As Diplomacy Falters, Military Struggle Deepens

With the failure of an international conference in Rome to agree on a plan to end the war between Israel and the Shiite militia Hezbollah, leaders of the two fighting forces have redoubled their commitment to war.

Two weeks into the war, the ground battle in southern Lebanon has intensified into close quarter combat and Hezbollah is still bombarding northern Israel with rocket fire daily, despite steady air attacks by Israeli warplanes. Israeli chief of Staff Dan Halutz this week ordered the Air Force to bomb 10 buildings in south Beirut -- where Hezbollah has its headquarters -- for every rocket the group fires at the Israeli port of Haifa, according to an Israel army radio broadcast picked up by Ya Liban, Naharnet and the New York Sun.

Hezbollah leader Hasan Nasrallah responded in a televised address Wednesday night, saying "there will be no limits for our rocket fire against Haifa no matter what the enemy's reactions." According to Almanar.com, news site of Hezbollah's TV station, Nasrallah said the war was moving to a new phase "beyond Haifa," the Israeli city hit by hundreds of Hezbollah rockets in the last two weeks.

Both sides expressed surprise at the military capacity of their enemy.

A senior Hezbollah official told Aljazeera.net that the group was "surprised" by the scope of the Israeli reaction to the their capture of two Israeli soldiers July 12.

Israel has been surprised by Hezbollah's resistance in the first weeks of ground war in south Lebanon, said The Times in London.

Both sides say their men are fighting heroically.

"The Islamic Resistance is still engaged in heroic confrontations in the Maroun el-Ras, Bint Jbeil and Aytaroun region for the sixth consecutive day, inflicting heavy losses among Israeli soldiers, armored vehicles, Merkava tanks and Apache helicopters," said Almanar.com.

The Jerusalem Post said that "officers who participated in the fighting described... stories of bravery and valor - tales, they said, that would go down in Israeli military history."

Israel had planned for a three-week campaign, according to a story in the San Francisco Chronicle, picked up by The Peninsula in Qatar and other Mideast news sites. But as both sides dig in on the front lines, that timetable appears unlikely.

"The Bint Jubeil operation taught Israeli war planners three lessons," says Debkafile, a security and terrorism news site run by former Israeli military officers.

1. It did not help reduce the rocket fire against Israel ....
2. Bint Jubeil and its satellite villages are only one small center at the southern end of the central sector of the south. There are dozens such clusters across the region. They will have to be flushed out one by one, entailing prolonged military action and exposing the troops to more casualties.
3. The IDF found that certain local elements, which once cooperated with Israel forces during their 24-year occupation of South Lebanon until the May 2000 withdrawal, were still willing to be helpful.

Debkafile used the the word "cleansing" to describe the Israeli military campaign, evoking images of "ethnic cleansing" in the Balkan wars of the 1990s.

"Once they have cleansed the five villages around Bin Jubeil," says Debkafile, "Israeli war commanders face a choice." They can attack Hezbollah positions in the western sector of south Lebanon (where there are many missiles), the central sector (which would require driving 20 kilometers into Lebanon) or the eastern part (where Hezbollah's command and control center is believed to be located).

"Whichever direction Israel's high command chooses for the next stage of the war will necessitate proceeding at a slow pace, whether because of an insufficiency of men on the ground, the risks of troop and civilian casualties or the complexity of their missions," said the Tel Aviv site.

But any expectation by Israelis that "the military clash will end with a convincing victory" is unrealistic says Goria Eiland, former national security adviser to the Israeli prime minister.

Where is the Conflict Heading?

Compare the answers offered two weeks ago with what three online commentators are saying this week.

Abdel Wahab Badrakhan, a columnist for the Arabic daily Dar al Hayat foresees a wider war in Lebanon.

"Israel and the US on the one hand, and Syria and Iran on the other, are competing over who is the more degenerate in dealing with this country and its people, who is better able to extinguish the necessities of life in this country, and who is more sordid in disdaining its people and ridiculing their fate," he writes.

The war will spread to Syria, say 52 percent of readers responding to an Aljazeera.net online survey. Thirty-three percent said the war would not expand to Lebanon's neighbor.

The United States and/or Israel will eventually attack Iran, but not invade it, according to Dawood Hermidas Bavand, a university professor on international affairs interviewed by Rooz, the leading English-language news site of the Iranian reformist movement.

Iran's enemies "will not enter ground forces into Iran," he predicted. "With their advanced weapons, they will hit almost all the strategic and economic facilities. A strike from a long distance."

Who's to Blame?

Online surveys by two Middle East news sites offer different answers.

Israel, said a slight plurality of 93,000 plus readers who responded to a poll done by Aljazeera.net, Web site of the Arab TV channel based in Dubai. Thirty percent said Israel was "mainly to blame," while 24 percent cited Hezbollah and 22 percent cited Syria and Iran. Twelve percent said the United States was mainly to blame.

Hezbollah, said a slight plurality of more than 6,500 readers responding to an online survey by Beirut's Naharnet News. Forty-two percent agreed the Shiite militia was to blame for the conflict, while 37 percent faulted Israel. Eleven percent named Iran and 10 percent cited Syria.

Debate in Israel

"The Causes of War: Hezbollah and Hamas's Grievances"

"Since independence in 1948, [Isreal] has lived by the philosophy of its first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, that any attack against Israel will be met with disproportionate retribution; hence why it has consistently pursued a rigid strategy of targeted assassinations of senior Hamas and Hizbullah leaders; collective punishment; and rejections of cease-fire proposals."

--Jerusalem Post


Nasrallah "en route to failure"

"The extent of the destruction, combined with the elimination of Hizbullah outposts and the international community's support of Israel, result in a critical mass pressuring Nasrallah and his organization. The media's focus on the bombings in Israel misses the 7 elements of the slippery slope the Hizbullah is on."

--Ynet News, Israel


Public opinion will shift "very quickly" against the war, predicts Meron Benvenisti in Haaretz:

"No one is able to predict the minute when the opposition to the war and the bloodshed turns from an act of betrayal into a legitimate and even correct stance; when a moral condemnation of the war's evil effects becomes acceptable from a patriotic point of view and when slogans like 'uprooting terror,' ' a war for our homes,' 'an existential struggle' and their like, turn from resonant war-cries into empty rhetoric. "


Shmuel Rosner, Washington correspondent for Haaretz, wonders if U.S. officials in Washington don't envision the conflict as an opportunity for "great actions":

"Bombing Iran, deposing the Syrian regime, destroying the Hamas government. It is certainly possible that this can be done. ... The price will be steep, but there are situations where such steps must be taken, so the proponents of the hard-line approach will say. "

"In the end, this is the big debate splitting Washington in two," Rosner continues. "A debate whose cover is ideological, but occasionally there surfaces suspicion that differences of character, of personality are the key players here: who is optimistic and who is pessimistic, who is a gambler and who is cautious, who is looking for great actions and who settles for the little joys."

An exchange on the street, as reported by Arutz Sheva:

"Another man was chanting slogans calling for Israel to "Stop the occupation!"

"What occupation?" asked Fox. "Didn't Israel leave southern Lebanon?"

"Israel has been violating international borders every days for 18 years," the man responded, "by violating Lebanon's air space and holding prisoners."

By Jefferson Morley |  July 27, 2006; 10:21 AM ET  | Category:  Mideast
Previous: How to Watch the War on the Web | Next: The Qana Tipping Point

Comments

Please email us to report offensive comments.



"Israeli chief of Staff Dan Halutz this week ordered the Air Force to bomb 10 buildings in south Beirut for every rocket that falls in Haifa "

If this is true it's an act of immense stupidity as it will create a "Lidice" effect that will add another generation of combatants to this cycle of madness.

Posted by: Angus | July 27, 2006 11:24 AM

One major element no one seems to notice is the total lack of regret displayed by Hizbollah's leaders for the sufferings their aggression has brought to the civilians they place their installations and weapons among.
Another major element is the 'bragging done' by ' Hizbollah' at the losses (however small in number) inflicted on Israel, and the hiding of their own much greater losses.
Israel and Israelis by the way are not good at 'propaganda' and emphasize the same thing, our own losses. We also do not boast about killing others, an admirable trait morally but not psychologically wise in dealing with a cruel enemy.

Posted by: Shalom Freedman | July 27, 2006 11:58 AM

Civilian death toll in Lebanon reaches 600 people.

Posted by: karim | July 27, 2006 12:03 PM

just a whim, now we can stop hearing the boast of the 6-day war.

i believe that war is never good. but if i "have to" choose who to cheer between Israel and Hizbollah, the later i pick.

the rarionale is: civilian casualty is inevitable in wars. weird enough, that doesn't give the reason to stop killing(war) but to justify it. in a sense it says that we shouldn't care about civilian casualty. i think that's right. it's so remote to me that i don't feel the pain of the unfortunate people there. so i should just sit down watch the "game" unfolding and as i do as usual, rooting for the underdog.

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 12:20 PM

The current rules of war established post WWII are about to start changing to the colonial era about 100 years earlier where civilian casaulties were an expected result of war. Terrorist and insurgent organizations are successfully using civilians as shields placing national armies at a strategic disadvantage. As the capability of these para-state organizations increases with their new weaponary, national armies will be increasingly called on to take more extreme measures to destroy the insurgents. The initial success of the insurgents will only lead to increasingly large civilians casualties. This will also lead to a growing division between the West and Arabs/Persians.

