Sunday, April 25, 2004

This WaPo article offers an interesting perspective on how badly Bush got played by Sharon:

But who's going to take over that responsibility? Not the tattered Palestinian Authority. Not cautious Egypt, which once ruled Gaza. Instead, de facto responsibility for what happens in Gaza once Israel withdraws will fall to the United States.


Ideally, a responsible Palestinian government would emerge in Gaza with an effective security force that would take control of the settlements, disarm the terrorist organizations and armed gangs, and police the borders and entry points. But the moon is closer to the earth than the Palestinians in Gaza are to achieving that state.

There is one answer to all of these challenges that Bush will have to contemplate -- an American-led international force that could take over the settlements, police the corridor and control the sea and airspace around Gaza. This is not a large-scale endeavor and, unlike in Iraq, there would be plenty of countries ready to share the burden of helping to promote order in the first installment of a Palestinian state. But is George Bush ready to take on this responsibility as well? Given his feelings about multilateralism, it won't come naturally.

Unasked is the question of whether Bush would even be able to put together an American-led coalition after the events of the last couple of years. Or, if the Israeli pull-out happens any time soon, where we would even get our own troops from, since the one's we've got are kinda busy. Or if a Bush administration which has shown itself to be utterly incapable of learning a damn thing from its mistakes would do a better job of nation-building in Palestine than it's doing in Iraq.

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