Obama Brings Mideast Clarity to the Voting Booth

Israel - and American Jews - now know where Democrats stand.

During the Cold War, America's intelligence agencies employed "Kremlinologists" whose job was to carefully parse official statements from the Kremlin and try to figure out exactly what the Soviets' plans might be.

The Kremlinologists have long since retired, but it looks like we need some Obamologists.  From the reaction across the Internet, lots of folks seem to have really not the slightest clue as to what exactly Barack Obama meant about Israel in his recent speech to the State Department.

The Washington Examiner made their take crystal clear in an article "President Obama throws Israel under the Palestinian bus":

President Obama stirred up a hornets' nest when he declared during his highly anticipated Middle East speech Thursday that Israel's borders should be based on the pre-1967 lines. He added enough caveats to render his demand unattainable from a practical standpoint, but, as a matter of political and strategic perception, Obama has inflicted a serious wound on America's most reliable ally... Even if Israel were to accept these crushing preconditions, there's no reason to believe that doing so would lead to peace. Arab possession of the disputed territories before 1967 did not prevent three major Arab-Israeli wars.

But most of the mainstream media was hardly disturbed, saying that Mr. Obama merely pointed out the obvious and demanded nothing less than what's reasonable.

What's the problem with moving the border line around a bit?  Let's take a look at a couple of maps.

Conquering Power or Small Island?

The first map is similar to one you've seen many times.  It shows Israel in beige, the "occupied territories" in green, other countries in tan, and of course the Mediterranean Sea in blue.

The tiny green speck on the lower left corner of Israel is the Gaza Strip.  This particular map is misleading; Gaza is not occupied by Israel in any way.  The Israelis pulled out in 2005, forcibly removing every single Israeli from the area and even digging Jewish corpses out of the graveyards.

To great international applause and truckloads of your tax dollars, the Gazans were set free to go to hell in their own way.  Which they promptly proceeded to do: the terrorist group Hamas was elected to power in a "one-time" free-and-fair election, followed by Hamas entrenching its power by pitching potential opponents off the roofs of tall buildings in true Chicago style.

The far larger West Bank remained under nominal Israeli control, but the Palestinians there were permitted a limited form of self-government under the slightly less bloodthirsty Fatah group.  Fatah and its founder Yasser Arafat were no strangers to terrorism, but Fatah acknowledges Israel's legal right to exist, which is more than can be said for Hamas.

Still, given that it's generally accepted that the Palestinians should have a country, and given how teensy Gaza is, why shouldn't Israel just pull out of the West Bank and leave them alone?  The answer lies in the third green spot on the map: Golan, which once belonged to Syria.

The more descriptive name for that area is "the Golan Heights", and it's called that because it is a high-altitude rocky plateau that commands the north end of Israel.  It used to belong to Syria; prior to 1967, the Syrians used it as a convenient artillery platform to lob explosives down on the Jews.

When Syria and the rest of the Arab world invaded in 1967, Israel took the opportunity to solve a longstanding problem.  In the course of pushing back the Arabs, they pushed them a bit further back than where they started.  Israel has controlled the Golan Heights ever since, effectively annexing them as part of Israel in 1981.  It's no coincidence that there haven't been any missiles fired at Israel from the Golan since 1967.

This is in stark contrast with Gaza. On just one single Saturday a few weeks ago, more than 50 - fifty! - missiles were fired into Israel.  A few weeks earlier, a missile hit a school bus, fortunately just after most of the kids had gotten off, though one teenager was not so lucky.  Even Barack Obama thought this was a bit much:

If somebody was sending rockets into my house where my two daughters sleep at night, I would do everything to stop that, and would expect Israel to do the same thing.

In any other part of the world, this ongoing missilery would define Gaza as an active war zone and Israel would be seen as fully justified in conquest leading to unconditional surrender.  In the Middle East, however, it's not the murderous Muslims who have turned down every peace plan they've ever been offered who're being pressured; no, it's the democratic state of Israel, which as Prime Minister Netanyahu pointed out in his speech to our Congress:

Of the 300 million Arabs in the Middle East and North Africa, only Israel’s Arab citizens enjoy real democratic rights.

