Marc Lynch hopes:
For most of the last year, I've been torn between two general views of Obama's Middle East policy. One says that he's got no strategy, that his team is making things up as it goes, reacting to events, and has no clear idea of how to achieve his lofty goals. The other says that he's been playing a long game, keeping his eye on the long-term objective while others get lost in the tactics and the public theatrics. I've gone back and forth, hoping it's the latter while seeing way too many signs of the former. I still don't know which is right, but last night's passage of health care reform suggests that maybe, just maybe, his administration really does know how to play a long game... in the Middle East as well as on domestic priorities.
Linkage, strategy, linkage. Does Obama have more clout now to deal with Netanyahu or Putin?