SENIOR EXECUTIVE INTELLIGENCE BRIEF -- MIDDLE EAST: CURRENTS FAVOR SADDAM

Created: 9/21/1998

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Formerly the National Intelligence Dally

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MiddleFavor Saddum

Analytic Perspective

Stalemate in The peace process, powing Arab dissatisfaction with sanctions againstnd Arab anger over ihe US military strike in Sudan have added momentum to regional trends benefiting Saddam. Regionalthai sanctions will soonpositioning themselves to gain from Iraq's anticipated re emergenceiable player In the region.

Arabs Stress Peace Procnu

The failure of Uracil-Palestinian talks to yield agreementurther Israeli troop withdrawal from the Weu Bank has hardened Arab altitudes toward Israel Gulf Cooperation Council foreign ministers last month agreed to boycott future Middle bast-North Africa summits that Israel attends, and Arab states are preparing u> press for strong statements on the peace process at the UN General Assembly beginning today in New York and at the Arab League ministerial that began last week in Cairo

Egypt's joining with France lost week toall forecond Middle Bast peace conference underscores mounting Arab disillusionment with the US-broketed talks.

Arab perceptions that the US enforces UN Security Council resolutions against Iraq while shielding Israel from similar pressure on the peace process persist. This undermines Arab willingness toonsensus to compel Iraqi compliance with UN demands.

The US military strike last month against tbe al-Shifa plant in Sudan has fueled Arab perceptions of US hostility toward Muslims, increasing the poliucal risk to US allies of siding with Washington lo renew pressure against Saddam, t

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