Lamis Andoni at PostGlobal

Lamis Andoni

Doha, Qatar

Lamis Andoni is a Middle East consultant for Al Jazeera, the Qatar-based news station. She has been covering the Middle East for 20 years. She has reported for the Christian Science Monitor, the Financial Times and the main newspapers in Jordan. She was a professor at the Graduate School in UC Berkeley. Close.

Lamis Andoni

Doha, Qatar

Lamis Andoni is a Middle East consultant for Al Jazeera, the Qatar-based news station. more »

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Worry About America, Not About Iran

Talk of an American war against Iran has provoked anxiety and uncertainty here in the Arab world, especially in the Gulf Region, Jordan, Palestine, Syria and Lebanon. People are still reeling from the effects of the continuing war in Iraq and the lack of resolution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

While it is true that in some quarters there is fear and resentment – especially in some regional governments - there is more anxiety the possibility of about another war.

Iran has lost a lot of popular support in the region, mainly due to its support for sectarian militias
and for parties in Iraq. However, Washington has less credibility than Tehran in a region where the U.S. has led the Iraq invasion and supported Israel’s occupation and expansion.

Many believe Iran's military power is the region’s only deterrent against Israel – and many here support Iran 's legal right to develop nuclear power. The view from the region is largely defined by the world's silence towards Israeli nuclear power.

However, there is vast support for turning the region into a WMD-free zone -- a proposal Arab countries have long advocated, but which the U.S. has rejected. This conflict-plagued region sees a nuclear and chemical weapons-free zone as its best hope.

Some in the region’s governments (primarily but not exclusively Gulf States) fear the threat of potential Iranian nuclear capability, but most are not affected by President Bush’s claims. It is deja vu for people here: we’ve heard WMD claims before, in Iraq, but they never appeared. So while there is some anxiety about Iranian policies, there is more anxiety about American intentions.

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