Iran’s moment

June 14, 2009

The next day or two will have a profound significance on U.S. foreign policy for years to come.

It may be that an Israeli airstrike becomes inevitable, or on the other hand a Tiananmen-style massacre creates an internal crisis which forces the leadership to turn inward and lessen Iran’s impact as a player in the region.

Juan Cole has some great writeups, but to follow the latest developments you should checkout Andrew Sullivan‘s and Josh Marshall‘s blogs.  They are keeping close watch, with assists from their Farsi speaking readers and local bloggers.

Don’t bother watching the news networks, they’re asleep at the switch.

PA losing it

January 14, 2009

My worst fears already coming true:

The more bombs in Gaza, the more Hamas’s support seems to be growing at the expense of the Palestinian Authority, already considered corrupt and distant from average Palestinians.

“The Palestinian Authority is one of the main losers in this war,” said Ghassan Khatib, an independent Palestinian analyst in the West Bank city of Ramallah. “How can it make gains in a war in which it is one of the casualties?”

NY Times 1/15/08

296 to 1

December 30, 2008

“By last night, the exchange rate stood at 296 Palestinians dead for one dead Israeli” -Robert Fisk

I don’t see how Israel can expect goodwill from the world or understanding from Arabs with such asymmetric response. Or how it can possibly not produce a whole new generation of suicide bombers.

The whole thing comes off as Israel wanting to teach the people of Gaza a lesson for voting Hamas in.  Is that too cynical?

I’m most afraid Israel may have just delivered the West Bank to Hamas as well, and destroyed any chance for peace another decade.

Charles’ write up has some great quotes.

Mitchell Bard makes a good case for Israel’s actions and justification.  And I agree 400 rockets cannot stand.  And yet I think they’re playing right into Hamas’ hands.