Israel and Lebanon: Three Views of a Regional War

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We’re dealing with a very difficult moment in the Arab world. These explosions and disruptions that happen periodically here in Iraq, perhaps in Syria, perhaps in Iran are symptomatic of this greater problem of a region that’s still finding its own identity, and its place vis-a-vis the United States, vis-a-vis Israel, and its own conception of the future.

Anthony Shadid

Lebanon before the chaos [Str1ke / Flickr]

With the conflict between Israel and Lebanon getting worse by the day, we’re pushing the redistricting show back by a week and taking a closer look at the situation, expanding outward in three ever-larger circles:

Anthony Shadid, the Oklahoma-born journalist of Lebanese extraction who last joined us to talk about his reporting from Iraq, will lead off. He’s been writing insightful pieces about Lebanon’s religious and sectarian divisions, their effects on popular support for Hezbollah, and the fragililty of the Lebanese government.

Vali Nasr, author of The Shia Revival, will expand the conversation eastward, past Beirut — and Damascus — to Hezbollah’s financial and ideological sponsors in Tehran — and those sponsors’ larger designs.

Zbigniew Brzezinski will take us home, somewhat literally, with a view of the geo-political ramifications of the current crisis and the the U.S. role.

(Tomorrow, most likely, we’ll add Israel to the conversation. Stay tuned.)

Anthony Shadid

Washington Post reporter

Author of Night Draws Near

Vali Nasr

Professor at the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Contemporary Conflict

Author, The Shia Revival

Zbigniew Brzezinski

Counselor and Trustee, Center for Strategic & International Studies

National Security Advisor to President Jimmy Carter

Extra Credit Reading

Rasha, Letter from Beirut, Three Quarks Daily, July 15, 2006.

Billmon, Failed States, Whiskey Bar, July 14, 2006.

Billmon, To Be Or Not To Be, Whiskey Bar, July 16, 2006.

Rami G. Khoury, The Mideast Death Dance, Salon, July 15, 2006.

Anthony Shadid, Barrage Reopens Wounds of a Fractured Beirut, The Washington Post, July 17, 2006.

Rory McCarthy and Patrick Wintour, Last minute talks in Lebanon amid fears of ground invasion, The Guardian, July 17, 2006.

Ari Shavit, Start Over, Haaretz, July 17, 2006.

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