Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Arab Spring — Where to?

December 14, 2012 5:29 pm 0 comments

Over 700,000 protesters gather in Al-Assy Square in Hama on July 22. Photo: Syriana2011.

The following interlinked assumptions are divorced from reality: the rising tide of the Islamist forces on the Arab Street is led by politically pragmatic and moderate Islam; the surging Islamic forces aim to eschew violence, moderate the Arab Street, focus on economic growth rather than the spread of Islam and engage the U.S. strategically; the Arab Street is experiencing an “Arab Spring” whereby democracy-seeking youth, independents and moderate Islamists collaborate in the effort to topple despotic regimes.

In Iraq, in the aftermath of the U.S. withdrawal, and irrespective of the U.S. campaign of democratization, the al-Maliki regime is increasingly dominated by Iran, the fiercest enemy of the U.S. Baghdad has become the most critical channel of Iranian military supply to the Assad regime, and Iran’s Revolutionary Guard is gaining control over Iraq’s domestic affairs.

In Egypt, contrary to Western delusions, President Morsi is significantly influenced by the Muslim Brotherhood’s supreme guide, Mohammed Badie, and the Brotherhood’s first choice for president, Khairat el-Shater, the former deputy supreme guide. Thus, Morsi’s proposed constitution would transform Egypt into an increasingly Shariah state. It would upgrade the authority of Muslim clerics over civil rights, provide for a Saudi-style “morality police,” impose 7th century punishments for adultery and theft, etc. Muslim Brotherhood thugs incite violence, purposely, to bring the opposition to submission.

In Libya, Western hopes for an Arab Spring have been shattered by the murder of the U.S. ambassador and three State Department officials and by an unprecedented civil war. Following 42 years of Gadhafi’s dictatorship, Libyans are afflicted by tribal, ethnic, ideological and religious fragmentation, violence and terrorism. For instance, the Arabs of the town of Misrata slaughtered the black African residents of the neighboring town of Tawargha. The country has become an arena for daily battles among armed militias, terrorists and Islamists.

In Yemen, al-Qaida suicide bombing has increased since the toppling of the 33 year regime of President Saleh, targeting military and government officials as well as tribal leaders and U.S.-bound airliners. Al-Qaida of the Arabian Peninsula has leveraged Yemen’s intensified tribal warfare, benefiting from Yemen’s inherent instability and weak central government.

In Bahrain — home to the U.S. 5th Fleet — the 22 month old uprising by Bahrain’s 70 percent Shiite majority, seeking to weaken the powers of the kingdom’s Sunni monarchy, is supported by Iran.

In Lebanon — which is severely impacted by Hezbollah terrorism and the Syrian civil war — a former prime minister, a former deputy prime minister, the current deputy speaker of Parliament and the mufti of Tripoli are all out of the country for “security” reasons.

The same goes for several members of Parliament and a handful of former cabinet ministers. Other prominent politicians are confined to their homes until further notice, also due to concerns for their safety.

In Syria, more than 40,000 fatalities have been recorded in the war between the Iranian, Iraqi and Russian-supported Assad regime and the Saudi Arabia and Qatar-supported ethnic, religious and political opposition. Unprecedented destruction of entire towns and suburbs, aerial bombings of civilians, summary executions and deadly sniper fire have plagued the country since March 2011.

The growing unrest in Algeria, Jordan and Kuwait, the simmering environment in the Persian Gulf and the actual fragmentation and fragmentation-in-process in Sudan, Iraq, Yemen, Syria and Libya, suggest that more lava is expected to erupt from the seismic Arab Street.

The dramatic alteration of the Middle East reality — independent of the Palestinian issue and Israel’s policy — requires an equally dramatic reassessment of U.S. Middle East policy.

The dramatic intensification of violence, unpredictability, instability, treachery and unreliability on the Arab Street — which highlight the tenuous nature of Middle East partners and agreements — requires a dramatic reassessment of Israel’s security requirements.

The exacerbated anti-U.S. sentiment on the Arab Street, the U.S. withdrawal from Iraq and the expected cuts in the U.S. defense budget warrant enhancement of the mutually-beneficial U.S.-Israel strategic cooperation.

