Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Chutzpah, Blair style

British Prime Minister Tony Blair, to whom self-righteousness is no stranger, recently lashed Iran for being the major obstacle to peace in the Middle East while criticizing other world leaders for their indifference to Iran's alleged sins. This is quite the performance for a leader whose country stole a large chunk of the Middle East's oil reserves after the First World War, helped overthrow a democratically elected government in Iran in the 1950s, continues to make billions on arms sales to dictatorships like Saudi Arabia, and whose army now participates in an occupation of Iraq that has unleashed bloody chaos. The British record in the Middle East is one of unmitigated greed and violence, and Tony Blair has the nerve to condemn Iran for making trouble?

If he is really interested in peace in the region, he might try sitting down with the key players, including Iran and Hamas, actually listening to them, and negotiating agreements that take their interests into account. Much more importantly, he might convince his good friend George W. Bush to do the same. Or maybe both the U.S. and Britain should seriously consider just going home, stop peddling weapons to anyone with cash or oil, and letting the inhabitants of the region sort out their differences for themselves.


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