CAIRO, Egypt (AP) -- Middle East economies that have limped along for years are ill prepared to weather the turbulence of a U.S.-led war against Iraq, analysts say, and some weaker economies could collapse.
The full impact of war on the region will depend on many variables: How long it might take to oust Saddam Hussein, whether Israel gets involved or the U.S.-led war on terrorism extends to Iran or Syria, and whether American forces remain as occupiers in Iraq. But any war could have dire consequences for some countries.
"The region will not emerge intact on the other side of this scenario, whether you have a short war or a prolonged war," said Anais Faraj, a London-based global strategist with Nomura International.
States neighboring Iraq, like Jordan, that depend on trade with Baghdad will be hurt worst, analysts say. Tourism, already in the doldrums, will take a bigger dive. Even some of the supposedly "oil-rich" nations could have troubles.
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