Thursday, January 08, 2009

Some thoughtful comments

Given the header, I must hasten to say "not my own."

Søren Schmidt, researcher at the Danish Institute for International Studies, has a guest article at Juan Cole's Informed Comment titled "It is 3 Crises, Not One":
Israel’s attack on Hamas in Gaza has led to Syria breaking off the semi-official peace negotiations with Israel, the strengthening of Iranian President Ahmadinejad’s popularity, the weakening of the pro-western governments of Egypt and Jordan, and an upswing in recruits ready to join the many extremist groups in the Middle East.

Everything indicates that a peaceful and constructive development of the situation has been pushed even further into the future.

This outcome is in sharp contrast to the positive developments of the 90s, when the Israeli-Palestinian peace process contributed to the Israeli-Syrian rapprochement and the election of the moderate Khatami as president of Iran.

If the region is to exit the current death spiral, it will be necessary to exploit the synergies that a coordinated approach to the situation would open up.
Juan Cole reports:
Iraqi cleric Muqtada al-Sadr called on Iraqis to kill US troops in Iraq in revenge for the Israeli assault on the people of Gaza. "I call upon the honest Iraqi resistance to carry out revenge operations against the great accomplice of the Zionist enemy,"

Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki from Baghdad attacked the international community for its silence in the face of what he called Israeli brutality, and he put pressure on Jordan, Egypt and Turkey (without naming them) to break off diplomatic relations with Israel.
and this:
Workers of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Gaza say they have gone into houses and discovered horrific scenes of corpses, and of living children still next to the body of their mother. Physicians in Gaza are convince that the official death and casualty totals for this military operation are gross underestimates, and that there are lots of buildings with undiscovered corpses in them alongside orphaned children.

This is a huge disaster.
--the BB

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