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Another incomprehensible US stroll into the Arab-Israeli minefield

Reader comment on item: Annapolis Blues

Submitted by Charles Martel (United States), Oct 25, 2007 at 12:09

Of course the talks are stupid and won't go anywhere -- anyone can see that and it's not worth dissecting.

What I found interesting is Dr. Pipe's reasons for the latest "peace talks" goat rope. I have never understood why no US administration (right or left, competent or pathetic) can't resist trying to settle this.

These five are at least adequate explanations -- although only the second is even arguably a plausible US interest:

  • Iranian threat: Rice sees an opportunity for U.S. diplomacy in a Middle East re-alignment resulting from Iranian aggression, both actual (Hizbullah, Hamas) and future (nuclear weapons).
  • Inaction worse: If nothing is done, Kadima's already dismal standing in the polls will continue to fall and Fatah's tenuous hold over the West Bank will erode. The prospect of Likud and Hamas succeeding Olmert and Abbas pleases the Bush administration no more than it does those two men.
  • Legacy: Zbigniew Brzezinski has articulated the foreign policy establishment's hopes for Annapolis and its dim view of Rice: "She realizes that her legacy right now is really very poor. If she can pull this off, she will be seen as a real historical figure."
  • Civil rights: Rice believes in a bizarre analogy between West Bank Palestinians and southern Blacks.
  • Messianism: Both George W. Bush and Rice seem to view themselves as destined to resolve Arab-Israeli hostilities. One interlocutor recounts that "she believes this is the time for the Israeli and Palestinian conflict to end."
  • Submitting....

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