Posted by: Kevin | July 27, 2006 12:27 PM

terrorism should never win. Those who support it should be attacked and brought down. Iran, Syria, and North Korea should all be eliminated

Posted by: action jackson | July 27, 2006 12:31 PM

War sucks, nobody wins! People die and for what! Live and let live!

Posted by: SANDMAN | July 27, 2006 12:31 PM

i just want to give a reminder about the argument about the hiding of Hizbollah among civilians (because it sounds so apologetic to me).

Hizbollah is in southern Lebanon, while the Israel bombing occurred during the first 10 days covered the most of the Lebanon territory. The targets they picked are strictly civilian. their motivation of punishing the Lebanese civilians was so obivious. it's after the international tide turned against their such action, they changed the rhetoric and limited their targeting areas.

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 12:41 PM

Right after 9/11, almost all U.S. citizens vowed to procsecrote terrorists, State-based or otherwise. There was unanimity on this point. Since then, for years we have watched the Iranian government snub its nose at this concept and at us as a people and at our Government. It is now high time for the U.S. Congress to declare war against the Iranian Government. If we meant what we vowed and what was said and agreed to by nearly all Americans as regards to terrorist governments, we must declare war against the Iranian Government now and no longer yield to their treachery towards us and our ally, Israel, which all modern governments acknowledge, including most governments in the Middle East, has a right to their State there. Indeed, there will never be any pushing of Israelis into the sea allowed, how ridiculous for the Iranian Government to pursue such a policy any longer. Such an absurd and warrior policy must no longer be tolerated by great nations. Because of their beliefs, the Irranian Government will never be allowed nukes and surely they can see why. Do they think we are so stupid as to allow this considering their public stance? So, it is either peace or war and no nukes. After declaring war, the Iranian government should have no more than 24 hours to decide, and then we attack if no armistice is signed. Peace or war, which is Mr. and Mrs. Iranian Government?

Posted by: U.S., A Paper Tiger? | July 27, 2006 12:51 PM

This "Hezbollah is hidding among civilians" is Israeli propaganda.

Who was hidding in the airport when they bombed it?

Israeli governments bans the press from reporting on the location of its military bases when they expect Hezbollah to tell them where they exactly are.

BOYCOTT ISRAEL.


Posted by: Karim | July 27, 2006 12:53 PM

All that we've managed is to add another country starting with an I to Bush's long list of failures, managed to turn off virtually the entire world (ok, UK and the US, big whoop), and by shipping guided smart bombs to Israel made it obvious Bush and his red commies have no real plans other than lining the pockets of the party elites.

And all this in a place that fits inside my state. It's like Seattle is at war with Redmond.

Talk about farce ...

Posted by: Will in Seattle | July 27, 2006 12:54 PM

An army of technological inferiorities will use guerilla tactics to outsmart the enemy. Is that so hard to understand for the people who claim Middle Easterners use hospitals as shields? People are complaining about the inaccurate Katyusha rockets killing Jewish civilians. The same could be said for the "accurate" Jewish rockets killing Lebanese. All I'm saying is, if you had to fight against an army 10 times your size with 10 times your rockets, hit and run would be your strategy too.

Posted by: JC | July 27, 2006 01:06 PM

When Israel attacked our naval vessel the USS Liberty in 1967 it said that it was accidential. For over ninety minutes Israeli jets bombed and machine gunned a US ship that was flying the flag Amidships and aft. That is an example of how Israel "defends" itself.

Now with its intentional targeting of Lebanon's civilians Israel has created more ememies then ever before. Syria has taken in thousand of victims of Isreali aggression. It has provided the Lebanese refugees with medical care, food and shelter.

A smart person will realize that Israel has lost its remaing captial of sympathy from the international debate.

Posted by: Jeremy | July 27, 2006 01:13 PM

Hi Will in Seattle. To 'action jackson':

'terrorism should never win. Those who support it should be attacked and brought down. Iran, Syria, and North Korea should all be eliminated'

I presume you'll be the first volunteer to go fight--right?

I'm afraid when the Israeilis staart talking about 'ethnic cleansing' they've lost me. When you join a religion, do you check your heart and brain at the door?

Posted by: Drindl | July 27, 2006 01:23 PM

karim wrote:
"This "Hezbollah is hidding among civilians" is Israeli propaganda. Who was hidding in the airport when they bombed it?"

This is a silly argument that ignores the stated reason for bombing the airport, to enforce an air and sea blockaid. Hezbollah has offices in the southern Beirut, where only Hez members are allowed, thus the bombing there. And Nasrallah has a command and control bunker ... a bunker ... there. Isn't it against Geneva Protocol One to place military headquarters in populated neighborhoods? http://abcnews.go.com/International/Mideast/wireStory?id=2192803
When you fight a war you don't just fight the frontline fighter, you go after command, control and supplies which since Hez headquarters being located in southern Beirut make it a legitimate target. Can you tell me why Haifa neighborhoods are a legitimate target of Hezbollah?

As for Hez's addiction to using Muslim civilians as human shields, this has been reported by many neutral observers over many years. What is probably not as well known is that many of these shields willingly become shields. Not all though. Its currently being reported that Hez is setting up roadblocks to prevent civilians from leaving southern Lebanon and preventing the UN from coming in to assist in the evacuation. What a nice bunch of guys...

Posted by: Sully | July 27, 2006 01:28 PM

Nothing could come from a cease-fire conference (even if it is held in Rome!) if the ones firing - Hezbollah and Israel in this case - are not attending and neither of them obey those who do attend.

Posted by: Jim | July 27, 2006 01:33 PM

The UN can only be viewed as incompetent by leaving its observers in southern Lebanon and in the direct line of fire. The result being tragic loss of life. For no good reason. They were equally incomptent in refusing additional security in Iraq which resulted in their offices being bombed, staff killed and their eventual withdrawl.
Kofi Annan has to go.

Posted by: Geo | July 27, 2006 01:34 PM

Drindl wrote:
"I'm afraid when the Israelis start talking about 'ethnic cleansing' they've lost me. When you join a religion, do you check your heart and brain at the door?"

Don't be fooled by Arkin's twisting of words. He reads about military cleansing, meaning to rid the area of fighters, and he hears ethnic cleansing and then reports it as such. It doesn't even make sense. What would Israel cleaning? In Kosovo it was serbs ethnically cleansing muslims from towns leaving only serbs in the towns. What type of ethnic cleansing is Arkin talking about? Go back and read what Arkin wrote and see for yourself. A Post commentator should not be taking words and twisting their meanings.

Posted by: Sully | July 27, 2006 01:35 PM

Both sides are clearly monsters. I just don't understand why my tax money goes to support one monster (the Zionist state) versus the other. Especially since Israel has done this:
1: Attacked a naval vessel the USS Liberty in 1967.
2: Stole Nuclear Weapons technology from us in the 60's
3: So indiscriminantly kills civilians including Red Cross workers and clearly marked United Nations Posts.
4: Is so cowardly stupid to think what they failed at 20 years ago will be successful today. If Israel really wants to stop Hezbolla they need to attack that weed at the root. The root is Syria/Iran. Only they are too cowardly to attack people that can defend themselves on equal ground.

As a US citizen I am saddened by my country's support of Israel. In fact MOST US citizens don't give a damn about Israel. It's the rich Jewish lobby that has our dear republic hostage to supporting their monstrous brothers in Israel. Funny it was that same rich Jewish lobby that helped slavery last so long in the US and profited the most from it, in owning the slave ships, and selling insurance on slaves.

I'm not anti-semitic, but the people of Israel and Jews as a whole need to start giving people reasons to love them instead of despise. Perhaps then terrorism would be abated. Their destruction of Israel does not help their cause.

Posted by: Kieran Cox | July 27, 2006 01:39 PM

Geo wrote:
"The UN can only be viewed as incompetent by leaving its observers in southern Lebanon and in the direct line of fire."

Agreed. They even let Hez place rocket and morter launchers in the shadows of UN buildings in S. Lebanon. You'd think military people would be worried about that, but not UNIFIL. And of course UNIFIL, which dutifily verified Israel left S. Lebanon never verified the other part of the agreement, the disarming of Hezbollah. Just what is the UN doing in S. Lebanon anyway? Acting as human shields is all I can surmise.

Posted by: Sully | July 27, 2006 01:39 PM

Most Arab terrorist countries want the US to perish. I have been there and spoken and seen the reactions of Arab people. They rejoice at the site of American women and children being killed. They talk big about drowning us in a sea of blood. Only good thing is they sure dont like to fight a fair fight and give up real easy when confronted with force. Time to take out the trash, lets get rid of these terrorist groups and the governments that back them. My opinion only, we live in a free country, I would like you to go to one of these countries and say something bad about their government in the open, can you say "Opps their goes my head". :)

Posted by: Sarge | July 27, 2006 01:41 PM

*"Their destruction of LEBANNON does not help their cause."

Posted by: Kieran Cox | July 27, 2006 01:42 PM

Sully, I really doubt anyone acts as a human shield voluntarily. I don't trust anything I hear about this, because both sides and lying and acting like animals. 'Cleansing' has only one meaning. Please, stop making excuses.

The world see this as a proxy war with Israel acting for the US against muslims. The fact that Israel is using US cluster bombs, that are designned to maim, doesn't help. There will be retribution. If my family dies, will anyone in Israel care? For that matter, will anyone in my own government? I sincerely doubt it. We're all being used as pawns in a war over land and oil.

