Great Britain’s Foreign Minister David Miliband told an audience of his admiration for the establishment of the nation of Israel and said the sixtieth anniversary of the creation of that nation was “an opporunity for all of us to recognize its achievments-in democratic govenance, science, culture and business.” Miliband emphasized the security of Israel was best guaranteed by the creation of an independent Palestinian state. “Israel’s future depends on it having normal relations with its neighbors.” The foreign minister said conflicts in the region stem more from economic inequalities, ethnic tensions and competition for scarce resources.
As he spoke, tensions heightened on the Israel-Syria border as each side claimed the other was preparing an attack. Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid Moallem emphasized his nation wanted peace but was prepared for war if attacked by either the United States or Israel. The newspaper, Al-Hayat reported both nations are exchanging messages of peace as they prepare for potential war on the part of the other.
The possibility exists that Syria is concerned of action by Hizbullah which would drag them into a fight with Israel and that might be a major factor in moblizing some of its armed forces. Perhaps, it is time to place a UN force on the heights of Golan to serve as a warning to all sides of the danger of armed conflict.