Friends, Enemies, and Knowing Which Is Which

No, the Middle East's problem is not found on the first map, which depicts a country smaller than our state of New Hampshire.  It's found on this second map, which shows the entire Arab world, virtually all of whose people hate Israel with a blazing passion, surrounding a few pixels denoting the only free country for miles around.

In reality it's even worse: this particular map doesn't show non-Arab countries like Iran, whose president regularly promises to wipe Israel off the map as soon as his scientists give him nuclear weapons, or Turkey, who for years was Israel's ally but whose newly Islamist government is following the same bloodthirsty path that all modern Islamic countries have thus far.

Yet our president sides with the barbarians against the free!

Netanyahu came out of his meeting with President Obama saying that the Israelis were still friends and that our ties were still strong.  The thunderous applause Congress gave Netanyahu's speech indicates that Israel's ties with Americans are indeed as strong as ever.

By pressuring the free ally rather than the murderous terrorists, Obama has presented the world, and particularly Jewish Americans, with a stark choice:

Should we defer to the realpolitik of where we get our oil and abandon a tiny but free country that nobody much likes and which has nothing concrete to offer us?

Or should we stand on principle, piss off our gas pumps, and go in swinging on the side of those who truly have something in common with the beliefs America was founded on?

In the coming days, months, and years, this is a question for America's foreign policy mavens.  More importantly, it's a question for individual Americans in the voting booths.  A vote for Barack Obama can no longer be considered a vote for a free, safe, independent Israel, and it's time for the 3/4 of American Jews who voted for him to have a serious round of soul-searching.

Jews tend to be more liberal than most which means that they have historically voted mostly for Democrats.  What's more, Jewish Americans in New York and California are famous as the financial backers of the Democratic party, right up there with unions and ambulance-chasers.

As Mr. Bin Laden's death will give the Muslims a reason to re-think whether they want to stop supporting Jihad and join the modern world, Mr. Obama's speech will give Jews a reason to re-think their liberal ideas.

To illuminate their choice more vividly, Mr. Netanyahu has another quote that all Jews would do well to remember:

If the Arabs put down their weapons today, there would be no more violence. If the Jews put down their weapons today, there would be no more Israel.

Petrarch is a contributing editor for Scragged.  Read other Scragged.com articles by Petrarch or other articles on Foreign Affairs.
Reader Comments

“Israel - and American Jews - now know where Democrats stand.”

Democrats? Republicans? Surely you jest. There is only one party in Zionist Occupied America, the Likud Party.
For more than half a century, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) has worked to strengthen the U.S.-Israel relationship.~AIPAC

For many years AIPAC has falsely advertised Israel as a "democratic state" that best serves U.S. interests in a turbulent and unpredictable part of the world, covering up Israel's suppression of human rights and its very nature as an entity premised on fanatic militarism, racial segregation and injustice.~Counterpunch

Each year, AIPAC is involved in more than 100 legislative and policy initiatives involving Middle East policy or aimed at broadening and deepening the U.S.-Israel bond.~AIPAC

AIPAC claims it "has a stranglehold on Congress." With a $47 million a year budget and more than 100 full-time staffers, it is no doubt a formidable advocate for Israel's interests.~Isreview.org

AIPAC lobbyists with their Christian Zionist allies guarantee billions of dollars in military aid for Israel each year.~AlterNet

You speak of Hamas, and the Palestinian Authority as terrorist organizations, but ignore the history of Irgun, and Sterngang, and how “Israel” was spawned by terrorism, is maintained by terrorism, and will surely commit suicide by terrorism.

This entire story is ahistorical BS, Newspeak garbage.

May 25, 2011 11:31 AM

Your extreme bias clearly unqualifies you to speak on matters concerning Israel. Go read the Scragged backfiles where we've extensively discussed these issues, then come back.



May 25, 2011 11:44 AM

I don't need to read hasbara propaganda to understand the history of the foundation of Isreal. It is one of my main topics of research.

