Middle East: Mounting Tensions on Two Fronts

Iran gains in the gulf, and Israel threatens the P.L.O.

Two wars—one active, the other sporadic and threatening—preoccupied the Middle East last week. On the Persian Gulf, Iran appeared to be gaining a crucial edge in its 19-month-long war with Iraq. A fierce battle raged for control of Khorramshahr, the strategic Iranian port city captured by Iraq shortly after the fighting began in September 1980. Some 800 miles to the west, Israeli fighter-bombers attacked a cluster of Palestine Liberation Organization strongholds in central and southern Lebanon, and the P.L.O. responded by sending volleys of artillery into northern Israel. In Jerusalem, one...

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