Friday, August 10, 2007

Middle East bazaarin climate of cold war

New York, Ghassan Michel Rubeiz
August 7, 2007

Rapid production and sale of arms cheapen the value of life. The US has a plan to flood the Middle East with arms going to “good” people to be used against “bad” people. In recent legislation, President Bush set forth a plan to sell and donate sixty-three billion dollars in weaponry to allies in the Middle East over the next ten years. Thirty billion will go as military aid to Israel, and thirteen billion will go as military aid to Egypt. Saudi Arabia and seven other Gulf countries are allowed to purchase twenty billion dollars worth of arms, if the Congress approves.

The 30-billion military aid to Israel, a 25 % increase over the last ten year period, will be easily approved by Congress. For Congress, Israel, a reliable ally can do no harm with more weapons.

The thirteen billion dollar aid to Egypt is likely to be contested, but it will ultimately be approved because Egypt, one third of the Arab world’s population, has had a peace treaty with Israel since 1979.

The twenty billon dollar arms sale assigned to the Gulf countries will be opposed by human rights groups, by friends of Israel and by Americans who want Saudi Arabia to be more vigilant in the war on terror. But in the end, Washington’s fear mongering directed towards Iran will facilitate the legislative authorization of the sale of advanced weapons to Arab countries which have no knowledge of how to use them.

Marketing of products sometimes requires a culture of survival anxiety. This is often how medicinal drugs are sold. Legislation for sale of arms also has its slick marketing in America: make the product indispensable. Regrettably, in order for the US to sell arms and maintain its dominance of the region Iran has become the focus of demonization, a great selling point.

It takes an accident-prone, provocative Iranian regime and a short-sighted, American Administration to misread each other and to create a new cold-war atmosphere in the Middle East. Iran decides to escalate its rhetoric against Israel and threatens to mobilize a controversial nuclear defense program. Iran meddles too deeply in Lebanon and in Palestine. By taking these provocative steps, Iran becomes marketable in the American media as a dangerous and evil empire.

It is not only Iran that is provocative. The US decides to invade Iraq for no good reason. Then the US and Israel threaten to attack Iran for no convincing causes. America mobilizes Sunni-minded Arab regimes to consider Iran as a Shia-obsessed enemy. Conveniently, America explains the Iraq civil war to the world as a product of growing power of the Shiite community.

Do we have the elements of a new cold war? The threat of the communism of the past is replaced by the threat of radical Islam. Iran is made to look like the Soviets. Iraq replaces Vietnam.

The similarities of past rivalry between the US and the Soviets and the current US-Iran hostilities are compelling, yet the differences are significant. These differences are too significant to make reliable predictions based on the past.

The cold-war paradigm follows a business model. Organizationally, the previous order of the cold war was based on how each of the two rival superpowers created a “client state” system. In return for foreign aid the client state compromised its sovereignty by complying with dictated foreign policy. The US was allied with right-wing client states throughout the world, and the Soviets were allied with left-wing regimes. Both superpowers actively and covertly manipulated regime changes.

Often war occurs when fear escalates disproportionately. In the new cold war, Iran does not measure up in size or power to the Soviets. But the “neo-cons” of Washington point out that Iran could mobilize over fifty countries in the Muslim world against the West. This is the “domino theory” of the old cold war.

Washington asks this rhetorical question: Does not Iran already have a client-state system that includes Syria, part of Lebanon (Hezbollah), part of Palestine (Hamas) and part of Iraq (insurgency)? Iran’s political alliances should not be taken lightly, but their impact is limited. Iran’s international partnerships are formed for self-preservation rather than for regional control. Syria, for example, is not cemented ideologically with Iran. If Syria were to be given back the Golan Heights, it would cooperate with the US.

In the Middle East, the US has its own client system including Israel, Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf States. In Lebanon, the government is allied with the US and in Palestine the new West Bank government is supported by Washington.

Ideologically, the cold war rested on the concept of containment. The US contained the danger of the Soviets with nuclear deterrence, conventional arms and an informal, world-wide alliance of allied states. The Soviets reciprocated with a similar system of defense and strategic alliances. The cold war lasted seven decades until the Soviet economy collapsed and Eastern Europe transitioned to the new world.

But the world has changed since the cold war. The US cannot count on winning this round. The US is behaving in the Middle East as the Soviets did in Afghanistan. Now it is the US that is bogged down in Middle Eastern wars as the Soviets were humiliated in Afghanistan in the 1980s.

The Muslims world is 1.3 billion people; every fifth person in the world is a Muslim. The tenacity and depth of the Moslem community are impressive. It is in this wider and peaceful community that radical Islam is finding shelter. Money and human resources are generated informally, covertly and without limits. If mishandled, radical political Islam will be long lasting and increasingly threatening. Political Islam is not a state to fight; it is an ideology. It is not a market economy. It does not collapse easily.

