What the U.S. Can and Can't Do in the Middle East
Myths, Illusions and Peace: Finding a New Direction for America in the Middle East
by Dennis Ross and David Makovsky
Viking, 368 pp., $27.95
The Obama administration’s lack of success in reviving negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians highlights a paradox. The US has a great deal of power in the Middle East, but it is often practically impotent.
How can this be?
The scope of American power, in the Middle East or anywhere else, depends on circumstances and local conditions. Yet Washington policy wonks all too often tend to overlook this uncomfortable fact, viewing situations exclusively from inside the Beltway.