Monday, August 14, 2006

A Ceasefire from out of Chelm

By P. David Hornik August 14, 2006

If America got fed up with Israel and decided to accede to a UN
.ceasefire. resolution, there were reasons for it. For a month an
inexperienced Israeli prime minister who had said he was tired of fighting
and wanted to turn Israel into a fun place, with an underqualified defense
minister at his side, paraded Israel.s delusions in an effort to defeat
Hezbollah on the cheap.

First was the attempt to triumph from the air.a basic plank of Olmert.s
.disengagement. and .convergence. philosophy that says Israel can safely
cede territory to its worst enemies because the air force can handle any
problems that arise. Then there was the attempt to stop Hezbollah.s rocket
fire with limited ground forays and a pathetically narrow .security zone.
a kilometer or two into Lebanese territory.reflecting a hope that Israel
could prevail without mobilizing or losing any significant number of

In recent days, though, Olmert and the Israeli leadership had shown that
they were on a learning curve and were preparing a major ground incursion
up to the Litani River and possibly beyond. At the very least, Olmert
realized he was finished politically unless he could show the distressed
Israeli public that he could stop the rockets once and for all. Hezbollah,
finally, was in for a drubbing. That is why it is so tragic that at this
moment, America decided to bend to international pressure, put the brakes
on Israel, and endorse a document that is a shameful exercise in moral
equivalence and facilitation of ongoing terror.

Security Council Resolution 1701 .Calls for a full cessation of
hostilities based upon, in particular, the immediate cessation by
Hizbullah of all attacks and the immediate cessation by Israel of all
offensive military operations,. drawing a precise parallel between
jihadist aggression and the effort to ward it off. The document also calls
for the release of the abducted Israeli soldiers only in the preamble,
while also claiming a need to .settl[e] the issue of the Lebanese
prisoners detained in other words, terrorists who include the
sadistic child-murderer Samir Kuntar.

The resolution at least cannot be accused of equivalence when it .Calls on
the international community to take immediate steps to extend its
financial and humanitarian assistance to the Lebanese people, including
through facilitating the safe return of displaced persons and . . . calls
on it also to consider further assistance in the future to contribute to
the reconstruction and development of Lebanon..without mentioning Israeli
rehabilitation in so much as a breath. Here the Security Council, with
American consent, adopts the BBC-CNN-Reuters view of the conflict in which
suffering within the country that has harbored Hezbollah for over two
decades, and elected the organization as a sizable faction in its
parliament with two cabinet posts.counts; whereas Israeli suffering,
devastation, and displacement do not.

The resolution calls for .delineation of the international borders of
Lebanon, especially in those areas where the border is disputed or
uncertain, including by dealing with the Shebaa Farms area.. This is a
direct reward to Hezbollah for using the false Shebaa Farms issue to keep
terrorizing northern Israel for six years, the UN itself having affirmed
that Israel had left Lebanon completely in 2000 and that any further
territorial dispute over Shebaa Farms concerned only Israel and Syria.

The resolution puts Israel on a very short tether in terms of looking out
for its future security. .Upon full cessation of hostilities,. it .calls
upon the government of Lebanon and UNIFIL . . . to deploy their forces
together throughout the south and calls upon the government of Israel, as
that deployment begins, to withdraw all of its forces from southern
Lebanon in parallel..not leaving Israel even a decent interval to try and
ensure that Hezbollah does not return to fill the void left by its
departing forces.

Then, even more ominously, the resolution .Affirms that all parties are
responsible for ensuring that no action is taken . . . that might
adversely affect the search for a long-term solution, humanitarian access
to civilian populations . . . or the voluntary and safe return of
displaced persons. . . .. If the UN were an institution that had always
given Israel a fair shake, this might not be so unpromising. But that, of
course, is not what the UN is, and one can particularly expect the phrase
.might adversely affect the search for a long-term solution. to be applied
liberally to any future Israeli attempts to defend itself militarily.

