Tuesday, July 25, 2006
Were the Israeli soldiers captured inside Lebanon?
The above map, purportedly published by AFP (which then had Israel purportedly revoked the press credential of AFP's reporter in Israel in retaliation for violating Israeli press censorship laws -- yep, Israel censors its press, unlike Lebanon), shows the Israeli soldiers being captured within the borders of Lebanon.
Neither Hezbollah nor the IDF have any reason to confirm (or deny) this -- Hezbollah wants to foster the impression that it can enter Israel and kidnap Israeli soldiers at will in order to impress its own constituency, and of course an Israeli incursion into Lebanon sans an attack upon Israel would be an illegal trespass upon another nation's sovereign territory, thus making it legitimate to arrest any Israeli soldiers found in said territory in much the same way that Mexican soldiers found north of the Rio Grande would be subject to arrest on a number of charges (carrying automatic weapons without a Federal permit being the least of them). Hezbollah has no problem at all with provoking Israel to kill as many civilians as Israel has the stomach to slaughter (which appears to be an unlimited number, based on their targetting of hospitals, shelters, and soup kitchens owned by Hezbollah in Beirut) in hopes of "proving" that Israel is a bunch of blood-thirsty savages who aren't fit to be seen in civilized company, while it would be embarassing to Israel if the entire reason for its attack turns out to be based upon a lie (i.e., that Hezbollah attacked Israel first, rather than vice-versa). Thus both would have an incentive to lie about where that initial capture of Israeli troops took place.
Will we ever know the truth? Not likely. No matter where those troops were captured, Hezbollah is gloating as Israel proves that they are exactly what Hezbollah has been claiming all along -- a bunch of racists who literally believe that Arab lives are worth less than Israeli lives. Israel has played right into Hezbollah's hands. Hezbollah wanted to prove to the world that Israel was a bunch of blood-thirsty savages who would gleefully kill a hundred Arab women and children in retribution for the death of a single Israeli citizen, and voila, what did Israel do? You guessed it. They did exactly what Hezbollah wanted them to do.
Forget all the nonsense about how Israel is going to somehow "degrade" Hezbollah. Hezbollah was going to be disarmed within the next three years if Israel had done nothing at all. It is impossible to defeat Hezbollah militarily -- they fought the world's second-most-powerful military to a standstill last time the Israelies tried to hold southern Lebanon, and they're no weaker today than they were then. The Lebanese had a plan to wean Hezbollah from its wayward ways, a plan which did not depend upon somehow defeating them militarily with the (non-existent) Lebanese army. Their plan was simple: to build a modern and prosperous Lebanon, one filled with peace and prosperity, the most peaceful country in the Middle East, and then co-opt Hezbollah until the armed branch of Hezbollah looked like a bunch of ignorant hick rednecks if they kept holding on to their arms when there was no need for them.
Lebanon was the only place in the Middle East where Shiite and Sunni and Christians got together in the same coffee houses and worked out their differences over java rather than via death squads, where there was no press censorship (note that every other nation in the Middle East -- including Israel -- censors its press), no secret police "disappearing" people in the middle of the night... it was the place where, when others in the Middle East were weary of the oppressive police states or violent anarchies that they lived in, they fled to Lebanon for a few moments of precious peace. Lebanon had fought out its civil war, and everybody had come to the conclusion that there was enough war, enough killing, that the time for peace had arrived. And they were making it work. Oh, there were the occasional little glitches, but by and large, they were making it work.
But all of that is gone now. Peace, I suppose, simply cannot be tolerated in the Brave New World that is Bush's New World Order... peace is a threat, for it shows that there is a way besides killing, a way besides death, and if Lebanon's peace had managed to co-opt Hezbollah and eliminate that threat to Israel... why, we can't have that. How would Israel's rulers scare their populance into voting for them to lead them to safety if there was peace? What would happen to military contractors' profits if we all embraced peace? Why, politicians who ran on a platform of "you are threatened, and I will lead you to safety" might get thrown out of office, and arms makers might have to (gasp) GET REAL JOBS! No no, cannot have that. Thus it is important -- no, IMPERATIVE -- to destroy the only peaceful country in the Middle East, before that nasty "peace" stuff caught on. Can't have that kind of bad influence hanging around, y'know!
- Badtux the Snarky Penguin
Posted by: BadTux / 7/25/2006 03:37:00 PM
The objective, physical evidence of the raid is inside Lebanon.
The patrol road is on high ground with the vegetation cleared, so there's no ground cover to hide in.
This took place at 9AM, full daylight.
There are mines on both sides of the barrier.
Logically the Israelis entered Lebanon. It's possible that Hexbollah drew them in by firing on them, but there is one huge Israeli tank sitting where it hit a mine well inside of Lebanon.
The last [only?] time Hezbollah made a raid into Israel, they caused trouble all along the border for days to cover the actual raid.
# posted by Bryan : 26/7/06 12:35 PM
It doesn't really matter. One side or the other was going to do something to provoke the other side, because both want the same thing, for the same reason: War, in order to stoke their fires of their own political careers. Hezbollah needs war or they become irrelevant, and Israel's PM needs war in order to prove he has a big swingin' dick and the cojones to go with it. And the poor slobs in the middle, the civilians, who want nothing more than to live their lives in peace and safety, are the poor bastards who get it. As usual.
# posted by BadTux : 26/7/06 1:39 PM
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