Thursday, March 3, 2011

The decomposition of the Mideast

Here's my (informal) translation of an article in French by Guy Millette that caught my eye:

"The decomposition of the Mid-East

Nothing can tell yet when the fall will end. But what you can already say is that, when you look at the Arab world in several months, you will see not an advance toward democratization, but an advance toward Islamization.

These regimes will not match the dreams of Al Qaeda, of course. Politically correct people, for that reason, will call them 'post-Islamic', but that will not be accurate: these regimes will take as their model the AKP as it now behaves in Turkey.

The big winner will be the Iranian regime, which has added to Syria, its ally for 30 years, two new recruits, Turkey and Lebanon, now controlled by Hezbollah. The passage of Iranian war ships through the Red Sea, by the port of Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, and through the Suez Canal shows that the new rulers of Egypt, but also those in Saudi Arabia, know which way the wind is blowing.

The destabilization of Bahrain is orchestrated by Iran, as is that of Yemen. In the first case, it's a matter of controlling the Straits of Hormuz. In the second, what is in play is the strategic control of Bab el-Mandeb. Somalia, on the other coast of Bab el-Mandeb, is in the hands of pirates and members of Al Qaeda. Djibouti is under attack. The decomposition of Libya is itself the work of Islamists, and the abominable Qaddafi risks creating a state of chaos in which Islamic armed groups will enforce their own law, while tribalism takes the upper hand. Jordan is far from being stable.

The big loser will be Israel, which will find itself more isolated than ever, constrained to watch the Sinai border, and to discover a bit late that trading land for a piece of paper is worth nothing more than the value of that piece of paper.

The other big loser will be the United States which, 30 years after having lost Iran, is about to lose all its influence in the Mid-East.

Those who because of anti-Israelism or anti-Americanism, both strong sentiments in Europe, rejoice too much, must see that Europe itself will take some blows.

If the Straits of Hormuz and the Bab el-Mandeb fall into the hands of hostile regimes, all trade with Asia will be affected, but also the price of energy. Any hopes of returning to growth, even weak growth, will evaporate. There will also be more immigrant surges from the Muslim world which will swell the existing immigrant masses in Europe.

Europe will be more Islamic, poorer, more shipwrecked. The Muslim world, which has no elements of cultural capital that contribute to economic development or individual liberty, will sink gently, with bouts of destructive violence.

This situation is already being followed attentively by Russia, where Putin sees all the short-term advantages for him: Russia being an energy exporter, it has an interest, as does Iran, in rising energy prices. China too is following the situation with attention, as its leaders also see short-term advantages.

Those who see in Obama an artisan of universal peace will perhaps wake up, but I doubt it: Those people tend invariably to believe the moon is made of green cheese. As for those who know that, when a U.S. president shows weakness and indecision, the world is more likely to see wars, explosions and the advance of tyrannies, their fears will be realized. Those who knew that Obama was a man of the far left and very open to Islam expected the worst from him. The worst is happening.

As things are going, in one term Obama may make the world less safe for liberty, while causing permanent damage to the United States.

I think Obama will have a place in history.

And don't tell me that I'm inciting anti-Americanism. I love the United States and liberty. That's why I deplore Obama as the first anti-American president of the United States and the first avowed enemy of liberty to have entered the White House."

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