August 14, 2006



>>Israel to defend itself against Hizbullah aggression<<

Just in case anyone gets the wrong idea from this kind of stuff, it should be pointed out that this war was not started by Hezbullah aggression.
For several years before the outbreak of hostilities, Hezbullah had not killed any civilians in Israel. And the incident that Israel and its sissy cheerleaders in the west like to portray as casus belli reflected in fact an act of war by Israel: the two Israeli soldiers were not abducted from within Israel, but from outposts within Lebanon. In any case, Israel - overtly or through undercover soldiers - had also carried out several abductions of Hezbullah fighters and leaders from Lebanon over the years.

So, now after one month of a criminal and vicious onslaught against Lebanon and its people, the IDF has been shown to be incapable of denting Hezbollah's capacity to retaliate. By declaring Hezbollah to be the enemy and then going on to slaughter countless civilians, Israel has in face done its best to ensure Hezbollah is now higher in the esteem and affections of the Lebanese people than ever before.

This - and over a thousand dead, several thousand maimed for life and an incalculable loss of homes and livelihoods - is the net result of a criminal war that the IDF had always wanted and started, cheered on by its chorus of flag-wavers in the west.

But Olmert makes a convenient whipping boy.

David Vance


You're an arch-apologist for Jihad fascism. You should be ashamed of your comments. Hezbollah are an Iranian founded and funded frontline, who have been killing for YEARS -but to useful fools the Jews are the problem. Right?


David, bush himself admitted that this entire incident was "american foriegn policy in action".

their attempt to make iran act overtly, though not necessarily beligerently, has failed. that is why the very visible dual diplomacy existed from almost the beginning of the crisis. to suggest that condi rice was somehow "going against the grain" is beyond ridiculous.


The Times summarises this neatly David
(though i apologise for the lengthy post)

"First, the damage inflicted by the Israeli Defence Forces on Hezbollah’s infrastructure and resources is far, far greater than the equivalent harm that it has suffered. A sizeable proportion of Hezbollah rocket launchers and fighters have been eliminated, while the Israeli army has lost no more than a few tanks and, to its regret, about 100 soldiers. For a body that is used to incessant combat, this is not a spectacular setback.

Secondly, Hezbollah has deployed a huge percentage of its missile arsenal to very little advantage. Only in the Alice in Wonderland world of the Middle East could it be seen as a “triumph” for a terrorist organisation simply to launch Katyusha missiles in the direction of Israel and roughly 95 per cent of them to hit nothing of any value. It took Hezbollah six years to accumulate a stockpile that, fundamentally, it has wasted.

Thirdly, the administration in Lebanon, which had ostentatiously refused to send its soldiers to the south of that country for the past six years, has been obliged to pledge to the United Nations that it will now do so. It will, furthermore, be under the de facto control of a much larger international force than has been assembled in that region before — one that will be judged a success or otherwise by the extent to which it keeps the place quiet.

The wider strategic consequences of these recent events are yet more significant. Hezbollah was, until July 11, a problem exclusively for Israel. That dilemma has been internationalised...."

Indeed it has.


A sensible editorial which I do think accurateley summarises the conflict and it's consequences. I am pleased the conflict seems to have ended and if this new dispensation in southern Lebanon can actually achieve a real believable normalisation of neighbourly borders between Israel and Lebanon with the threat from Hezzbolah removed then I welcome it and it should be given a chance.

Just precious how if Hezbollah as much as farts in the direction of the Israeli border, it's an "intolerable attack on Israel" etc, yet when 250 rockets are fired into Israel on the last day of a conflict that was supposed to destroy that organisation, why that’s no problem at all.

When the war drums are rolling, it's "vicious attacks on the Jewish homeland" etc., but when it's time to run with your tail between your legs, Hezbolla is suddenly deemed to pose no threat at all.

And just imagine the crowing if anyone outside the Israel-can-do-no-wrong front suggested that there is nothing spectacular about 100 dead Israeli soldiers.
(so the IDF launches a war because 2 of its members are kidnapped, yet 100 soldiers killed does not represent "a spectacular setback".)

But the language of this tripe says it all: Hezbollah fighters are "eliminated", while the IDF "lost, to its regret" about 100 soldiers. To its regret, indeed.

Another example of how the discerning blogger immediately gulps down anything the "MSM" serves up as long as it tastes right.


The above was me, as if you hadn't guessed.

Colm, the ceasefire is indeed to be welcomed.

