Gaddafi Goes Off

The Houston Chronicle is reporting that Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi grabbed the spotlight at an Arab summit this week:

He said the world should thank Syria for maintaining peace in Lebanon and argued that what he called “Islamic terrorism” was mainly the result of the West’s cultural arrogance.

The Arab leaders are expected to relaunch later in the day an Arab peace plan offering Israel normal relations in return for withdrawal to the 1967 borders and a Palestinian state.

But Gaddafi went against the grain, preaching the minority view that the solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is for the two peoples to live together in a single state.

But he drew sustained applause for airing views which many Arabs express in private but which their leaders rarely utter in public. Among the dignataries present was U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan, whose own speech was conventionally diplomatic.

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