On Wednesday, Jordan sentenced three nationals to five years in prison for spying on behalf of the Iran-sponsored terrorist group, Hamas. Just days before, Egypt charged 49 persons tied to Hezbollah – another Iran-sponsored group – with espionage, possessing weapons and explosives, and for plotting to destabilize Egypt.
For nearly three decades, since its inception in 1979, the Islamic Republic of Iran has utilized proxies to destabilize the Middle East. In the early 1980s, it began arming and training the Hezbollah terrorist group in Lebanon. In 1987, Iranians rioted in Mecca and called for the deposal of the Saudi monarchy. In the late 1980s, it began providing weapons, funding and training to Hamas to gain a foothold among the Palestinians. More recently, Iran has also fomented sectarian violence in Iraq and has gained significant influence in that country’s south.
Fear stemming from Iran’s quest for nuclear weapons continues to overshadow Iran’s meddling in Sunni Arab affairs.