Thursday, July 20, 2006

Just sit back and hope for the best:

The WaPo reports:

"[ Condi] Rice is now expected to travel to the Middle East as soon as this weekend, but with a limited listening mission in Israel and Egypt. The United States is still struggling to define the timing and purpose of her mission. She is tentatively expected to leave a team behind in Israel, head on to Malaysia for a conference of Southeast Asian nations, and possibly return to the Middle East for further negotiations if her team can put the right "building blocks" in place, a U.S. official said."

Malaysia? My God, could she get any further away from what's going on? Now that's showing real engagement! This is even worse than when Colin Powell took the slow boat to the Middle East in April of 2002. Just as now, the US decided to let Israel go ahead and do what ever it wanted; flatten Jenin; maybe accidentally kill Arafat; who knows what might happen, but first we need to go to Morocco, Jordan, Damascus, Beirut: and then to Palestine maybe next week to see Arafat.

This approach is seriously deluded. What makes this administration think any amount of Israeli bombing is going to weaken or eliminate Hezbollah. They're Lebanese, where are they going to go? The thinking behind this non-engagement strategy is reported in Newsweek:

"U.S. diplomats are working hard to keep Israelis from killing innocent Lebanese, despite the call by some Israeli hard-liners to make the strikes "Biblical" in severity, according to the senior U.S. diplomat. 'The Israelis intend to bruise Hizbullah, and that's probably a good thing. I don't think there should be call for a ceasefire right now,' he said. 'But we're saying [the strikes] shouldn't be unbridled and promiscuous.'"

That's a policy? What about the tens of thousands of Lebanese without water and electicity? How about the thousands of refugees trying to leave and get into Syria? This is completly outrageous.


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