Replying to David was Re: ______ Arafat or what is going on in the Middle East

Gary MacLennan g.maclennan at
Sat Sep 20 16:37:00 MDT 2003

Hi David,

Greetings on a bright Brisbane Sunday morning.  Just two things

>It is also unclear to me why you think Hussein's Iraq was a barrier
>to  neo-liberal reforms. He did not self -impose the decades long
>trade embargo on Iraq, the Americans and UN did. He also did not
>ask to become America's sworn enemy. Hussein was duped into
>invading Iran, after being given the green light by the then U.S.

I think PB the Third has already outlined a neo-liberal future for Iraq has
he not?  It centres around the privatisation of the oil, of course, and
represents a radical departure for Hussein's economic policies.

>  How do you feel Sharon/Israel does the bidding of the U.S.?
>It seems to me that it would cost a lot less to simply dispose of
>Israel, which recieves billions in subsidies each year -- the most of
>any government that the U.S. provides support to -- , and search
>out a new ally in the area that would cost a lot less to prop up and
>would much fewer enemies?

This is a puzzle admittedly. A similar conundrum surrounds the British and
Northern Ireland.  But as an ex-SAS officer said to me when I asked him why
didn't the British just leave, "You cannot yield a province to the enemy".
Israel is an American province and they will not yield it.

How do the Israelis serve the US interests in the region?  Well for a start
they de-stabilize it in many ways.  I have read Golda Meir's autobiography
and it was instructive to see the use she made there of Kind Saud's
anti-Semitic ravings. He of course made use of her to legitimise his
regime.  So both parties supported each other while appearing to be in
opposition. Again a bit like the Catholic Church and the Protestant State
in N. Ireland. Seeming enemies but at heart mutually dependent on one another.

This promotion of a anti-modernist Islam can even take the form of the
direct sponsorship of fundamentalist organisations such as Hamas.

One has also to factor in the military blows that Israel has delivered to
militant Arab nationalism.

For me Israel plays the role of a fortress in potentially hostile
territory.  With the Sharon regime the USA has an active partner in the
fundamental task of preventing the development of the Arab Nation.  This is
a task which all the imperial powers immediately assumed following the
collapse of the Ottoman Empire.



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