Roger L. Simon

Democracy Good, Four Legs Bad

From this week’s Newsweek:

[Lebanese Druze leader] Jumblatt is a survivor, and if you want to know the way the treacherous political winds are blowing, he’s a good man to keep an eye on. He knew that the Syrians murdered his father in 1977, but he worked closely with Damascus anyway throughout much of the Lebanon war, fighting bloody battles mainly against Lebanese Christians. A year and a half ago, Jumblatt’s was one of the most bitter voices raised against the unpopular U.S. invasion of Iraq. When a dozen rockets hit the Baghdad hotel where Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz was staying in November 2003, Jumblatt said he wished they’d killed “this virus wreaking corruption in the Arab land of Iraq.” (Jumblatt’s visa to the United States was pulled after that.)

Now Jumblatt has been in indirect contact with Wolfowitz, and says he re-grets some of his previous rhetoric. Wolfowitz, who always preached the spread of democracy as part of a grand American design for the Middle East, told Lebanese television he’s not holding a grudge. Jumblatt, he said, has “shown a lot of courage.”

MEANWHILE: Speaking of Animal Farm (see title), Bashar continues his pathetic fight for survivial.