Toward a New Foreign Policy.The U.S. remains committed to its commercial, economic, military, and political interests, which are often defined in ways that run counter to support for human rights and democracy in Lebanon and elsewhere in the Middle East. Washington's policy toward Lebanon (and the Middle East as a whole) is based, contrary to the misconceptions of many Arabs, on firm principles of realpolitik realpolitik
Politics based on practical objectives rather than on ideals. The word does not mean “real” in the English sense but rather connotes “things”—hence a politics of adaptation to things as they are. and is not designed by a small group of lobbyists and contributors. U.S. foreign policy in the region has been institutionalized in·sti·tu·tion·al·ize
tr.v. in·sti·tu·tion·al·ized, in·sti·tu·tion·al·iz·ing, in·sti·tu·tion·al·iz·es
a. To make into, treat as, or give the character of an institution to.
b. and has largely remained unchanged even with the passing of different political administrations.
A new foreign policy toward Lebanon should, at minimum, include supporting the enforcement of UN Security Council Resolution 425. The U.S. cannot continue to press for the vigorous enforcement of UN resolutions dealing with Iraq while ignoring similar resolutions against Israel. Along with U.S. tolerance of human rights violations by Israel and its allies in South Lebanon, such duplicity DUPLICITY, pleading. Duplicity of pleading consists in multiplicity of distinct matter to one and the same thing, whereunto several answers are required. Duplicity may occur in one and the same pleading. poisons U.S. relations with the Arab world “Arab States” redirects here. For the political alliance, see Arab League.
The Arab World (Arabic: العالم العربي; Transliteration: al-`alam al-`arabi) stretches from the Atlantic Ocean in the as it underscores what Arabs see as U.S. "double standards." Support for an Israeli withdrawal would no only be popular with Lebanese and other Arabs but--based on recent public opinion polls--with Israelis as well.
A new U.S. foreign policy should also be based on universal support for human rights and democracy. This would encourage a process of democratization de·moc·ra·tize
tr.v. de·moc·ra·tized, de·moc·ra·tiz·ing, de·moc·ra·tiz·es
To make democratic.
de·moc in Lebanon and the region, one that allows for genuine self-determination for the Lebanese without interference by Israel, Syria, France, the U.S., or any other outside power.
Washington's fixation with a peace process that has failed to deliver in its basic promise of peace, ignores the plight of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and elsewhere, and acquiesces to Israeli settlement Israeli settlements are communities inhabited by Israeli Jews in territory that came under Israel's control as a result of the 1967 Six-Day War. Such settlements currently exist in the West Bank, which is partially under Israeli military administration drives in the West Bank and Gaza cannot hope to gain Lebanese support. U.S. policy toward the Palestinians and Israel must include support of basic Palestinian rights--including the right of refugees to return to their homeland--if the U.S. is to expect friendly relations with Lebanon and other Arabs.
The United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. also needs to redefine its relationship with Islam and with what is identified as "political Islam." The inappropriate association between terrorism and Islam remains firm in the West. Recent conflicts in Lebanon have helped fuel this trend, and a more balanced and rational policy toward Lebanon could help reverse it.
Due to America's warped view of Islam and given deep-seated Arab suspicions of American motivations, real peace cannot be achieved through unilateral U.S. initiatives but only through international organizations and regional players. Lebanon has too long been the victim of unilateral moves by great powers and would be far more open to multilateral initiatives. As part of a shift toward a more multilateral approach, Washington should allow the UN to play its logical role in implementing its own resolutions. The U.S. should also allow France, and other powers more trusted by the Lebanese, to play a more prominent role.
Economically, the United States should revise its foreign aid priorities. In contrast to the Canadian government, which determines its foreign aid policy purely on the basis of need, Washington continues to apply reward-and-punish standards, often to the detriment of Lebanon's economic development. By contrast, Israel, one of the world's wealthier countries, is still the largest recipient of U.S. aid. Foreign aid based on need, rather than politics, would go a long way toward addressing the deep problems of poverty, underdevelopment, and hunger.
The U.S. also needs to encourage the World Bank and the IMF IMF
See: International Monetary Fund
See International Monetary Fund (IMF). to reverse their policies and start supporting initiatives that facilitate wider public access to food, education, and health. Finally, U.S. aid to the region should shift away from military hardware to support for sustainable development Sustainable development is a socio-ecological process characterized by the fulfilment of human needs while maintaining the quality of the natural environment indefinitely. The linkage between environment and development was globally recognized in 1980, when the International Union . Until now, Lebanon has been on the receiving end of too little American economic assistance and too many American weapons.
Unfortunately, the end of the cold war has seemingly only hardened American unilateralism u·ni·lat·er·al·ism
A tendency of nations to conduct their foreign affairs individualistically, characterized by minimal consultation and involvement with other nations, even their allies. toward Lebanon and the Middle East. Unless there is change, most Lebanese--like many others throughout the world--can only look forward to an aggressive and often violent imposition of American economic and political will.
* The U.S. should support all UN Security Council resolutions, including UNSC UNSC United Nations Security Council
UNSC United Nations Space Command (gaming)
UNSC United Nations Staff College 425, which calls for immediate and unconditional Israeli withdrawal from Lebanese territory.
* Washington should change its foreign aid policies, which are currently determined according to political criteria, to ones based on need in order to address the serious problems of underdevelopment, poverty, and hunger.
* The U.S. could improve the political climate in the region by promoting democracy and human rights universally rather than targeting only regimes the administration opposes.
As'ad AbuKhalil is an associate professor of political science at California State University, Stanislaus California State University, Stanislaus, a campus in the California State University system, was established in 1957 in Turlock, California. CSU Stanislaus has nursing and education programs. , and a research fellow at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of California, Berkeley The University of California, Berkeley is a public research university located in Berkeley, California, United States. Commonly referred to as UC Berkeley, Berkeley and Cal .