Conceptual Explanation of Shiite Geopolitics (A New Definition)

Document Type : Original Article


Assistant Professor of Political Geography, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran


Extended Abstract
Concept of Shiite geopolitics has received a good deal of attention particularly among Iranian researchers and writers in the field of political geography and geopolitics during the past two decade. The volume of articles, content and books on the issue has increased significantly. However, majority of them have either failed to present a clear definition of the Shiite geopolitics concept or they have had irrelevant and sometimes conflicting interpretation of it. It seems that lack of transparency and relative stability in the concept has led to increasing ambiguity which in turn it may lead to wanderings and further problems in the future. Accordingly, conceptual explanation and provision of a rather comprehensive definition of the Shiite geopolitics concept which contributes to its scientific identity seems an undeniable necessity.
In the current article, using a descriptive and analytical method and after reviewing suggested definitions and different viewpoints on the concept of Shiite geopolitics, the writer will provide a rather comprehensive definition of the concept which is based on scientific and geographical realities. The method of collecting information is library and is used from books, magazines and various databases of the Internet.
The findings of this study are discussed under the following themes:
1. Numerous and contradictory definitions of Shiite geopolitics
It is clear that there are different views and attitudes about the subject and the nature of Shiite geopolitics, especially in Iran. Although it has not been long since the design of this concept in the Persian-speaking world, there are numerous, sometimes contradictory, definitions of Shiite geopolitics that will surely make it more difficult to reach consensus in the future.
2. A misunderstanding; Shiite geopolitics is the same as Shiite political geography
Most of the views and definitions provided by Shiite geopolitics are considered the same as Shiite political geography. They mean the collection of geospatial data and geographic information in Shiite areas, especially biological foundations and energy sources. Surely, this view can not be a proper conception of Shi'a geopolitics.
3. A scientific mistake; Shiite of geopolitics and the Shiite crescent be one
A number of writers have also considered the Shiite crescent and thus interpreted it as a non-scientific and imaginative and conspiracy concept.While the Shiite geopolitics and Shiite crescent can not be considered as a meaning, they are not the same despite the apparent similarity.
4. Non-comprehensive definitions and the need for new definition
Other definitions, however worthless, are not of comparative consistency. Each of them has taken a part in the subject. Hence, a more comprehensive definition is needed not only to include the views, but also to respond to the scientific community and researchers and enthusiasts, and can cover the relevant developments well.
What are the characteristics of the new definition of Shiite geopolitics and what should be covered? In the new definition, Shi'a politicization initiates a wave of politicization of religious and religious identities in the world. The Shiites also pursued a Muslim alliance to save global domination. The effort to further influence and expand the sphere of influence of the center of the Shiite territories, Iran, is also completely natural and accepted in international relations, and has served as an effective strategy for the unification and dignity of Muslims and the salvation of world domination. In the new definition, Shi'a geopolitics is not opposed to Sunni geopolitics. The genuine cultural-geopolitical concepts of the Islamic Revolution refer to Islamic unity and the formation of a universal Islamic government, not Shiite supremacy over the Islamic world. According to this definition, all Shiites, as well as the entire Islamic world, are called to a single movement in the face of global arrogance.
In the new definition, Shi'a geopolitics does not mean the extension of the political geography of the Shiites outside Iran, nor the equivalent of the imaginary and non-scientific term of the Shiite crescent, and not limited to a particular historical period. Shiite geopolitics is a scientific science with dimensions and specific aspects that have been formed after the Islamic Revolution in Iran and influenced by the West Asian region. Shiite geopolitics has also undergone three evolutionary stages. Identity and self-awareness of the Shiites; the formation of political parties and organizations; the role of the Shiites in the political structure of the countries.
Thus, given the explanation of the underlying role of the three main factors of geography, politics and power in relation to the Shiite phenomenon, the following definition can be derived from Shiite geopolitics:
"Shi'a geopolitics is the combination of the geographical capacities of the Shiite areas with the ideals and teachings of Shi'ite political culture that could put it in the path of empowerment, and to establish the core – periphery interactions in the form of effectiveness and influence between Iran as The center of the Shiite territories and Shiite minorities around Iran after the Islamic Revolution."