In response to my blog post “Pakistan just became a bigger security threat to Iran“, Mr Farhad Poluladi who is a former Tehran based AFP journalist tweeted:
Mr Pouladi makes a very interesting point, but I am not sure I agree.
Until now, Pakistan has not been a major reason for Iran to arm itself with nuclear weapons. Yes, Pakistan is a primarily Sunni Muslim state and Iran is a Shiite Muslim state. The two have vied for power in places such as Afghanistan. But in none of these differences Pakistan’s nuclear weapon have been a threat to Iran.
The next question which must be asked is: what if there are more cross border attacks from Pakistan inside Iran by armed groups?
Again, I am not sure that’s going to be sufficient reason for Iran to arm itself with nuclear weapons.
The only time when Pakistan could turn into a serious threat is if it arms the Saudis with nuclear weapons.
If the reports are true and the Saudis could buy a nuclear weapon off the shelf from Pakistan in response to Iran acquiring nuclear weapons, then Iran will not just have one, but two enemies. Proliferation of nuclear weapons from Pakistan to a major enemy of Iran will be no small matter to Iran’s leaders. This could seriously impact Pakistani – Iranian relations.
I think we are very far from the realization of such a scenario. To be honest, I don’t think Iran’s supreme leader Khamenei will ever decide to issue an order to assemble a nuclear weapons. The economic and military costs would be too high.