Posted by: Drindl | July 27, 2006 01:51 PM

Hizbollah (and the IDF too) must have thought ahead of time. they ran hiding in the hospitals, in the grocery stores, in the paper factories, ... etc, in ... not to mention, the beirut apartements before the bombings even started.

the casualty in Lebanon in the 1st 10 days was strictly, 100%, civilians.

be careful when one says it's okay to bomb civilian targets just because he doubts the other side's combatants might hide in those places no matter how slim the possibility is. and if that gives you the rationale for bombing, it justifies the other side's bombing similar targets, too.

Also, this is so awful to think the civilians should die in company with the death of the combatants.

Israel is not good for propaganda. only they know to intercept Lebanonese TV broadcasting signals and rebroadcast their content. and they know to dispatch cellphone text messages among the Lebanese.

why Hizbollah bombed Haifa? isn't it because they perceived Israel's killing of Lebanese civilians giving them the reason to retaliate? Or do you think only Israel is justified for retaliation actions?

is it so hard to see that war is NOT the solution.

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 01:59 PM

What do Persians and Shias have to do with the arab-israeli conflict? Many Sunni arabs don't even consider them muslims anyway. Iran is a large and wealth country with an educated and progressive population that could be a regional super power if only got its act together. What the world needs is another revolution in Iran.

Posted by: AC | July 27, 2006 02:04 PM

it is so awful to think that the vast civilians should die in company with the destruction of few combatants.

Posted by: | July 27, 2006 02:05 PM

Do any of you posters have any idea whatsoever of what you are debating? Not a single one of you has made a logical argument opposing Israel or Hezbollah (let alone being able to correctly spell the terrorist group's name). Have a single one of you studied the history instead of just listening to the porpoganda fed to you by the american media? If not then I suggest you close your mouths and turn off your computers because none of you has done your due dillegance and therefore have no rational, countable opinions. Hezbollah is in fact a terrorist group, and the fact that they are hiding in civillian area's is a fact to which they have in the past and present not denyed or attempted to hide. They have actually always openly admitted to doing so. The UN was responsible for disarming Hezbollah when Israel pulled out of Lebanon back in 2000, and never followed through with their promises. Now once again Hezbollah has come into the frey and decided that it wants their turn to enter the new Jihad. This war in the middle East is and has always been about getting rid of Israel. Israel has fought and won it's right to exist and has attempted to live peacefully with its neighbors. It's neighbors however have always had a different idea, and instead of standing up and being honest about the circumstances they are taking a back alley approach by claiming injustices by Israel which are actually preformed on the common man in the Middle East by their own governments. The Palestinian Government get's a huge allowance every month, and yet the common man lives with no electricity or running water while their leaders live in palaces with gold toilets purchased with the money that was intended to feed the nation. But no, blame Israel. Give me a Break!!!
Enough with victimizations! Im sick of hearing people believing that they are owed luxuries. If you want a better life...WORK HARDER! No one owes anyone anything. Get over yourselves.
Terrorism in all forms should never be tolerated nor allowed to occur without severe reprocussions! Hezbollah had it comming. Ignoring acts of terrorism such as the unprovoked capture of soldiers, only allows the terrorists to believe that we will do nothing about it. We must stand against all acts of Terrorism with such force as to ensure that it will never happen again.

Posted by: annoyed mama | July 27, 2006 02:06 PM

Cleanse: to free a place, person, or society from something wrong or unwelcome. ie. to cleanse the government of corrupt influences. Encarta Disctionary. The term makes perfect sense in the context of removing Hez fighters from their S. Lebanon strongholds.

Posted by: Geo | July 27, 2006 02:06 PM

I don't think the US can really afford another two years of Bush. We go from one disaster to another. Somebody, please, take him out! March to the WH and take him out of there.

Posted by: candide | July 27, 2006 02:11 PM

"They rejoice at the site of American women and children being killed."

The U.S is rushing deliveries of precision guided bombs to Israel (which just happen to be so inaccurate that the majority of casualties are civilian). Why would the Arabs not be happy to see the U.S suffer? This administration has basically been egging on the Israelis to keep killing. The U.S is complicit in whatever atrocities Israel commits in Lebanon. Don't whine when Iran and Syria provide Hezbollah a small fraction of the support that the U.S provides Israel.

"Only good thing is they sure dont like to fight a fair fight and give up real easy when confronted with force."

The British were complaining about the same thing when the American revolutionary war took place. So the U.S was founded by terrorists eh? As far as giving up when confronted with force is concerned, it has not happened in Palestine. The U.S and the Israelis were kicked out of Lebanon after trying to occupy it the first time, and last time I checked you had pretty much no control over Iraq. When people make statements such as "those people do not understand and respect anything but force" it sounds like they need to be living in Lawrence of Arabia's world. Sixty years of "confronting with force" have not pacified the Palestinians. Get a clue. Start negotiating without pre-conditions. Give them their land back.

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 02:11 PM

annoyed mama,

please recommand a history book.

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 02:13 PM

"Israeli chief of Staff Dan Halutz this week ordered the Air Force to bomb 10 buildings in south Beirut--for every rocket that falls in Haifa "

WOW,

That is what the Nazis did.
Stalin and other, Saddam Hussein etc prescribed to the same method of dealing with resistance. For any attack on them they would will kill 5 or 10 or 100. You pick the number.

I guess the Jews are not the helpless victims they are like to claim. More like Nazis or Stalinists or... You pick it.

Posted by: Joe | July 27, 2006 02:14 PM

Kieran Cox wrote:
"Both sides are clearly monsters. I just don't understand why my tax money goes to support one monster (the Zionist state) versus the other."

Let not forget what those nice Hezbollah people have done to the US:

1) 1983 Bombed the marine barracks in Lebanon killing 241 peacekeeping marines.
2) 1982-1991 Thirty US and other Western hostages kidnapped in Lebanon by Hezbollah. Some were killed, some died in captivity, and some were eventually released. Terry Anderson was held for 2,454 days.
3) 1985 TWA Flight 847 en route from Athens to Rome hijacked to Beirut by Hezbollah terrorists and held for 17 days. A U.S. Navy diver was executed.
4) 1985 Tortured and killed the CIA station chief William Buckley.
5) 1996 Hezbollah bombed the Khobar Towers in killing nineteen American servicemen.

Israel has appologised for the Liberty attack and others. Haven't heard any amount of sorrow from Hezbollah, just "Death to America". These people are uncivilized barbarians.

Posted by: Sully | July 27, 2006 02:16 PM

annoyed mama:

"This war in the middle East is and has always been about getting rid of Israel."

Well yeah. They are the ones who came and occupied the land in 1948 aren't they? What did you think the Arabs would do? Roll over and say tickle me under my turban for occupying my land?
But that's history now. The war will stop when Israel either at least retreats to the 67 borders, or becomes a non-ideological state with equal rights and votes for both Arabs and Jews.

"Ignoring acts of terrorism such as the unprovoked capture of soldiers"

So you would rather they attack civilians? If two soldiers can provoke the destruction of a nation and hundreds of dead civilians (one third children), perhaps attacking civilians is the best route. Israel provokes the actions committed against it by continuing to occupy lands that do not belong to it. Hezbollah was born out of the atrocities committed by the Israelis the first time around. Perhaps it is you who needs to brush up on history.

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 02:21 PM

Jo: If the Israeli chief of Staff really did order Air Force to bomb 10 buildings in south Beirut--for every rocket that falls in Haifa, then that must be condemned. Do we know he really said that?

This does not fit with so many other statements by Israeli leaders, who have expressed a strong policy in favor of minimizing civilian casualties and damage to civilian infrastructure.

Posted by: Geo | July 27, 2006 02:24 PM

"1) 1983 Bombed the marine barracks in Lebanon killing 241 peacekeeping marines.
2) 1982-1991 Thirty US and other Western hostages kidnapped in Lebanon by Hezbollah. Some were killed, some died in captivity, and some were eventually released. Terry Anderson was held for 2,454 days.
3) 1985 TWA Flight 847 en route from Athens to Rome hijacked to Beirut by Hezbollah terrorists and held for 17 days. A U.S. Navy diver was executed.
4) 1985 Tortured and killed the CIA station chief William Buckley."

Let's see this was around the time that Israel occupied Lebanon. Over 20,000 civilians killed by Israel and the militia it supported (South Lebanese Army Militia of Lahad). Seems like the retribution was pretty minor.

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 02:34 PM

Hey annoyed mama

My grandparents came from ireland 100+ years ago. I visit my grand cousins every couple of years or so and they love when I come and visit.

I wonder how they would feel and react if I showed up one day and claim the land of my ancestors. I would not be surprised if they would have me shoot (these terrorists grand cousins)

Think about it. Maybe you get it.

Posted by: Tom | July 27, 2006 02:35 PM

Zian wrote:
"Let's see this was around the time that Israel occupied Lebanon. Over 20,000 civilians killed by Israel and the militia it supported (South Lebanese Army Militia of Lahad). Seems like the retribution was pretty minor."

So you see it was justified? You approve?

Posted by: Sully | July 27, 2006 02:36 PM

'annoyed mama' don't talk about history when you have no idea. What arrogance... it only makes you look more ignorant and clueless.