You accuse me of bias, when you spill out Zionist talking points like an agent from AIPAC itself.

And I am sure you mean "disqualifies", my "highly educated" 'teacher'.[?]

May 25, 2011 12:08 PM

BTW, an "extreme bias" for the truth is hardly a sin.


May 25, 2011 12:23 PM

If and when you come up with some truth, Willie, I'm sure someone will notice.

May 25, 2011 1:16 PM

To me, a civilized country is one that behaves in a civilized manner. Should an Israeli kill an Arab civilian, he is put on trial in Israel. Should an Arab kill an Israeli civilian in Gaza, he is a hero. It is very simple, no exceptions allowed. Gaza and the Palestinians living there are for the most part uncivilized barbarians.

Conquest has been a way of solving these problems for a long time. Charlemagne finally had enough with the barbarian attacks in Germany, rounded the problem tribes up, executed 10,000 warriors and moved the tribe to western France. Israel should move the Gaza Palestinians to Jordan (leave off the beheading) and resettle the territory claiming it as conquered territory. The threat of doing the same to the West Bank and the Golan Heights should quiet terrorist activity there.

Oh but that would upset the Arabs more! No, it would solve a problem for the Arabs who would like to get on with their lives and only cause a problem for Jordan, who has an out because they still practice beheading.

The problems in Lebanon will sort themselves out as Syrians and Iranians gain their freedom and those countries will no longer need an external enemy to keep the citizens under control.

May 25, 2011 1:18 PM

There is so much information/misinformation from both sides, it's hard to know where to begin on the Jew/Arab conflict, or who to believe.

Every time I debate a pro-Palestinian on the "whose land is it?" question, they seem to forget that there was an Israel (yes, in the same exact spot) a thousand years before the Romans came stomping through. For some reason, pro-Palestinian's only want to argue the history of the area from the Roman Empire on. Before that? Doesn't matter.

The other thing they never seem to acknowledge is that the "Palestinians" aren't a homogeneous group of people either. When you push the history issue, the response by pro-Palestinian's is that modern day Jews are nothing like pre-Roman-empire Jews. The current mix is more European than Jewish. Yet... The "Palestinians" aren't homogeneous either. They're an even more diverse mix of Muslim Arab, Christian Arab and African.

Both sides cherry-pick facts to make their argument. Both sides have scads of books, researchers, historians and organizations arguing for and against their case.

The only thing that I know to be 100% true is Netanyahu remark:

"If the Arabs put down their weapons today, there would be no more violence. If the Jews put down their weapons today, there would be no more Israel."

The last two decades have demonstrated that clearly.

May 25, 2011 1:26 PM

You are all tight about one thing. It is no use arguing with you.

You have been taught and will continue to believe a total myth.

Iudea of the Roman days was not 'Israel'.

Learn some real history rather than the crap you see on TV.


May 25, 2011 2:12 PM

"Iudea of the Roman days was not Israel"

This is another tactic used by pro-Palistinians which, to me, also doesn't ring true.

Specifically, they point to different regions, dynasties and borders that/moved changed during Israel's pre-Rome/post-Rome timeline, suggesting that that somehow invalidates any concept of there being an original "Israel".

This is an easy tactic since the Land of Israel has been invaded and occupied by so many different people over the past thousand years. The general borders were left in tact until the Hasmoneans/Seleucids period in which time a lot of the original Jews were relocated.

The reason this tactic doesn't work is because, if it did, it would equally apply to any number of other countries/cultures which have changed borders/rulers over a long period of time. For some reason, only Israel is forced to abide by this rule.

May 25, 2011 2:28 PM

"For some reason, only Israel is forced to abide by this rule.

Israel "forced to abide"? Israel abides by no other rule than 'Might is Right'.

The fact that the Ashkenazi are originally from the Caucuses, the Steppes of Russia, has no influence on your thinking, even though their "return" to the holy lands is fully absurd given this historical reality.

There is no "history of Israel" aside from the mythos of the Old Testiment. Geology tells quite a different tale from this fairytale of some 3500 years ago.

