Iran has spent a lot of its time, money, and lives of its direct and proxy military forces in building up its influence across the Shia Crescent of power in the Middle East – Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Iraq – and it continues to target the further acquisition of power in those countries on the edges of the Crescent, together with China and Russia. A core strategy in Iran’s methodology is to build out a pan-Middle Eastern power grid with Tehran at the centre. In just the same way that Russia’s huge level of gas supplies to Europe gives it immense power across that continent so Iran’s electricity and other power supplies will give it enduring power over the Middle East. ‘Roping in’ potential countries into this notion initially through a less overtly threatening proposition – Iran’s ‘front agent’ Iraq offering oil supplies, for example – is a standard […]