Saturday, July 22, 2006

What Some of Our Friends Think

The current US foreign policy with respect to the Middle East is apparently "Let's You and Him Fight." As Israel rolls its tanks and troops into southern Lebanon, the Secretary of State Smashing still hasn't gotten around to announcing just what the US plans to do about the current Middle East War. I'm not even sure at this point she has left the US for her Middle East trip. A week and a half and hundreds of deaths later, she doesn't want to rush into anything, including pressuring Israel into a cease fire. This looks and smells like a collusion between the US and Israel to do more than ensure Israel's security. Lots of people are beginning to agree.

First, an editorial from Egypt's Al-Ahram:

Israel wants to turn the Lebanese public against the resistance. It wants Lebanon to aid and abet American hegemony in the region. Some parties in Lebanon have been of two minds about the resistance, and Israel wants them to do Washington's bidding. Israel is bombing, shelling and settling accounts, and in its attempts to eliminate the Lebanese resistance is being aided by Arab silence, global indifference and American backing. Israel is seeking to avenge its humiliating withdrawal from Lebanon in 2000 and wants to remove Hezbullah from the equation, thereby weakening Arab and Islamic resolve. It seeks to undermine any confidence Arabs may have gained when American schemes in Afghanistan and Iraq came crashing down on the heads of the U.S. administration. [Emphasis added]

OK, that was an easy one. Egypt is an Arab state. But what are some of our traditional allies saying about this? Here's a column from the Australian Sydney Morning Herald:

George Bush, Condoleezza Rice and, for that matter, John Howard, can bleat forever about Israel's right to defend itself, but we are witnessing an obscenity. On all sides. The targeted Israeli air strike which murders children in a Beirut suburb is as much a crime against humanity as an indiscriminate Hezbollah rocket crashing into downtown Haifa. There are no gradations of immorality. It is total.

Bush's buffoonery in St Petersburg - manhandling Merkel, dropping the "shit" word - were funny or offensive, depending on your take on these things. But there is no humour in the fact that American policy in the Middle East now lies in ruins. The neo-conservative fantasy of a swift war in Iraq magically spreading peace and democracy throughout the region has brought nothing but catastrophe.

Sooner or later, when Hezbollah has killed enough Israeli civilians, and the Israelis have killed enough Lebanese, some sort of ceasefire will happen. But new hatreds will pile upon the old. The seeds are sown. Next, the whirlwind.
[Emphasis added]

You're doin' a heckuva job, George.


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