What a couple of days for the Bush Doctrine.
Lebanese people buck their government and protest Syrian occupation.
Mubarak announces multiparty Presidential elections in Egypt.
Neither of those are outside the realm of something we might have expected to eventually happen. After all, some Lebanese have taken up arms against Syria in the past, so demonstrations aren’t without precedent. Egypt of course has an ‘authoritarian’ government, but has also been a moderate voice in Arab politics and has for some time had the trappings of democracy despite falling short on substance. But there were other surprises.
Abu Mazen responded to the latest terrorist attacks on Tel Aviv by saying, rightly, that they are “against Palestinian interests” and won’t be tolerated. Not surprising since even Arafat could say the right words about terrorism as long as he was speaking English. But there’s substance here. The Palestinian Authority received intelligence from the Israelis and used it to arrest 3 suspects.
And the Syrians made a small but significant “gesture of goodwill” to the Iraqi government and the United States by capturing and turning over Saddam Hussein’s brother-in-law, number 36 on the US “most wanted” list of Baathist officials.
Seems like maybe the world is getting the message that the US means it – we will “go anywhere, pay any price, bear any burden” to promote freedom.