effect. Rebellions inflame against the state authorities, a global campaign is waged to discredit the latter, the regimes fall like a house of cards. This happens in Tunis, Egypt, Libya and Yemen. Financial resources of the Gulf countries, Saudi Arabia and Qatar in particular, are extensively used. These countries are situated on a hot spot and are ready to take any steps to protect themselves from the obvious danger of civil unrest. Egypt, including the Arab League on its territory, has actually been turned into a collaborator of the US.

I cannot rule out that if the pro-American powers win in Syria, the turn of Saudi Arabia and Qatar will come next. They may become the new victims of the American plan of “democratization” of the Arab world. The maps of the so-called Greater Middle East known as the “maps of Ralph Peters” with “blood borders” have been published for a long time now and are used far and wide by the US military to teach NATO officers. On these maps one can see not only Syria cut off from the Mediterranean See, but also Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Pakistan and Afghanistan, each one split into three separate states. What does it mean? It means that the western civilization is trying to force the Arab-Islamic world with its millennium-old traditions to live by western values and principles. The anti-Islamic mechanism functions very well, political changes are happening very fast due to financial and economic intervention.

This political agenda was elaborated during the presidency of George W. Bush by the neoconservative circles (neo-conservatism is a political movement with a clear anti-Islamic character inside the US).

Take for example Libya. It seemed Libya was in good relations with the Soviet Union. The weapons were mainly imported from the Soviet Union, the economy had strong ties with the Soviet Union as well. After the collapse of the USSR Qaddafi completely switched in his political orientation from the USSR to the United States. If you recall the situation in 2005-2010, Libya had US, French and Italian oil companies working on its territory. Russian presence has become a rare exception and was only possible in a close partnership with American, French and Italian companies. That is why it was easy to arrange a revolt against the Qaddafi regime from inside the country where the most employees were migrant workers from Turkey, Egypt and other Arab countries who were employed by American companies. It was simple to turn the second capital and the home city of the overthrown king Idris I of Libya, Benghazi, into a stronghold of the revolt. The stake was made on the inevitable influence of the global corporations that wanted to preserve and strengthen their position in the energy sector of the Libyan market. It was vitally essentional for them to go for such measures, as Qaddafi did not hide his intention to put all oil and gas companies under the state control.

The same occurred in Egypt. Anwar Sadat, a former president of Egypt, stopped the diplomatic relations with the USSR. After the death of Gamal Abdel Nasser the Americans gained total control over the foreign politics of Egypt. Egypt was converted into a pro-American country, like Tunis and Yemen. Using the levers of influence that were at their disposal the United States could easily create an atmosphere of chaos and civil strife and thus actually plunge one of the major Arab countries into the abyss of civil confrontations for decades. These plans of the US were well known to the ex-president Hosni Mubarak. It becomes obvious out of secret correspondence of the US ambassador with the Department of State published on Wikileaks. If one carefully reads these materials it is unambiguous that USA has been contacting opposition groups openly and inciting them to go against the regime ignoring the requests of the Egyptian government that was watching helplessly. The Egyptians appealed to the US authorities asking to stop the intervention into their interior affairs. But the Americans frankly ignored the demands of the Egyptian authorities and went on carrying out their plan. What was the result? The country is basically split into two parts: a major Arab nation, with a population of almost 100 millions, is on the edge of a total collapse. One half of the population confronts the other. No compromise is in view. The country’s economy is at the edge of ruin, the state income is decreasing, and the population is experiencing great economic difficulties. Now it is senseless to speak of the role of Egypt in the region and its military development any further. Egypt has lost its traditional leading role in the Arab world. Qatar and Turkey compete with each other to take over this important function. That is why the dissolution of the Arab world by implanting the principle of “western democracy” has such harmful consequences.

