Iran’s Political Constellation Through West’s Pressure

Iran’s Political Constellation Through West’s Pressure

Iran (
Iran (


Today, nuclear proliferation is became a complicated problem. The existence of “stubborn” or deviant actors were worried many states and threatened world security and stability if the nuclear is transforms to mass killing machine. The core of this article made is to know deeper about nuclear proliferation matters which is including the survival of state such as Iran and Western countries, USA’s allies. And to analyze the case I will use neo-realism theory which is explain how security is become vital interest for every country, but sometimes state have to choose difficult choices among their political ideology or keeping their economic safe to fulfill the interest. Also, includes a few explanation of international organization that participated with short approach, clear and dense, so it is easy for reader to know the truth that happened.

Keywords: Kenneth N. Waltz, Security Dilemma, War, Iran, Western Countries, Oil


The core of this article is to know what lies beneath the reality and deeper analysis about the case of nuclear proliferation which is including Western countries and Iran as their opposite. This case is all about survival of state or in other word is security which is the vital interest for every each country in the world. But sometimes, to reach the need, state often facing problematic choice, they trapped in “which one is first to reach the need, economic or politic?”

As the daylight, international politics today is heater than before because of nuclear proliferation matters by some countries those are worrisome for UN Security Council as “stubborn” countries. As example, Iran and North Korea are international society focused about. Iran stood firm about their nuclear plans but International Atomic and Energy Agency (IAEA) reported that Iran’s uranium enrichment has been stepped on higher level which is potentially transforms to nuclear weapons.

United States of America as “global police” tried to approaching Iran through diplomacy although this method refused by Israel and he suggested US to launch military operation towards Iran as soon as possible so they can stop Iranian’s nuclear program. Whatever the option, in the name of peace, they have to avoid nuclear war, so well-planned act have to be realize.

In the other side, Iran played important role while his movement against West influence in the world. European countries are very depended on oil supply from Iran because of monetary crisis that is not end yet. How can Iran still exist under great powers pressed? What kind of respond from West to overcome Iranian’s nuclear program? This article will analyze the important factors those caused dilemma among Western countries and their own interests and Iran movement towards Western countries’ pressure using three levels of analysis: individual, state and inter-state. First, we will explain you the theory that based this arcticle created.


The theory which will use to explaining Iran foreign politics is Neo-Realism. Neo-realism is classical realism theory by Hans J. Morgenthau which is renewed by Kenneth N. Waltz to completing the lack of realism theory in explaining world politics reality nowadays. Waltz used to international theory approach which is more scientific, for him the best International Relations theory is neo-realists system theory which is focus to system structure, unit interaction, sustainable and system change.[1] According to neo-realism, state is unitary actor and also as leviathan and the director of the great ark of a nation that we called state. Waltz said that anarchy means that any state could be attacked at any time, therefore security (the survival of the state) is always at risk of another states (villain/rival state) so self-help is the best way to feel secure.

Neo-realists are seen a power from different perspective, security is vital interest for a nation and a state can cooperatively along with another states to create a joint security. This thing is usually create a “paranoid” condition where another countries those are outsider (out of the bond) pushed to increase the power to balancing another countries power so resulted security dilemma[2] and it comes with a risky condition when crucial war can be happen anytime and the final consequence is collective destruction.

Neo-realism is well-off in flexibility to decide actor that means non-state institution can be an actor if only it have power as strong or stronger as state, neo-realist seen international institution as arena of hegemonic states to increasing power and international institution is not kind of actor. (Waltz, 1979).

The indicators for both actors those engaged in this case are political and survival which are vital and it have to be keep safe and sound for every nation generally. For some countries, economic indicator becomes highly important for their own national interest because the situation if compromised could bring significant consequence in the future.[3] In the next chapter we will analyze the case comprehensively and easy for you to understand.


“Iranian has been lived in Middle East since seven or 10.000 years ago. Israeli has took over the land for 60 years that supported by West. Israeli does not have historical root,” Ahmadinejd said[4] as I quote from his speech in Kompas Online (25/9/2012) at UN General Assembly, New York, September 24, 2012. Even under pressuring by many countries, Iran still stand up for their right, right to fulfilling their own national interest such as the need of energy. Iranian president, Ahmadinejd said many times about they will not stop about their nuclear program, because the program is for peace, no less. What Ahmadinejd talked about is his own nation survival, Iranian believed that with their own strength, they can and they will survive.

In the other side, US’ ally, Israel felt the threat from Iran is threatening Israeli’s existence. For Israel, Iran is villain and they have to slaughter him. Iranian’s threat make a possibility where Israeli could be attacked at anytime because of the hatred of their existence in Middle East. Nothing but building up the defensive power and depends on allies’ support to make sure they will survive on their claimed land in Middle East.

