The Strategic Importance of the Middle East?

[Prospect-UK] Edward Luttwak - Middle East experts, like the rest of us, should at least learn from their past mistakes. Instead, they just keep repeating them. The first mistake is "five minutes to midnight" catastrophism. The late King Hussein of Jordan was the undisputed master of this genre. He would warn us that with patience finally exhausted the Arab-Israeli conflict was about to explode. The remedy was usually getting an American envoy to the scene to make the usual promises to the Palestinians and apply the usual pressures on Israel. Hussein's son, Abdullah, periodically repeats his father's speech almost verbatim. Yes, it would be nice if Israelis and Palestinians could settle their differences, but it would do little or nothing to calm the other conflicts in the Middle East from Algeria to Iraq.

2007-04-27 01:00:00

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