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Analysis: Events in Gaza spell the end of the beginning

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Fozzledick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-21-09 07:01 PM
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Analysis: Events in Gaza spell the end of the beginning

The Arab summit in Doha last week was intended to unite the Arab states in condemnation of Israel and begin diplomatic moves against it. But with Egypt and Saudi Arabia absent from the gathering and actively lobbying other Arab heads of state not to attend, the summit turned into a rally for the pro-Iranian bloc, in which Qatar looked like merely a constituent member.


The ease with which Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia, meanwhile, felt able to contemptuously dismiss the incendiary language of Doha is testimony to the perceived success of Operation Cast Lead. We are told that in the wars of the 21st century, which do not end with the placing of the victor's standard in the capital of the vanquished, perception is everything. As the smoke clears from the latest round of fighting in Gaza, the perception in the Arab world, on both sides of the divide, is that Israel was victorious and that Hamas and its allies suffered a significant setback.

It is precisely the extent of destruction wrought by Israel in Gaza, along with the very minor losses suffered by the Israeli side, which make the Hamas claims of having achieved anything at all - let alone victory - ring hollow.

Since the Second Lebanon War of 2006, it was an article of faith and a favored item of propaganda on the pro-Iranian side that Israel would be unable to undertake determined action against the semi-regular forces building up to its south and north, because of the "weakness" of the Israeli home front and the unwillingness to accept military casualties.

But this time around, the muqawama (resistance) model did not seem to work. The rockets did not succeed in creating a sense of siege in Israel's South, but rather declined in number as the operation proceeded. Ground operations were undertaken in the heart of the Strip - successfully, and with few losses. And the "resistance" failed to achieve symbolic acts - such as the kidnapping of a soldier or the destruction of a tank - which could at least be held up as evidence of tactical prowess. At the close of the fighting, Hamas's declared goal of opening the crossings between Israel and Gaza had not been achieved, and currently shows no sign of being achieved.
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shira Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-21-09 07:40 PM
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1. the pundits are wrong
Israel cannot possibly piss the Arab/Muslim world off anymore than they already have. Terror spiked during/after Oslo 1993 and also during/after Camp David / Taba 2000. Israel wasn't bombing anything then and was working for peace. So much for the propaganda that Israel's actions in this war will make things so much worse.

Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, etc... do not want ANYTHING to do with an Iranian backed Hamas. Of course, they don't want to be perceived as being allied with Israel either, but let's not underestimate the enmity and hatred between secular Arab states and fundamentalist ones like Iran. SA, Egypt, and Jordan are all too happy to see Hamas get destroyed.

They hate each other.

A lot.

And both sides which hate each other are extremists. They've killed at least 11 million of each other since 1948.

Madness and insanity.

Let's not fall for the trap that Hamas is just a national liberation organization representing the best interests of Palestinians. They're not only hated by other Arab/Muslim extremists but they're feared by our moderate Arab/Muslim friends - within and outside Gaza - who are suffering at their hands under Sharia Law and outright thuggery.

This latest war will do nothing to bring more Arabs/Muslims together.

If peace with Israel is a tough sell, it's even tougher for peace within the Arab/Muslim world. Even if all the Sunnis, Shiites, and seculars got on the same page - moderates would STILL suffer, women would be treated like crap, and their children brainwashed into intolerant haters of all that is progressive.

It's a sad story. Too many dead people for no reason whatsoever.

Israel will never defeat its enemies.

The only hope is for truly moderate Muslims to take out or deal with the minority who are extremists.
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