Sully, I don't beleive anyone ever said Hizbollah were not terrorists. I didn't. As long as they attackng Israeli civilians, they should be disarmed. The UN should have done this... perhaps if it wasn't constantly demeaned in this country it might have more power. [Or why didn't the US go in wiht their bunker busters and root out Hizbollah instead of Saddam Hussein, who was not a threat to our interests?]

But that doesn't mean that Israel should do the same thing, does it? Discriminately kill, and terrorize civilians? Use weapons of mass destruction on a civilian population? I don't think so. How are they better then? Why should I care who 'wins'? And what will than mean, anyway?

Sure, Israel apologized for attacking us on numerous occasions, and spying on us, and stealing state secrets. But they still keep doing it.

Posted by: Drindl | July 27, 2006 02:40 PM

Muslims and jews always fight to their own grave. What bothers me is American credibility suffers to new LOW!.

America is blocking UN from acting at all. World knows what is happening but its hands are tied.

They are watching. They will strike back when the right time comes.

It is really pathetic to see this kind of obscene support for jews killing innocent civilians from america.

World is shocked but helpless. They are upset at the impotency of all the world leading countries including russia,china,japan, germany and france.

Yes every one hate muslims and nothingw rong with that. They are worst.

But you can't condone the murder of lebanse civilians and UN by Israels Jews army.

World is seeing the JEWS with a suspecion. May be it is jews who are keeping palestenians under house arrest and palestenians just reacts.

Anyway religion is the stupidest thing humans created!.


Posted by: Alex | July 27, 2006 02:41 PM

Sully:
"Israel aplogized for attacking for the Liberty and others."

If you had a loved one among the over 200 killed and wounded by the deliberate and porlonged attack by Israeli jets and boats you wouldn't be dismissive of the terroist attack on our Naval ship.

It is a sign of what James Forestal, said when he opposed America's involvement with Israel after that country's founders committed numerous and contiuous terroist attacks against Palestinian and British civilians and civil servants.

Forestal, the first US Secretary of Defense, died from a fall of 16 floors from the Bethseda hospital. He believed that agents of the Israeli Mossad were out to murder him because of his opposition to America financing Israel from US taxpayers.

Posted by: Jeremy | July 27, 2006 02:49 PM

annoyed mama ,

The real terrorists are Israel. israel should n't exist at all. They exist because america is hijacked by rightw ing jews. simple as that.

Hizbollah and hamas are not terrorists. They are freedom fighters. They don't have high tech weapons to bomb israeli buidling like israel does witha merican weapons. So they fight where it hurts israel.

Even though i am no fan of muslim as i see Islam is a virus against civilized world but israel is occupying arab land illegally and should be wiped out when arabs get their chance. it is arabs right exterminate israel. Israel is doing all terrorism acts to stay in arab land. if there is a warcrime , it has to be all isrealis to be put in jail forever.

But again that is a dream.

So this war will go on and on until no muslims left in the world. By that time world will not exist as much as we see now.

Religion is evil.

Posted by: Alex | July 27, 2006 02:52 PM

Zain -- no, annoyed mama was right, it is indeed you who need to learn some basic history. The end of WW2 meant the redrawing of lots of borders, and the creation of many new states, not just Israel. The Israelis did not "occupy the Palestinians land." "Palestine" was a territory of the British, the Jordanians, et al but there was never a sovereign state of "Palestine." The so-called "Palestinians" fled the land because they hated the Jews and didn't want to live among them. Fine. But quit whining, and save that breath instead to ask why, SIXTY YEARS LATER, they are still in squallid refugee camps. When the modern state of Poland was created, the ethnic Germans who had been living there returned to their historic homeland, and the Germans already there helped them settle and reassimilate, because that is what decent people do. The Arabs have kept the "Palestinians" in poverty because it suits their most indecent purposes.

And no, Hezbollah was not created post-1948 to counter Israel, but rather is one of the current offshoots inspired by Sayyed Qutb (who also gave the world Wahhabism) in the 1920s. (PS, confidential message for Zain, the 1920s PREDATE World War II and the modern state of Israel. That means they came BEFORE, wouldn't want you to get confused AGAIN.)

Annoyed Mama, you are right, this blog is the exclusive province of the bigoted and the aggressively ignorant. It's a waste of time. You cannot reason anyone out of positions they were not reasoned into.

Posted by: annie | July 27, 2006 02:57 PM

Here is the first politician I have ever seen who has brought up the issue of the ME as part of their main campaign message and spoken truthfully and insightfully about the Issues, and who has real credibility while other politicians work to shut down real debate just to save their own asses. Furthermore, he's running against Hillary and begging her to debate him on these issues!!! She's probably hiding in her basement, rolled up into a fetal position and quaking with fear over the prospect!

If you live in New York, Vote for Tasini against Hillary!

There are some really great insights here,
enjoy!

J

Touching The Third Rail: Speaking Some Truth
Submitted by Jonathan Tasini on July 26, 2006 - 2:24am.
When I announced that I was entering the race for the U.S. Senate, I began with a quote from Martin Luther King, Jr.: "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." I am not a professional politician whose sole goal is to accumulate power so I have the freedom to speak my mind and I will not be silent.

I've touched the "third rail" of politics in New York: the Israel-Palestine conflict, the dreadful occupation and the never-ending violence that is spinning out of control, in large part because the United States--and politicians like Hillary Clinton--continue to blindly pursue a one-sided policy in the Palestinian-Israel conflict, a policy that is causing more death and sorrow for civilians on all sides of the conflict and, ironically, is hurting the security of Israel.

From the beginning of this race, I was committed to speaking the truth, whether about the Iraq war/occupation or abusive corporate power or the corruption coursing through our political system. People are simply fed up with the pandering, the triangulation and the inability to speak the truth that is endangering our country's future, our relations in the world and our well-being at home. We need a real opposition party, a Democratic Party with a vision that has the spine to stand for something authentic and honest.

Voters should know a little about where I come from on the issue of Israel-Palestine and the raging conflict engulfing the region today. I speak about Israel out of love and pain, in the same way that I am a deeply patriotic American who is harshly critical of our government and its behavior in Iraq--and of Hillary Clinton's vote to send our men and women to die into an illegal, immoral war.

My father was born in then-Palestine. He fought in the Haganah (the Israeli underground) in the war of independence; my father's cousin, whose name I carry as a middle name, was killed in that war. I lived in Israel for seven years, during which I went through the 1973 war: a cousin of mine was killed in that war, leaving a young widow and two children, and his brother was wounded. My step-grandfather, an old man who was no threat to anyone, was killed by a Palestinian who took an axe to his head while he was sitting quietly on a park bench. Half my family still lives in Israel. I have seen enough bloodshed, tears, and parents burying their children to last many lifetimes.

For that reason, I believe passionately in a two-state solution, which includes a strong, independent, economically viable Palestinian state existing along side a strong, independent, economically vibrant Israel. It is the only solution that will bring peace to the civilians who now live in fear of death raining down from above--either because of the missiles of Hezbollah or the bombs of Israeli aircraft.

I do not believe Israel is a terrorist state. I do believe that Israel has committed acts that violate international standards and the Geneva conventions. In Israel, such a statement that the military has committed acts that violate the Geneva convention and international standards and has also engaged in torture (or, as it is called, "moderate pressure") would be a subject of debate but hardly considered novel or particularly radical. Among the many sources for the truth, beyond my personal experience, is the Israeli human rights organization, B'Tselem. If you visit the organization's website, you will find condemnation of both Israeli and Palestinian violence against civilians of each side.

Here is what B'Tselem says about the current escalation: "...the organization reiterates that international humanitarian law (IHL) obligates all parties taking part in hostilities to refrain from launching attacks against civilians or against civilian objects."

"IHL requires that the combating sides direct their attacks only against specific military objectives, take cautionary measures to prevent injury to civilians, and refrain from disproportionate attacks, i.e. attacks directed against legitimate targets, but that are likely to cause excessive harm to civilian. Furthermore, IHL clearly forbids the intimidation and terrorising of civilians, as well as collective punishment."

"Over the past week, Israel has killed hundreds of Lebanese civilians in its attacks against targets in Lebanon. There is a concern that at least some of them were disproportionate attacks, which constitute war crimes. In addition, Israel has launched deliberate attacks against civilian infrastructure throughout Lebanon, such as bridges, the Beirut international airport , the electricity supply and fuel reservoirs. There is a concern that such attacks are intended to put pressure on the Lebanese Government and not to obtain a specific military advantage. If this is the case, these attacks constitute collective punishment and a grave violation of IHL. Moreover, even if these targets constitute legitimate military objects, or civilian objectives that may be used for military purposes, Israel must respect the principle of proportionality and refrain from attacks that would cause excessive harm to civilians."

The problem is not the debate in Israel. The problem is the debate--or lack thereof--in the United States.

Senator Clinton's spokesperson has called my comments about Israel's conduct "beyond the pale." With all due respect, it is Senator Clinton's behavior, lack of leadership and failure to call for a respect for international law that should be questioned by the press, the Jewish community and the voters of New York. At a time when the violence against people on both sides of the border has killed hundreds of innocent people (mostly Lebanese), Hillary Clinton has fanned the flames of the conflict by recognizing and condemning the violence only against Israelis and effectively encouraging military action. I, too, have stated clearly, from the outset, that Hezbollah's actions violate international law. But, to ignore Israel's actions is abhorrent, weak and cowardly.