The best way to limit underground Islam is by allowing Muslim countries the freedom and the space they need to evolve their traditional political systems. Muslims need not be taught democracy; they have the necessary political values to build a democracy that suits their culture. Time and trust are needed. Muslim communities would, however, benefit most from industrial empowerment, cultural cooperation, and a climate of regional coordination.

Only Muslims can contain and transform the energies of radical, fundamental Islam. Fundamentalism will prosper as a mode of defense as long as the West is viewed by the Muslim world as enemy number one. The US rush to sell arms to its Middle East clients is counterproductive.

The old cold war is gone. Good riddance.


Blogger oakleyses said...

nike air max, tiffany and co jewelry, tiffany jewelry, prada handbags, oakley sunglasses, coach outlet store online, longchamp outlet online, michael kors outlet online, kate spade outlet online, coach purses, tory burch outlet, louboutin shoes, longchamp outlet, louis vuitton, cheap oakley sunglasses, michael kors outlet online, ray ban sunglasses, coach outlet, michael kors outlet, louis vuitton handbags, michael kors outlet online, coach outlet, longchamp handbags, ray ban outlet, polo ralph lauren, nike air max, jordan shoes, burberry outlet online, prada outlet, louis vuitton outlet, chanel handbags, michael kors outlet online, michael kors outlet store, christian louboutin shoes, gucci handbags, christian louboutin outlet, burberry outlet online, polo ralph lauren outlet, louis vuitton outlet online, oakley vault, nike free, louis vuitton outlet, kate spade handbags, nike shoes, red bottom shoes

8:40 PM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

vans pas cher, nike air force, converse pas cher, north face, tn pas cher, true religion, ralph lauren pas cher, sac michael kors, mulberry, lululemon, air max pas cher, hermes pas cher, scarpe hogan, nike roshe run, true religion outlet, lacoste pas cher, ralph lauren, nike air max, michael kors canada, burberry pas cher, air max, nike blazer pas cher, guess pas cher, oakley pas cher, true religion outlet, longchamp, ray ban pas cher, hollister, chaussure louboutin, ray ban uk, longchamp pas cher, louis vuitton pas cher, new balance pas cher, sac vanessa bruno, michael kors uk, nike air max, nike free pas cher, timberland, louis vuitton, north face pas cher, air jordan, sac louis vuitton, hollister, louis vuitton uk, nike free

8:41 PM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

giuseppe zanotti, herve leger, soccer shoes, reebok shoes, instyler ionic styler, roshe run, babyliss pro, beats headphones, soccer jerseys, ugg, nike trainers, abercrombie and fitch, asics shoes, mcm handbags, nike roshe, north face outlet, ferragamo shoes, barbour, ghd, jimmy choo shoes, ugg soldes, north face jackets, valentino shoes, uggs outlet, longchamp, bottega veneta, wedding dresses, marc jacobs outlet, celine handbags, nike huarache, nfl jerseys, chi flat iron, rolex watches, hollister, new balance outlet, vans outlet, p90x workout, mont blanc pens, abercrombie and fitch, ugg outlet, lululemon outlet, mac cosmetics, insanity workout, birkin bag, uggs on sale

8:42 PM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

canada goose outlet, converse shoes, nike air max, ugg, hollister clothing, ralph lauren, canada goose, hollister canada, lancel, karen millen, coach outlet, replica watches, iphone 6 case, timberland shoes, uggs canada, gucci, hollister, louboutin, canada goose pas cher, canada goose outlet, oakley, juicy couture outlet, moncler, canada goose, wedding dress, moncler, air max, converse, moncler, canada goose, moncler outlet, supra shoes, louis vuitton canada, parajumpers outlet, montre femme, moncler, ray ban, toms outlet, moncler, canada goose outlet, baseball bats, canada goose uk, vans, ugg boots, juicy couture outlet, moncler

8:43 PM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

burberry outlet, nike free, oakley sunglasses wholesale, gucci handbags, longchamp outlet, replica watches, oakley sunglasses, nike air max, ray ban sunglasses, christian louboutin uk, ugg boots, nike air max, polo ralph lauren outlet online, louis vuitton outlet, ray ban sunglasses, kate spade outlet, tiffany jewelry, michael kors outlet, uggs outlet, michael kors outlet online, michael kors outlet, nike outlet, michael kors outlet online, prada handbags, christian louboutin shoes, louis vuitton outlet, christian louboutin, jordan shoes, polo outlet, cheap oakley sunglasses, burberry handbags, christian louboutin outlet, tory burch outlet, michael kors outlet online, longchamp outlet, uggs on sale, longchamp outlet, michael kors outlet store, tiffany and co, prada outlet, ugg boots, chanel handbags, uggs outlet, louis vuitton, ray ban sunglasses, louis vuitton, louis vuitton outlet, replica watches

