I was away for the past couple of days and have been unable to post on a pretty busy weekend in the Middle East. So the next couple of posts from me will be more a links-dump on some of the more important events and some analysis by smarter people. I will comment on some things (Israel / Palestine developments, Lebanon / Syria rapprochement, US involvement in Yemen… ) when I get some more time. Until then, enjoy some good reading:
Hariri in Syria:
– Prime Minister Hariri made a visit to Damascus for talks with President Bashar on Saturday in the first diplomatic visit by the Lebanese PM to Syria since his father’s assassination in 2005, which was widely believed to be at the hands of the Syrians (for more see: Associated Press). The two men agreed that improved relations (see also Ya Libnan) would benefit both countries
– The talks between the two leaders are widely (and optimistically) seen as a turning point in the recent troubled relations between the neighbors.
– From: Asharq Alawsat :
It cannot be denied that the fingerprints of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz could be clearly detected in the scene that took place in Damascus (my emphasis). This [meeting] is a clear addition to the policy of reconciliation and [promoting] inter-Arab interests undertaken by the Saudi monarch, and this policy is now bearing fruit in a significant and ongoing manner.
– A quick note on the symbolism of the trip – this article also parallels Hariri’s reconciliation with Syria with Jumblatt’s in the 1970’s. Both men made very important trips to Syria after their fathers were killed, perhaps by the Syrians.
– Reaction to the trip.
Picture from Reuters