We can observe the same situation in Libya. The country consists of tribes and depends on their relations with each other which could be kept balanced by Muammar Qaddafi despite of his bizarre behavior and the unusual ways of solving internal issues in the country. He managed to preserve the most important things - to keep the national and territorial unity of the country, to meet the economic, financial and social needs of the population and to safeguard the domestic stability. Today, Libya’s new authorities leave space for speculations about whether they have the necessary expertise; another big issue is the recognition by the tribes in Central Libya. The proliferation of weapons is out of control. The Libyan armaments are smuggled far beyond the borders of Libya. We observed how trucks loaded with antitank grenade launchers left Libya heading for the Egyptian territories. Vast consignments of arms stream from Libya to the South, to the countries of the African Sahel (the territory between Somali and Mali). Such destabilization of the Arabic and even of the entire Islamic world has the potential of destroying this world from inside. This world is losing its power, the central authorities are losing control, fundamentalism is growing, which all causes the main actors on the global political arena to react. As a result we can see a war in North Mali and in Chad and instability in many countries of the continent to the South of Sahel.

We can observe something similar in Tunis that was the first link in the chain of regime collapses. This process in Tunis is not of the same acute nature as in Egypt and Libya but the civil confrontations are increasing which has a negative impact on the financial situation of the people: they simply prefer to leave their country and go to Europe.

Iraq is facing serious political issues after the US troops withdrawal. Daily terrorist attacks take lives of dozens of people. The country is about to fall apart due to ethnic and confessional disputes. The Kurdish regions in the North almost do not share the oil income with the central government. The question of forming three states on the territory of Iraq arises: the Kurdish state in the North, the Sunni in the central region and the Shii in the South.

In Yemen the current authorities are US protégés who fight with the opposition; the fights don’t stop and there is no solution in view. Consequently there are new victims ho are from civil population in the first place. The Americans could not establish political stability, assumed they wanted it at all…

Even in the wealthy Gulf countries there is no confidence in the future; a threat is in the air... This is very obvious in Bahrain, where one population group is putting the other one under pressure; there are armed confrontations and victims. If we take into account that Bahrain is a close ally of Saudi Arabia then we can come to the conclusion that this issue shall have a negative impact on the Saudi regime as well.

In light of the current situation in the Middle East and Africa, Russia’s foreign politics is very wise and logical in my opinion. I believe that the Russian President and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stand up for peace and stability in the Middle East, support the termination of armed conflicts and prohibition of export of western methods of democratizations of traditional societies that have been formed during millenniums. I think that the Russian government has shown its ability to pursue its own political strategy independently from the West, and has chosen the right time for it, so I believe; it will have the support in the Arab as well as in the Islamic world.

To sum it up, I would like to highlight it again that the reasons of the events in the Arab world and its transformation into a seething pot of feuds and wars, are not that much the internal socio-economical issues, but the elaborated plans of the Western neo-conservative circles with their anti-Islamic moods. In my opinion, Russia can make a great contribution to the preservation of stability everywhere in the Middle East, and this will help the countries in concern get out of the military and political crisis. 

Let us switch to another topic.Mr. Matuzov, you are a recognized person in the Arab world, you have a great command of the Arabic language and you are familiar with the Arabic culture and traditions. How did it happen that you became interested in the Middle East? How did your career as a political analyst and an orientalist start?

It seems to be my destiny, though actually it came into being by quite an accidental decision. I have become a student of Arabic studies by chance. After graduation from the Novosibirsk Institute of Geological Exploration I was dreaming to work as geologist, and then I worked at the Siberian Research Institute of Geology, Geophysics and Mineral Resources and took part in oil and gas exploration in Siberia. After I came back from the military service I decided to enroll for studies at the Institute of the Foreign Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This was a closed institute in those years. One needed to have good recommendations from the Party authorities to get there. Despite all difficulties I managed to enroll. The students were divided into language groups quite randomly. If somebody wanted to learn Arabic, he was given Mongolian. All young students wanted to study English and French, but it was almost impossible to get into these groups.

The interest in the Arabic language was also growing in those days (it was in 1963). The political and economic relations with the countries of the regions were becoming more intense. After the Israeli aggression of 1967, the interest grew higher than ever. The Arabic Studies have gained much popularity, and as a result the Ministry of Foreign Affairs started recruiting more students for the Arabic studies.

Since the first years of my studies at the institute I became interested in the Palestinian issue, I dedicated my semester thesis, and then also my final thesis to this topic. I started studying the region, its culture, its politics, and its infrastructure. According to the standard definition, the total number of Arab countries in the Middle East and on the African continent is 22.

Since 1968, after my graduation, I used to deal with the relations of the Soviet Union with Lebanon, Syria and Palestine.


To be continued...

Interview by Haji-Murat Rajabov


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