But Resolution 1701.s most glaring weaknesses are precisely in those areas
that some are touting as its strengths. The resolution .Calls for . . .
the establishment between the Blue Line and the Litani River of an area
free of any armed personnel, assets and weapons other than those of the
government of Lebanon and of UNIFIL.; .authorize[s] an increase in the
force strength of UNIFIL to a maximum of 15,000 troops.; and even hints at
a military role for UNIFIL by authorizing it .to take all necessary action
in areas of deployment of its forces and as it deems within its

UNIFIL having become a synonym for uselessness at best and collusion with
terrorism at worst, a UNIFIL force beefed up with troops from France and
other dhimmified countries that relate to Iran as a business partner does
not inspire confidence. More significant, though, is Resolution 1701.s
treatment of the Lebanese government as the main actor in this story that
is supposed to ensure peace and stability.

Essentially, anything the document is supposed to achieve is subject to
Lebanon.s veto. The word consent appears three times in the text, each
time in reference to Lebanon:

.The Security Council...[e]mphasizes the importance of the extension of
the control of the government of Lebanon over all Lebanese
that there will be no weapons without the consent of the government of
Lebanon..... foreign forces in Lebanon without the consent of its government...

.Calls upon the government of Lebanon to secure its borders and other
entry points to prevent the entry in Lebanon without its consent of arms
or related materiel.... .

Again, if Lebanon were a country (a) solidly in the pro-Western camp and
(b) powerful enough to assert its will in its territory, these items would
be cause for hope. But the resolution, which remarkably never gets around
to mentioning the words Iran or Syria, ignores the facts that Lebanon has
basically been a plaything of Syria and, less directly, Iran for at least
a quarter-century; that much of its populace, army, and government,
particularly the Shiite component, enthusiastically backs the
Hezbollah-Syrian-Iran axis and is essentially part of it; and that
Lebanon.s weak, ethnoreligiously dissonant army is no more capable of
exerting control than a 15,000-man UNIFIL force.

Allowing Israel to take a few more weeks and rout Hezbollah.preferably
also with some sobering strikes against Syria.would have created a
different scenario and, most important, perceptions of a Western victory
and humiliating jihadist defeat. That may have allowed the truly moderate
Christian, Druze, and Muslim forces in Lebanon to start trying to retake
control of their country while leaving the Iranian-led jihad axis reeling.

Instead the United States and the world community have chosen with this
dire Security Council resolution to create a powerful scenario of
perceived, and to some extent real, jihadist victory while ensuring
continuing instability and endangerment of Israel. It is a moment that
will come back to haunt America and the West.

2. The War against Hezb-fascism:

3. The WSJ understands what Ehud of Chelm does not:
August 14, 2006

Status Quo Ante
August 14, 2006; Page A8

Ever since war broke out last month on the Israeli-Lebanese frontier, the
Bush administration has said it wouldn't tolerate a return to the "status
quo ante," in which Hezbollah behaved as a power unto itself within the
Lebanese state. Yet after reading the text of the U.N. Security Council's
cease-fire resolution adopted unanimously on Friday, we'd say the "status
quo ante" is nearly what we've got.

And perhaps worse than that, because Hezbollah has now shown it can battle
Israel to a military draw. The new resolution does call for disarming
Hezbollah, just as resolution 1559 previously did, but without saying who
will do it. Presumably that task is intended for the Lebanese Army, which
is supposed to occupy the parts of southern Lebanon from which Hezbollah
launched its attacks on Israel. But Lebanon's army is a weak force,
consciously undermined over the years of Syrian occupation, and is largely
Shiite. There's reason to doubt it will be able to disarm Hezbollah's
still-powerful Shiite military.