The thing is worrisome for US, they were added sanction for Iran, but still nothing changed, the economic sanction does not enough to stop Iran. US committed to help Israel from the very beginning but the condition right now is difficult for US to decide. During global monetary crisis, military operation is a difficult option because of expensive and there is no support from congress even some states of NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organization) will support for the operation, but still not guarantee anything. American president, Obama said that American will try to prevent Iranian growing their nuclear weapon[5] and to allies have to be more patience because US still try with diplomacy to solve the problem.

Middle East is always been a zone where political and economic interest across each other. West need the oil, but their political ideology will resist, nevertheless national interest need to be fulfill. As you know, Iran’s oil stock is second biggest in the world with highly strategic location where oil export flow from Middle East via Iranian waters (Persian Gulf) so it placed Iran’s bargain position higher than before in world politics constellation under Western Hemisphere influence. Because of many states still depended on Iran’s oil supply to push the economics sector during European crisis.

United Nations as organization that embraced whole states in the world try to accommodates the problem, but still the institution is only become an arena for actors to steal and to race in spreading influence. As witnessed, UN policy for nuclear proliferation does not consumed by all states, some countries still stubborn about owning the nuclear, another examples are Pakistan and India but they seems not bring any harm to West.


The neo-realists theory is right about this problem. States are only believes with their own self. They created a joint security for they own security, but still some states wants to act by themselves such as Israel which wants to launch a military operation on Iran even no one will helps, they will decide their own future. Iran doing the same way, even he had allies such as China and Russia, he will protect the land and the nation even they have to act first.

Iranian’s nuclear weapon is just like an issue to escalate a war among the countries. If we take the other example such as Pakistan and India, why are they not become a problem for Western countries? Why only Iran and North Korea? Political and economic interest dilemma trapped the actors between two difficult choices. Iran’s threat is enough to shakes Israel, the credibility of IAEA report is still in doubt for many countries, even US’ allies doubting it. Israel needs US and allies to support his plan to slaughter Iran as his villain state in international politics. Global economics is still in crisis and even worse if there is no solution for political conflict among states. This is kind of devide et empera[6] politics between nations, so they could never reach positive peace[7] among themselves. If the states were separated, they will conquer by the chaos and anarchy which are even worse than now.

The core of the solution is from the will of states to overcome the problem itself. Some states do not have the will to end and get the resolution. It is far easier if Israel is more calm facing Iran threat, they have to talk each other. US should be a “bridge” for both rival states. Great power supports to Israel will solve nothing but make the hatred even worse than before. Peace needs the openness and the openness among all actors needs a power, a power to be brave to solve the problem together.


Art, RJ 2003, A Grand Strategy for America, Cornell University Press, Ithaca.

Jackson, R & Sorensen, G 2009, Introduction to International Relations, Oxford University Press, New York.

Palmer, G & Morgan, T 2006, A Theory of Foreign Policy, Princeton University Press, Princeton.

Waltz, KN 1979, Theory of International Politics, McGraw-Hill, Sydney.

Katzman, Kenneth 2010, Iran Sanctions, Congressional Research Service, retrieved 13 April 2012, <>.

Hardoko, Ervan 2012, ‘Lagi, Ahmadinejad Ancam Hancurkan Israel’, Kompas Online, 25 September, viewed 25 September 2012, <>.

Kistyarini 2012, ‘Ahmadinejad Diperingatkan soal Pidato Keras’, Kompas Online, 24 September, viewed 25 September 2012, <>.

2012, ‘Iran Tuding Barat Manfaatkan Dewan Keamanan’, Kompas Online, 25 September, viewed 25 September 2012, <>.

2012, ‘Perang Dunia III Pecah jika Israel Serang Iran’, Kompas Online, 24 September, viewed 25 September 2012, <>.

W., Laksono 2012, ‘Pidato Obama Singgung Reaksi terhadap Film Anti-Islam’, Kompas Online, 25 September, viewed 25 September 2012, <>.


[1] Robert Jackson and Georg Sorensen, Introduction to International Relations (New York: Oxford University Press, 2009), p. 110-115.

[2] Security dilemma is a condition where a state build up the defensive power that also enhance offensive power, but rival state can misunderstand the defense for offensive threats so rival states respond by building up their own defensive power, so the state feel afraid of each other or in other words threatened by other states, in the end can escalate to war

[3] Robert J. Art, A Grand Strategy for America (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2003), p. 45-55.

[4] Ervan Hardoko, “Lagi, Ahmadinejad Ancam Hancurkan Israel”, Kompas Online, 25 September 2012.

[5] Laksono Hari W., “Pidato Obama Singgung Reaksi terhadap Film Anti-Islam”, Kompas Online, 25 September 2012.

[6] Kind of colonialism political game at colonial era, divide and conquer

[7] Utopian’s peace, the condition where all things are safe and sound


This Arcticle is given by Jelang Ramadhan as our Guest Writer.

Walter Pinem
Walter Pinem
Traveler, Teknisi SEO, dan Programmer WordPress. Aktif di Seni Berpikir, A Rookie Traveler, GEN20, Payung Merah, dan De Quixote.

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