Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Bush trying to entangle NATO allies in Lebanese strife?

Helena Cobban, here
"......I was trying to think through why the Bush White House and its Lebanese allies have been acting in such a provocative, escalatory way in Lebanon in recent weeks. There is no way the pro-US forces in Lebanon could ever hope to "win" a civil war if the country should indeed be tipped over the brink into one ..... Then it struck me. There are 15,000 UN troops, most of them from NATO countries, currently deployed in the south of the country; and most of them aren't doing very much there. (The peace is kept between Israel and Hizbullah much more by the deterrent power that they exert towards each other than by UNIFIL's lightly armed peacekeepers, as I wrote here, a long time ago.) But if a civil war should suddenly threaten to engulf the whole of Lebanon, maybe the Bushists would seek to get UNIFIL's mandate suddenly enlarged, so that its troops could intervene at short notice, and in support of the Lebanese side that the Bushists judge to be "legitimate"?...."

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