The resolution also calls for beefing up Unifil, the existing U.N.
peacekeeping force in Lebanon that also couldn't disarm Hezbollah. The
addition of French troops to Unifil will help, but the resolution fell
short of invoking the Chapter VII powers that U.S. officials had
previously said were necessary to ensure a strong enough U.N. presence.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice insists that the resolution has
Chapter VII powers in all but name, but we'll see what happens the first
time Hezbollah again challenges Unifil authority. The likelihood is that
Unifil and the Lebanese army will co-exist with Hezbollah, which will
slowly re-arm to intimidate Lebanon's government and strike Israel or the
U.S. again at the time of its choosing.

All the more so because Hezbollah's main suppliers, Syria and Iran, have
suffered no negative consequences from their role over the last month. If
anything, their regional clout has been enhanced, with growing calls in
the U.S. and Europe for appeasing both countries with assorted "carrots."
Yes, the new resolution calls for an arms embargo against Hezbollah, but
Iran and Syria have evaded such strictures before. And both countries will
now attempt to extract more diplomatic concessions from the U.S. and
Europe as a price of not re-arming Hezbollah.

Syrians are under U.N. investigation for their suspected involvement in
last year's murder of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, and
Iran's nuclear activities put it in material breach of another Security
Council resolution. Syria wants the Hariri investigation dropped or at
least its findings downplayed, and Iran may feel better positioned to
flout the U.N.'s August 31 deadline to suspend uranium enrichment.

Perhaps it is true that the Bush administration had little choice but to
accede to a cease-fire resolution. President Bush took some political
risks for resisting an immediate cease-fire, not least in Iraq where the
fighting in Lebanon was helping radical Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr stir
up anti-U.S. sentiment.

Last weekend's much better U.S.-French draft resolution was also resisted
by the Sunni dictators of the Arab League fearful of a political backlash
at home after their early criticism of Hezbollah. As usual, the likes of
Egypt and Jordan chose to direct this public anger toward the U.S. and
Israel. No doubt some of them are intimidated by Iran and the growing
power of Hezbollah. The French also flipped their position -- which serves
us right for saying something nice about them last week.

The Israeli government of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is also responsible
for indecisive war leadership. Mr. Bush gave him time and international
political cover to act militarily, yet Mr. Olmert made the mistake of
insisting on war without prosecuting it with sufficient speed and force.
To paraphrase Napoleon, if you decide to disarm Hezbollah, then disarm

After his Cabinet agreed to the cease-fire, Mr. Olmert said yesterday that
"Hezbollah won't continue to exist as a state" and that "the Lebanese
government is our address for every problem or violation of the
agreement." For him to say anything else would be an admission of defeat
after a bloody month. But even many Israelis in his own party are saying
that, after firing more than 3,000 rockets into Israel, nearly 800 into
residential areas, Hezbollah is emerging from this conflict stronger than
either Sadat or Nasser after their wars with Israel.

Perhaps, for a time, this cease-fire resolution will "stop the violence,"
as Kofi Annan likes to exhort. But the price for letting a transnational
terrorist group like Hezbollah claim victory is likely to be far more
bloodshed in the future.

Postwar self test: Are you an anti-Semite?
(appeared in Haaretz!!!)
By Bradley Burston

One of the more fruitless debates between critics and supporters of
Israel, is where to draw the line between candid criticism of Israeli
policy, and anti-Semitism.

As a public service, we present the following post war self-test, to
assist readers in placing themselves along the continuum which stretches
from taking rational issue with Israeli policy, and ends in Jew-hate.

1. There is only one neighborhood grocery store [makolet] still operating
in the Katyusha-shredded northern town of Kiryat Shmona. Up from the bomb
shelters during a lull in attacks, shoppers seeking milk, bread, infant
formula and other staples, congregate outside the grocery, waiting to

A Hezbollah rocket attack on the crowd is:

A. Morally indefensible. Israel is careful to bomb only Hezbollah targets,
many of which the organization regrettably locates among civilians, who
are thus forced to act as human shields.

