August 11th, 2014
03:06 PM ET

What I'm reading: Civil war fear hangs over Lebanon

By Fareed Zakaria

“Hizbollah has committed several thousand men to the fighting in Syria. After Iran’s reversals in Iraq, it needs to defeat Syrian rebels in Qalamoun, in that way consolidating the territory controlled by President Bashar al-Assad between Damascus and the Syrian coast, the regime’s heartland,” writes Michael Young in The National.

“The Lebanese army, by design or default, may become a part of this project. That’s worrying, because it could heighten sectarian tensions that undermine the army’s unity, since a substantial portion of soldiers in the army are Sunnis.

“Hizbollah must also beware. If Lebanon collapses into a new civil war, Hizbollah would have to abandon Syria to fight at home. In other words, it would effectively have to give up on the Al Assad regime at a time when the latter’s capacities to remain in power are already doubtful. This may not only mean that Iran, Hizbollah’s sponsor, could lose Syria; it would mean that Hizbollah suddenly finds itself trapped in a civil war that it simply cannot win.”

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“From start to finish, the latest Gaza conflict has largely been a man’s war,” writes Elana Maryles Sztokman in The Atlantic. “The Israeli negotiating team in Egypt does not include a single woman–not even Justice Minister Tzipi Livni, whose condition for joining the current governing coalition was that she head Israeli-Palestinian negotiations. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has instead appointed his own (male) representative, Yitzchak Molcho, to represent him in the delegation. Livni sits on Israel’s security cabinet, the small committee that has made most of the major decisions about this war, but, tellingly, she is the only woman at the table. The story is the same on Israeli television and in the country’s newspapers. According to a study by The Marker, fewer than 10 percent of all experts interviewed on news programs during the war have been women.”

“The sexism underlying women’s exclusion from security and military leadership has found expression in some particularly troubling statements by senior officials and commentators.”

 


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soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. PEACE in Middle East ...

    PEACE is Big Business, Big Money! PEACE is Good – War is Bad! USA should not be throwing fuel on Middle East Fire! PEACE – no wars. Wars make us loose money! PEACE allows us to make money!

    August 12, 2014 at 6:03 am | Reply
    • Joey Isotta-Fraschini©

      @ PEACE in Middle East
      Any USA citizen born during the "Great" Depression of the 1930s saw evidence that your Big Business statement is not true.
      I well remember my unemployed young aunts' and cousins' joy when acquiring jobs, jobs, jobs related to World War II.
      Of course, we did not enter that war to rescue our economy. We all know that we were forced to fight because Hitler was a madman who had to be stopped before he duped all the citizens of Germany into a completed act of genocide.

      August 12, 2014 at 8:14 am | Reply
    • George patton

      I agree, PEACE in Middle East... Unfortunately, the politicians in Washington and London don't see it our way. They like war since for them, it means big business and big profits.

      August 12, 2014 at 10:08 am | Reply
  2. The "compassionate" GOP Solution

    The GOP Prayer/Mantra/Solution: Dear God...With your loving kindness, help us to turn all the Old, Sick, Poor, Non-white, Non-christian, Female, and Gay people into slaves. Then, with your guidance and compassion, we will whip them until they are Young, Healthy, Rich, White, Christian, Male, and Straight. Or until they are dead. God...Grant us the knowledge to then turn them into Soylent Green to feed the military during the next "unfunded/off-the-books" war. God...Give us the strength during our speeches to repeatedly yell............TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH!!!..........and........GET RID OF SS AND MEDICARE!!!
    In your name we prey (purposely misspelled, or is it?)........Amen

    August 12, 2014 at 11:34 am | Reply
  3. j. von hettlingen

    The last thing leaders in the Middle East want is a new civil war in Lebanon. Yet who knows, Sunni extremists might start a war, in order to take the Hezbollah back home to Lebanon. If Assad's forces can't do without the Hezbollah, this would only play into the hands of the jihadists, because they have the upper hand now, not the moderate Sunni rebels.

    August 14, 2014 at 9:40 am | Reply
  4. Cyrusz

    The head of snake is in Tehran.
    The Iran Shia regime also created civil war in Iraq with supporting of Al maliki shia prime minister against the Iraqi Sunni.

    August 20, 2014 at 1:34 pm | Reply

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