Saturday, October 07, 2006

A party in a ghost town

The news cycle moves fast, and the war in Lebanon has already been largely forgotten about - indeed, it's ancient in comparative terms. But this reporting, from the discussion thread at Robert Young Pelton's website Come Back Alive is very much worth reading. The site's boards are one of the few discussion boards worth reading on the Internet, especially if you're into dashing deeds of derring-do - his bio on the website states
His recent journeys have taken him inside the seige of Grozny in Chechnya, the battle of Qala-i-Jangi in Afghanistan, the rebel campaign to take Monrovia in Liberia, inside the hunt for Bin Laden in the Tribal Areas with the CIA, with insurgents during the war in Iraq, and running RPG Alley every day for a [sic] two weeks with Blackwater in Baghdad.

So what do those who were actually there think about Lebanon?
This all seemed to me to be a culmination not so much between Hezbollah and the Israeli state but rather a proxy war between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the United States. One could cynically say that while on the surface another war between Arab and Jew, the driving forces underneath were a confrontation from an emboldened Iran looking to assert itself over weakened American neoconservative policy... Was the war here in Lebanon part of Jordanian King Abdullah's predicted "Shia Crescent"? While this current war can be viewed in several different hues depending on one's political and too often ethno-religious outlook, the deification of Secretary General Nasrallah was absolutely undeniable.

At some point - and I really think that point has already come - it will be quite necessary to make hard choices about what we're doing in the Middle East, and where our priorities must lie. Unfortunatley, the spineless cowards in Washington refuse to make any choices at all.


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