Cole in Salon: Did Obama Win the Lebanese Election?

My column is out in Obama wins an election in the Middle East: Lebanon’s voters gave the White House the victory it wanted — with a lot of help from Hezbollah.


‘ Whatever the size of Obama’s influence, the election has already had a direct impact of the future of Arab-Israeli negotiations and on the realization of U.S. aims in the region. A Hezbollah win would have strengthened the case made by the right-wing Israeli Likud Party that Iran and its proxies are a higher priority for Israel’s foreign policy than trying to restart the peace process with the Palestinians. For Americans and the rest of the world, the Lebanese elections were about whether Iran would be strengthened or weakened in the Levant, and whether Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would have a new pretext for intransigence. The answer to both questions was a resounding no.’

Read the whole thing.

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