Forum members, as you may have seen in the other topic I started, Im a Journalism and Politics student researching the vews of service people on the current conflicts the UK is engaged in. One of the probable outcomes of the Invasion of Iraq is to hugely strengthen Iran and make it more difficult to justify future intervention against them, leaving them to develop nuclear weapons. Even if the US has the military strength to manage this along with its other commitments the political will is certainly now lacking. The Shia dominated government (along with the Shia insurgents) are made up of groups that were largly nurtured by the Iranian regime during the Saddam years. It is almost certain that 5 years from now the Iraqi government will be far closer to Iran than to the US and UK, so in taking out Saddam we have caused a lot of chaos and destruction without strengthening our strategic position in the middle east, and the sacrifice of our troops lives will not have established a friendly democratic state but provided the Iranians with a strong regional partner - to the horror of the Sunni ruled gulf states who supply us with oil. I wonder what service people who have seen the Shia parties and their militias in action in Basra think about this theory, and the extent to which Iran influences events in Iraq?