Monday, November 27, 2006

Wonders in The Washington Post

The Washington post ran this article on Sunday (hat tip: JOSHUAPUNDIT):

Needed: A Big Stick

Iran and Syria are waging war in the Middle East. Will the West fight back?

Sunday, November 26, 2006; Page B06

ONE WAY TO understand the deteriorating situation in the Middle East is to contrast last week's assassination of Lebanese Christian leader Pierre Gemayel with the response to it. The assassination was a shockingly audacious attack on Lebanon's democratic forces and their U.S. and European allies. But those Western governments remain in a profound muddle about how to address Iran and Syria, which have been fomenting the destabilization of Lebanon, Iraq and the Palestinian territories.

The killers of Mr. Gemayel have not been identified and may never be. But the attack fits snugly into a pattern of provocations across the region by Iran and Syria, which appear to believe that American reversals in Iraq have given them the opportunity to create what Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad calls "a new Middle East" -- one in which their influence and radical ideology will predominate. They would make their client Hezbollah the power broker in Lebanon, restoring Syrian suzerainty. They would use Hamas to block any progress toward an Israeli-Palestinian settlement and perpetuate a continuing, if low-grade, war on Israel. And they would continue to bleed the United States by supplying insurgents in Iraq with arms and sanctuary. Iran meanwhile presses ahead with its barely disguised nuclear weapons program: President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad recently promised to increase the number of centrifuges enriching uranium from the current 328 to 60,000...

Wonders will never cease! That the Washington Post should finally recognise some of the double-dealing, and homicidal dishonesty that is being perpetrated by Iran and Syria makes a pleasant change. The final paragraph even shows some recognition that actually getting tough might help. That certainly might do better than what the West is currently practising, which is to `speak softly and ask for the stick'.

Iran and Syria are ruthlessly waging war against Western interests in the Middle East. Offering to talk is only a small part of what it will take to stop them.

Of course there's no attempt to explain the profound muddle or the malaise affecting large portions of the West; nor any admission of the large contribution to it that's been made by the MSM. There are some limits to journalistic integrity, after all.

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