Bahrain’s King Hamad today defended the violent crackdown against protesters, insisting that the deployment of military forces to the streets of Manama foiled a “subversive” plot by unnamed foreigners.
The king insisted that the plot “had been fomented for twenty to thirty years,” and that thanks to the Saudi-led invasion to crush the protests, the plot was foiled. Other Bahraini officials insisted that this unnamed foreign plot was Iran’s fault.
Which is a common refrain in Bahrain’s foreign policy, as the Sunni monarchy has had to contend with growing unrest among the nation’s Shi’ite majority. One noteworthy WikiLeaks cable from 2008 said Bahrain was constantly discussing Iran in private talks, but refused to provide any evidence to back up its allegations.
GCC Secretary General Abdul Rahman al-Atiyyah defended his organization’s invasion to crush the protests, saying that it “did not represent foreign interference” because the regime asked for military help in silencing the protests.