But any bets on who's gonna be the first to break it?


Eh? The Israelis fought their way right into Lebanon and created a buffer zone, which they will ONLY leave when the UN/Lebanese soldiers replace THEM - they arent running anywhere! Should Hezbollah start again they are in a unique position. Hezbollahs priniciple stations are all but destroyed. Lebanon will now have to get a grip. Simply because this is relayed via a piece of msm (which is generally critical of Israel btw) shouldnt mean it cant be used as a reference point. You shouldnt be so bitter sounding about that part anyway.

It has also brought some scrutiny to the useless UN who will be under pressure to police this properly. I dont think there will be anything neighbourly about relations just yet Colm though..specially now Lebanon are forced to comply. They have an embarrassed Hitzbollah trying to save face to contend with and a lot of international pressure.


It was Hizbollah by all accounts.

>>when the UN/Lebanese soldiers replace THEM<<

I hear the UN force may be spearheaded by Malaysian and Irish units!!

Alison, as for your hopes regarding the capacity of the Lebanese army (LAF) to counteract Hezbollah, here's an account by a military man who was there for years under the UN:

"The LAF would be more or less powerless to reinforce or give legitimacy to any such UN peace-enforcement mission in any meaningful way. It is poorly equipped and armed and functions primarily as a rag-tag gendarmerie providing armed support to the Lebanese police. The LAF does not operate as a conventional army and for the most part occupies static checkpoints and barracks throughout the north of the country.

These positions normally consist of run-down corrugated iron shacks painted in the red, white and green of the Lebanese flag and surrounded by clapped-out US and Soviet tanks dating from the 1940s and 1950s. Many of these tanks are inoperable and are half-buried into permanent positions overlooking road junctions, bridges and vital installations - many of which have been destroyed in recent weeks by Israeli bombs. In short, the Lebanese army does not enjoy any recognition or status as a sovereign army in south Lebanon - it is merely tolerated by Hizbullah."

It's also typical of the cynicism with which Israel went to war that it claimed the LAF should be smashing Hezbollah, when even its own IDF, with infinitely better training, manpower, weapons and resources, couldn't stamp out the much weaker Hammas over so many years in the West Bank (I wont mention the US in Iraq).


(sigh) me again.


Cunningham - I have already argued the same about the Lebanese army eslewhere and am not in disagreement with you there - they are powerless. I dont have any hopes for them on their OWN. That was the deal breaker. It will be humiliating for them to have to go along with this since many within its ranks tacitly supported Hiztbollah. Im not sure how you draw your parallel with the West Bank though.


Even someone who strongly disagrees with Israel's actions should be hard pressed to offer Hezbollah as some organization that has any virtue. Indeed, I would say your comments might be worthy of some consideration for argument purposes if you didn't drown them in willful blindness to the nature of the Hezbollah organization.

>>Even someone who strongly disagrees with Israel's actions should be hard pressed to offer Hezbollah as some organization that has any virtue.<<

Quite. That's probably why I didn't try.

>>if you didn't drown them in willful blindness to the nature ..<<

Err.. where exactly did I do that?

If this was the South Lebanese counterpart of "A Tangled Web" (by now probable A Mangled Web), I would no doubt say some pretty nasty things about Hezbollah. But as it is the Clarion of the West and I am responding to a post that suggested Hezbollah was the agressor in this war ("(the deal) makes it all but impossible for Israel to defend itself against Hizbullah aggression"), I thought I'd point out a few facts.
The only "virtue" I attributed to Hezbollah is the ability to survive.

One of these fact is that Hezbolla had not killed a single Israeli civilian for years before this attack by Israel, and then did so only after the IDF had killed literally scores of Lebanese civilians. Yet Hezbolla are the monsters, fascists, terrorists, etc.

Another is that Israel has had soldiers stationed in outposts in Lebanon for years - this in itself is an act or war - whence they often kidnapped and indeed killed Hezbolla fighters, so nobody should go whinging about "terrorism" if one of these soldiers of occupation is abducted!

Israel's attack on Lebanon was in this context totally unjustified. It was also murderous and another example of that state's total disregard for human suffering when the victims are not their own.


Me again.



Rather than all the secondary "me agains" - wouldn't it be easier if you just ticked the remember personal info box !

David Vance

Maybe he's too busy dreaming of those kindly sould in Hezbollah...?


