Thursday, November 7, 2013

As'ad AbuKhalil: The Failed Gamble of Khaled Meshaal


As'ad AbuKhalil (Al Akhbar)
 It would be fair to say that Khaled Meshaal is one of the biggest casualties of the Arab uprisings. Early on, Meshaal appeared more arrogant and more self-confident than usual. He had his reasons: the sponsoring Qatari regime was on the offensive and it seemed to be leading the entire Arab League and the Arab counter-revolution. Saudi Arabia was absent from the scene for much of 2011 and 2012, or so it appeared. Secondly, the Muslim Brotherhood reached power in Egypt and Tunisia and he received a hero’s welcome in both countries. Thirdly, the statement that was attributed to him in al-Quds al-Arabi in 2012 to the effect that he was willing to switch sides against Iran, contingent on finding an alternative financial sponsor, seemed to have sent the right signals that he and his organization were for sale to the highest bidder. Fourthly, the Syrian regime which had provided shelter to Hamas appeared to be in its last days; statements about the ultimate demise of Bashar were being made on a weekly basis. Fifthly, the Turkish regime was in ascendancy and some argued that Turkey was destined to lead the Arab world again, for the first time since the end of the Ottoman Empire. Sixthly, Saudi Arabia expressed willingness to forgive Hamas for its anti-Israeli sins provided it forswears its relationship with the Iranian regime.

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