Wednesday, August 5, 2009

What if Obama's Middle East Strategy Failed?

By Khalid Amayreh
Palestine Think Tank
(Cartoon by Khalil Bendib)

".....However, there are those who are not willing to give Obama the benefit of the doubt, not only because they keep hearing nearly daily statements from Washington asserting America’s "iron-clad" commitment to Israeli security, but also because Israel is effectively flying in the face of Obama and telling him "do what you may, we are not going to heed your calls."

Indeed, the systematic savaging by Israel of the Palestinians, especially in the Gaza Strip, as well as the unmitigated theft of Arab land in the West Bank, should be a clarion proof, if a proof was needed, that peace and Israel are an eternal oxymoron.......

And what would be the repercussions and ramifications in case Obama’s entire strategy in the Middle East failed to materialize, mainly as a result of Israeli intransigence and arrogance of power, and also because of America’s perceived unwillingness to exert pressure on Israel to give up the spoils of the 1967 war?

These and other questions were put to three Palestinian intellectuals who have extensive knowledge of the American foreign policy in the Middle East.

"I don’t see any genuine difference between Obama and former US President Bush…" Qassem believes.

"Carbon-copy of Bush"

Abdul Sattar Qassem is a professor of political science at al-Najah National University in Nablus in the Northern West Bank. He is also a prolific writer and political activist who has been imprisoned by Israel and the Palestinian Authority (PA) a number of times due to his outspoken criticisms of the “peace process” with Israel.

He told Islamonline that he had no doubt that the entire Obama strategy would fail.......

Qassem's views are generally shared by Haider Eid, an English Lecturer at al-Aqsa University in Gaza.

He argues that it is naïve to pin any hope for achieving a just and durable peace on Obama.

"I believe that Obama’s efforts will meet a clarion failure, not only because of the Israeli refusal to end the occupation, and the mounting Nazi-like trends in the Israeli Jewish society, but also because of the conspicuous absence of the political will on the part of official Arab regimes."......"

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