Senator Clinton, you are no friend of Israel. A friend of Israel, not someone who simply seeks votes, would understand that employing collective punishment against people in Lebanon only embitters a population, possibly for generations, and that even a short-term military victory will be empty if it leaves behind a shattered country. As an article in The New York Times illustrated: "We're not Hezbollah supporters, but we cannot excuse what the Israelis are doing," said Rima Beydoun, a secular Shiite who owns an advertising agency. "We knew there would be repercussions, but no one expected they would be like this," Mr. Salhab, the filmmaker, said of Shiite support for Hezbollah. "I am very critical of that part of my country, but I have to put it aside, because we are being destroyed. At this point, I can't just say: Hezbollah, go to hell."

A friend of Israel, not someone who simply seeks votes, would never have stood before the "security wall" in the West Bank, as Senator Clinton did, and praised it--even though it has been found to be illegal under international law and by the Israeli Supreme Court (which said that, if a wall needed to be built, it should not stray outside the "green line" into the occupied territories). A friend of Israel would argue strenuously that Israel's moral fiber and its security is weakened every moment that that wall stands in its place, in violation of the law of Israel, severing families from their land, separating people and filling more people with rage and despair.

A friend of Israel, not someone who simply seeks votes, would deplore the collective punishment employed by the Israeli army in Gaza. As Rabbi Michael Lerner has suggested, in the wake of the democratic elections that brought Hamas to power in Gaza, "Instead of narrowly focusing on Hamas' capacity to make war, the Israelis chose the path of collective punishment, a frequently ineffective counterinsurgency policy used to eliminate public support for resistance movements. In the height of the oppressive summer heat, Israel bombed the electricity grid, effectively cutting off Gaza's water and the electricity needed to keep refrigeration working, thereby guaranteeing a dramatic decrease in food for the area's already destitute, million plus population. This act was yet another violation of international law that include[d] the arrests of thousands by Israelis and the shooting of Qassams at population centers by Hamas."

I make this offer: Senator Clinton, come out into the public arena, stop hiding behind your spokespeople and spinners and image consultants. Let's debate the future of Israel and Palestine, publicly, on television, in front of the voters. Right now, in the coming days because the violence in the Middle East is rising. Pick the time and place.

I would end with this thought: As a Jew, I have always been proud of the Jewish concept of "Tikkun Olam" or "repairing the world." I like to think that that is what brought so many Jews into the civil rights and labor movements in the 1960s and 1970s, and into the current anti-war movement--and, personally, guided me into the world of social justice work. I feel great sorrow that Israel is an occupier of another people and I believe that Israel can never be whole and can never be at peace until that occupation is ended in a just way. And I also believe that the concept of Tikkun Olam means that we must never be silent.

Jonathan Tasini's blog

Posted by: J | July 27, 2006 03:05 PM

Thank you, J. I love Tasini. I thoroughly agree that it saddens me to say Israel occupy another people. We expect more of them... to be better than those who would attack them.
'
'Annoyed Mama, you are right, this blog is the exclusive province of the bigoted and the aggressively ignorant.'

So, annie, why are you here? Feel free to leave.

Posted by: Drindl | July 27, 2006 03:10 PM

Drindl -- to remind myself of reality, whenever I catch myself thinking that most people are smart, and informed, and decent. This blog is a bracing corrective to naive optimism.

Posted by: annie | July 27, 2006 03:22 PM

So on NPR yesterday there was a news report that said the IDF had moved into Gaza and 23 people had been killed...14 of whom were militants!!

I was waiting to hear what came next but that was it .....didn't reporting used to be "x were civilians".....

Looks like even NPR is starting to knuckle under...

Posted by: Angus | July 27, 2006 03:54 PM

Annie and Annoyed Mama,

Please comment on the Tasini statement I posted above and let me know if your arguements regarding the opinions and factual basis of the beliefs of most of the posters on this forum apply to Mr. Tasini and his experiences as well.

Does he strike you as misinformed or disingenuous in any way?

God willing, those who would close their eyes and ears to the truth for polical gain will increasingly be called out to defend their views by the likes of Mr. Tasini, who happens to be Jewish, has lived in Israel, has family there and denounces the current Israeli policy on Lebanon and advocates an immediate end to the occuaption and Settlement movement.

(Watch out Hillary, you may be forced to make a fool of yourself in front of the entire nation (again) if you ever have the guts to debate this guy on these issues!)

J

Posted by: J | July 27, 2006 04:03 PM

Hi Annie

Quick question: What about the West Bank, Golan Heights and all the other occupied land after the Six Day War.

Do you expect the Palestinians to help the Jews to settle and re-assimilate in the West Bank, Golan Heights and all the other occupied land, because that is what decent people do.

I call that colonialism.

Posted by: Tom | July 27, 2006 04:03 PM

This is a sad day in the annals of history. Our country is about to be drawn into a war because of the racist, apartheid policies of the state of Israel. It's bad enough that the US is slaughtering freedom-fighting Arabs in Iraq, now the U.S. is providing bunker-busting bombs to enhance Israel's ability to do the same. Shame shame shame on U.S. War is a symptom of failed dimplomacy. Which shouldn't be surprising since failure is a sympton of U.S. policy under Bush.

Posted by: Tsunami | July 27, 2006 04:09 PM

This is a sad day in the annals of history. Our country is about to be drawn into a war because of the racist, apartheid policies of the state of Israel. It's bad enough that the US is slaughtering freedom-fighting Arabs in Iraq, now the U.S. is providing bunker-busting bombs to enhance Israel's ability to do the same. Shame shame shame on U.S. War is a symptom of failed dimplomacy. Which shouldn't be surprising since failure is a sympton of U.S. policy under Bush.

Posted by: Tsunami | July 27, 2006 04:10 PM

Yes, annie, only people who agree with you are informed, intelligent and decent. Good for you.

Posted by: Drindl | July 27, 2006 04:12 PM

Looks like Hezbollah's done sprung the Malaysian monkey trap on Israel, and without the connivance of Damascus since Triangle Head never could grasp the concept. So will rookie Ehud let go the banana before Pakistan and India fill the air with their own devices putting Lebanon somewhere in the back slot of what's hot and what's on the drainboard in the daily hit brigade?

Posted by: Reynolds | July 27, 2006 04:13 PM

I have to add that Tasini's comment is the most rational here. I'm not happy with what Israel is doing, becuase I believe in it, I believe it can be so much more, becuase I too believe in Tikkum Olam too. And I am sad to see people here who are advocating for the destruction of Israel.

There must be another solution besides endless war. But no one seems to be looking for one any longer. No good will come of any of this.

Posted by: Drindl | July 27, 2006 04:18 PM

Drindle,

If you live in NY, vote for this Tasini. If he built up steam running a campaign like this and made it to the Senate, It would send shock waves throughout US politics.

Also, the end of the settlement movement will spell the begining of the end of this "endless war". I think that can only commence by lending whatever support we can to poliicians like Mr. Tasini.

When that happens you will see a stronger and safer America and a Stronger and safer Israel.

J

Posted by: J | July 27, 2006 04:40 PM

Well J, I do live in NY. I've gotten more interested in Tasini lately. The question is, can a decent guy with no money win in with today's money politics?

And I think you're right. The settlers are very, very radical and holding the rest of Israel hostage.

Posted by: Drindl | July 27, 2006 04:43 PM

Tsunami wrote:
"This is a sad day in the annals of history. Our country is about to be drawn into a war because of the racist, apartheid policies of the state of Israel."

Hmmm, I thought the war started because Hezbollah launched a raid into Israel, kidnapped two Isreali soldiers and killed 8. You tell the families of those 8 soldiers how their racist attitudes started this war. What unbelievably nieve thinking on your part.

And which side, Israel or Hezbollah, allows both Arabs and Jews to live in the lands they control?

Be careful when you use words like racist and apartheid in the ME. Israel is the one place where these are least practiced. Lebanon was another until Hezbollah set up shop.

Posted by: Sully | July 27, 2006 04:49 PM

Sully,

I have bad news for you. Virtually the entire popultion of the Planet, with the exception a relatively small group of Israelis and about half (and probably less) of America disagrees with what you are maintaining.

By the way, if you think that Israel should be allowed to devastate the Infrstructure of an entire country, Kill 600 civilians and displace half a million or more people (many for a very long time)
over taking a few soldiers hostage, what reprisals should the US allow the Palestinians for the 30 innocent civilians (many of them Children) that the IDF killed with indiscriminant shelling in the Gaza only a week before this happened?

It's a ridiculus assertion on either side, but god willing, and for Israel's sake, you will never meet your palestinian or arab counterpart, only able to reason as far as you are, and capable of reigning similar destruction down upon Israel for past sins.

Think past your hatred and blood lust. There is a terrible crime against humanity called the Settlements. They have persisted throughout this entire period, causing it to fester when it would have healed long ago in their absence. Start there, doing something constructive that does not result in loss of life and in fact will give back a real chance at good life for millions of people. ie get the log out of your own eye before picking at the speck in someone else's.

One more thing, I am curious about your thoughts and feelings about the Tasini Statement I posted above.

