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1 Feb, 2010 16:43

US activity in Arabian Gulf – what to expect?

Washington has reportedly begun deploying Patriot air defense missiles in four Arabian Gulf countries and stepping up US Navy warship patrols in the area.

According to American officials, the move is aimed at defending US allies in the Gulf from potential Iranian attacks, as well as deterring Israel from a strike against Iran.

Lawrence Korb from the Center for American Progress explains that these are all defensive weapons, “They are there so that the other countries in the Gulf don’t decide to press ahead with their nuclear weapons. The last thing you want is that if Iran continues on the path that it is, that in fact you have a nuclear arms race in that part of the world.”

Political editor from Al Riyadh newspaper, Hani Wafa thinks the The United States is trying to pressurize Russia into moving towards a peaceful solution.

“We know that the negotiation between Iran and international committee did not go any further,” Wafa told RT. “So I believe this is one of the American strategy parts that they will put some arms in the area so they will send their message to Iran that they are prepared.”

On the other hand, Dr. Seyed Mohammad Marandi from the University of Tehran doesn’t believe Iranian are afraid of an attack from Israel.

“Iranians don't believe that Israel has the capacity to cause serious damage to Iran. The only way that Israel can attack Iran is through the Persian Gulf, Iraq or Turkey and American forces are based in all these regions. So Israel would have to have the consent of the US in order to attack,” Marandi told RT.