How Damascus can help US find its lost keys
By Sami Moubayed
"This is what is happening to the US administration, searching for solutions in Lebanon because there seemingly is no light in Iraq - the real place where they should be looking for their "lost keys".
Yet even Lebanon is falling into darkness. The situation in northern Lebanon, where the army is combating al-Qaeda-inspired Islamic insurgents called Fatah al-Islam, is worrying - to say the least. Veteran investigative reporter Seymour Hersh complicated matters even more by appearing on CNN to say that Fatah al-Islam, a Sunni militia, had actually been supported by the Lebanese government of Prime Minister Fouad al-Siniora, to serve as a counterbalance to Hezbollah, a Shi'ite group, in case further Sunni-Shi'ite hostilities erupted in Lebanon.
The idea was apparently the brainchild of Elliott Abrams, the deputy national security adviser, Vice President Dick Cheney and Saudi National Security Adviser Bandar bin Sultan......
Syria can also be a vital player in the "war on terror" that is so dear to America. They have had their own war with Islamists since the 1960s and have been keeping files on Syrian and non-Syrian Islamists, many of whom they handed over to the US after the attacks on the US of September 11, 2001.
The Islamists have seduced America into the sands of the Middle East. It's not the other way around, as many people believe. Syria knows this territory well and can be of great help to the Americans - if treated as an ally in the "war on terror". Syria wants to be seen as part of the solution to the Middle East, rather than a part of the problem. That is where the Americans should be looking: Damascus. It is one part of the Middle East where the streetlights still work and where America could find its "lost keys". "