J

Posted by: J | July 27, 2006 05:31 PM

To the prime minister of Lebanon,
Sir, please end this fighting, end this agression on your beautiful country. You have no F16 but you have a nation that loves you.
Please go to the southern Lebanon border with TV crews, and your people, women and children preferentially, sit in front of the Israeli tanks, and hold your position. Please reoccupy your villages in the south, and let it known by the media, so the Israelis will know you are there. If the Israelis are asking your people to vacate a particular village, reply by telling them that they will not leave their home, that it their right, as lebanese, to live there, and go in that particular village with some of your government people, even the President, and let it know to the Israelis you are there, bring as many tv crews as you can.
It's risky, but it is the only choice you have!
I still have that image of the chinese student standing in front that tank in tiananmen square a quarter century ago! (http://www.freedomtocare.org/Tiananmen.jpg)
You can only fight Israel invasion peacefully. I am sure you will find all the volunteers you want.
Do it!
Yours Truly,

Posted by: adp | July 27, 2006 05:34 PM

The true face of the Israeli regime, expansionist, militaristic and barbaric has been now shown to the world. Israel will not only lose this brutal aggression against the whole sovereign country of Lebanon, this collective punishment and massacre of civilians; but it will retreat in shame, and will be forever isolated as a international pariah. This is the fate that awaits those who engage in state-sponsored terrorism! Israel has already lost the war.

Posted by: Patricia | July 27, 2006 05:52 PM

annie:

"Hezbollah was not created post-1948 to counter Israel, but rather is one of the current offshoots inspired by Sayyed Qutb (who also gave the world Wahhabism) in the 1920s"

So you are telling me that the current Shiite Hezbollah was founded by the same man who gave the world Wahabism (a branch of Islam that does not necessarily consider Shiites Muslims)?

How can you reconcile the contradiction here? Of course the current Hezbollah movement in Lebanon might have nothing in common with that set up by Sayyed Qutb, other than the name (party of god), in which case I would be correct.

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 05:55 PM

Sully:

"So you see it was justified? You approve?"

I do not believe any killing is acceptable. I mentioned the 20,000 killed by Israel and the Militia it supported because you seemed so bent out of shape over the 240 marines killed. The magnitude of atrocities committed by Israel has always overshadowed anything the Arab groups have done. I, like a lot of other posters critical of Israeli policies, am not trying to say that that makes it ok for Arabs to become suicide bombers; but it does help in trying to provide some context and background for the violence. The beef (if you would allow me to call it that) that critics of Israel have is that it gets a blank check to indulge in whatever it thinks necessary to advance its goals, while the Arabs get branded terrorists for trying to advance their goals using whatever means they have at their disposal. Both sides are committing crimes, but the Israelis are exonerated. You cannot have lasting peace by unjustly demonizing one side (the Arabs) and then trying to use that psychological advantage to offer them scraps as a solution.

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 06:06 PM

Sully:

"Israel is the one place where these are least practiced."

What's the problem with Israel (and the disputed Arab territories) being a non ideological state (call it something else if you have to) and allowing both Arabs and Jews to live there with equal rights? Sincere question this one.

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 06:16 PM

Oops. just browsing...you let only pro israeli views here. Not a good sign. Another website taken over by right wing jews.

Not a good sign. No more washingtonpost reading. I will stick with ny times and newyorker magazine. They reports truth.

I am not against jews though , i am only against how media is muzzled by jews. They blame every one anti-semite to suit isreals agenda. Someone has to tell the world and america exactly what is going on.

No cherry picking the news to suit israels Greater Israel agenda.

Israel exploiting america's anger towards arab and muslims to capture as much land as possible. When the world worried about muslims , islam and alqaeda , israel jsut keep occupying lands. Only issue israel has is they need more jews people. It takes time.

With lebanon in every ones mind israel killed 143 innocent palestinians.

Bush is an idiot. You can't solve this muslim problem with force. Unless the intention is something else.

Which makes me wonder , America just uses israel toc reate war and just keep selling weapons and keep war economy running.

I say it is evil economy. You can't live on someones blood money.

No more of washington post. I am done with this jewish site.

Posted by: Alex | July 27, 2006 06:28 PM

Hmm...what happen suddenly , you let me post?

Change of mind?

This is frigging forum...even if it is your blog...you have to let everyone vent and say anything as long they don't curse people personally or attack...

You can't muzzle opinion and cherry pick the news like FOXNEWS does.

Posted by: Alex | July 27, 2006 06:31 PM

I think you are doing good job other than blocking my posts. I have bookmarked this link because i can read what the world is saying about this tragedy in lebanon from your blog. Good reporting so far. Keep it up.

Posted by: Alex | July 27, 2006 07:01 PM

no jews living in Lebanon?
you must be kidding me.


annie,
i too don't like smart asses, e.g. those who don't even seem to understand that most people in Lebanon speak arab not english but would try to teach others to pronouce some arab names in english.

would you please provide us some chronological statistics(numbers) of the jewish and arab(palestinian) populations in the region since 1900?

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 07:28 PM

"And which side, Israel or Hezbollah, allows both Arabs and Jews to live in the lands they control?"

i'll have to say, no other countries is recruiting Jews from all over the world like Israel does. and ALL countries on earth have implemented some sort of immigration laws. plus we don't see Hizbullah or Lebanon expel their Jewish population out of the country. contrary to that claim, it actually has happened that israel did this to the palestinians.

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 07:40 PM

Why is the two state a solution? With any luck the Israel will follow the path of South Africa. From 50's to 80's both countries had a problem controlling "lower class" citizens. In South Africa a "second
state" aka "Homeland" was provided for those, shall I call them, citizens. The best land was kept for the 1st class citizens. During this time Israel and South Africa shared technology on chemical and nuclear weapons. Both nations suffered the effects of "terrorists".
Organisations which did not fight the battles according to the rules defined by the stronger force. The terrorist organisations support came from an oppressed people. In the case of South Africa, one of those terrorist organisations is the ANC, and one of the members of the organisation a man by the name of Nelson Mandela.
A two state solution is not a solution. A solution is the acceptance that all people are equal, and the land of Israel can be shared. A solution exists. It existed before the state of Israel was created,
when all the Semites of the region lived together.

Posted by: Yashik | July 27, 2006 08:33 PM

Why is the two state a solution? With any luck the Israel will follow the path of South Africa. From 50's to 80's both countries had a problem controlling "lower class" citizens. In South Africa a "second
state" aka "Homeland" was provided for those, shall I call them, citizens. The best land was kept for the 1st class citizens. During this time Israel and South Africa shared technology on chemical and nuclear weapons. Both nations suffered the effects of "terrorists".
Organisations which did not fight the battles according to the rules defined by the stronger force. The terrorist organisations support came from an oppressed people. In the case of South Africa, one of those terrorist organisations is the ANC, and one of the members of the organisation a man by the name of Nelson Mandela.
A two state solution is not a solution. A solution is the acceptance that all people are equal, and the land of Israel can be shared. A solution exists. It existed before the state of Israel was created,
when all the Semites of the region lived together.

Posted by: Yashik | July 27, 2006 08:33 PM

Why is the two state a solution? With any luck the Israel will follow the path of South Africa. From 50's to 80's both countries had a problem controlling "lower class" citizens. In South Africa a "second
state" aka "Homeland" was provided for those, shall I call them, citizens. The best land was kept for the 1st class citizens. During this time Israel and South Africa shared technology on chemical and nuclear weapons. Both nations suffered the effects of "terrorists".
Organisations which did not fight the battles according to the rules defined by the stronger force. The terrorist organisations support came from an oppressed people. In the case of South Africa, one of those terrorist organisations is the ANC, and one of the members of the organisation a man by the name of Nelson Mandela.
A two state solution is not a solution. A solution is the acceptance that all people are equal, and the land of Israel can be shared. A solution exists. It existed before the state of Israel was created,
when all the Semites of the region lived together.

Posted by: Yashik | July 27, 2006 08:33 PM

I think the Israeli mentality that they have to kill 10 times as many Insraelis killed, as the Jerusalem Post says, is driving this war out of control.

While Hezbollah may lose a lot, Israel will keep adding to the list of its implacable enemies who will stop at nothing but the destruction of that country. I think that though Israel will survive for a time with US support, its long term survival is very much in doubt...

The establishment of a state exclusively for Jews in the Middle East was a monumentally flawed idea (even a 'racist' idea) and all the knee-jerk pro-Israeli reactions and the 'root cause' peddlers ignore this 'root cause.'

What is missing from all the pundit pronouncements is an essential and fundamental truth--that there is no God and religions only perpetuate fraud. Until all believers--Jews, Muslims, Christians and other believers--realize this truth and become rational (thereby have the same frame of reference, minimizing competing perceptions of the same reality) conflicts like this will unfortunately continue and innocent people will die.

It will be easier to stop fighting when the combatants recognize that there is nothing 'holy' about the 'holy land.' Religions provide people a self-deluding moral gloss to their most immoral and most idiotic actions. In this context, George Bush, Hasan Nasrallah and the Israelis, are all the same. Expose this irrationality once and for all, then there is no religious cover for these idiot believers to hide from the truth of their egregious immorality. The world has to take this one bold step first to solve all conflicts.

Posted by: Katrina | July 27, 2006 09:00 PM

I used to think peace was possible when i was canvassed by us media to believe israel is the victim.

I no longer think Israel is the victim. It is the occupier and agrressor. If i am palestine i would n't accept israels existance in next 100 lives.

Because Israel is a forced occupier. To accept that is accepting fasle as truth under force.

Israel is a bad idea. It will keep creating wars. World war III and more destruction will happen because of israel existance.

It is time to move israel to florida. Then we will see how america will react.

