[tweetmeme] I made it back from Jordan alive late last night. Barely, though, as every joint in my body was tight from the 35 hour bus ride (8 hours at the Saudi border, plus a breakdown in the desert – good stuff). So while I continue to hobble like a 80-year-old and mine through my Google Reader – I’ll point to a few good reads for your (western) weekend.
– Josh Landis has a good overview of the SCUD missile debate. Though it is still unknown whether Hezbollah indeed has the SCUDs – and has yet to confirm or deny, Lebanese PM Saad Hariri told a group of Lebanese ex-pats in Italy that the SCUD accusation was similar to the WMDs in Iraq argument: “Threats that Lebanon now has huge missiles are similar to what they used to say about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq… such arms were not found. They are trying to repeat the same scenario with Lebanon.” Hussein Shobakshi in Alsharq Alawsat – pretty much a Saudi mouthpiece – echoed this accusation in a recent editorial.
– Not much news here, but Diana Mukkalid has a link-worthy editorial at Alsahrq Alawsat about the cyclone of Lebanese politics – mainly about the differing reactions to the fourth and fifth anniversaries of Syria’s withdrawal from the country (last year and this year). Money quote: “No one can deny the significant and numerous changes that have taken place over the past five years, the most important of which is Syria’s military withdrawal from Lebanon. But has this had an impact on the nature of Syria’s ambitions in Lebanon, especially as the Lebanese internal situation seems to have no immunity at all from such ambitions?”
– Jerusalem Media and Communications Center has a new poll showing rising support for a one state binational solution among Palestinians. Nearly 34 percent of Palestinians polled responded favorably to a one state solution. The Majlis compiled some important numbers from the poll and compared them to recent years (a good chart, check it out) and found that support for Fatah is up slightly (38% to 39%) while support for Hamas is down considerably (18% to 14%) from last year. Meanwhile, support for a two state solution has dropped (55% to 43%) and support for a binational solution is up (20% to 33%) over the same one year period.
– On Thursday, two rockets landed in Aqaba, Jordan – presumably aimed at the nearby Israeli town of Eilat. The AP quotes some unnamed Jordanian official as saying the rockets could have come from Jordan, but Al Jazeera quotes other unnamed sources, saying the rockets were not Jordanian. Got to love anonymity.
– Al Jazeera has a great Inside Story video dissecting the plight of Palestinians in Lebanon. Does the political sectarianism of Lebanon demand the continued denial of civil rights to the Palestinians?