Eye of the Storm: The thumpin' as seen from the Middle East
It may take months before the full impact of the mid-term elections on American foreign policy may be gauged. However, one thing is already certain: radical elements throughout the Middle East see the defeat of President George W Bush's Republican Party as a victory for themselves.
Designating the US election as "the beginning of the end for Bush," Ayatollah Imami Kashani told a Friday prayers congregation in Teheran that the Americans were learning the lesson the Israelis had been taught by last summer's war in Lebanon.
"Faced with the resistance of dedicated martyrdom-seekers, the Americans are heading for the exits," adds Ayatollah Mahmoud Khatami, a leading radical cleric.
Teheran decision-makers believe that the Democratic Party's victory will lift the pressure off the Islamic Republic with regard to its nuclear program.
It should come as no great surprise that the Islamists believe this, and recent comments from the incoming Democrat leadership have done nothing to cause them to believe otherwise.
The question that keeps recurring to me is this: If George W. Bush has established an Imperial Presidency, and is intent on setting up a fundamentalist theocracry by the Christian Taleban, then what difference does it make who controls Congress? Won't Democrats be shipped en masse to Gitmo? Or, were those arsonic rhetorical charges simply expressions of patriotic dissent? If so, then why the calls for Bi-partisanship now? What about my rights of patriotic dissent?
No, the answer lies in the simple fact that Democrats view their political opposition in this country as a bigger threat than the Islamists. I don't know how any thinking person can review the events of the past decade and come to that conclusion. Pity.