The American Iraq: How the Sunni Arabs and the Palestinians Respond

[Wall Street Journal] Fouad Ajami - The Sunni Arab regimes are not of one mind on Iraq. Curiously, the Arab state most likely to make peace with the new reality of Iraq is Saudi Arabia; those most hostile are the Jordanians, the Egyptians and the Palestinians. The Palestinians, weaker in the scale of power and with troubles of their own, are in the end of little consequence to the strategic alignment in the region. But to the extent that their "street" and their pundits matter, they can be counted upon to view the rise of this new Iraq with reserve and outright hostility. For six decades, the Palestinians have had a virtual monopoly on pan-Arab sentiments, and the Arabic-speaking world indulged them. Iraq - its wounds, and the promise of its power and resources - has been a direct challenge to the Palestinians and to their conception of their place in the Arab scheme of things. To the bitter end, the Palestinian street remained enamored of Saddam Hussein. Iraq's Shia majority has returned the favor, and has come to view the Palestinians and their cause with considerable suspicion.

2007-01-30 01:00:00

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