The Gulf Could Help Stop the War, If It Wanted To

Remember 1973? Well maybe we should:

It was the beginning of the end of the Yom Kippur War.

Furious that the U.S. was sending emergency supplies to Israel so it could fight Syria and Egypa, the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries organized a huge embargo of petroleum to countries that supported Israel, namely the U.S., Western Europe, and Japan.

Result? Oil prices soared, more than doubling, even though the embargo was short-lived. The U.S. underwent extreme oil shortages. The West was in a panic.

And as for the war, it started to end. Western Europe and Japan began switching from pro-Israel to pro-Arab policies. Negotiations to end the war speeded up.

Even better for the Gulfis, the oil prices never went back down, allowing for the wealthy Gulfis we see today.

Why don't the Gulf states repeat the embargo? The U.S. is sending bombs to Israel, just as it did in 1973. But only Iran is threatening an embargo.

Do they really care? The U.S. is continually griping about oil costs, and their media always talks about strife in the Middle East in relation to their gas prices. An embargo would make the Gulf unpopular with the U.S., but it would show it cares more about its Arab neighbors than the powers that are helping destroy them.


At Sunday, July 23, 2006 6:24:00 PM, Blogger olegt said...

Dream on man.

At Sunday, July 23, 2006 6:52:00 PM, Blogger Lycanthropy said...

do u actually think iran cares about us? we are just their pawns in this game.
If they did they would already have started an embargo.
Even worse they threaten israel if it hits syria , but no threats about bombing lebanon to the stone age. wake up.
and do not blame the rest of the arab countries about not wanting to be dragged into the trap the Persians are setting up to become leaders of the islamic world instead of the arabs

At Sunday, July 23, 2006 7:06:00 PM, Blogger Shmulik said...

Your knowledge of 73 is a bit fuzzy
1) The soviets began resupply oprations to Syria and Egypt 3 days before "nickel grass" (the US resupply operayions to Israel.
2) The arabs refused the first cease fire and only began screaming for it after the tides of war changed, sounds familiar?

The most important difference is that there are hugh US forces in Iraq and the gulf. No matter if you think the American deployment there just or not, I don't think they will sit idly by and let nations they defend (thats how the americans believe) back stab them.

At Sunday, July 23, 2006 7:29:00 PM, Blogger mikealpha said...

Nasrallah threaten Detroit USA:


At Sunday, July 23, 2006 8:05:00 PM, Blogger VFBVFB said...

These gulf countries no longer have the ability to limit oil supplies. This is both because they need the money that oil sales bring and they rely on the United States for their defense, and as such cannot defy the United States.

The reason citizens of Gulf States are loyal to the ruling powers, in spite of the limited rights they have is because they do not pay taxes yet receive many social services free. Further, many of their citizens have makework jobs for the government, which makes them loyal to the government. Without oil revenues, these governments couldn’t continue to do this. Thus, oil revenue is essential to the stability of these regimes.

Further, the gulf regimes cannot defy the United States, because they rely on the United States for their defense. The Gulf States have small militaries because they are afraid that a powerful military might turn on the government. They allow a huge United States military presence on their territory; because there is an implicit if unwritten understanding that the United States will protect them from outside influence. Saddam Hussein’s invasion of Kuwait in 1991, and the subsequent war solidified this unwritten understanding. The only reason these Gulf States are in power rather than being under Iraqi occupation is because of the United States.

At Sunday, July 23, 2006 8:28:00 PM, Blogger remotb said...

todays results on Israel grounds:
93 missiles on Israeli cities(civilian cities, this is)
93 wounded, some of them very badly.(offcourse, civilans)
2 dead(did i say civilians???)

and no, i do not justify anything. but reading the stuff here makes me tihnk Lebanon is the only one who suffers.
almost a million human beings living in shelters in the northern part of israel. every day about 100 wounded and few deads.
so stop srying! our governments put us in war now its time to ask them to stop it!

At Sunday, July 23, 2006 9:13:00 PM, Blogger Ghassan said...

The idea that an oil emgargo directed towards a few countries will be effective is a fiction and a myth. Since oil is a fungible commodity then all what an embargo by some countries will achieve is a reshuffling of the transportation routes in the world. The immediate result of such an embargo will be a major spike in the price of crude but as the transportation routes are reworked then the only result will be to add up a couple of dollars to the price of transporting a barrel of crude. There is no doublt that a global enbargo i.e. to close down the oil fields will be create havoc all over the world and will result in global hostilities in the short run and a move away from oil in the long run.

Saudi Arabia and other major oil producers have come to the realization that the oil weapon is an option that should not be used.

