Ideologies and the History of the Syrian-Iranian Alliance

Mark L. Haas

in The Clash of Ideologies

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780199838424
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199933419 | DOI:
Ideologies and the History of the Syrian-Iranian Alliance

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This chapter examines the factors that led to the creation of the Syrian-Iranian alliance, as well as those developments that strengthened and weakened the coalition from its origins. The major ideological differences separating Syrian and Iranian leaders created barriers to cooperation that required very strong incentives to overcome. When the forces for alignment weakened—but were by no means eliminated—the effects of ideological differences created conflicts of interest that at times virtually ended cooperation. These dynamics created an opportunity for other countries. The more that external powers can help bring states’ ideological differences to the forefront of their foreign policies, the more likely that alliances among ideological enemies will weaken. While the George H. W. Bush and Bill Clinton administrations took advantage of this opportunity of using ideologies as “wedge” strategies to separate Syria and Iran, the George W. Bush presidency failed in this objective.

Keywords: ideologies; Syrian-Iranian alliance; George W. Bush; Bill Clinton; George H. W. Bush; wedge strategies; alliances

Chapter.  18553 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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