Reconciling with Syria vs a new regional order?

It could be say that reintegrating Syria in the international sphere is bound to impact the regional sphere. It is sure is not the favorite dish for many in the region as Saudis or Egypt and even some factions in Lebanon. But an increase of the Syrian say in regional politics and this through Turkey and the US may decrease the leverage of countries as Egypt, thus reshaping the regional status quo.

In this direction points Haaretz’s text.



Egypt riled by Syria’s increasing role in the region By Zvi Bar’el

What happened to the reconciliation between Syria and Egypt supposedly in the works? There had been widespread speculation in the Arab media in anticipation of the Syrian-Saudi summit meeting last Wednesday, that the Egyptian president would go to Riyadh for the Syrian-Saudi summit meeting last Wednesday, to ease the four years of bad blood (starting from the Second Lebanon War) between the two. The rift in relations between Syria and Saudi Arabia had lasted longer than that: five years. It began after the assassination of the Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri in February 2005, and ended only last October when Saudi King Abdullah mended ties with Syrian President Bashar Assad and agreed to visit Damascus. Since then, Abdullah has been trying to persuade Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to bury the hatchet with Assad, but has been unsuccessful thus far. As the summit approached, it seemed as if the warring sides would shake hands in the Saudi capital, but then Mubarak learned that on the eve of his departure, Assad had held a telephone conversation with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in Tehran and explained to him that “Egypt would have no choice but to recognize that opposition (such as that espoused by Hamas and Hezbollah) is the only way to get things done.” That was enough for Mubarak to cancel his trip to Riyadh. Egypt can continue being annoyed with Syria but it cannot ignore the new role Damascus has recently taken on for itself in the region. One example of this is Assad’s proposal to the Saudis to mediate between them and Iran with the aim of reaching “regional reconciliation” and not merely “Arab reconciliation,” which is King Abdullah’s goal.

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