The Upsurge in Terror is a Sign of the West's Success

(London Times) Michael Gove - The liberation of Iraq has created the potential for the country to become a broadly free, fairly governed, and economically dynamic state - an outcome deeply troubling to an unholy alliance of forces in the region, from Syria through Saudi Arabia to Iran and al-Qaeda. In Iraq, the aims of Syria's secular Baathist leader Bashar Assad and Islamic fundamentalist Osama bin Laden coincide. Neither can countenance the successful emergence of a free, pluralist state in Iraq. The effect on existing tyrannies such as Syria and Saudi Arabia would be dramatically percussive. And the disappearance of autocratic regimes in the Middle East would, in turn, be the gravest blow bin Laden could suffer. A similar desire drives Hamas and its allies, responsible for the recent upsurge of violence against Israel. Just as a reformed Iraq is poison to the autocrats in Damascus and the fundamentalists of al-Qaeda, so a reformed Palestine would mean the end of Arafat's kleptocracy and the chance of a proper reckoning with the fundamentalists of Hamas. Only by clearing the democratic slum that was the Arab world before 2001 can we hope to tackle terrorism at its roots.

2003-08-27 00:00:00

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