"The whole Mideast is changing," observed the anchorman for France 2's evening news Monday night. That's such a commonplace observation at this point that it wasn't a story; the assertion was a mere transition from one remarkable Mideast story to another.
Of course, the major Mideast story this week was the massive demonstration in Beirut by hundreds of thousands of Lebanese demanding that Syria's puppet government resign, and that Damascus withdraw its troops and intelligence operatives. Walid Jumblatt, the man at the center of this Lebanese intifada, has some ideas about Mideast change, too.
"[T]his process of change has started because of the American invasion of Iraq," Jumblatt tells the WaPo's David Ignatius. "I was cynical about Iraq. But when I saw the Iraqi people voting three weeks ago, 8 million of them, it was the start of a new Arab world." Writes Ignatius, "Jumblatt says this spark of democratic revolt is spreading. 'The Syrian people, the Egyptian people, all say that something is changing. The Berlin Wall has fallen. We can see it.'"