As featured on p. 218 of "Bloggers on the Bus," under the name "a MyDD blogger."

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Civil Strife In Lebanon

The Lebanon situation is hard to follow, at least from my vantage point. The first reports intimated that a government crackdown on Hezbollah incited the gun battles and riots. Then it appeared that no, it was Hezbollah that was trying to take over the government, then all of a sudden they stopped and order was restored to the streets, then it turns out that Hezbollah is in control of a substantial portion of Beirut. Obviously this is something of a proxy fight, which pits Sunni vs. Shiite and a pro-Western central government against a pro-Iranian rebel authority. The last time Hezbollah moved in Lebanon, tens of thousands rallied in the streets of Iraq to their cause. And the sectarian nature of the violence is also an extension of Iraq. Until we understand the nature of that crisis, and of the tensions throughout the broader Middle East, sparks like this will continue to shoot up and we can't really do a whole lot to stop it; I don't think occupying yet another Muslim society is in the cards. This also shows how the Iranian hand remains strengthened strategically in the region, and how a wider war is certainly still a risk.

UPDATE: And now there's a cease-fire in place. Apparently this initially erupted over taking a TV station off the air. And that apparently is being negotiated.


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