Iran spends billions of dollars in deployment of military advisers to Syria and in sponsoring the operations of the Hezbollah and other foreign Shia militias fighting for the Assad's regime. Iran also supplies arms to Syria and the country's entire needs for crude oil. The Syrian conflict has become a costly war for Iran.
"to support the regime in its war against the opposition"
with respect, should read "to support UN member Syrian Arab Republic against Al-Qaeda, ISIL and a number of rebel forces"
It should also be noted indications are that a majority of Iranians inside Iran support Iran's position on Syria and Iraq, including moderate and even reformist political figures.
In terms of cost, in relative terms, the Iraqi and Syrian theaters of war has not been costly, and it has rendered Iraq and Syria closer and more dependent on Iran.
I agree with Mark on this. Both Iraq, Syria and to lesser extend Lebanon are de facto Iranian provinces. War is always costly but not to have one (i.e. leaving Syria and Iraq on their own) will be much much more costly in the long run. Case in point US and NATO have spent trillions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Puritans may argue that the regime (whatever than means) is suppressing democracy and aspiration of people. Look at Arab spring what has that achieved except flooding Europe with refugees from Syria and others and make room for terrorists. There was no ISIS before Arab spring? Where are we now.
Power projection by Iran is a good thing. It protects the interest of nation. This is nothing new. Soviet Union did that by creating buffers in Eastern Europe. Iran is entitled to protect its interest. As usual there is cost attached.
Mark, here I was talking about the war in Syria. There are distinct differences in the two fronts. In Syria, the Iran-led coalition almost exclusively fights the opposition, exclusive of ISIL. In Iraq, the Iran-led coalition is the main anti-ISIL force.
I think you are talking abstraction here. It does not matter who the Iran led coalition fights in Syria They are enemies of Syria right? You can ask 2 million plus Syrian refugees who they would rather run their country. A secular dictatorship run by Assad, or another dictatorship run by opposition, supported by the Persian Gulf Arabs and Jordan (b.t.w. these are hardly the shining examples of regimes with democratic values) or the barbarians ISIL and others.
There was no Al-Qaida in Iraq, and certainly no ISIS, before the US invasion. When will Bush jr and Tony Blair as well as their respective cabinets of high ranking officials/ministers answer to their warcrimes?
The islamic regime has no business wasting Iranian monies on foreign adventures.By this regime investing our money in a lost cause it is putting Iranian people at danger when abroad and at the same time destroying what ever is left of the Iranian economy. Let Syria Iraq Yemen Lebanon and palestinians sort their own problems out without islamic regime muddying the waters and taking Iran deeper into the quicksand and then drowning.We don't need it !
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