This article was originally published by Israel Hayom.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Author of New Book on Connection Between Jews, Punk Rock Describes Bands Flinging Gefilte Fish, Bagels at Audience (INTERVIEW)

    Author of New Book on Connection Between Jews, Punk Rock Describes Bands Flinging Gefilte Fish, Bagels at Audience (INTERVIEW)

    Some punk rockers integrate their Jewish identity into their music through food, the author of a new book on the topic told The Algemeiner on Wednesday. Michael Croland, author of Oy Oy Oy Gevalt! Jews and Punk, described the way different musicians express this connection. “One band is known for throwing gefilte fish in the mosh pit, and people at its concert slide around on it while dancing,” he recounted. “Another used to drink Manischewitz [sweet kosher] wine out of a shofar [the ram […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Scottish Soccer Club Manager Hails ‘Fantastic’ Jewish-State Visit After Victory Over Israeli Team (VIDEO)

    Scottish Soccer Club Manager Hails ‘Fantastic’ Jewish-State Visit After Victory Over Israeli Team (VIDEO)

    The manager of Scotland’s Celtic soccer club lauded Israel, after his team won a match against the Jewish state’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva on Tuesday night. Brendan Rodgers said at a post-match press conference: On behalf of the players, the people of Celtic and Scotland, Israel’s been fantastic for us. We came out here on Sunday, [and from] the hotel, the staff, we’ve been very, very warmly received. The atmosphere at the game was amazing and, obviously, one team has to lose, but you have a wonderful team here, […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Second Jaffa Jazz Festival to Reunite International, Israeli Musicians

    Second Jaffa Jazz Festival to Reunite International, Israeli Musicians

    For the second time, Israel will host the Jaffa Jazz Festival, according to Broadwayworld.com. The festival will unite 43 Israeli musicians and eight international artists for a three-day event. The program will include a special performance by an ensemble of top jazz students studying at Belgium’s Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp, the Belgrade Music Academy in Serbia, Israel’s Rimon School of Music and the jazz program of the Israel Conservatory of Music in Tel Aviv. There will also be a jazz show for children led by Israeli saxophonist […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Israel’s First NASCAR Driver Revved Up to Win

    Israel’s First NASCAR Driver Revved Up to Win

    JNS.org – As a young boy growing up in Ashdod, Israel, Alon Day got his first go-kart at age 9. By 15, he was racing them. Less than a decade later, Day has become the first Israeli professional race car driver on the NASCAR circuit. He made history by competing in NASCAR’s Xfinity Series race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 13. “Driving a race car is not like any other sport,” Day told JNS.org. “You are actually almost flying […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Writer of Popular Kids Series to Premiere Autobiographical Solo Show ‘Not That Jewish’

    Writer of Popular Kids Series to Premiere Autobiographical Solo Show ‘Not That Jewish’

    The writer of a popular children’s television series will premiere an off-Broadway solo show called “Not That Jewish,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. Written and performed by Monica Piper — the Emmy Award-winning showrunner of Nickelodeon’s “Rugrats” — the show is described as “the autobiographical telling of a Jew…’ish’ girl’s life.” “Not That Jewish” explores Piper’s Bronx upbringing in a show-business family, her comedy-club debut and her “almost” night with former Yankees legend Mickey Mantle. “Audiences can expect to leave laughed-out, a little teary-eyed and […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Scottish Soccer Team Will Fly to Israel on Private Jet Used by Madonna

    Scottish Soccer Team Will Fly to Israel on Private Jet Used by Madonna

    Scotland’s Celtic soccer club will fly to Israel with the same private jet Madonna used while on tour, The Scotsman reported on Monday. According to the report, the team is heading for the Jewish state to compete against Israel’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva on Tuesday night, and will be transported in the customized, luxurious Boeing 757-200 that the pop icon used in New Zealand for her six-month Rebel Heart tour, which wrapped up in March. The plane is on loan from Greece-based GainJet Aviation and can accommodate 62 passengers. The […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Revealed: Actor Jonah Hill Officiated at Wedding of Fellow Jewish Star, Singer Adam Levine

    Revealed: Actor Jonah Hill Officiated at Wedding of Fellow Jewish Star, Singer Adam Levine

    Jewish actor Jonah Hill revealed on Wednesday morning that he had officiated the wedding of good friend and Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine. The “War Dogs” actor, 32, was a guest on Sirius XM’s The Howard Stern Show when the conversation turned to Levine’s July 2014 wedding to Victoria’s Secret model Behati Prinsloo. Hill said that after he was asked to officiate the nuptials, he started getting worried about the type of speech he was going to deliver. “I’m writing all these things, and then I […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Music Jewish Indie Rocker Dedicates New ‘Refugee’ Track to Grandfather Who Fled Nazi Persecution

    Jewish Indie Rocker Dedicates New ‘Refugee’ Track to Grandfather Who Fled Nazi Persecution

    Jewish indie singer Ezra Furman released a song on Wednesday that he said was dedicated to his grandfather, who escaped Nazi persecution. Furman told the website Consequence of Sound that the new track, called “The Refugee,” is his “first song entirely concerned with my Jewish background and present, a song dedicated to my grandfather who fled the Nazis, as well as to all of the refugees desperate for a home today.” He added, “May all the wanderers find the homes they seek, and […]

    Read more →