Monday, May 12, 2008

Lebanon surrenders

I've given short shrift to the goings-0n in Lebanon, where the government attempted at least slightly to curb the power of Hezbollah, but was then stabbed in the back by the Lebanese army: Whether out of fear or because it was compromised, or some combination of the two, the Lebanense Army refused to support the government as it attempted to oust Hezbollah from its positions of power in Beirut, and the end result was Hezbollah taking over Christian and Sunni areas of the cities.

This whole process has long-term ramifications for the world in general and the region in partiuclar. First, the Lebanese government has now been officially exposed as being completely impotent. Second, Hezbollah and its Syrian and Iranian masters now know that the Western backers (including the United States) of the Fouad Siniora government will do nothing of consequence to support it. Third, Hezbollah will now likely give up even the pretext of respecting the terms of the 2006 ceasefire with Israel. Fourth, Hamas will likely now attempt to follow suit and take over the West Bank. Fifth, Israel will continue to do nothing, despite the drumbeat of war getting louder from both its south and again now from the north.

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