At Sunday, July 23, 2006 9:34:00 PM, Blogger Vicyle said...

Is seeking peace synonymous with weakness? Is tolerance mostly rewarded by treachery? Can compromise ever be sifted from the sands of domination?

I do not know the answer to any of these questions. I just know how it works in my world. Even on the streets of a one of the largest, most affluent cities in the world, I fear that the answers are murky at best.

The only way to truly achieve peace, tolerance and compromise, is to possess an ideal that supersedes all others. Call it a "guiding principle" or "moral imperative," or even (for those who remember Gene Rodenbury's Star Trek) a "prime directive."

This guiding principle must be held to, and above, all else. If the guiding principle is "violence only creates more violence," then violent acts cannot be used to obtain peaceful goals. This is like saying "I will go to the desert to find water."

If the guiding principle is to "destroy all enemies," then it is incongruent to expect an enemy to act peacefully towards you. With the principle of destroying all enemies, one should only expect violence from one's enemies. In a sense, this is the only option left to them.

Finally, one cannot avoid responsibility and accountability for the guiding principle that they hold to, and above, all else. It is a bed that must eventually be slept in.

At Sunday, July 23, 2006 10:21:00 PM, Blogger Someone from the other side said...

The reason the gulf countries support (yes, SUPPORT) the Israeli operation, is their fear of Iran.
It's as simple as that.
The suni arab countries like Iran as much as Israel does (an vice versa).
HA, being an Iranian hand, and their support to Islamic resistance groups all over the the arab world is the reason most of the Arab regimes don't even try to pretend to stand with Lebanon this time.

At Monday, July 24, 2006 1:54:00 AM, Blogger Frank said...

Detroit supports the people of Lebanon. Although the metro Detroit area has a large population of people of the Jewish faith, Middle Easterners far outnumber Jewish people. Its said proudly that the largest population in the world outside of the homelands reside in the Detroit area. I don't pretend to speak for all Detroiters, but know that there is a huge contingent and they (we) are very concerned and upset with what is going on. Most have friends or relatives that are caught up there just because they were visiting Grandpa and Grandma, relatives, a wedding or just on vacation.
I'm not sure what the link on the previous post was trying to convey, but the Detroit area, despite what people may read in the news, is a very accepting, diverse area. We still believe in the sayings of "live and let live" and "do unto others as you would have them do unto you". May cooler heads prevail.

At Monday, July 24, 2006 8:37:00 AM, Blogger Nightstudies said...

Please please do.

The US will go on a crash course to replace oil with other sources and we'll finally be free of dependence on people who will never live in peace. People who want a special peace where you can always kill Jews, but the Jews will never respond.

A scientist once told me that we don't need oil. "The world will never run out of organic chemicals" he said. Oil can be replaced by plant material or by animal waste products. There's shale in Canada. And even natural gas can be made into a gas replacement, one that's much cleaner than gas from oil.

At Monday, July 24, 2006 6:22:00 PM, Blogger Fakty said...

I agree with those who say that an oil embargo is not a weapon which can bring a solution to the current crisis. In 1973 it was indeed a mighty weapon, but unfortunately the Arab countries didn’t press on to get a final solution to the Palestine-Israeli issue. Since then the world have continued spinning around, and the Arabs has never been able to come up with anything they could agree upon since, not even agree to disagree.

If the Arabs would be able to show unity and condemn the brutal aggression by the Israelis in Lebanon, it would have a great impact on oil prices and would therefore have an effect on US who is the only country who can stop the Israelis.

Bush and Blair’s bloodshed of countries in the region is despicable and should lead to criminal charges being filed against them.

Blair proposed to establish a military force in the south of Lebanon to protect the Israelis against the slingshots Hezbollah fires against them. I use the word slingshots not because I don't have sympathy with the Israelis who are killed or wounded by the rockets fired by Hezbollah, but in comparison to the Israeli weaponry its nothing but slingshots.

Blair probably see European soldiers in such a role, something Bush has seconded since US foreign policy has released a hatred against them that would make such a mission impossible. Blair probably realize that his own backing of US policy will make also English participation a mistake, and may think upon coalition partners in Iraq doing the job. Since Spain and Italy have thrown out their “partners”, they may therefore give the job to east European countries.

I pray the Lebanese will not give up hope during these extremely difficult times. Remain strong and united, and be not afraid of raising demands against the International community.

At Monday, July 24, 2006 10:19:00 PM, Blogger fuzoid said...

