Middle East: A Holy War's Troublesome Fallout

Iran's victories over Iraq threaten the moderate Arabs

Ya Mohammad ibn Abdullah! Ya Mohammad ibn Abdullah!

As this code signal was broadcast over walkie-talkie radios early last week, some 65,000 Iranian troops and militia launched the most ambitious counterattack of the 20-month border war between Iran and Iraq. The prize: the Iranian port of Khorramshahr, which the Iraqis had captured soon after crossing to the Iranian side of the Shatt al Arab at the start of the war.

The predawn Iranian attack routed the Iraqi forces with an ease that surprised even the Iranian commanders. By noon, two Iraqi divisions and two border...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!