Cross-posted from National Review Online, The Corner
Two observations about the hostilities that began on November 10:
(1) The old Arab-Israeli wars were military clashes, the recent ones are political clashes. The wars of 1948-49, 1967, and 1973 were life-and-death struggles for the Jewish state. But the wars of 2006, 2008-09, and now 2012 are media events in which Israeli victory on the military battlefield is foreordained and the struggle is to win public opinion. Opeds have replaced bullets, social media have replaced tanks. Will Israel prevail in arguing that its enemy initiated offensive action? Or will those enemies, Hamas or Hezbollah, convince observers that Israel is an illegitimate regime whose recourse to force is criminal? The war must be fought primarily as a media event.
Cross-posted from National Review Online
JUNE 23, 2012 -- There appears to be agreement on the basic facts: a Turkish F-4 (see photo below) violated Syrian airspace and the Syrian military shot it down over its territorial waters. Further, there is no dispute that the AKP-led Turkish government has for months offered sanctuary and armed the Syrian opposition forces in what amounts to a civil war in Syria between a hideous, brutal tyranny and an increasingly Islamist opposition. The Turkish leadership, even while accepting that its plane violated Syrian airspace, is growling about retaliation. The Syrian government has done its best to tamp down Turkish anger.
December 17, 2011. Cross-posted with express permission from National Review Online. http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2011/12/the-slap-heard-around-the-world
A year ago to the day, Officer Fadiya Hamdi slapped fruit vendor Mohammed Bouazizi across the face in the small Tunisian town of Sidi Bouzid, setting off upheavals that caused three seeming Arab dictators-for-life to lose power: Ben Ali of Tunisia resigned on January 14, Mubarak of Egypt resigned on February 11, and Qaddafi of Libya was killed on October 20. (In addition, Saleh of Yemen resigned on November 23 but that appears to be more a ruse to hang on to power than his really leaving office.)
Scandinavia may look idyllic from a distance, what with royal families and prime ministers almost without security, but it has endured its fair share of violence, from the assassination of Swedish prime minister Olof Palme to two school massacres in one year in Finland, one killing eight, the other ten. Anders Behring Breivik's rampage, in other words, was hardly unprecedented.
Cross-posted from National Review Online
In a much-touted speech today bearing the modest title "Remarks by the President on the Middle East and North Africa," Barack Obama responded to the Arab revolt of the past five months with elements, common sense and even eloquence ("through the moral force of nonviolence, the people of the region have achieved more change in six months than terrorists have accomplished in decades"). He also defined a U.S. policy in support of reform and against violence that I find worthy of discussion and debate.
Bin Laden was just a part of Al-Qaeda which is just a part of the Islamic terrorist effort which is just a part of the Islamist movement, so the announcement of his death today by the U.S. government makes little operational difference. The war on terror has not fundamentally changed, much less been won.
First published by Lion's Den :: Daniel Pipes Blog on February 11, 2011 with an update on February 12, 2011. It is reprinted with express permission: http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2011/02/reflections-on-hosni-mubarak-res
Long gone are Egypt's revolutionary days of the 1950-60s, when Gamal Abdel Nasser dominated Middle Eastern politics by stirring the Arabic-speaking masses, forming unions with other countries, starting wars, exporting ideologies and songs, and deftly maneuvering between superpowers. So too have the hopes of the 1970s vanished – Anwar El-Sadat's economic opening, American alliance, and a peace treaty with Israel.
First published by Canada's repected National Post, as "Muslims can embrace democracy, but I'm not optimistic," on February 7, 2011, and reprinted with express permission: http://www.danielpipes.org/9435/islam-democracy.
With anti-regime demonstrations raging in Egypt, and the possibility of a new government led by or involving the Muslim Brotherhood, many are asking whether Islam is compatible with democracy? The answer is yes, it potentially is, but it will take much hard work to make this happen.
Share your perspective by calling the program
Monday - Friday · 10am - 12pm
Provide us with your name and email address and we will send the Breaking News right to your inbox. No spam, just news, we promise!