16 reasons for Iranian distrust to Russia

Sergey Alekseev,
Especially for Iran.ru

11 july 2014

Tehran, though not yet fully, but managed to break through the international isolation in which it pounded crippling sanctions regime established by the West. Nevertheless, the dynamics of Russian-Iranian relations until, that is, "not up" to the level of strategic partnership. What is alarming Iranian side? What prevents Tehran visible in Moscow reliable political and economic partner?

The history of relations between our two countries has never been easy. 19th and 20th century and 21th century brought the history of our neighborhood for a few bitter Iran pages. And although the public debate on this subject are lacking, however, in the public mind firmly entrenched Iranians peculiar historical and political episodes that cause problems in our relationship that interfere openly and confidentially treat our country.

  1. Gulistan Peace Treaty (1813)

The first Russian-Persian War (1804-13) Turned to Persia nearly a disaster. At its end was signed for her extremely unfavorable Gulistan Peace Treaty (1813), in which from Persia to the Russian Empire moved significant areas, including Dagestan, Georgia with Shuragelskoy province, Imereti, Guria, Samegrelo and Abkhazia and Karabakh, Ganja , Sheki, Shirvan, Derbent, Guba, Baku and Talysh Khanate. In addition, under this agreement, Persia lost the right to keep a navy in the Caspian Sea.

  1. Turkmenchai peace treaty (1828)

At the end of the second Russian-Persian War (1826-1828) Turkmanchay signed a peace treaty, in which Persia again lost some territories (Nakhichevan Khanate Ordubad district and some other areas), and paid a huge indemnity, put it on the brink of economic collapse.

  1. Agreement on the division of spheres of influence in Iran between Russia and Great Britain

In the same period between 1900 and 1907. Russia almost openly pursued a policy of colonial expansion in Persia, and then Russian Prime SY Witte spoke openly about the need to include the entire northern part of Persia in the Russian Empire, areas such as the Caucasus. These projects were not just words, and by some dreams - as agreed in 1907, Russian and British empires Persia divided among themselves into spheres of influence, practically deprived of its sovereignty.

  1. Occupation of Iran in 1941 by Soviet and British troops

Joint British-Soviet operation codenamed "Operation Agreement" in the occupied territories of the Iranian state (Persia in 1936 was renamed Iran) ended occupation of the country. September 8, 1941 an agreement was signed, according to which the Iranian government has pledged to expel all German citizens and other Allied Berlin, adhere to strict neutrality and does not interfere with military transit the anti-Hitler coalition. Pretext for the invasion - "countering the Nazi secret service" - was enough "stretched", the German influence in Iran was no more than on the rest of the Middle East, but September 12, 1941 the British ambassador to the USSR Cripps initiate discussion between London and Moscow about a new chapter Iran. The choice fell on the son of Shah Reza Pahlavi - Mohammad Reza Pahlavi. September 15 allies sent troops into Tehran, and on September 16, Reza Shah was forced to sign the abdication in favor of his son.

  1. Party "Tudeh"

After the Second World War to the rejection of South Azerbaijan and northern Iran and the subsequent accession of Azerbaijan SSR, on the orders of Joseph Stalin, the Soviet Union in these areas creates the People's Party of Iran (Party "Tudeh"). As a result of this party country to the brink of civil war and division. Supporting activities "Tudeh" and Iranian separatists suspended USSR withdrawal from Iran than Iranians gave rise to suspect Moscow in an effort to dismember the country and in the rest of - to bring to power the "Kremlin puppet." After the withdrawal of Soviet troops in Iran's army routed the short game "Tudeh", thousands of people died.

  1. Trying rejection of South Azerbaijan

Occupied by Soviet troops (in agreement with the UK) Iran started a democratic movement, marked the formation of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan with its capital in Tabriz. USSR was considering joining the newly formed republic of the Soviet Union within the Azerbaijan SSR. In April 1946, the armed forces of the self-proclaimed republic launched an attack on Iran, but success is not achieved. USSR pulled with withdrawals from Iran and this heavily guarded Iranians only after serious pressure and ultimatums by the U.S. and UK to May 9, 1946 60000th contingent of Soviet troops were withdrawn from Iran, which meant the end of the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan, and brutal repression of the Iranian authorities against its activists.

  1. Support for Iranian Kurds of Mahabad Republic

Guide the former Soviet Union was interested in using the Kurds to weaken British influence in the Middle East. January 24, 1946, shortly before the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Iran in the west of the country was proclaimed Kurdish (Mahabad) republic. After the withdrawal of Soviet troops Republic fell, and managers Kurds insurgents were arranged Shah trap: they were invited to Tehran for talks, captured there and hanged. Only one Kurdish leader - Barzani escaped this fate and was forced to go along with his colleagues Soviet border, once on the territory of Azerbaijan. The Soviet Union conducted training Barzani and his officers in the Soviet military schools and academies of the Barzani and assured that "in the event of suitable conditions" make every effort to return them to Kurdistan.

