MIDDLE EAST: Iraq and Syria: A New Axis for Unity

Their merger moves ahead "like a rocket to the moon "

"Unity between Syria and Iraq will become the axis for a strong, unified-Arab policy," declares Syria's Information Minister Ahmed Iskander, 35. "We have gone far beyond a first step." The Iraqis clearly agree. "By the will of God," says Iraq's Vice Chairman Saddam Hussein Takriti, "the unity between our two countries will be made permanent." The negotiations are proceeding, adds an excited Foreign Ministry official in Baghdad, "like a rocket to the moon!"

Syria and Iraq have been enemies for years, ruled...

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