Regions / Middle East & North Africa

The recent announcement by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that the United States will open an embassy in Libya was welcome news all around. Long overdue, the restoration of full diplomatic relations is a win-win situation for both Libya and the United States, as well as for other states in and out of the Middle East. The U.S. decision also marks a significant shift in the foreign policy of the Bush administration, a change most observers have overlooked.

Iran: The Day After

If the U.S. attacks Iran - with nuclear or "conventional" bombs - it is virtually certain that Iranian retaliation will be swift and lethal.

Controlling the Bomb

Nuclear proliferation can at best only be slowed down through a process of sanctions and double standards. The use of force shall serve to make other states believe that if only they had the bomb they would be safe. This way leads to catastrophe. The alternative, non-proliferation by cooperation and consent, cannot succeed as long as the United States is insistent on retaining and improving its nuclear arsenal and allowing its allies to have these weapons.
Even if an all out civil war is avoided now, it may not be as easy to avoid in the future if negotiations over either the formation of a coalition government or the constitutional settlement finally break down.
By blaming promordial hatred for the sectarian violence in Iraq, the Bush administration is ignoring the effects of the war and other decisions made by the United States during the occupation that have fueled the violence.
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