This claim that "God gave this land to me," has got to be the most absurd excuse ever mounted in modern times. The "Chosen People" myth is no better than the Aryan myth of the German Superman.

But you buy this oink hook line and sinker because of one reason; Zionist public Relations--pure unmitigated propaganda.

May 25, 2011 2:47 PM

I'm with lfon on this one. And SparkyVA made good points too. If I go the MiddleEast, if I was to be harmed most likely it will not be an Israeli who I would have to worry about. I have yet to see a bunch of Jews slice anyone's head off (Daniel Pearl?). So the question really is, who do we side with?
Seriously Willy, Zionist Occupied America? I thought on another post it was the Anglos who controlled the world. Now it's the Jews? I think they only control Hollywood ;)
Like I said I dig your comments, but sometimes I am left speechless.

May 25, 2011 2:51 PM


The so-called “State of Israel” is perhaps the largest most massive strategy of tension ever put into action.

You thought Anglos ruled the world...Where do you think the House of Rothschild's main game is played from? The City of London. Zionism is a game lagger used for a continuing Balkanization of the Mid East, Eastern Europe and now moving into northern Africa.

Don't forget, it was Lord Balfour who started this whole ball of BS rollingin his letter to Lord Rothschild. It is a combine.

May 25, 2011 3:06 PM

Willy your ignorance is either astounding or you are just a political hack for the Palestinians and able to ignore the uncomfortable. I think the latter applies. Cherry pick your facts all day. The last invasion of Gaza by the Israelis went well beyond the necessary rules of engagement to avoid civilian harm. The Palestinians firing rockets could care less about civilian harm. Your comments are basically lies for the Palestinian cause - the kind of lies we hear from politicians all day long. Your judgement is flawed in that you cannot tell the difference between the deliberate murder of innocents and casual deaths caused by conflict. Your grade school diploma should be revoked.

Palestinians are trying to drag the Arab world into another war with Israel as if they haven't had enough already. It is time the Arabs stand up and say peace is better than war, Palestinians leave us alone.

Question: if there were no politicians would there be wars? Answer: well if Willy, the hate monger, would see the light, there would be one less advocate for war and death.

May 25, 2011 3:11 PM

"I have yet to see a bunch of Jews slice anyone's head off (Daniel Pearl?)."~Alin

This is another instance of "war by deciet", the motto of the Mossad.
You believe the crap in the mainstream media, but never follow up to find the anomalies that bring such stories to their knees--False Flag.
Ever heard that term?
Ever looked at the real facts surrounding the 1967 attack on the USS Liberty?
I didn't think so.

If you are aware of the hysteria taking place in the halls of Congress during Nuttinyahoo's speech--as if it were Led Zepplin playing to teenage girls, how can you deny that the federal government is NOT Zionist occupied territory. You cannot be elected and hold a federal public office without swearing allegance to Israel.

If you don't realize that, you simply aren't paying attention.

May 25, 2011 3:16 PM

Your comments are upside down and backwards.
Because Israel declared itself innocent of crimes against humanity during the siege of Gaza doesn't make it so.

Again, you are hypnotized by mainstream BS.
You are nothing but a Chatty Cathy playback doll.


May 25, 2011 3:20 PM

Have you ever seen the damage caused by one of these Palestinian bottle rockets? They don't even disturb the asphalt on a paved street.
The only way they could hurt someone would be to land directly on your head.
Compair that with the high tech explosives, including phosphorus used by the IDF. This whole argument is absurd in the extreem.

And as far as fighting a dogpile...forget it.
You can continue this oinkfest without me.


May 25, 2011 3:35 PM

Shoveling with both hands today?

For controlling the entire world, or, at least, the representative body of the world's most powerful nation, the Israelis have sure done a fine job of it. They're utterly surrounded by mortal, existential enemies and outnumbered hundreds to one. Their enemies hurl rockets into their lands and strike residential areas and hospitals and kill civilians and then hear the rest of the world shriek in horror when they've dared to defend themselves.