  1. Soviet Afghan campaign

December 12, 1979 the Soviet Union sent troops into Afghanistan. Reaction Tehran to enter a "limited contingent" was sharply negative not only because the Soviet Union was believed to have "committed an act of aggression against Muslims," ​​but mainly because the Soviet troops supported government in Kabul has launched large-scale repression against Afghan Shiites who massively fled to Iran. Tehran is actively involved in support of the Shiites in Afghanistan. By the mid-1980s. Iran was established 18 centers for Afghan fighters with a maximum number of 10 thousand people.

  1. USSR in the Iran-Iraq war has actively supported Saddam Hussein

USSR rendered, "hand in hand" with the U.S., active assistance to Saddam Hussein during the Iran-Iraq War (1980-88). At the beginning of the Iraqi aggression against Iran in Iraq, there were about 1,200 Soviet military specialists, and that the Soviet military equipment and weapons, especially the widespread use of Saddam Hussein's family of Soviet missiles "Scud" greatly complicate life Iranians and caused them great damage. The significance of Soviet aid to Baghdad said at least the fact that when the February 6, 1983 200,000 Iranian troops launched a successful attack on Baghdad, only massed hastily put Iraq Soviet attack aircraft rescued from the fall of Saddam Hussein its capital.

After the end of the Iran-Iraq War (1988) Moscow strongly restored Iraqi war machine, and when, in February-March 1991 the Iraqi army tanks crushed peaceful civilians and defiled Shiite shrines in Najaf and Karbala, cracking down on imams and Shiite authorities, nor Moscow nor Washington condemned the actions of Saddam Hussein.

And at a time when Iraq was "overlaid" sanctions, and that is amazing since the overthrow in 2003 allegedly "friendly Moscow" Iraqi dictator's regime, Russian companies are literally shove each other in the struggle for oil and other contracts with Iraq, while fully ignoring the normal economic ties with Tehran. Recent history of Russian-Iraqi relations formed Tehran belief that Moscow and Russian businesses are important solely arrived at full unprincipled politically.

  1. Inequitable division of the Caspian Sea

Soviet relations with Iran on the use and division of the Caspian Sea were governed by bilateral agreements of 1921 and 1940. According to them, the Caspian Sea is considered an internal reservoir of these two states, and its section was carried out on a parity basis, ie 50 to 50. After the collapse of the USSR the newly formed independent states (Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan) in determining the status of the Caspian Sea, quite naturally, claimed its own share. Here Iran could shrug and say, "All you (Russia, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan) want to do, can do within those 50% that belonged to the Soviet Union, for all you out there that happened, it happened in your territory Iran to these processes is irrelevant. " Instead, Iran to support the newly formed young economies of neighboring states (of course, not without the desire to strengthen these countries so economically that they are less dependent on Russian) unexpectedly proposes to divide the Caspian Sea on a parity basis, ie 20% each of the Caspian states. In those 90s flywheel anti-Iranian U.S. and the West was just beginning to gain momentum, and the newly independent states of Iran embraced this initiative as its weakness and uyazvimost.Opirayas on Western support, the newly formed state made its own initiative, not dividing the Caspian Sea on a parity basis, and on the principle of so-called "median line", according to which Iran received only slightly more than 13% of the Caspian basin. And the most unpleasant in this story for Tehran was that Moscow, in solidarity with these young states, also supported their unreasonable demands and totally unjust principle, from the Iranian perspective, the section of the Caspian Sea.

  1. Transaction Gore-Chernomyrdin

In 1995, Russia signed an unprecedented agreement with the U.S. on Iran. In accordance with the Russian-American agreement, decorated in the "Gore-Chernomyrdin memorandum", Russia has pledged to complete all of its contracts with Iran on the supply of arms and military equipment (AME) and the provision of services for military purposes until December 31, 1999 and continue not to enter into new . In addition, Russia was forced to withdraw from the supply of spare parts to Iran AME she under the Russian-Iranian agreements should deliver up to 2011. It is noteworthy that yielding to pressure from Washington on Iran, Moscow has suffered a loss of $ 4 billion, which were never compensated Washington.

  1. Political background protracted Bushehr

The contract for the Bushehr nuclear industry virtually saved Russia, kept the industry from total destruction as a result of "market reformers." However, in the 90s and early 2000s, the construction of Moscow led a total dependence on the U.S. position, tearing deadlines and assembly in accordance with the wishes of Washington. For all the uniqueness of the project (not build from scratch, and to finish building technology-based Siemens) and of pathological frugality Iranian Bushehr nuclear power plant could be built for 5-7 years, and have since the signing of the contract (1995) and to its full implementation (2013) 18 years have passed. In this project tightening policy has played a significant role. So, for example, May 10, 1995, during a visit to Moscow, U.S. President Bill Clinton led the U.S. side of Boris Yeltsin unilaterally exclude from "the Bushehr contract" supply of centrifuges, which, according to the Americans, the Iranians could be used to produce nuclear dual-use items . The cost of the centrifuge ($ 500 million) was just half the amount of the contract then Russia and Iran. Unfinished Bushehr Iranians adopted the opinion that any Russian-Iranian project for Russia becomes a bargaining chip in political bargaining with the United States.

