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War of Peace? - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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When the October 1973 war broke out with a surprise attack by Egyptian and Syrian forces on the tenth day of Ramadan, many people described what the late President Anwar Sadat had done as a war of mobility rather than a war of liberation. By this, what is meant is a war of changing political positions between Arabs and Israelis with the aim of reaching an understanding on a final solution, which later resulted in a full Israeli withdrawal from the occupied Egyptian territories and a peace agreement that clearly regulates relations.

With the increasing talk of an imminent “summer” war between Israel and Syria, or more specifically an Israeli aggression against Syria, one could ask hypothetically why and what will come after? The Israeli government ousted the former defense minister who was shamed by his limited preparation for last summer’s confrontation with Hezbollah. Furthermore, the ministry is headed by Labor Party leader Ehud Barak, the professional general who wants to regain the lost prestige of Israeli military power. He is convinced that this will be secured only by attacking Syria, a major supporter of Hezbollah.

Unprecedented military maneuvers on the occupied Golan Heights were carried out by Israel weeks ago, an area that remained quiet and without resistance throughout the decades of Israeli occupation. In fact, there are trial balloons geared officially towards Syria such as Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert’s willingness to meet Syrian president and negotiate peace “any time and anywhere” and sending a US-Syrian businessman, who is close to the Assad family, to the Knesset to discuss the idea of peace with Syria. All of these are pressure cards to accept the idea of a solution, peace and normalization, not overlooking that Israel is an absolute renegade state that has breached all international conventions and UN resolutions calling for withdrawal. In fact, Israel carries out extremist Nazi-like acts against Palestinians. However, this should not cause us to forget that Israel has been an absurd pretext for despotic dictatorships that have spent billions of dollars on mobilizing countries, people and discourse for battles that were never fought and liberation that was never realized. Therefore, the result was an absolute economic underdevelopment, social humiliation and political slavery as well as a complete decline of infrastructure and future dreams and aspirations.

Israel wants to strike Syria from the significant Golan Heights. This will be an opportunity to rearrange and close several issues including the restoration of the Golan Heights, the status of the Lake Tiberius, returning the remains of the Israeli spy [Eli] Cohen, the Shebaa Farms, Hezbollah and the remaining Syrian Jews and settling their religious status.

If the summer war takes place, it wouldn’t be a game or maneuver as there is apparently a wider settlement for which preparation is being made. Therefore, if it does take place, expect a different summer.

Hussein Shobokshi

Hussein Shobokshi

Hussein Shobokshi is a businessman and prominent columnist. Mr. Shobokshi hosts the weekly current affairs program Al-Takreer on Al-Arabiya, and in 1995 he was chosen as one of the "Global Leaders for Tomorrow" by the World Economic Forum. He received his BA in Political Science and Management from the University of Tulsa.

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