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Prognosticators Predict Peace

Please excuse my copious use of the letter “P” but apparently, those same soothsayers who have made inaccurate predictions in New Year’s Days past have predicted smooth times ahead for this coming year.  It’s starting to look like those prophetic utterances are already on the way out as bombs and rockets fall and nations continue to act aggressively towards others.

In the Middle East, hostilities between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip continue to escalate.  Israel has been massing troups along the border to this territory in what looks like will end up being an invasion.  Reports indicate that Hamas is firing rockets ever deeper into Israel, using more sophisticated rockets obtained from, you guessed it, Iran.  Hmmm…There seems to be one really common thread between this scuffle and the recent one they had with the terrorist group Hezbollah.  That common thread is Iran’s continued meddling in the affairs of Israel.  Don’t be surprised if Israel acts against both Hamas in a much more aggressive way AND directly with Iran itself before President Obama is inaugurated later this month.  Things could really ignite over there, making the Middle East an even more dangerous place than it already is, not to mention that it could send our gas prices soaring once again.

Gas prices being what they are, we also need to be concerned about Russia.  They showed signs of aggressiveness last year, especially towards the former Soviet state of Georgia as they invaded the country, though they later agreed to withdraw their forces.  Yesterday, they cut off the flow of natural gas to Ukraine in what looks like an attempt to force them to pay higher prices to assuage Russia’s apparent economic problems.  The lower gas prices are putting the squeeze on Russia’s economy and some predict that they will continue to move aggressively if the low prices continue.

The site for GlobalSecurity.org currently lists over 40 “major” conflicts, defined as involving 1,000 battlefield deaths per year.  With many of those showing no signs of ending any time soon, I’m wondering if those prognosticators were sipping just a little too much spiked eggnog over Christmas break.


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