Wednesday, May 28, 2003

Mr. Bush goes to Jordan


The President's proposed trip to the Middle East next week is is a cause for intense concern. I cannot believe that the President is going to go through with this charade. One can always blame the State Department for its asininity, but the President is a big boy, and he can make his own decisions. I still have faith in him, so I have developed a theory:

The only way that there will be peace in Israel is if the 'Palestinians' self-destruct. There appears to be an incipient civil war brewing among them. Perhaps, Sharon (and the President) have decided to play the endgame in which they remove the last vestige of common denominator among the 'Palestinians' - that is: the opposition of Israel to peace talks and to the dismantling of setlements. Once that opposition is removed from the equation, all that is left is a fight for power among the various 'Palestinian' factions.

Admittedly, this requires an assumption that the game that Sharon (and the President) are playing is exceptionally Machiavellian. The argument can be made that Barak did the same thing, and the 'Palestinians' became stronger not weaker. The response to that argument is:

The 'Palestinians' are not stronger now, they are merely more desperate and thus more deadly;
the time wasn't ripe for a 'Palestinian' civil war last time whereas, now, the President has succeeded in marginalizing Arafat, who is in a last ditch fight for survival; and Barak was incapable of thinking in Machiavellian terms, whereas Sharon has proven repeatedly that he is a master at it.

I am hoping against hope that my admittedly optimistic theory proves valid. But the President's proposed trip to this meeting is not a good sign. I am also enormously concerned for his safety. This trip is a bad idea all around!

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