Yep; the ol' Zionists have really gotten that one figured out. That's a damn fine job of world domination, that.

Anyway, I could point out that nearly every nation on earth would like to strengthen its relationship with Washington in some way; that the American president, who's basically sat on Israel's hands for a few years now had the gall to demand that they retreat to indefensible borders as a starting point for peace; that Arabs living in Israel enjoy full democratic rights with their fellow citizens and Jews in Arab lands fear for their lives; and that the "Palestinian refugees" and their terrorist representatives have been given everything they've asked for and it was never enough because they will not accept the existence of a Jewish state. But were I to carry on with such facts, I would merely be trying to urinate uphill, since Willy is not only attacking writers instead of their written points, as usual, but also engaging in the oldest form of hatred.

It's tired, Willy; it's worn out, it's meaningless. "It's all the Jews fault" is the most vapid, brainless garbage I've ever heard. If you want peace in the middle east, the rest of the region is going to have to accept that Israel isn't going anywhere. You want juvenile arguments? Jew hatred is the starting point.

May 25, 2011 3:45 PM

Yea, Willy the conspiratorial guy left! Sure must be scary living outside the hospital where everyone is lying to you, the Jews rule the world, and the Mossad, after bungling their last attempt to get a terrorist, is now after you. Got to learn the difference between facts, opinion and propaganda.

May 25, 2011 3:46 PM

The question of "Right of Return" caught Herman Cain by surprise (he didn't know what that was). Simple answer: there is "no right of return". Not for the Jews driven out of Iraq, not for the Christians being driven out of Egypt now, not for the Drews / Christians driven out of Lebonan. So I guess there is no right of return for the Palestinians who fled what is now Israel at the urging of the Arab countries in 1947, or the refugees from the other wars in that land. The right of a return has never been established in any other country in the world for any other war-displaced people. So lets move on.

May 25, 2011 3:54 PM

"This claim that "God gave this land to me," has got to be the most absurd excuse ever mounted in modern times"

This is another tactic used by pro-Palestinians: the claim that Israel proponents are nothing but religious drones. It is a vacuous straw man argument irrelevant to the debate at hand.

I never once said, here or anywhere else, that modern Israel exists because "God said so". In fact, Willy was the first person in this comment train to even introduced the idea.

Prominent atheists such as Chris Hitchens have pointed out the history of Israel, having nothing whatsoever to do with religion.

The Land of Israel (before and after Rome) is a historic fact, documented by academicians in the same manner as any other region of the world.

To reject that is to reject the Hasmonean Kingdom, the Herodian dynasty as well as the various Jewish monarchies.

One can certainly argue when/where certain monarchies existed, and how "Jewish" the Israeli citizens have been during different time periods, but to reject the complete historical timeline of Israel is flat absurd.

May 25, 2011 3:58 PM

Just look up the letter 'J' in etymology, and then come back and tell me there were any people known as "Jews" before the 18th century.


May 25, 2011 4:17 PM


You said:

"Just look up the letter 'J' in etymology, and then come back and tell me there were any people known as "Jews" before the 18th century."

Can you explain this more? I don't understand the logical path here.

"Jew" is a Yiddish translation for "from Judah" which was of course part of the Land of Israel, the southern kingdom.

Who cares if the word was Jew or Judah or "Iudah"? Languages evolve.

Are you saying that any true "Jew" could not be from the northern kingdom and thus has no right to the Palestinian-claimed regions?

May 25, 2011 4:25 PM

Willy, you promised us you were going away!

We are intelligent people here and know that spelling and language changes over time. Please don't try to astound us by your childish discoveries. Jesus is a modern name as well, used to be spelled with an "I". The sign of the Fish was both a reminder to early Christians of many New Testament teachings as well as the Greek word for fish started with the same letter as the name Jesus. Hence it was also code to the early Christians. Doesn't change anything, and we would never claim that Jesus didn't exit until the letter "J" was created. Go read some good fiction and enjoy yourself.

