The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Friday, July 28, 2006

Unified Front

One of the risks BushCo ran with an invasion of Iraq, as I've mentioned many times before, was the possible consequences of destabilizing the only secular regime in the region. Hussein was a bastard, but from a purely pragmatic standpoint, his presence kept other radical governments in the region wary. We've taken away that fear and paved the way for Iraq to become another radical theocracy and terrorist haven. Not to mention turning the population of the Middle East even more against American policy.

Now the New York Times reports that people across the Middle East are turning from sympathy for Israel for the terrorist attacks and suicide bombings they've endured, and starting to favor Hezbollah. Oh, joy. An even more destabilized Middle East, firmly united against the United States.

At the onset of the Lebanese crisis, Arab governments, starting with Saudi Arabia, slammed Hezbollah for recklessly provoking a war, providing what the United States and Israel took as a wink and a nod to continue the fight.

Now, with hundreds of Lebanese dead and Hezbollah holding out against the vaunted Israeli military for more than two weeks, the tide of public opinion across the Arab world is surging behind the organization, transforming the Shiite group’s leader, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, into a folk hero and forcing a change in official statements.

The Saudi royal family and King Abdullah II of Jordan, who were initially more worried about the rising power of Shiite Iran, Hezbollah’s main sponsor, are scrambling to distance themselves from Washington.

An outpouring of newspaper columns, cartoons, blogs and public poetry readings have showered praise on Hezbollah while attacking the United States and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice for trumpeting American plans for a “new Middle East” that they say has led only to violence and repression.

If the neocons and tough-talkin' Republicans are as eager as they sound for a massive war, they're certainly on the right track.