Slingshot? How can you possibly compare a rocket to a slingshot? Can a slingshot level a factory and kill employees? While Israel may have the upper hand in weaponry, a rocket kills just as easily as a missle.

As for your belief that Arab unity and higher oil prices will force the U.S. to reign in Israel, you are sadly mistaken for a number of reasons.

1) Ancient hatreds prevent the Arab people from forming a united front.

2) Bush is an oil boy from way back and probably still has his hands in the pockets of big oil. So higher prices would only benefit him.

3) And the most obvious, Israel is an independent nation that has reached its limit with Hezbollah. So long as Hezbollah remains in Southern Lebanon, you will see no peace in this region, regardless what the U.S. has to say.

And these are just a few...

As far as Israel is concerned, this is the end of the road for Hezbollah in Southern Lebanon. Either Hezbollah is disarmed and disbanded as a political and fighting force, with international assistance (since the Lebanese army is not strong enough), or Israel continues on the path of Hezbollah's destruction.

Personally, I believe the [temporary] answer lies within the international community, and not just as observers. They need to have the backbone (unlike the current UN observers) to honor their commitment to peace and not be afraid to fire on any side that violates the peace.

For a lasting peace, either Hezbollah has to go or they assimilate into Lebanon and allow the Lebanese government to become the governing force in Southern Lebanon. Only then can they become part of the solution towards peace rather than being the primary problem.

As with you, I pray the Lebanese people remain strong through this very difficult time. But I also offer the same prayer for the Israeli people, and all innocents from all sides caught up in this provoked crisis.

At Tuesday, July 25, 2006 12:12:00 AM, Blogger Fakty said...

Rockets fired by Hezbollah are not close to be a precision weapon, unlike the one used by Israel. In short, they fire the rockets, and from their point of view, hope for the best. Although said rockets unfortunately have killed and wounded Israelis, it doesn't come close to what Israel have done in Lebanon. I think my caracterization of Hezbollahs rockets as slingshots compared, and I underline compared, to the weaponry Israel have dropped over lebanon is correct.

I believe I said "if" the Arabs would be able to show unity, then many things could have been otherwise than today. Such unity is far from the situation today, where they practically cant agree on anything. I believe this is one of the reasons that Israel can behave like they are doing in Lebanon.

Regarding the oil boy, he is not the only one consuming oil. Higher prices will affect regular consumers, and they react when prices increase.

Israel depends on US and as we have seen many times over the years, they crumble when Washington says no. Yes, Israel is an independent nation, but act with a brutality that stuns the majority of peoples worldwide. Its almost unbelievable that the victims of Hitlers eradication program can act the way they do.

You cant be serious when referring to Hezbollahs destruction? If the correspondents from all the major International media in Lebanon is correct, then the destruction of civillian houses, ports, airports, highways, bridges, gasoline stations etc. has nothing to do with Hezbollah. The small children now soffering immensely due to the Israeli brutality may have a father or mother that is a member of Hezbollah, but that should not make them ligitimate targets.

A foreign force, or the Israely army for that sake, cant even dream about destroying Hezbollah, the only way to get peace is by diplomatic way.

You may be right when saying that the answer lies within the International community, but I believe peace can only be achieved if Israel and US realizes that they are not the only one setting the terms.

I wonder what gives Israel the right to lock up people for more than 20 years, arresting members of the Palestinian palament etc. Peace has to be negotiated, not dictated by one of the parties.

As with you, I second prayers for both parties, and also include the Palestinian people.

At Tuesday, July 25, 2006 4:48:00 AM, Blogger Vicyle said...

Fakty- About the "slingshot" comment.

It seems to me that there a difference between the philosophies of those involved:

One kills randomly by intent and design. The other kills it's intended taret (but also anyone else that is near the target).

Does one have more honor than the other? That's hard to say.

Unfortunately, this entire remark is academic. I mean, what would I chose: Death by a random rocket sent by a person "hoping for the best (i.e., my death)." Or die by an artillary shell or missile and be labled "collateral damage."

Dead is dead.

At Tuesday, July 25, 2006 5:47:00 AM, Blogger fuzoid said...

Peace Fakty,

While I fully respect your opinion, I still believe the use of "slingshot" to describe rockets being launched indiscriminately. As you have accurately pointed out, Israel uses precision weaponry while Hezbollah fires "willy nilly" hoping for the best(?). I wouldn't exactly use "best" either, but I suppose this depends on your perspective. Anyway, my point being, while unnecessarily destroying much humanitarian infrastructure, at least the Israeli's are attempting to hit "specific" targets. Firing off rockets (filled with shrapnel and ball bearings for maximum effect) indiscriminately is much worse. Either way you look at it though, the human toll is appalling is something needs to be done to put an end to it before it spreads further.

