July 17, 2014
Slavin on the Gulf Cooperation Council and an Iran Nuclear Agreement
However, Barbara Slavin, a Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council’s South Asia Center, told Inzuna that “Khomeini said all these things back in ’79 but I don’t think Iran, now, has any kind of illusions that it’s going to be overthrowing regimes in the Gulf. It has good relations with several GCC members such as Qatar and Oman.”
Also, in 1987, over 400 pilgrims were killed in Mecca, Saudi Arabia during riots believed to have been orchestrated by Iran to show that the Kingdom could not protect the holy city, explained David Ottaway, a Senior Scholar at the Wilson Center. Following that incident, relations were cut off between the Kingdom and Iran from 1988 to 1991.
Slavin, however, said that she did not think the event was “terribly relevant now. That was when Iran truly was in a revolutionary state, and also Iran was fighting Iraq in an existential war, and the Saudis, of course, supported the Iraqis during that conflict. I think Iran has matured as a state and we’re far beyond that sort of behavior at this point.”