Opinion from the desk of the Editor:
The question before us these days is….just what if anything have we accomplished in the Middle East?
For more than a century the US has had the worst foreign policy when concerned with the Middle East….we have NEVER been able to grasp the complexities of the region. To be truthful, the region was never much interesting until the need for oil became paramount and then we tried to formulate a policy of dealing with the region…..funny how the need to make profit can override everything.
Since those dark days following World War One we have been struggling to find a one size fits all policy……and there is the biggest problem…..we have NEVER realized that one size fits all policy will NOT work in the Middle East. In short, we have NO idea what to do in the Middle East.
Now ask, what have we accomplished in the Middle East in the last 20 years? How about in Iraq? And then in Libya? Now in Syria? And as always the Palestine-Israel conflict, what have we actually accomplished?
We have the leaders that we do not like….for whatever reason. Look at Iraq…..we hated Saddam so we decided that the best way to control the region was to get rid of him. Our first choice for the new leader was a guy named Chalabi convicted felony in Jordan for bank fraud…a FELON! Not once did we consider the tensions between the different ethnic regions. We execute Saddam and the country went into a tailspin that has resulted in its partition into 3 parts and the rise of ISIS…..which show NO signs of weakening. I would say a job well done by a crackerjack State department (that is sarcasm in case it was missed)…….
Now move on to Libya. Qaddafi was not a leader that we approved of at any time in his long reign…… then with the first successful insurgency against him we threw our support behind the rebels……Qaddafi was eliminated and all was well…..no it wasn’t! The rebel factions have been battling for control ever since the dictator’s death…..with NO way out of the cycle of violence. Another dynamite decision by that same crackerjack State department.
Now there is Syria, it is not as important or newsworthy as other stories but it still remains and it is still a bloody mess…….the Assad family have been in control of Syria for many years and recently there was a challenge to that rule…..and what did the US do? We waited for the situation to disintegrate to the point that it needed fresh resources……..and then BAM! in waltzes the Us to support the rebels…..the problem was the rebels…..we did not know enough about them to use our support successfully and now it is a damn bloody mess and it seems that the Assad family is making head way against the rebels we support…..another fine example of the US State department missing the boat.
That brings us to the most bloody and persistent situation in the Middle East…..Palestine/Israel situation…….this one the US will NEVER get right…..why? We still cannot grasp what the two sides are truly after. Is it peace? Maybe it is the genocide of the opposing state. Now because we cannot grasp the complexities of this situation or for that matter any situation in the Middle East we are doomed to keep making one bad decision after another.
Name one decision that we have made regarding the Middle East that has turned out well for us and for the people of the region…….(I will pause here for some reflection if needed)………
The only successes in the Middle East have been from the Arab Spring, as it was called in the media, and why? We pretty much stayed out of it and let the people handle their own lives and situations.
Is there an answer? You betcha! We, the US, need to revamp the State department and hire people that know the region and not because they went to school with someone’s mother or brother or father. It will not be a quick fix but it would be a good start.