About Amal Saad-Ghorayeb
Amal Saad-Ghorayeb is the author of Hizb'ullah: Politics and Religion (Pluto Press, 2001)
Articles by Amal Saad-Ghorayeb
This week's guest editors
Crisis in Ukraine
One of the main "lessons learned" from the war of July-August 2006 is that the modern concept of asymmetric warfare, which emerged in the late 1990s in the United States, is already in dire need of revision.
The Israeli cabinet's decision to strike a prisoner-exchange deal with the Hizbollah movement in Lebanon - on the eve of the anniversary of the war between the two sides of 12 July-14 August 2006 - will not be remembered as one of Israel's most glorious moments. Even its chief architect, prime minister Ehud Olmert, has referred to the deal in terms of "sadness" and "humiliation"; while it has been staunchly opposed by the heads of Israel's internal-security agency (Shin Bet) and foreign-intelligence agency (Mossad), as well as by a number of Israeli politicians across the political spectrum. Indeed, the exchange of captives itself (or in the case of two Israeli soldiers whose seizure precipitated the 2006 war, their remains), which is planned to occur by 16-17 July 2008 at latest, can be described as a replay of what Israel's own investigative commission into that war regarded as a historic defeat.
Many parallels are currently being drawn between the crises in Palestine and Lebanon. A number focus on the most visible similarity: the "two-state, two-government" scenario which has become a reality in Palestine (with different authorities in charge in Gaza and the West Bank) and threatens to do the same in Lebanon (where the country is polarised between major political blocs). But there are more affinities between the two situations and the political developments and players driving them, and it is an unavoidable reality that the regional political strategy of the United States underlies the evolving conflicts in the respective countries.