Shia Geopolitics or Shiite Crescent (Principles, Goals and Approaches)

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Assistant Prof., Dep. of Political Geography, University of Tehran

2 Ph.D. Candidate in Political Geography, University of Tehran


Islamic Revolution in Iran (1979) transformed the geopolitical circumstances in the Middle
East. of The system of social sciences and geopolitical analysts to analyze the occurrence of
alternative pay systems have also been collapsed. Shiite state in the Middle East region makes
up a Convergence condition and they will be increased in geopolitical power. Other
developments in the Middle East, such as, American attack to Iraq, the collapse of the Baath
Party and the empowerment of Shias in Iraq were of concern to the Rulers of Arabic countries
in the Middle East. King Abdullah, of Jordan, criticized the rising power of Shiites in the
Middle East and of the Shiite Crescent. Next, the rulers of Saudi Arabia and Egypt took
advantage of the Shiite Crescent. The question of this paper is that, what differences are there in
the principles, goals and approaches of both the geopolitical and Shia Shiite Crescent?
With regard to the theoretical nature of the research, the present study is an application research
bearing a descriptive-analytical design. The data have been collected using library documents
and analyzed qualitatively.
Results and Discussion
Shiite political geography in the Middle East: Shiites are one of the most diverse Religions in 
the world. Shia scattering is important both historically and also in terms of cultural and
political situations. Shiite makes up about twenty percent of the Muslims population. Shiite
dispersed in Middle East. Starting from the Indian subcontinent and covering substantial parts of
India and Pakistan. Then, part of Afghanistan and Central Asia. Finally, included are all Iranian
and Iraqi majorities. These are scattered in important parts of Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Palestine,
Jordan, Yemen and the Persian Gulf countries such as Bahrain and Saudi Arabia East region.
Shia geopolitics: Shia geopolitics is meant to keep political geography. Shia people are
distributed in different countries, the Middle East, with central Iran. Belt of Shia includes
economic life, strategically and Islamic history. Most Shiites live in the Persian Gulf where 75%
of the world's oil and oil reserves has increased the importance of Shiite district. Different
periods of Shia geopolitical state include:
First period: weakness of Shia Geopolitical situation (Nineteenth Century to 1979): During
this period, Shia in different regions was faced with two major challenges. The first is anticolonial
and the second fight of their rulers.
Second period: The Revival of Shia Geopolitics (1979 to 2003): In fact, Iran's Islamic
Revolution led more Liberation movements in the Middle East especially among Shiites for
their rights. Shia geopolitical condition came out of the domestic conditionand its regional
Third period: The Shia geopolitical condition boom periods (from 2003 until today): After
the fall of Saddam Hussein in Iraq and low oppression pressure of the Iraq Shias, about 70
percent of Iraq's population, a new era of democratic change and was emerged in the Middle
East and they found international aspects.
The Shiite Crescent: Shiite crescent started of Jabal and continues to Mesopotamia, Iran and
the Persian Gulf coast. King Abdullah of Jordan proclaimed that the main result of the war in
Iraq is a Shiite crescent formation under the leadership of Iran. According to him, if pro-Iran
parties or politicians win in Iraq a crescent will be come from Iraq, Syria and Lebanon that will
thereby lead to Shia Sunnis. It will be a great challenge for America and Arab countries in the
Middle East.
Differences between Shia Geopolitical and Shia Crescent are: Shia geopolitics is a real issue and
more geographically in Shiite countries in the Middle East while Shia Crescent is an ideological
issue and made mind the West and its regional allies in the Middle East. Shia geopolitics is
sustained but Shia Crescent is temporary. Shia geopolitics is real but Shia Crescent is
Unrealistic and utopian.


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