May 25, 2011 4:32 PM


I am saying that what are now referred to as Jews, are a disparate grouping of tribes, that were not brought together as a whole until modern times, first under Napoleon's congress on the matter, and again later in the Zionist congresses of the 19th century.

But like I said, continuing here with all the hostility is not my wont.

May 25, 2011 4:40 PM

"Truth has to be repeated constantly, because Error also is being preached all the time, and not just by a few, but by the multitude. In the Press and Encyclopaedias, in Schools and Universities, everywhere Error holds sway, feeling happy and comfortable in the knowledge of having Majority on its side."~Goethe


May 25, 2011 5:25 PM

The banking systems of early Venice and other Italian States were made possible by Jews having trusted relationships scattered all over Europe, not with just their local clan. Jewish communities were at times the targets of Crusaders looking for easy prey as they marched across Europe. Yes it was a dispersed people, but to say they were "separate tribes" doesn't actually describe the unity of a persecuted people not their willingness to work together. The Sadir toast "Next year in Jerusalem" was not a new idea, and Jews had been moving back into the land, buying their land legally long before 1947. Unfortunately the bigotry from Europe has been maintained by the likes of Willey and his kind. The Hebrew people, and the Jewish people in particular have contributed great ideas to the advancement of Civilization. But the barbarians are always at the gates...

May 25, 2011 5:38 PM

fascinating-- I never understood the meaning of a "Zionist" other than the benevolent Rastafarian use..
..and i still don't.
Having been to Israel in the '78 Seventh Fleet cruise, I wondered why anyone would chose not to live in Israel, as opposed to the third world enclaves of Egypt, Jordan, Syria, or a distant second in Lebanon.
Now even Lebanon is not safe, Egypt does not want the return of Gaza and the verbal atrocities Israel endures bespeak of an agenda designed to enslave more than the Arabs who live in the Levant, the people whose ancestors were part of the Caliphate/Islamic invasion some 1300 years ago.
I smell a fish-- and it ain't pretty.

May 25, 2011 5:51 PM

@Willy - you may be right - Netanyahu got standing ovations in Congress. Did Obama get that?

May 25, 2011 7:54 PM

Nevertheless, all of this controversy is based on mythology, the three so-called “Holy Books”, with the sects adhering to them vying for this “Holy Land”. Anyone familiar with comparative religions realizes that all of these myths flow back into the mists of time. The figure of Moses himself, and his Law, both were taken from material already existing. The story of Moses's discovery in the bulrushes was plainly borrowed from the much earlier legend (with which it is identical) of a king of Babylonia, Sargon the Elder, who lived between one and two thousand years before him; the Commandments much resemble earlier law codes of the Egyptians, Babylonians and Assyrians.

The ancient Israelites built on current ideas, and by this means
apparently were well on the way to a universal religion when they were swallowed up by mankind.
Then Judah put the process into reverse, so that the effect is that of a film run backward. The masters of Judah, the Levites, as they drew up their Law also took what they could use from the inheritance of other peoples and worked it into the stuff they were molding. They began with the one just God of all men, whose voice had been briefly heard from the burning bush (in the oral tradition) and in the course of five books of their written Law turned him into the racial, bargaining Jehovah who promised territory, treasure, blood and power over others in return for a ritual of sacrifice, to be performed at a precise place in a
specified land. Thus they founded the permanent counter-movement to all universal religions and identified the name Judah with the doctrine of self-segregation from mankind, racial hatred, murder in the name of religion, and revenge.

The perversion thus accomplished may be traced in the Old Testament, where Moses first appears as the bearer of the moral commandments and good neighbor, and ends as a racial mass-murderer, the moral commandments having been converted into their opposites between Exodus and Numbers. In the course of this same transmutation the God who begins by commanding the people not to kill or to covet their neighbors' goods or wives, finishes by ordering a tribal massacre of a neighboring people, only the virgins to be saved alive!

Then there is the New Testament, with a central character, again based on earlier mythos, Krishna, Mithra, and all of the other “hanged gods” of antiquity.

And finally the Koran, and Islam, another book of myths built for political purpose

May 25, 2011 8:28 PM


No of couse not. All suck-up to Israel, it is the name of the game in Zionist occupied DC.