12:35 AM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

michael kors, converse pas cher, new balance, north face uk, true religion outlet, nike roshe, sac hermes, nike tn, true religion jeans, timberland pas cher, vans pas cher, michael kors outlet, mulberry uk, coach purses, nike roshe run uk, nike free uk, lululemon canada, michael kors pas cher, nike blazer pas cher, oakley pas cher, nike air max, polo lacoste, polo ralph lauren, nike air max uk, abercrombie and fitch uk, hollister uk, nike free run, longchamp pas cher, north face, hollister pas cher, hogan outlet, true religion outlet, ralph lauren uk, michael kors, jordan pas cher, air max, sac vanessa bruno, guess pas cher, nike air max uk, kate spade, louboutin pas cher, ray ban uk, ray ban pas cher, burberry pas cher, coach outlet, nike air force, coach outlet store online, sac longchamp pas cher, coach outlet, true religion outlet

12:40 AM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

vans, ralph lauren, giuseppe zanotti outlet, nike roshe run, ray ban, p90x workout, herve leger, asics running shoes, nike air max, timberland boots, ghd hair, reebok outlet, new balance shoes, north face outlet, iphone 6 cases, mac cosmetics, wedding dresses, nike trainers uk, converse outlet, celine handbags, lululemon, hollister clothing, soccer jerseys, instyler, longchamp uk, converse, soccer shoes, babyliss, insanity workout, beats by dre, gucci, north face outlet, vans outlet, abercrombie and fitch, hermes belt, ferragamo shoes, hollister, bottega veneta, nike huaraches, nike air max, louboutin, jimmy choo outlet, valentino shoes, baseball bats, nfl jerseys, chi flat iron, oakley, mcm handbags, hollister, mont blanc pens

12:45 AM  
Blogger oakleyses said...

karen millen uk, doudoune moncler, canada goose, michael kors outlet online, louis vuitton, moncler, moncler, replica watches, pandora uk, pandora charms, swarovski crystal, ugg uk, coach outlet, michael kors handbags, canada goose outlet, moncler, ugg,uggs,uggs canada, ugg, canada goose outlet, marc jacobs, pandora jewelry, lancel, wedding dresses, moncler, moncler outlet, links of london, moncler outlet, barbour uk, canada goose outlet, canada goose uk, doke gabbana, michael kors outlet, barbour, louis vuitton, louis vuitton, canada goose, supra shoes, juicy couture outlet, louis vuitton, canada goose jackets, canada goose, juicy couture outlet, louis vuitton, swarovski, hollister, toms shoes, ugg,ugg australia,ugg italia, pandora jewelry, ugg pas cher, thomas sabo, moncler uk, montre pas cher

12:50 AM  
Blogger dong dong23 said...

ray ban sunglasses outlet
michael kors outlet
coach factory outlet
ralph lauren sale
louis vuitton outlet
ray ban sunglasses
coach factory outlet
asics shoes
coach outlet
ray ban wayfarer
louis vuitton handbags
michael kors outlet
tory burch outlet
coach factory outlet
michael kors outlet
adidas outlet store
toms shoes
prada uk
michael kors outlet
louis vuitton outlet
replica watches
michael kors outlet
rolex watches
kate spade handbags
tory burch sale
kate spade
oakley sunglasses wholesale
ray ban sunglasses outlet
michael kors purses
tods shoes
supra shoes
coach outlet
cheap toms shoes
oakley sunglasses
louis vuitton outlet
toms shoes
marc jacobs
louis vuitton outlet
louis vuitton

11:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

2016-4-19 xiaozhengm
cheap oakleys
tiffany jewelry
toms shoes
michael kors outlet
coach outlet
coach outlet
oakley sunglasses
gucci handbags
coach outlet
basketball shoes
timberland boots
air jordans
cheap oakley sunglasses
nike air max 90
coach factorty outlet
jordan 8s
retro jordans
ugg boots
louis vuitton handbags
jordan 6
polo ralph lauren
coach factorty outlet
toms shoes
michael kors outlet
coach factorty outlet
michael kors handbags
rolex submariner
coach factory outlet
toms outlet
hollister outlet
toms shoes
ray ban wayfarer
mont blanc pens
louis vuitton outlet
coach outlet store online
nike huarache shoes
air jordans
kobe shoes 11

7:48 PM  
Anonymous Pengobatan Atasi Muntah Darah said...

Article extraordinary interest, may be useful for many people

obat polip hidung tanpa operasi
Pengobatan Kuku Cantengan Alami
Cara Ampuh Atasi Benjolan Di Ketiak
Obat Ampuh Iritasi lambung
Obat Atasi Sinusitis Tanpa Operasi
Obat Ampuh Usir Jerawat Tanpa Bekas

5:27 PM  
Anonymous Obat Batu Empedu Alami said...

Thanks for sharing the information

Khasiat QnC Jelly Gamat
Obat Eksim Atopik
Pengobatan Herbal Penyakit Liver
Cara Mengobati Alergi Dingin
Obat Paling Mujarab untuk Diabetes
Cara Mengatasi Penyakit Asam Lambung

4:43 PM  
Blogger lamiss ibrahim said...

I definitely love this site.

11:38 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home