8.12.06

Will Lebanon again become a casualty of American expediency?

The Daily Star - Editorial - Will Lebanon again become a casualty of American expediency?:

The report by Washington's Iraq Study Group is a sweeping document that may lead to profound change in the Middle East - or to nothing at all. Whatever the case, governments in this part of the world would do well to recognize that the report is not about Iraq: It is about how to protect America's interests as it gets out of Iraq. Only by appreciating this distinction can indigenous players hope to safeguard their own interests as the executive and legislative branches of the US government decide what, if anything, to do about the report's recommendations.

This will mean different things to different state and non-state actors. For many, Washington's desire to keep Iraq from falling apart, and so to improve stability across the region, will mesh perfectly with their own goals. For others, the particular mechanisms by which the Americans seek to accomplish these tasks might constitute a threat that is nothing less than existential. One of these potential casualties is Lebanon, whose chronic instability makes it a prime candidate for a 'solution' that looks expedient from the US perspective but condemns the Lebanese people to yet another era of foreign domination. Both the government headed by Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and the opposition led by Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah need not just to be aware of this peril but also to guard against it, and actively so.

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