Tuesday, April 01, 2003

Trouble on the doorstep( Economist )
The rulers of Iran and many other Middle Eastern countries have been trying to avoid taking a strong stand over the war, saying they would like the fighting to stop but avoiding going too far in criticising America. ….Iran’s leaders have been insisting on their “active neutrality” between America—the Great Satan—and Saddam, who waged a long and bloody war against Iran in 1980-88…
Who’s next for regime change? Several of Iraq’s neighbours fear that once America has finished with Saddam, they will be the next target. The warnings from two senior American officials are bound to increase those worries. Iran is already on America's “axis of evil” list and America suspects it of developing nuclear weapons. Syria and Saudi Arabia both backed America against Iraq in the first Gulf war in 1991 but both are suspected by America of sponsoring terrorism and thus their leaders also fear they are on George Bush’s list…Alternatively, a rise in Islamic fundamentalism may be the result if the Middle Eastern public turns on its governments for being “lackeys” of America. The press, and Muslim clerics in many parts of the region, are busy stirring up such sentiments.

(posted by Iman)

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