Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Who is the skunk at this garden party? Or are there more than one? Eye on Annapolis

In Annapolis, Maryland,Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has convened a meeting of
Middle Eastern leaders, excluding Iran and Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip.
"We must not view Annapolis asa failure," Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said before the summit started. Expectations could not be lower, so this is primed to be seen as some kind of seminal event for Bush if the tetchy leaders plod through the palaver.
Meanwhile, Hamas pledged to pack more explosives in its homemade rockets, and Iranian
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said, "Participation in this summit is an indication of the lack of intelligence of some so-called politicians." Petulantly, Ahmedinejad called a counter-meeting in Tehran for further Middle East peace navel-gazing. Only the delegation of Djibouti begged off their invitation from Bush to come to the US Naval Academy meet, and Iran did not get one.

A social anthropologist and activist friend in Jerusalem points out the "siege mentality" that has gripped Israeli since the days of Masada zealots. The present-day siege of Gaza goes on and on, and things are scarce there despite the smuggling tunnels and the ingenuity of the Gazans.

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