Middle East: So Near, Yet So Far

As jubilant delegations dashed between Baghdad, Damascus and Cairo last week, the Arab world was awash with joy. Crowds swarmed in the streets chanting the slogan, "Unity. Freedom, Socialism!" In Cairo and Damascus, mobs shouted. "Nasser! Nasser! Union tomorrow!" Iraq's Deputy Premier Ali Saleh Saadi cried. "The Arab world will now certainly unite. This is an old aspiration. What is new is that it has now become possible."

Double Path. The urge to merge brought Syrian and Iraqi leaders flying to Cairo for 15 hours of talks with Egypt's President Gamal Abdel...

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