Posted by: Alex | July 27, 2006 09:25 PM

khula ye raaz key ishq nahi hai kuch is key sawa
razziee yaar jo ho apna haal banai rekhna

Posted by: nazrana | July 27, 2006 09:32 PM

Thank you Katrina and Yashik. The two of you have articulated what I have been alluding too. It is ironic that the self professed propagators of democracy, equality and freedom in the West would support not only the creation and existence of a theocratic state (I do not care how good non Jews allegedly have it in Israel, a theocratic state by its definition designates one group of people as being superior to another), but continue to advocate further divisions along religious, cultural and racial grounds. Unfortunately the divisions, hatred, and violence of the past sixty years make this particular line of reasoning seem naught but wishful philosophical rambling.

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 09:34 PM

annoyed mama said it best!

Posted by: proIsrael and proud of it | July 27, 2006 09:57 PM

Breaking news:

Moslems have decided to REALLY follow the religion of "peace" and stopped their wars and confrontations with
1. Jews
2. Hindus
3. Atheists (china/russia/europe)
4. Buddhists (thailand)
5. Secular humanists (the dutch)
6. Christians
7. animists (sudan).
8. Shia ;-)
9. Sunni ;-)

Just kidding of course.

The cancer hasn't affected one major culture/civilization - Japan. Why? Ponder on that for a while.

Posted by: Raj | July 27, 2006 10:11 PM

Breaking news:

Moslems have decided to REALLY follow the religion of "peace" and stopped their wars and confrontations with
1. Jews
2. Hindus
3. Atheists (china/russia/europe)
4. Buddhists (thailand)
5. Secular humanists (the dutch)
6. Christians
7. animists (sudan).
8. Shia ;-)
9. Sunni ;-)

Just kidding of course.

The cancer hasn't affected one major culture/civilization - Japan. Why? Ponder on that for a while.

Posted by: Raj | July 27, 2006 10:13 PM

http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/index.html#Attacks

Posted by: take a look! | July 27, 2006 10:22 PM

Wrong blog Raj.
While you are out and about, see if the local drugstore has any medication for racism. You do have drug stores in India don't you? Or did the Muslims steal those from under your noses as well?

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 10:27 PM

Here we have an attack on a military patrol, the response from Israel is to bomb civilian targets, then civilians, the response from Hezbollah is to bomb civilians, we then have Israel bombing the Red Cross and the U.N and with the latest rumours of using chemical weapons.

Did we in the west not fight against Hitler and Hassan for doing exactly the same things, even they did not bomb the Red Cross ambulances. Although they were both known for using chemical weapons, and for killing civilians.

So tell me who is the terrorist state in this case, the people who first attacked a military unit or those who attacked a civilian population?

Posted by: White Australian | July 27, 2006 10:28 PM

Interesting Article regarding Israel's handling of Palestinians-American's.


The same malign intent by Israel towards the Palestinians is stamped through its history like the lettering in a children's stick of seaside rock. But despite the consistent aim of Israeli policy, generation after generation of Western politicians, diplomats and journalists has shown a repeated inability to grasp what is happening before its very eyes.

The Palestinian historian Rashid Khalidi once noted that the first goal of Israel's founders as they prepared to establish their Jewish state on a large swath of the Palestinian homeland in 1948 was to empty Palestine's urban heartlands of their educated elites.

Even before Israel's Declaration of Independence on 15 May 1948, most Palestinians had been terrified away from the two wealthiest cities in coastal Palestine, Jaffa and Haifa. Other Palestinian cities soon fell during the war of 1948: Israeli forces mostly cleansed Lydda, Ramle, Acre, Safad, Tiberias, Baysan and Bir Saba of their native populations. Today all these cities have been repopulated with Jews -- as well as renamed.

Khalidi has written: "These refugees from the urban areas of the country generally tended to be those Palestinians with the highest levels of literacy, skills, wealth, and education". Or, in other words, the small number of Palestinians allowed to remain in their homeland by Israel were peasant families living in isolated rural communities.

These Palestinians posed little threat to the new Jewish state: they lacked the education and tools to resist both the wholesale dispossession of their people and their own personal loss as their farm lands were expropriated by the state to establish the Jewish farming communes of the kibbutz and moshav movements.

And so history repeats itself. As Israel's violent siege of Gaza continues, the Associated Press reported this week that dozens of Palestinians with American passports have left Gaza, escorted out of the Strip in a convoy of United Nations vehicles. One Palestinian American mother said she and her children could no longer stand the terrifying sonic booms produced by Israeli aircraft flying overhead during the night.

These fleeing Palestinians have two things that most of their kin in Gaza lack: they have lots of money that they might have invested in rebuilding Gaza's economy were Israel not intent on destroying it; and they are familiar with a language and ideas that might have conveyed very effectively to Western audiences the horror currently being endured by Gaza's civilian population.

They are also among the least radicalised elements of Gaza's population and might have been the ones most willing to start a dialogue with Israel -- had Israel shown any interest in negotiating.

But of course their absence from Gaza, and flight to America, will not be mourned by Israel.

How much Israel fears the presence in the occupied territories of Palestinians who have lived in the West -- those who have money and influence, and speak in a language the non-Arab world can understand -- was highlighted in another piece of news this week that went mostly unnoticed.

According to the Haaretz newspaper, Israel's interior ministry has been quietly implementing a new rule since April that allows it to refuse entry to Palestinians holding foreign passports to Israel and the occupied territories. Most of those affected are Palestinians who today have citizenship in America or Europe.

Israel has this power over these Palestinians' lives because, since its occupation of the West Bank and Gaza in 1967, it has usurped control of the borders of the Palestinian territories. In another sign of how mistaken Western observers are in believing that the occupation of Gaza somehow ended with the withdrawal of Jewish settlers last year, Israel is still able to prevent Palestinians with a foreign passport (as well as those from the West Bank) from entering Gaza.

This new policy of exclusion affects thousands of the wealthiest and most educated Palestinians, some of whom have been living in the occupied territories for a decade or more investing in the economy as entrepreneurs, teaching in the universities or establishing desperately needed civil society organisations.

In another irony, many of these Palestinians have a foreign passport only because Israel stripped them of their rights to residency in the occupied territories in violation of international law. Using its control of the area's borders since 1967, Israel revoked the residency of these Palestinians while they were studying or working abroad.

As the Israeli journalist Amira Hass has documented, some of these Palestinians eventually came back to the occupied territories after marrying a local Palestinian resident but were refused rights of residency they should be entitled to according to the normal principles of family unification.

Instead most Palestinians with foreign passports have remained in the occupied territories at Israel's discretion: as long as they renewed their tourist visa every three months by crossing the border into Jordan or Egypt, they were left in relative peace.

But Israel is now unilaterally changing the rules (as it always does), even if it has been too embarrassed to declare the fact openly. Apparently the US embassy has been aware of the change for some time but does not think it should intervene in the "sovereign decisions" of another country -- or, more accurately, in the decisions of a sovereign country, Israel, in violating the rights of an occupied people, the Palestinians.

Palestinians with US passports have been told by Israel that, when their three-month visas expire, they will no longer be entitled to enter the occupied territories to visit their families -- except in rare "humanitarian cases" such as a close relative dying. Some will be separated from their spouse and children, while others will lose their businesses and everything they have invested in them.

With these foreign passport holders forced to leave the occupied territories, the pressure is sure to grow on their families left behind in Gaza or the West Bank to seek ways to emigrate abroad to be with them again.

The purpose of Israel's current bureaucratic obscenity is the same as it was in 1948 when its highest priority was the clearing of the Palestinian cities of their elites to make way for the establishment of the Jewish state.

This time Israel needs to empty the ghettoes it is crafting for the Palestinians of the most educated and well-connected of their number so that it can more credibly claim that there is no one "moderate" to talk to. Any Palestinian with a stake in an Israeli-imposed peace, even one that damages Palestinian national interests, will have been forced out by Israel's policies long before.

Those who remain behind, trapped by walls of concrete and steel, will be powerless to resist the unilateral and illegal expansion of Israel's borders explicit in Ehud Olmert's convergence plan.

When the only noise heard from the Palestinians in their cages is the occasional whine of a home-made Qassam rocket flying out of the ghetto into the Jewish state, we will be told by Israel and its US ally that terror is the only language the Palestinians know.

But, in truth, it will be the only language we have left the Palestinians to speak.

Posted by: Angus | July 27, 2006 10:31 PM

And the Idiot in Chief once again calls up Israel to say; "Heck of a job Olmert".

Posted by: Zain | July 27, 2006 10:35 PM

The details of Israli mistreatment of palestinians and "hyphenated Americans" (I'm one) are only secondary and incidental - however shocking and inhumane it may be when considered in isolation - to the bigger picture. Personally, I was shocked when I saw the news item about how an Israeli guard was forcing an arab musician to play his violin and the arab had to play ...trembling with fear. Now THATs inhumane - to violate the dignity of a civilized human being. However, Hamas calling for "moral" stance from America is as abusurd as Jeffrey Dahmer demanding people to go vegetarian.

How is Jordan surviving without any Israeli attacks since the peace treaty, if the "Zionists" are so expansionist? The more arrogance one experiences from islamists towards infidels, the more determined enemies, the infidels become.

All instinctive sympathy towards any suffering innocent islamic populations, is now tempered, if not dangerously and unconscionably obscured, with the memories of 9/11. After all, 9/11 was celebrated in the moslem world. Islamists who live in America should display less arrogance and more understanding for this ORIGINAL SIN if they need their legitimate view points to strike a chord with the infidels here in America and/or elsewhere - MORE humility, decency and less nonchalance.