May 25, 2011 8:31 PM

Wow Willy you are so knowledgeable-not. Try your thesis as a doctorate in history and see it shot down. I believe it has already been said "drink deep the well of knowledge or drink not at all".

Instead of screaming that the rest of the world is wrong and your the only enlighten person on the earth maybe you should be bending your efforts to space travel and go off and find another enlighten person.

There is far more to the various religions then the nefarious purposes you accuse them of. But with your anger you will never see straight enough to find it. So good luck finding peace in your godless world. I am reminded of the story of Peer Gynt whose eyes were slit so all good appeared evil and all evil appeared good to him. You seem to have the same affliction - hating mankind for finding a purpose in spiritual causes.

Better that you become like the "alte Groll" in Nietzsche's Zarathustra and live in your cave and be done with mankind. We are so imperfect. But from our imperfections come acts of kindness, and something nobler than what you can see in mankind with your split eyes.

May 25, 2011 9:31 PM

Willy has been such a distraction... The main thesis of the article is again whither to from here? In the initial war of 1947, the Arabs intended to push the European settlers out of the area, and the British army thought they could. Didn't happen that way, and the Arab armies disappeared like smoke.

Refugee camps appeared because, in spite of professing love and brotherhood, the Palestinians are an unloved lot of Arabs. But wonders happen, and money from other nations started pouring in. This lead to a poor people procreating large populations of disenfranchised youth - no jobs, just welfare and fences. Here in America we know what happens in such circumstances. Some were given guns and found a purpose in life. Since polygamy is practiced, there is an inherent surplus of youth with no prospect of family life, so dying a hero might sound good.

The activity was kept low with just an occasional outbreak often to prove one Palestinian leader better than another. In return for hijacking a plane and becoming a name in the PLO, Arafat leaves his wife a rich multimillionaire from funds he was able to siphon off of contributions to his people.

No other country has sent armies since the defeat of 67. Now things are starting to heat up again. Money was flowing in from Saudi Arabia until recently. Then the Saudi's realize Iran is far more deadly than Israel. So they are now quietly seeking ways to secretly work with Israel against common enemies. Most of the money is now coming directly or indirectly from Iran through Syria, Turkey, and indirectly through Lebonan. Hezbollah is raising an army in Lebonan, but without Russian or Chinese weapons, they are still no match army to army. They can bloody Israel but they can't defeat them.

Now the world is changing again. Syria is up in the air. Egypt is up in the air. The efforts of the US in western Afghanistan was to open up ways of supplying the opposition in Iran, but that hasn't worked out so well. You have to assume that Obama will do what he can to help his Highness the King of Saudi Arabia, to whom he bowed so low. (Note: the King is the protector of most of the holy sites of Islam, and Muslim children are taught to respect him for that. Of course Obama was raised as a Muslim, so of course he bowed out of respect. He hadn't seen the LOTR movie where the hobbits were told "You bow to no one".)

Does the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt want war with Israel? Probably. Will the Army allow them power or just draw them out in the open and round them up? We will have to see. Does the Egyptian Army want war? Nope, they know they wouldn't last a week, maybe not even a day. But they will take money for equipment and villa's.

I bet Hezbollah in Lebonan is the only serious threat who actually wants war. To the rest it is a game. Should they lose Syria through an new regime, they will be weakened. Saudi Arabia is doing what it can to undermine Syria and Iran. And Iran, in spite of it's words against Israel, is focused on the riches of Saudi Arabia and the other gulf states. Do the fanatics in charge in Iran help or hurt China? Does China really need a foil to use against the West any more? I suspect that game is over - they won: we are broke.

It should be an interesting summer.

Also note China's interest in Pakistan. Pakistan has a major supply of good coal, If there was peace enough to mine it, they would be a rich country. Likewise, minerals in Pakistan and Afghanistan (Lithium)could make those countries very rich and China will need those to become an fully industrialized country. Things are changing.

May 25, 2011 10:26 PM
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