By Jim Lobe
"It's more the sense that the growing number of crises in the "new Middle East," proudly midwifed by the administration of President George W. Bush, is rapidly spinning out of control with potentially catastrophic consequences for the entire region and beyond.
The ongoing war between Israel and Hezbollah—not to imminent expansion of Israel's invasion of southern Lebanon if it does not get a United Nations Security Council resolution to its liking—has, by virtually all accounts, inflamed and radicalized the Islamic world and rendered a larger regional conflagration much more likely.
That Rice may now find herself in a similar position, having to contend with a resurgent Cheney-led coalition of hawks who are not so much complacent about the course of current events in the Middle East as convinced that their strategy of regional "transformation" by military means will be vindicated, is what is perhaps particularly alarming about the present moment.
"This whole business is nuts -- unless, of course, you believe what the rumor-mongers are beginning to pass around," wrote Wilkerson in reference to the Lebanon war in an email exchange with IPS. "(T)hat this entire affair was ginned up by Bush/Cheney and certain political leaders in Tel Aviv to give cover for the eventual attack by the U.S. on Iran. At first, I refused to believe what seemed to be such insanity. But I am not so certain any longer.""