Arens can complain about threats, but he has no alternatives to offer. He is an extreme rightwinger, a believer in Greater Israel, and one who even voted against the peace agreement with Egypt. Arens is at the root cause of the present problems, not their solution. Leaving Lebanon was not a bad idea, especially since Barak was close to a peace agreement with Syria. Barak chickened out at a critical moment, for fear of Israelis like Arens, then when Sharon came in he simply stopped a SYRIAN offer to continue the talks. Here is a possible peace plan, not based on empty threats: 1. Make peace with Syria. The Syrians offered it to Sharon (following Hafez Assad moves). Syria at peace will kill Hizballah, and get Meshal and other Palestinian rejectionists out of there. Cost: The Golan. 2. Make peace with Lebanon. They want it, and nothing will stop it now. 3. Make peace with the Palestinians. Abbas wants it, and Hamas was about ready to join the Prisoners' Document, essentially adopting Fatah positions. Cost: Nearly all/all the Territories. 4. Make peace with all Arab states, as per the Saudi plan. 5. Iran, having been pushed out of the region, looks elsewhere to cause trouble. Iraq and Afghanistan will keep them and the US busy. Israel is no longer of central interest to them.
Protests in southern Syrian city after Druze cleric's death (AP)
from the article: Good advice from Confucius