21 January 2009

Arab Unity

The two day joke of a summit is over. Apparently set up as the first Arab Economic Summit, the main topic of discussion was, as expected, the situation in Gaza.

We keep talking about Arab Unity, but is there really such a thing? Considering there are totally opposing positions from different countries, mainly pushed forward by Saudi and Egypt, who are looking for a peaceful solution with Israel, to Syria and Qatar who totally oppose any form of peace with them, there was no apparent agreement in sight. So what is the result of two days of full discussions between 23 Arab countries?

About zilch.

Saudi Arabia pledged 1 billion dollars of aid (actually according to the Saudi King, it was 1000 million, hehe) to help reconstruct Gaza, which just goes to show that they're willing to drop money in, without actually directly helping the situation; just passive donations. The other countries also hinted at giving money to Gaza, but no one really came up with a direct figure. By the end of the summit, there was no specific fund set up..

In terms of actual economic issues; an Arab Development Fund was announced to help develop initiatives in the region, a push for a customs union by 2015 and a common Arab market by 2020, a call for a program to reduce Arab poverty, and improving water security. Mostly talk, calling for resolutions and so, with nothing really fixed being set.

Oh, and the divisions over the Gaza situation came up again and again keeping things tense.

Meanwhile, in another part of the World, a new president took up his position, and called on his people to unite and work together in pushing their nation forward, to the cheers of millions. Total contrast.

Arab unity; sure.


Anonymous said...


You know, I don't blame Obama much if he's putting his country first. Dubya put it into such an atrocious situation that the Yanks decided to have somebody who didn't care much about putting his fingers into other countries' pies, so to speak.

But I think Arab countries should get off their comfy couches to put up a formidable force (and I do mean they have to show that they mean business) to Israel to show that they're not pleased with what's happening and that they could punish it anytime for what it has been doing to the Palestinian people.

Shouldn't we Muslims try to act on our own rather than rely on a president-elect who still has yet to test the waters?

Anonymous said...
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Zhu said...

Arabic countries look extremely different to me, in terms of economy, religion, people, geography etc. Hard to seek unity...

Man, we are still struggling with Europe here!

Shwaish said...

LOL i know 7abaita walla he did say alf milyoon dollarr and i was like what? what is that? then dad pointed out that thats a billion...it was soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo adorable, i heart him in case u didnt notice

Kiwi Nomad said...

Who says there is no Arab unity? Arabs are united in their agreement to disagree about everything, and talk about anything but the real issues that affect their countries...

Actually Arab countries are also united in that they face a dilemna... they are united in wanting to sit on the sidelines and let Israel root out and destroy Hamas, as they don't want Hamas in power to continue to destroy Gaza's economy, or gain further popularity. But of course it's the innocent Palestinian civilians who are the casualties... so they are united in publicly condemning Israel.

Salman Al Rahma said...

Maybe Saudi did not want us to think the one billion = 1024 millions