Tuesday, January 23, 2007

The Folly Unfolds......

Thousands of people went out in force on the streets of Beirut to protest against the US backed government in the Lebanon. The protests were called for by the Hezbollah led opposition. As a result of these protests, the pressure is mounting for fresh elections. Elections that are bound to alarm some in the West.

This is not the situation Bush and Blair would want at the moment. The likelihood is that, if elections were called, Hezbollah would be the most likely benefactors. This, in turn, would lead to Iran increasing it's influence in the region. An influence already growing as a result of the invasion of Iraq and the execution of Saddam Hussein. Meanwhile, the influence of the West will further diminish as the balance of power shifts away from Downing Street and the White House. There's just one tiny problem. This is all of our making.

We stood by silently whilst Israel went to war with Lebanon. Our leaders said nothing, hoping that the tactics employed by Israel would weaken the Lebanese opposition. The opposite has turned out to be true. Hezbollah were the undoubted winners of the conflict and they have turned this to their advantage. The attacks by Israel have weakened the Lebanese government to such an extent, it is on the brink of collapse. A bizarre tactic for a country that feels threatened by Iran and Syria. Of course, the Israeli government, as well as the people, are well aware of the damage that has been caused leading to heads rolling. It has also led to Olmert becoming one of the most unpopular leaders in recent history by his people. It is clear who the winner really is.

Of course, you will also read many comments in other blogs and in the media, that it is radical Muslims behind this so-called coup attempt. It is not. The opposition movement also includes many Christians. The BBC has already erased this fact from it's reporting (although I didn't much to get a screen grab before they did - you'll have to take my word for it). The balance of power is certainly shifting in the region, but not the way Bush and Blair had hoped. The folly magnifies day by day.