Kuwaiti politics is at standstill, even though an opposition election boycott in December 2012 led to a pro-government Kuwaiti Parliament. The deadlock is set to continue outside parliament as support for Musallam Al Barrack, the leading opposition personality grows.
There is much confusion over the supposed 'merger' between Syria's Jabhet al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq group. The confusion itself emphasisesthe erosion of Al-Qa'ida's supra-national aims and the reduced focus on Western targets.
The supposed 'merger' between the Syrian opposition group 'Jabhet al-Nusra' and Al-Qa'ida in Iraq is nothing new. But it underscores the Jihadist takeover of the Syrian opposition while moderates remain weak and divided and the humanitarian crisis worsens.
However disheartening the current war in Gaza has been, it can become the catalyst for such productive peace negotiations that will lead to the two-state solution. The latest conflict in Gaza has demonstrated to both sides that war can no longer improve their position over each other substantially enough to justify the cost involved.
Hamas has repeatedly stated that it has an army of 20,000 men that are willing to defeat their ‘Zionist enemy’ regardless of the cost, echoing the rhetoric of the second intifada (2000-2005). However, there is a crucial difference between the Hamas of the second intifada and the Hamas we see in Gaza today.
Israel’s actions in Gaza are designed to deal with more than the present challenge presented by Hamas – there are long term existential issues at stake. If Israel is to deter its neighbours from becoming involved in wars in the future, it must set back the strategic penetration of Iran and its radical axis.