We have a couple of excellent articles up at Mother Jones today about the conflict in the Middle East. (Both come by way of Foreign Policy in Focus.) In the first, retired U.S. Army Colonel Daniel Smith writes that just as the Bush doctrine of preventive war has failed to make the United States more secure in the world (while making the world more insecure from the the U.S.), so has Israel’s security strategy–responding to any provocation with the application of maximum force–failed to win it peace and security. He writes: “Perhaps the United States and Israel should try something that neither country is very good at: examining policy from the viewpoint of those who do not have overwhelming military firepower.”
In the other piece, Stephen Zunes reflects on last week’s congressional resolution in support of Israel, which he argues, “reveals a bipartisan consensus on the legitimacy of U.S. allies to run roughshod over international legal norms. The resolution even goes so far as to radically reinterpret the United Nations Charter by claiming that Israel’s attacks on Lebanon’s civilian infrastructure is an act of legitimate self-defense…despite a broad consensus of international legal scholars to the contrary.