Sunday, July 16, 2006

Arab Reaction Muted

Here is a view that you have probably not heard yet. The Strategy Page has this story.

The War With Iran
July 16, 2006: Iran aside, there hasn't been a really noisy response from the Moslem world about Israel's military operations against Lebanon. Notably subdued is the response from the Arab countries; it's mostly been mumbling about the plight of the Palestinians and such. Could this mean that the principal Arab leaders are not all that unhappy to see Hizbollah get it in the neck? After all, most of the Arabs are Sunni, while Hizbollah and Iran are Shia. The exception that proves the rule is Syria, which has a Shia leadership. But most Arabs fear Iran, not because most Iranians are Shia, but because Iranians are not Arabs. Iran has been the regional superpower for over three thousand years. Iran is building nuclear weapons. Iran is backing Shia Arab factions in Iraq that would support turning Iraq into an Iranian ally. Also scary is the fact that Iran is currently run by a religious dictatorship. Most Arabs have noted how that worked in Iran, Sudan and Afghanistan and want no part of it. Worse, the Iranian religious leadership believes that they would do a better job running the Hejaz (the region of Saudi Arabia containing Mecca and Medina and the most holy places in Islam). For centuries, the Turks kept the Iranians out of the Hejaz. But who would keep nuclear armed Iranians out? Perhaps worst of all, what if Iran tried attacking Israel with nukes, and both nations went at it with nuclear weapons. Iran has loudly proclaimed its aim of destroying Israel, but Israel has nuclear weapons, and no desire to be destroyed. The Arabs would be caught in the middle of all this.

The Sunni Arab world always saw Hizbollah as an Iranian branch office on the Mediterranean. Hizbollah was also seen as one of the reasons the Lebanese civil war, that began in 1975, went on for so long (until 1990, when everyone called it quits, mainly because of sheer exhaustion). Sunni Arabs also take a dim view of how the Shia Alawite sect has controlled Syria (a majority Sunni country) for two generations. The Syrian Alawites hang on via subsidies from Iran. Sunni Arabs have always despised Shia, and would like to see the Lebanese and Syrian Shia put in their place (subordinate, very subordinate). Having Israel do a lot of the heavy lifting is seen as an added bonus.
Read the whole thing for important details and come back to this page every day for a running update of the war.

The only people who think that this war was started by Israel are the liberals and leftists™ who believe that the existance of Israel is the problem, brought on by the NeoconChimpyMcHitlerHaliburtonites in the White House.

Israel must destroy Hizbollah to protect herself. She has the right to defend herself, to the disappointment of liberals and leftists™ everywhere.

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