In explaining my opinion it is important to point out that both this current and the said American policy are due to sound reasons. This current of Israel based skepticism exists mainly because of the crisis in US Israel relationships that took place last year over planned constructions in East Jerusalem. This crisis left many Israelis and supporters of Israel distrustful of the Obama administration. This mistrust was echoed in the concern some Israelis had that the abandonment of Mubarak preludes an abandonment of Israel. But there is no comparison between the American Middle East policy of March 2010 and that of February 2011. Then the United States acted as if it had a textbook of new ideas regarding Middle East peace making. But since those ideas were new, and with no relation to past experience, the textbook was actually a guessing book. However, during the more recent Egyptian crisis of January and February 2011, they did had a textbook to read from, an old and reliable one. It is called “How to address a dysfunctional allied dictatorship,” or “How not to get bogged down in another Vietnam.” It is an important book that proved itself in 1986 during the ouster of Ferdinand Marcos of the Philippines. Then a pro-western tyrant was removed from power in a way that kept the country as an ally of the west without slipping into an endless civil war involving thousands of American troops.
|The Vietnam war|
|Learning the lessons from Vietnam and adapting them to a different region. |
That is the American challenge in the Arab spring of 2011
These unanswered questioned are the making of uncertainty. And there is no need to list its drawbacks, especially in the Middle East, where the stakes are high. Here chaos and bloodshed can be no more the one mistake away. Writing damn good textbooks for everyone involved.