Twenty years of continued varying international policies such as isolation, sanctions, together with confrontation, the Republic of Iran still pursues weapons of mass destruction. This can be viewed via the point of view of the international anarchic system of self-help, creating a punitive discourager to states which are in possession of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons looks logical, but through the examination of corresponding levels of analysis it has enabled the revelation of a fuller picture behind the factors that motivate states ( Shahram Chubin 2006). The Iranian nuclear program can be examined from two different views or perspectives. We can analyzing the ideological reasons for example, Islamic shi'ism and Persian nationalism which depict that Iran has genuine legitimate security concerns, but none the less has foregone the examination of alternative security solutions in favor of nuclear biological and chemical deterrents.
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According to James Lebovic, by carrying out a much deeper analysis at the individual and state levels, it reveals more convincing geopolitical reasons such as protection of their oil reserves deposits which has further motivated Iran's pursuit of nuclear weapons. When Iran was entangled in the destructive war with Iraq, an alliance of military and political leaders managed to convince Ayatollah Khomeini to redirect his move on nuclear weapons program. These nuclear policy makers were able to develop a following inside the government of Iran and within the organizations mandated with the operation of the program. The technical organizations that are in control of Iran's nuclear program now maintain it for narrow-minded self-interest that is; they want to evade the thought of alternative security solutions (Jerome R. Corsi 2010).
Research into Iran's driving motives at the geopolitical as well as ideological levels can help to clearly illustrate the root factors for Iran's nuclear weapons goal attainment. According to Mahjoob Zweiri, In order to be triumphant, any logical U.S. policy aimed at the prevention of Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons must tackle fully the reasons why Iran wants them. In addition, they must provide a way to control and influence the actors on each critical level.
The Persian Nationalism is a key reason of Iran's quest for nuclear weapons and nuclear technology (Anoushiravan Ehteshami 2007). Persian nationalism emerged with the growing war that was initiated by two Middle Eastern powers which had completely different views: the theocracy of Iran and the nationalism of Iraq. It was complicated further by the age-long religious and ethnic rivalries of Persian and Arab nations.
Persia also known as Iran was among the first empires to give way to the advanced Arab armies in the middle of the seventh century. According to Mark lebovich a vast majority of its citizens accepted Islam as the religion of the mighty conquerors. The Persians later became discontented with the initial founders of the Arab-Muslim Empire found in Damascus. They backed and supported the Shi'ites,. These rebels from Sunni Islam or Orthodox developed a distinctive political and theological tradition. As a largely persecuted and marginalized minority within the Muslim world, they relied on the coming of a messianic person who would govern the world in justice through the stretch of Shi'ite Islam. In their waiting for the emergence of this leader called Imam, Shi'ites has tried, from time to time, to reconstruct their theocratic states through armed struggle.
In the last two hundred years, the Middle East has gradually come under the Western thought and influence.
Due to this factor, its citizens, who were mainly Arabic speaking, started to accept nationalistic dreams and ideas. To begin with Jackson Eichenwald in his book states that, they sought after a greater degree of independence among the Ottoman Turkish Empire. In the First World War, they sided with the Allies against the Turks and hence they were promised to attain full independence after the war. They were awfully let down when they came to discovered that the French and the British had shared the area between themselves. To make matters worse, Palestine was later affirmed to be the national home for the Jews with the full support of the League of Nations! This was viewed as European colonialism and it added fire to the Persian nationalism as well as encouraging the pursuit of nuclear weaponry and technology. Persian countries acquired full independence at the end of World War two. In their efforts to construct modern states, leaders in Arab countries and Iran adopted strategies which aimed at harmonizing traditional Islam through the borrowing of ideologies from the Western countries.
Nationalism in Persian also spread quickly in the early nineteen fifties, Reza Khan who was an officer in Persian army, organized a coup against the government. Mark hitchcock in his book points out that he (Reza Khan) was animated by nationalistic and militaristic ideologies towards Persian Nations and Iran; and the need to acquire nuclear technology. He altered the country's name to Iran and acquired the position of king or shah. In the World War two, the Allies overthrew him for his pro-German tendencies. His son Mohammad Reza succeeded him. The new king or shah continued with his father's nationalistic policies and further divided the religious leaders in Iran. His aim was to make Iran the most powerful country in the Middle East. A way of attaining this goal was by acquiring nuclear technology. He assembled a large army and governed in an very authoritarian way. His relations with the ayatollahs and the mullahs, the religious leaders in the state, depreciate to an extent that they supporter civil disobedience.
In the mid 80's, Iran's military supremacy through nuclear ideologies had since become the strength of Pan-Arab nationalistic movement such as the Renaissance or Baath Party. Khomeini became the definite spiritual and political leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran when the Shah lost his seat. He started a storm of propaganda against the Iraqi government and called for the creation of a powerful drastic Islamic state among his neighbors in the west. The Iraqi leaders feared to see their land become a Warfield between its Shiite and Sunni population. They opted for a defensive strike against Iran with the expectation of destroying the Khomeini regime. The war has continued throughout the nineteenth century which clearly shows the crucial mistake of Saddam Hussein, the ex- president of Iraq. This continues to remain a primary reason as to why Iran is striving to adopt nuclear weapons.
The Persian nationalism caused the population in Iran to become passionate with an astonishing religious zeal. The Shi'ite Islam's advocated on the significance of martyrdom in the work for Allah (God). Young people who died on the battle line were convinced beyond doubt that they would never lose. They had two options, to either achieve Paradise or defeat Iraq! The war against Iraq began at an opportune time for Khomeini. It made it possible for them to galvanize the energies of the Iranians and to consolidate their power in a jihad against Iraq. They had consuming passion towards the total devastation of the Baath government. Cost in the war was not a factor for they could not stop until victory was attained. Nonetheless, not all the Iranians were in favor of the continued struggle. Hundreds of thousands of young Iranians fled their country and went to Western Europe Pakistan and Turkey to seek refuge.
To this day the militaristic ideologies and nationalistic policies of Iran are allegedly viewed by many historians as the key motivating reasons for Iran's nuclear aims (Mark Fitzpatrick 2007). The growth of Persian nationalism has had harmful impacts on many nations in the Middle East. According to Kaveh L. Afrasiabi he points out that the poverty stricken population in many regions of the Muslim World became disappointed by the failure of militaristic and nationalistic ideologies in solving their problems. In their desperate state, they embrace the false utopian promises of some radical religious leaders and they then expect the coming of a theocratic state to save them. As earlier noted, the Iraq-Iran war is a struggle between two worldviews: the theocratic and the nationalistic. This is not to portray that the Iranian regime completely ignores the Islamic teachings but it does not also hesitate to borrow ideas from the outside world and equipments which contribute to the modernization of the Iraqi society. In the meantime, the Iranian regime seeks to establish a theocratic state in which Islamic Law or Shari'a becomes the total rule of life and faith for the people of Iran.