No-one knows which way to look.
To the west – where Lebanon’s rival factions have agreed an all-encompassing deal to end the 18 month political crisis. The Opposition tents are being taken down, Lebanon will have a president by the weekend, and the government will finally represent the whole country. None of that would have been possible without Qatar as a genuine independent party.
Or to the east – where Syria and Israel have publicly confirmed they are in peace talks for the first time since 2000. None of that would have been possible without Turkey as a genuine independent party.
Today is a tribute to Qatar and Turkey – and shame on Lebanon, Syria, Israel, the US, Saudi and Egypt, which can’t see beyond their own narrow interests.
Today has got to be the most optimistic day in the Levant since before the Iraq war. That was five years ago this March. On the fifth anniversary we looked at the prospects for Lebanon and for Syria and sighed.
Yes, it’s true, the fragile agreement in Lebanon could collapse. And the Israel-Syria peace talks will probably yield nothing. But that doesn’t stop the sun shining today.
Happy Peace-in-the-Levant Day.