Lebanons total diregard for the original UN resolution, its open support of Hitzbollah before the war broke out, the fact that Iran had been allowed to arm them and the UNs willful blindness to this are massively at fault here. Israel stuck to their side of the original agreement, unwilling to allow Iran to arm their puppets when Iran has so recently called for Israel to be annihilated. They made enough concessions - to then have soldiers kidnapped in such a move was openly willful stupid and an act of war by Hitzbollah.


Alison, the facts as you tell them are true enough* but, singly or in total, they still don't justify a war being waged, especially on a country where most people killed will inevitably be innocent civilians.

* But also need comment:

>>Lebanons total diregard for the original UN resolution<<
The Lebanese army is, as everyone knew, entirely incapable of enforcing it, see what I posted at 2:30.

>>... its open support of Hitzbollah before the war broke out,<<
Hezbollah and its allies hold 35 seats (of 128) in the Lebanese parliament and there are two Hezbollah govt. ministers (Energy & Water, Labour). It's a nationalal coalition govt, so a certain amount of support is inevitable. That support, both within the population and witin the govt, will probably grow thanks to the IDF election agents.

>>the fact that Iran had been allowed to arm them<<

The US is allowed to arm Israel with infinitely more murderous weapons, and which accordingly killed twenty times more civilians in this latest conflict than the Iranian arms did.

>>Israel stuck to their side of the original agreement, <<

There was for a long time a tacit, but very effective, agreement between the two sides, which everyone was aware of, that Israel would not target Lebanese civilians or invade the country if Hezbollah did not fire rockets into Israel. It was Israel that broke this in the present conflict.

>>(Israel) unwilling to allow Iran to arm their puppets when Iran has so recently called for Israel to be annihilated.<<

Understandably, true, although this was not the reason they went to war.
The Iranian leadership is insane. For all their fanaticism, I don't think the Hezbollah leadership is as bad.

>>have soldiers kidnapped in such a move was openly willful stupid and an act of war by Hitzbollah<<

Israel "had its soldiers kidnapped" by having them stationed in Lebanon in the first place! Frankly, a kidnapping is the least a soldier of occupation can or should expect.

Tell me, do you deny that Israeli overt and covert forces also kidnapped individuals from Lebanon over the past few years?
Was each of these incidents also an act of war by Israel?


>>there are two Hezbollah govt. ministers (Energy & Water, Labour)<<

Though no doubt they're now also in line for the Defence portfolio in the next cabinet reshuffle!


Lebanons total diregard for the original UN resolution<<

They openly endorsed Hiztbollah. The PM last year gave his backing to them and they sit in government. So the army as I have stated cant do a thing..this is hardly the solution. You go on to reinforce this.

>>the fact that Iran had been allowed to arm them<<

The point being here that Iran have openly called for Israels annihilation as do its little puppets Hiztbo' (Nasrallah backs this up: let the Jews gather in Israel its easier to kill them all).

So thankfully the US do indeed arm Israel.

I dont say Israel are perfect Cunningham but im prepared to take a stand against that sort of rhetoric.

For all their fanaticism, I don't think the Hezbollah leadership is as bad<<

Please see above

Israel "had its soldiers kidnapped"<<
Im not clear as to how you have soldiers kidnapped. You cant 'have them kidnapped'.

The onus was on Lebanon to fulfill its remit as indeed Israel did under the last resolution.

Instead Lebanese Hizballah has been allowed to flourish. It has continued to provide support to Palestinian terrorists mounting attacks against Israel - in spite of the withdrawal of 8000 settlers in Gaza which has subsequently become a terrorist hotbed. Indeed Hamas' charter seeks no reconciliation and refutes ANY agreement with Israel.

Hizballah as Ive said continue to call for the destruction of Israel and use Lebanese territory as a staging ground for terrorist operations. So with respect to your question do I deny it? No i dont doubt they have had to defend themselves along the border. Indeed On November 21 last year, Hizballah fighters launched a rocket barrage against border communities and IDF outposts. Acting on threat information that Hizballah intended to kidnap Israelis, the IDF stopped the incursion, killing four Hizballah fighters.

They remain threaatened and as I said i dont hold them up as a perfect example of anything - but im prepared to throw my hat in with Israel. I think they make the greater gestures overall.

As for the Cabinet reshuffle - indeed - let them become Lebanons legitimate army....

Richard, London

The original post on this subject from Cunningham says that the two Israeli soldiers were seized in Lebanon, rather than in Israel.

It may not change a lot, but is this true? What is the source of this version of events? Does anyone know?



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