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Middle East: the strategic map changes « Previous | |Next »
December 30, 2006

If the situation in Baghdad is dire, then that involving Lebanon and Israel around what is often called the 'unfinished business' is troubling. This is more than Lebanon being deeply divided.

Jabra Stavro

Fred Halliday argues that the third, and most important, outcome of the 2006 war is that the strategic map of the Middle East, the one with which Israel, the Arab states, the Palestinians and the outside world have all lived since 1967, has now in two ways significantly, perhaps even fundamentally, altered.

He says:

First, it is no longer just a matter of conflict between the Arabs and Israel, but of one between Israel and Iran, this latter power now developing a strategy, from Iraq to Gaza, designed to weaken the United States and its allies across the region. Second, the assumptions of that post-1967 epoch no longer hold, of territorial compromise, UN resolutions, the pursuit of mutual recognition, international guarantees. In Iran, and in its allies Hizbollah and Hamas, Israel now has an enemy more resolute, organised and uncompromising that any it has faced since it was established.

This is a new dynamic.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 10:49 AM |