B. Wrong, if understandable in the context of guerilla warfare. Both sides
should make every effort to keep non-combatants from being hurt.

C. Heroic. An example of self-defense. The rockets, a relative slingshot
compared to the Israel's Goliath-scale arsenal, cause negligible damage in
comparison to the slaughter which Israeli has inflicted in massacre after
massacre from air, land and sea. Moreover, there are no non-combatants in
Israel. Every infant is a potential soldier, women serve in the army, even
the handicapped and elderly volunteer for service in the armed forces.


2. You are handsome, famous and inebriated when you are stopped driving in
Malibu, California by the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Dept. Suspecting
the arresting officer of Judaism, you consider informing him that "The
Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world."

You would take this course of action:

A. Over your dead body.
B Only after 6-8 drinks.
C Cold sober.


3. You are CNN. When Lebanese civilians are killed, injured or rendered
homeless in Israeli air strikes, you identify the victims as Lebanese
civilians and elaborate on their suffering. When Israeli civilians are
killed in Hezbollah rocket attacks, you should:


5. Who says there is no one around with the courage to curse out the
Hezbollah they way it should be?
Anti-Hizbullah comment starts W.Bank wedding riot
Associated Press, THE JERUSALEM POST Aug. 14, 2006

Two Palestinian families went after each other with knives and clubs at a
wedding after one guest cursed the leader of Lebanon's Hizbullah guerrilla
group, Palestinian security officials said Monday. Seven people were
seriously wounded, they said.

It took police three hours to break up the brawl that erupted Sunday night
in the village of Aqada near the West Bank town of Jenin after a critic
called Sheik Hassan Nasrallah "a dog," they said.

Nasrallah's Hizbullah touched off a five-week war with Israel by killing
eight Israeli soldiers and capturing two in a cross-border raid. A
cease-fire that went into effect early Monday was designed to halt the

6. Naomi Ragen:
The Worst Government in the History of Israel
By Naomi Ragen

We finished a quiet Sabbath in the relative safety of Jerusalem, only to
check the news and find out the heartbreaking news that seven more Israeli
soldiers have been killed and
eight-four injured in the worst-led war in Israel's history. [The number
of dead and injured has since risen.--ii]

In addition, the government which interfered with the military (i.e.go win
the war without upsetting CNN and the BBC), imposing guidelines that have
helped get not only our boys killed left and right, but our civilians as
well, has now decided to accept a Security Council resolution which
ensures that Israel's soldiers and her people have made their ultimate
sacrifice for nothing: our kidnapped soldiers will not be returned.
Hezbollah will not be disarmed. And Israeli forces will be replaced by
some U.N. force and a bunch of European anti-Semites who will allow
Hezbollah to rearm.

The full text of the resolution has been published in YNET. So far, 1,784
Israelis have responded in its talkback. The overwhelming majority say
something like this:

We went to war to free our kidnapped soldiers. Why aren't they mentioned?
For shame. Olmert, Peretz, Halutz, the triumvirate of losers.

Let me add this: Mr. Olmert, Mr. Peretz, Mr. Halutz: You have squandered
the lives of our soldiers. You have squandered our opportunity to free the
nation of Israel from a deadly enemy. You have set the stage for the next

By September, we will be under attack once more. Do the decent thing:
Resign, all of you, and let Mr. Netanyahu and General Ya'alon (who was
kicked out because he refused to go along with the disengagement) take

Resign, Mr. Olmert. Resign in shame for your incompetence. Your inability
to carry out a single one of the objectives you so stirringly announced at
the beginning of this war. With all
of you and your incompetent Kadima-led government out of office, we will
all be safer and better prepared when the rockets start to fall once
again, as they inevitably will with the U.N. and the French guarding our

And if you won't do the honorable thing, we will do everything we can to
get you fired. You make me sick. I am ashamed to be a citizen of my
country under your leadership. I am appalled to have a son in the IDF
under your leadership.

For shame, for shame, for shame!

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