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Opinion: The regional arms race in the Middle East

Jun 15, 2015, 10:48 AM | Article By: Alieu Jobe

The Middle East as we all know is the most troubled region in the world occupied with war, extremism and a regional arms race which if not looked into will lead to a regional catastrophe someday.

The arms race has started to make some major powers, like the United States and Israel, to look into some of the problems faced in this region.

Israel, without doubt, is the biggest power in the region, armed with the most sophisticated weapons in modern warfare.

It has more weapons and battle ships armed with nuclear warheads combined with hundreds of modern fighter jets than any other country in the region.

It is also assumed to have the Middle East’s only nuclear arsenal. Their military dominance in the region has prompted Iran to also boost their military capabilities.

Iran sees Israel as a threat to their survival and it is, therefore, flexing its muscles around the region, and it also has a great army capable of striking any country in the region with an arsenal of long-range missiles even capable of reaching Israel and Saudi Arabia precisely.

The Israelis see Iran as their biggest threat and, therefore, can use it military might to strike at any given time to deter them from becoming a nuclear power.

We’ve also seen Saudi Arabia, another regional power flexing its muscles in Yemen against Houthis trying to overthrow the legitimate government of President AbdrabbuMansouHadi.

The Saudis are also showing their rivals in the region that they are capable of striking at any country that is threatening its peace and stability.

The preemptive air strikes against the Houthis in Yemen are a reminder to the regional powerhouses that Saudi Arabia is also a force to be reckoned with.

This regional arms race is a clear indicator that something should be done to put a halt to this worrying situation in that region.

The Middle East is a very fragile region with lots of conflicts currently going on in countries like Iraq and Syria, where Islamic State is fighting both countries.

Those countries are in a situation that must be contained as soon as possible to free them from extremism and war.

Hezbollah and Iran are backing Assad in Syria, and other regional powers are backing the opposition fighting against Assad making matters worse in that country.

The Syrians need a dialogue to settle their differences and bring back trust amongst themselves, and take the fight to the Islamic State, which needs to be completely erased for the stability in the region to persist.

Fighting, the Islamic State needs better coordination within the countries battling them. They must try to come together and work to see how best they can defeat this enemy.

Flexing muscles in the region cannot solve the region problems, but coming together to see how best to tackle the Islamic State is what is more important at the moment in the region.