America has to rethink its diplomacy in the Middle East. The revolution that started softly in a minor country, Tunisia, has now overtaken Egypt, a behemoth in the Arab world, and threatens to spread like wildfire to the whole region: Libya, Yemen, Bahrain, Oman, Algeria, Morocco, Jordan, Iraq, Iran and even beyond the region, as far out as China, where a so-called Jasmine revolution was immediately squelched!
Perhaps the most remarkable thing about this tsunami is that it hasn't yet hit other dictatorial regimes, such as Saudi Arabia or Syria. It may hit there too, but for the moment, the attention of the international community is trained on Libya, and no wonder. Libya stands apart from the others; so far, it's the only country that has experienced a bloodshed that looks almost like a civil war.
Israel is understandably worried about losing its allies in the region and, overall, it is keeping mum while everybody else is speaking up. Israel's peace treaty with Egypt and with Jordan no longer looks so solid. Now that Mubarak is gone and Egypt is in transition towards a new regime, all the options are open, including a rejection of the treaty, as a majority of Egyptians are said to dislike it.
What about the US? Obama, in line with America's vision of itself as the champion of democracy, has come out very clearly on the side of the protesters. So has Europe (albeit a little belatedly). There has been near-universal condemnation of the bloodshed in Libya, with the notable exception of Cuba, Venezuela and Ecuador who have sided with Qaddafi. So far, the UN estimates more than 1,000 have died and 100,000 have fled the country. As might be expected, this has led to cries for sanctions, with a UN Security Council resolution slamming the usual sanctions on Qaddafi and his family: asset freezing, interdiction to travel, arms sales embargo, and perhaps what is more important, opening the way to refer him to the International Criminal Court (ICC), charging him with crimes against humanity. But that would require an investigation in Libya, something that hasn't yet been set up.