Living in a democracy, I completely understand the irate consumer syndrome. Especially during an election year! However, my faith in sleazy politicians, right or left, to be corrupted by big oil never ceases to amaze me. They talk the talk to get elected. But once in office, all the oil lobbyists come crawling out of the woodwork to grease the palms of their new benefactors. There is a rush in Alaska right now to put up new oil wells to cash in on the higher prices. Don't you believe they would do everything they can to keep prices high? Including influencing foreign policy?

As far as Israel asking how high when the U.S. says jump, I sincerely hope you're right. But I have a feeling Israel has had enough. And while the world may view their actions as brutal, you can't blame their desire to take the punch out of their enemies before any real resistance can be attempted. They are surrounded by enemies that are hell bent on "wiping Israel off the face of the map." And we wonder why they are so brutal? Because they have to be. I just wish Hezbollah did not bring this war to the innocents of Lebanon.

My reference to Israel destroying Hezbollah was rhetorical. Sorry, I should have been more clear. What I meant, as I indicated above, is Israel may have had enough and will not stop until they have knocked Hezbollah out as a viable fighting force. Meaning the unfortunate continued destruction of Lebanon and death of innocent civilians. I'm well aware that the "ideology" of Hezbollah cannot be destroyed, but the individuals can be.

I think you're mistaken about the only way to achieve peace in the Middle East. You also have to factor in the extremist element such as Iran, Hezbollah, Hamas and any other extremist organization that's main goal is the complete destruction of Israel. So long as such an ideology exists, there will never be peace unless it is forced upon the region by the world community. This means constant occupation by foreign armies.

As far as Israel locking up individuals for more than 20 years, neither of us know if any of these individuals are guilty of a serious crime which warrants such a long sentence. I agree that if some of these individuals are innocent, then they need to be released. But I'm willing to bet those served with the longest sentence are guilty of some form of crime serious enough for a 20+ years.

The arrested members of the Palestinian parliament, were they Hamas or Fatah? If Hamas, then there probably has been an arrest warrant for these individuals before being elected. Becoming a politician does not wipe the terrorist slate clean. And by peace being negotiated, were you referring to the referendum to officially recognize Israel that Palestinian PM, Abbas, was going to force on Hamas by popular vote? It seems to me the terms for no peace are being dictated by the likes of Hamas and Hezbollah.

I truly enjoyed this conversation and fully respect your opinions. We may not have convinced each other but at least we can explore and hopefully work through our difference of opinions. But before I close I want to make one point very clear. Until this ideology about the destruction of Israel is put to bed once and for all, there will never be peace in the Middle East. The Arab (and Persian) peoples need to understand that the Jews have just as much right to live where they do as do the Palestinians. History attests to this fact. Now if they can only get along.


At Tuesday, July 25, 2006 10:15:00 AM, Blogger Fakty said...

To Vicyle

I just want to say that there is no honor in the rockets fired by Hezbollah, or the destruction caused by the Israelis in Lebanon.

A lot can be said about Hezbollah, but the eyes of the world are now focused upon the so-called civilized nation of Israel and its actions. There is no sign that Israel differentiates between civilians and Hezbollah, and the tactic seams to be that “better to kill them now before they become members”. They are violating the laws of warfare and must be held to account for their actions sooner rather than later.

At Tuesday, July 25, 2006 11:30:00 PM, Blogger Vicyle said...

You can't have it both ways. You cannot say that because a people are "civilized" that they have to fight by different rules than their enemies.

Ancient Rome was lost because they chose to maintain their rigid style of battle took advantege of their relative, asymetircal strengths and did not fight according to the then established "rules of war."

What followed was a 400-500 year period of cultural, scientific and religious darkness.

The only way to defend oneself against an asymetrical threat is to offer asymetircal responses to that threat.

At Wednesday, July 26, 2006 1:06:00 PM, Blogger Fakty said...

Peace and joy fuzoid,

I also fully respect your opinion, so at least we agree to disagree about the use of “slingshots” when comparing Hezbollah’s rockets against the weaponry of Israel.

Part of the problem with the Israeli actions is actually what you say yourself; they destroy unnecessarily, creating turmoil in its path. The precision weaponry used by Israel therefore points out that the targets were meant to create turmoil and immense suffering for innocent civilians.

What I find appealing is that the leader of the people who survived the horrific eradication program of Hitler, has warranted a war where the whole civilian population of Lebanon seems to be deemed Hezbollah terrorists.

