Neo-con manifest destiny: the "Lebanonization of the Middle East"?

Tom Hayden: "What I fear is the rehabilitation of the discredited U.S. neoconservative agenda to ignite a larger war against Hamas, Hezbollah, Syria and Iran.

"The neoconservatives’ 1996 'Clean Break' memo advocated that Israel 'roll back' Lebanon and destabilize Syria in addition to overthrowing Saddam Hussein.

"An intellectual dean of the neoconservatives, Bernard Lewis, has long advocated the 'Lebanonization' of the Middle East, meaning the disintegration of nation states into 'a chaos of squabbling, feuding, fighting sects, tribes, regions and parties'....

"One might argue, and many Americans today might agree, that Hezbollah and Hamas started this round of war with their provocative kidnappings of Israeli soldiers.

"Lost in the headlines, however, is the fact that the Israelis have 9,000 Palestinian prisoners, and have negotiated prisoner swaps before. Others will blame the Islamists for incessant rocket attacks on Israel. But the roots of this virulent spiral of vengeance lie in the permanent occupation of Palestinian territories by the overconfident Israelis.

"As it did in 1982, Israel now admits that the war is not about prisoner exchanges or cease-fires;
it is about eradicating Hezbollah and Hamas altogether, if necessary by an escalation against Syria or even Iran.

"It should be clear by now that the present Israeli government will never accept an independent Palestinian state, but rather harbors a colonial ambition to decide which Palestinian leaders are acceptable."


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