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"Anyone can act presidential. "
It's a lot harder to do what I do.


Monday, October 10, 2011

Arab:This Obama character is a nareccistic man, his obssetion is only with him self…not the world, not the US.”

From Lebanon’s Daily star, a portion of this comment

Ed JazairiOctober 08, 2011 07:57 AMThe Quandry in the US vis-a-vie the Middle East is called The Barack H. Obama syndrome. Ooops, sorry did I mention his middle name “H” that is Hussein…NO, NO…NO…
Look, and to be frank about it!? This Obama character is a nareccistic man, his obssetion is only with him self…not the world, not the US. The US economy in shambels, the unemployment rates is in shambles. Right wing extremisms are on the rise and what does Obama do!? He goes to Haloween parties, watching hoops while drinking beer and counting the scores of college basket ball teams. Well, and your are still wonderning about his position in the Middle East. Best of Luck….people.This guy is a one term president of the US….trust the American people. One Syrian -American gentleman told me recently ” Where is Dick Cheney when you need one at this turn of events”, in Syria. Let us hope that we will find somebody like George W. Bush and Dick Cheney in the future. No more Barack HUSSIEN Obama….no more.

Read more: http://www.dailystar.com.lb/Opinion/Columnist/2011/Oct-08/150754-has-anyone-seen-the-us-in-the-mideast.ashx#ixzz1aIuwqDGk
(The Daily Star :: Lebanon News :: http://www.dailystar.com.lb)

from an arab on this column:


To spend time speaking and listening to a wide range of people in Washington, D.C. on Middle Eastern issues, as I did last week, is to wander into a world of deep perplexity, for two main reasons. First, every pillar of U.S. Middle East policy is changing rapidly. And second, much of the change sees Middle Eastern actors taking charge of their own destinies, leaving Washington in a weakened and often marginalized position.

The principal manifestations of this situation are the behavior of the Palestinians, Saudis, Egyptians, Israelis, Turks and Iranians – and the Russians and Chinese outside the region. The two most telling arenas where American perplexity rises to the surface are the Palestinian bid for United Nations recognition and the rolling Arab citizen revolts across the Middle East.

The most dramatic window into America’s confusion, contradictions and degraded credibility is its inability to stop the forward motion of the Palestinian bid for United Nations recognition of statehood in the pre-1967 borders. This has dramatically exposed Washington’s sharp isolation in the region, because its strong commitment to Israel apparently overrides all other issues in the region, including applying international law on issues such as Israeli settlements’ expansion.

The Palestinians not only dismissed strong American objections about the move at the U.N., but have now followed this up with a request for recognition at UNESCO. This request has received preliminary approval from the body’s executive board. The U.S. has threatened to cut off its share of funding for UNESCO – 22 percent of the body’s budget. In the new world we are entering, the Palestinians are acting, and Washington is reacting.

This is just one example of how the strongest power in the world also may be the weakest power in the Middle East, despite its armed forces fighting two wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The isolation of the Americans and Israelis at the U.N. reflects a wider reality. Across the region, most people and governments see American policies as being contrary or even hostile to their well-being. This will continue to be highlighted by the Palestinian move at the U.N. in the months ahead.

The Palestinian quest for U.N. recognition is now being widely debated across the U.S., with the common denominator being total uncertainty about its direction and implications. Even Palestinian officials close to President Mahmoud Abbas are not certain of what happens next, because the three primary dimensions of the move remain unknown: the Palestinian strategy, its impact on the ground, and American-Israeli retributive reactions.

The U.N. move is intriguing at many levels. Most importantly, it tells us about the determination of even the weak Palestinian leadership to defy the U.S. and shift the adjudication of the Arab-Israeli conflict out of Washington and into the halls of the U.N. or other bodies – where international legitimacy and law, rather than American Zionism, define the ground rules of diplomatic engagement.

The central lesson to date of the Palestinian initiative at the U.N. is that power is something you generate by your actions, and credibility as an international political actor comes from harnessing your power and using it efficiently and wisely. The Palestinian leadership seems to have learned the first lesson, and is pursuing the U.N. initiative in a manner that reveals its capacity to shake up a stagnant diplomatic arena vis-à-vis the Palestine issue.

Ironically, though, as UCLA professor Saree Makdisi pointed out in his Edward Said Memorial Lecture at the Palestine Center in Washington last week, Abbas seemed embarrassed to see that he actually had power and autonomy of action that he could use, and seemed hesitant to use the power at his disposal. While Abbas unleashed enormous international support for the Palestinian cause, Makdisi said, he also seemed unsure of how far he should push for implementation of the key U.N. General Assembly Resolutions 181 and 194, appearing unsure if he should be assertive or apologetic.

Makdisi attributed this to the fact that Abbas is only involved in “political theater” at the U.N., rather than in a serious diplomatic deployment of power. The Palestinian president, he continued, is also hampered because he made no attempt to secure Palestinian popular legitimacy for his “high stakes poker game at the U.N.”

The Palestinian leadership may or may not be moving ahead according to a coherent strategy, and may or may not enjoy any significant legitimacy or support among its own people. Regardless of this, however, it has triggered a significant debate in Washington that has also exposed the enormous confusion and contradictions in Washington’s unsuccessful attempt to be both the guarantor of Israel’s supremacy in the region and a mediator for the birth of a Palestinian state. Unable to live with this situation any longer, the Palestinians have taken the initiative to break the stalemate, and the United States seems unsure of how to react.

Read more: http://www.dailystar.com.lb/Opinion/Columnist/2011/Oct-08/150754-has-anyone-seen-the-us-in-the-mideast.ashx#ixzz1aIumG9Ez
(The Daily Star :: Lebanon News :: http://www.dailystar.com.lb)

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