ISRAEL'S massacre of children in Qana is bound to undercut U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's mission and scuttle the Washington's plans for a new Middle East. Washington must grasp the political significance of this massacre and understand that there is a conflict of interest - and by this we don't mean an alliance between Tehran and Tel Aviv to sabotage U.S. plans to stabilize democratic regimes in the region.

By taking the opportunity provided by Hezbullah and attacking Lebanon, Israel acted alone and according to its own plans. The United States has supported Israel without realizing that the Zionist state wants to negate Washington's role - not only in the Middle East - but also Afghanistan. In the midst of such a serious and dangerous situation, America must act quickly to salvage its reputation and its image as the world's only superpower. The U.S., which has been exerting pressure on Arab and Muslim countries not to interfere in the ongoing war, must force Israel to cease fire and end its aggression of Lebanon.

If America fails to prove it can control Israel, we will witness the return of a multi-polar world similar to the Cold War. Under current circumstances, the United States must assert is superiority and force Israel to comply with all U.N. resolutions passed since 1948 - including allowing the return of Palestinians to their homeland, their right to establish an independent state, and the return of the Golan Heights to Syria. Israel must also be made to compensate for the damage and losses suffered by Lebanon and its people. If America can stop seeing things through Israeli eyes, end its unlimited support of Israel and dedicate its efforts to assisting all countries in the region, Washington should be able to play its historic role.

When Rice said, "it is time to declare a ceasefire," she only sought to ease the pain caused by Israel's massacre of innocent children in Qana. Such words are nowhere near the tough instructions required to prevent Israel from destroying Lebanon and end its barbaric aggression.

The United States must understand that working for peace requires hard decisions. Although all Arab leaders had pledged their support to efforts aimed at bringing peace, America ruined these efforts by supporting Israel. The U.S. has not only lost its credibility, but it has increased the number of its enemies in the region. The United States should not fall for Israel's claim that it is fighting terrorism and allow that country to flout international treaties, commit outrageous massacres and stand against the peace process.

Unfortunately, the United States has ignored the peace initiative of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, [Saudi] King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz, who proposed to trade land for peace. Although all Arab countries supported the initiative, America preferred to stand by Israel and rejected the proposal. This is when we started doubting America's credibility, especially as it was talking about peace and plans to establish a new Middle East.

The Arab and Muslim worlds have stood shoulder-to-shoulder with the United States in its war against terrorism. But this superpower has drifted away from justice and is adopting double standards to serve the interests of the Hebrew state.

The United States is in a situation where it has to make a choice: it can either base its project for a new Middle East on justice and fairness, or it must abandon the region with its credibility lost and its image ruined. We know the pressure of political lobbies. We also know America is capable of realizing the fact that Israel is nothing when compared to the Arab and Islamic worlds, which have all the reason to survive, resist and fight.