I agree with you regarding politicians, more in some countries than in others, and not only in relation to oil. I don’t think the oil prices can be sustained as high as now over a long period of time, since its already gravely affecting the economy worldwide. I do believe that we may see oil prices go higher than today, but for a short period of time.

What regards Israel “take the punch out of their enemies”, I have to say that the lack of taking proportionate actions instead of dismantling most of the infrastructure in Lebanon, together with all the civilians killed, wounded and misplaced, truly will lead to an increase of members in fractions opposed to Israel. Israel may suffer consequences not thought about before they started the bomb-rain over Lebanese territory. A weak Israeli prime minister, as described by a former US secretary of state the other day, and his need of showing muscles, together with a US president that has little if any moral authority left, may result in the crisis spinning totally out of control.

I note you think I’m wrong when saying that the only way to achieve peace is through diplomacy. I assume you therefore believe in confrontations, and if so I disagree with you. I do believe one has to go way back to 1948 and evaluate what happened then up to present. I personally believe the Palestinian “issue” is the root cause of the problems in the Middle East. Sadly they have often been treated more or less with a cold shoulder by Israel and the International community, instead of dealing with the issue properly. Due to this confrontations became the answer to everything, leading up to Hamas and other extremist groups. Today, the whole world except for some few seams to be tiered of the bloodshed and realizes that confrontation will never solve the problem.

The US under the sitting president seams always to prefer a sledgehammer to hammer in a nail, but has in spite of the military might been humiliated. Israel having adopted the US sledgehammer principle, may find it can back-fire like it did when they occupied Lebanon in 1982.

Groups who have been declared terrorists were often formed in connection with Israeli actions, like for example Hezbollah who was formed in 1982 when Israel occupied Lebanese territory. Israel lately has uttered their dismay with the Lebanese government who never heeded UN resolution 1559. However, for Israel to show dismay in this regards is ironic, considering that Israel has not heeded any of the 68 UN-resolutions issued against them. The conclusion must be that Israel wants everybody except itself to heed resolutions issued by UN.

In regards to Arab prisoners held by the Israelis for more than 20 years I agree, we don’t know the reasons behind, but we certainly should. If correct that Israel have more than 10,000 Arab prisoners, I find it unlikely that all of them have committed serious crimes that warrant life sentences. However, I will appreciate comments from anyone who knows more about this.

The arrested members of the Palestinian parliament were from Hamas. An Israeli spokesman said that the Hamas members were taken for questioning, and I’m not aware of criminal charges having been filed against any of them.

I fully agree with you in regards to the state of Israel and Jews living there. Nobody can or shall be able to take away their rights. If diplomacy based upon respect and legitimate rights for both parties fails, then we will probably be back to status quo as per date, which will not benefit either party, irrespective of the military might one have over the other. I therefore believe the International community has a clear responsibility to guide the parties, taking equal note of the terms set forth by each party and help the negotiations move forward.

The conversations with you have been great! I’m really not trying to convince others about my opinions, but rather try to explore how others think about the subject. It may of course lead to changes of opinions on either side, but then probably because one has picked up something not considered earlier. I do not claim having a solution to the issue at hand, but strongly believe that peace should be given a chance through diplomacy. I assume it’s hard for the Palestinians and now the Lebanese people to have faith in the US form of diplomacy, so the International community must be brave enough to stand up, showing unity, and address what is needed to be addressed. The many countries that yesterday reacted harshly against US green light for Israel to continue their sledgehammer tactic brings hope. I truly wish all parties involved peace, whether they are Palestinians, Israelis or Lebanese.

I end by saying that I also fully respect your opinions.

At Wednesday, July 26, 2006 2:36:00 PM, Blogger Fakty said...

To Vicyle

I wonder if you forget that the issue for Israel is Hezbollah, not the whole Lebanese nation. If Hezbollah is bombed into pieces the International reaction would probably be limited. However, the fact as reported by all major media is that the punishment has taken out most of the infrastructure in Lebanon, and in addition to the about 400 killed (mostly civilians) and 800,000 displaced, a humanitarian crisis is developing.

Do you mean that you consider Israeli actions proportionate?

At Wednesday, July 26, 2006 11:26:00 PM, Blogger Nightstudies said...

There is no sign that Israel differentiates between civilians and Hezbollah

That's what the war propaganda on the Arab side says, certainly.

At Thursday, July 27, 2006 12:22:00 PM, Blogger Fakty said...

To nightstudies

I'm sure the propaganda machinery is spinning equally on both sides, but when reported by the majority of International media that those killed is mainly civillians, it becomes more crediable.

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