  1. Support Russia-Iran sanctions in the Security Council

In the period from 1979 to the present time the United States and its NATO allies, under various pretexts repeatedly imposed sanctions against Tehran, which cover almost all areas - from the economy to the scientific exchange. Moscow is not enough that is loyal enough to these sanctions, but, in fact, supported them. Contrived UN Security Council resolution for the further expansion of the sanctions not only sparked protests in Moscow, but was adopted with the acquiescence of Russia not to use its veto to block these openly biased resolutions not supported by any serious evidence. Moreover, Russia, seeking to please the West, unilaterally made quite excessive, expansive interpretation of some resolutions rejecting extremely profitable deals at many billions of dollars with Iran, which under the resolution did not fall. "Female genital sanctions", which were introduced in the West against Tehran unilaterally and cause great damage to the Iranian economy and the population, largely made possible with the tacit approval of the Russian side, showed no principled on this issue.

  1. C-300 and other contracts

Yielding to pressure from the West and believing the promises of Israel and the Saudis, President Dmitry Medvedev banned the supply Iran with anti-aircraft missile systems S-300 armored vehicles, combat aircraft, helicopters and ships. The deal between Russia and Iran on AAMS totaling $ 800 million, as well as contracts for the coming MTC for another $ 4.2 billion, was unilaterally broken by the Russian side. Yielding insistent requests premier Benjamin Netanyahu, the same decree Dmitry Medvedev banned the use of Russian territory to transport arms to Iran in transit, export weapons directly from the territory of Russia, transfer them outside the country under the Russian flag. In addition, a ban was placed to enter the territory of Russia some citizens of the Islamic Republic, which the U.S. and Israel suspected of involvement in the creation of the military component of Iran's nuclear program. At the same time the decree was followed and closed solutions. In particular, an agreement was finally buried in the early 2000s on the exchange of intelligence on terrorist groups between the special services of Russia and Iran. Refusal to deliver S-300 to Iran caused enormous damage to Russian-Iranian relations and almost completely undermined the credibility of Iranians to Russia. Every single one in Iran understand that the C-300 is a purely defensive weapon, and Russia's decision, taken against her as political and economic interests, showed complete dependence on Moscow's foreign policy in Washington.

  1. Western influence on the economy and politics of Moscow

Under the influence of the West, trade between Russia and Iran has declined significantly. Ambiguous position of the Russian government does not allow small and medium businesses to not only expand, but even keep existing position in the Iranian market. Dozens of Russian companies that have focused on business with Iran, as a result of this ambiguity, bankrupt or experiencing incredible complexity. In fact rocking economic relations and the tacit support of U.S. sanctions palm undoubtedly belongs to the Russian banking system, almost completely stop any operation with Iran. It went so far that U.S. and foreign banks began to demand from Russian partners in the banking system to report any transactions relating to Iran without considering natural or legal person performs them Russian. Such a situation has formed the Iranian side in the belief that the banking and financial system is fully controlled by Russian and U.S. West. Virtually the entire Russian banking system, including the largest state-owned banks type Sberbank, VTB, Gazprombank and a number of other, completely excluded from any activity related to Iran or Iran. Banks own denial of service contracts with Iran explained by the presence of some special recommendations from the Central Bank "does not work" with this country, and the position of the President of Russia in this matter to them, as they say, is not true.

  1. Economic and technological backwardness of Russia

Russian business in the Iranian market obviously weaker than their Western competitors. He can not dump, it does not have long and cheap money, no support from their own banking community, government mechanisms to encourage the development of exports, serious practice of long-term economic projects. It is also important that the Iranian businessmen and technocrats West understood more than the Russian business. They closely worked with him, many of them were educated in Europe, well versed in the pros and cons of both the western style of doing things, and the features of practical approaches to a particular project. Another serious problem is the general and technological backwardness of Russia's industrial base. We, in fact, has nothing to offer to Iran in such as areas important for him as machine tools, automotive and electronics. This raises the Iranian business serious doubts about the need to develop economic partnership with Russia, because everything you need for economic development, they may well get in the West, albeit indirect routes.

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Of course, the Russian side also wonders how she can trust Tehran. And in this article we are only stating facts, without going into an analysis of their causes. Such a sharp, but so necessary for all of us talking - big topic series of articles scheduled for publication on Iran.ru soon. And within the same part of the material in the end I would like to mention one very important thing. Until recently, Russia's foreign policy and foreign economic activity of our country raises many questions, if not - frank bewilderment. And not only in Tehran, but also throughout the Middle East. Today the situation is changing, but getting rid of the burden of past mistakes can not happen in one day. Although it is necessary to get rid of them, because errors in our country - it is not only its internal affair. From our security policy depends on the rest of the world, and awareness of this responsibility should permeate and in relations with Tehran, and in relations with any other country.

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