Times have changed.

Posted by: Raj | July 27, 2006 11:04 PM

Raj,

for your info, if you don't see what human nature is and you don't know that it's might be in your blood too, in the time of viet war, it was the christian government(the south, supported by the us) that massacred the buddhist monks and the people.

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 11:18 PM

Zain - You might want to get your racism in check as well. Maybe you can lend Raj some of your medication. Oh, never mind, it sounds like you've been so busy attacking everyone that you must be off yours.

Posted by: observations only | July 27, 2006 11:25 PM

why 2-state solution?
bcs one-state is not a realistic solution for the Jews(Israelis) and the Palestinians. i don't think that's in either side's interest. for one, Jews would be far out numbered and become small minority.

Posted by: wu | July 27, 2006 11:37 PM

The Hezbollah militants have embedded themselves (with the full approval of the Lebanese people) within the civilian population. The civilians serve as human shields.

Even though the Israelis are clearly racist (since their immigration policy favors Jews over non-Jews), they are not targetting the civilians in Lebanon. They are targetting only the militants. The civilians are inevitably killed because they serve as shields.

Here in the United States, we would never tolerage a Mexican vigilante group launching military attacks against Americans from Mexico itself. We would kill the vigilantes. We would bomb Mexico.

Posted by: atheist | July 28, 2006 01:12 AM

Observations Only:

Try to read what I was responding to before you shoot your mouth off. Raj's post suggested that the majority of the violence in the world is the fault of Muslims. His statement; "Moslems have decided to REALLY follow the religion of "peace"", implies that Muslims, as a people and a culture, are violent.

You can call me a racist when you can quote me branding another ethnic group, or culture as violent, racist, or anything derogatory. My criticism has been of Israeli policy (I have criticized Hamas and Hezbollah as well).


Posted by: Zain | July 28, 2006 08:14 AM

"The more arrogance one experiences from islamists towards infidels, the more determined enemies, the infidels become."

This is the root of the problem. If you swap the words Islamists and infidels, then you have essentially summed up the opinion in the Arab and Muslim world as well. You criticize celebrations in the aftermath of 911; similar to the Israeli school girls signing messages on Israeli shells that end up killing civilians. Both are distasteful. It does help to try and understand why the other side reacted the way it did though, but then we end up falling back into that age old debate of who killed who first. Who occupied whose land? It is pointless. I had thought that perhaps my accusation of "racist" was a bit harsh, but your second post has even less tact. To use your own words;

"MORE humility, decency and less nonchalance."

Times have indeed changed. Violence only begets violence. Israel has had the military upper hand since 1948. It needs to negotiate with Abbas, Fatah, and the elected members of Hamas who had indicated willingness to, as a first step, at least implicitly recognize Israel. Israel's approach so far towards having peace is reflected in the moronic attitude of the Bush Administration towards ending the latest conflict. The occupation of Arab land drives the support and ideology of groups like Hamas and Hezbollah. You cannot realistically have them agree to disarm when the reasons for their existence continue to be present.

Posted by: Zain | July 28, 2006 08:51 AM

Can someone please explain to me why arabs all over the world think they have a birth right over the ancient lands of Judea and Samaria (renamed "palestine" by the Romans, after tehy destroying the Jews)?

Posted by: AC | July 28, 2006 09:04 AM

Zain wrote:
"What's the problem with Israel (and the disputed Arab territories) being a non ideological state (call it something else if you have to) and allowing both Arabs and Jews to live there with equal rights? Sincere question this one."

No problem at all. Its been proposed but I haven't heard either Israelis or Palistinians ask for it. The only thing they seem to agree on is separate states. But right now only Israel is a democracy in the region. Lebanon was moving in that direction until Hezbollah decided to start a war the Lebanese government did not want and showed Lebanon did not even have an effective government. Hezbollah demands the heads of jews. The Saudi's won't allow a synagague (or church) to be built in their country or any religious service other than Islam to be held. Yet right now the are more than twice as many Arabs living in Israel than were displaced by the creation of Israel. And they have mosques. I'm not going to kid you and say life is lovely for Arabs in Israel. Its always tough being a minority, especially being a member of an ethnic group that globally wants Israel to be wiped off the map. But they are free to live and worship and vote. The right is not preserved for Jews in some of Israel's neighboring states. That is the reality. If you want to boil it all down to individual freedom, the people whose religion means surrender are the least supportive of individual freedom.

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 09:49 AM

Zain wrote:
"The occupation of Arab land drives the support and ideology of groups like Hamas and Hezbollah. You cannot realistically have them agree to disarm when the reasons for their existence continue to be present."

Problem is Zain that Hezbollah and their sponsors Iran as well as Hamas believe all the land that is now Israel is Arab land. So, as long as Israel exists by your explanation they will not disarm.

I have heard this before from supporters of ME terrorists. The argument goes that Israel needs to withdraw, Israel needs to stop killing Arabs when they attack Israel. Israel needs to stop resisting. Yet no arab acknowleges that Hamas and Hezbollah are trying to not only eliminate the state of Israel, but its people as well. Israel is not calling for Palistinians to leave the west bank or gaza, lands that used to be part of Jordan and Egypt respectively, nations Israel is at peace with. Israel left S. Lebanon as the UN resolution demanded and UNIFIL verified. But Hezbollah not only did not disarm as the UN resolution demanded, they built up their forces and arsenals right in front of UNIFIL, which did nothing. Israel left Gaza and militants launch rockets from Gaza. And Israel is continuously called the agressor by the arabs. I'm sorry, I look at the reality and the reality says that Israel is continually being attacked even when arab demands are met. If the arabs want peace, they need to propose it. If the arabs want the support of peace loving peoples, they need to care about having peace. If they want to wipe Israel off the map and attack Israel as Hezbollah did a few weeks ago, they need to expect Israel to defend herself and peace loving peoples to see through the pleas that arabs are the victims.

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 10:06 AM

Sully:

"Yet no arab acknowleges that Hamas and Hezbollah are trying to not only eliminate the state of Israel, but its people as well."

You are spinning the circular argument that has been the staple of pro Israelis for years. As you yourself said; "The argument goes that Israel needs to withdraw, Israel needs to stop killing Arabs when they attack Israel. Israel needs to stop resisting." That is indeed the argument for the existence of Hezbollah and Hamas, so adopting a position that Israel will not negotiate until Hezbollah and Hamas disarm is tantamount to putting the cart before the horse.

Look at the results of the policy pro-Israelis advocate. For all intents and purposes it has been practiced by Israel for the last sixty years. Israel has started a pre-emptive war, attacked Arabs with disproportionate force causing massive civilian casualties and damage to civilian infrastructure. The civilian casualties Israel has caused have been three to four times as many as the ones it has suffered. What has the result been? More hatred, more violence, and a strengthening of organizations such as Hezbollah and Hamas.

Why are pro-Israelis so resistant to trying an alternate route? As I mentioned earlier, Israel has been the dominant military power in the region since 1948. The whining that it will drown in a sea of Arab hostility does not fly (I doubt the Israelis would hesitate to use nuclear weapons if they ever came close to a conventional military defeat, as unlikely as that may be). Plus the United States is not going to idly stand by in such a situation. Saudi Arabia again reiterated that the Arab states would offer full recognition to Israel if it retreated to the 67 borders. That's another blow to the "sea of Arab hostility" theory. Involving Iran and Syria in the dialogue will bring everyone involved to the table. It is time to try the alternate approach.

It almost seems like Israel would prefer to stick with the status quo. After all, as long as the Palestinians continue to be occupied, their will be reason for groups like Hezbollah to exist. A defensive wall and a virtual siege of the occupied territories minimize any damage they can do with their primitive weapons. Israel continues to get billions of dollars in financial assistance, as well as technology. Pretty rosy picture. In the absence of a conflict in the region, Israel may actually have to fend for itself.

Posted by: Zain | July 28, 2006 11:05 AM

Sully:

"I have heard this before from supporters of ME terrorists."

There is no need for indulging in name calling. Just because people have a different opinion than yours does not mean that they are unpatriotic, terrorist sympathizers, or Jew haters.

I myself will not consider either Hezbollah or Hamas terrorist organizations (unless you want to also call Israel a terrorist state) until Israel goes back to the 67 borders. If Hamas and Hezbollah continue their violent activities after such a withdrawal by Israel, then by all means I shall agree with you.

Posted by: Zain | July 28, 2006 11:12 AM

Zain,
Gaza is at the 1967 borders yet rockets are launched from there into Israel, why? What is the stated purpose of those launching the rockets? To free Gaza? It is free!

I was not name calling. Hezbollah and Hamas are recognized terrorist organizations which you seem to support. Its their methods which make them terrorists. You can agree or disagree with their ultimate goals but if you support their fighting you support terrorism.

I am behind the 67 border proposal. I think it is the best solution and I believe all the states in the region except maybe Iran would agree with it. However Hamas and Hezbollah and other terrorists groups have not backed it. So how could any agreement bring peace when only those Israel is at peace with be behind it. What is needed is a joint US/Arab summit, including Iran, to forge a peace based on the '67 borders. The arab states which already back it could bring pressure on Hamas and Hezbollah. But Iran would need to agree. Without Iran agreeing there can be no agreement due to their heavy influence on Hez and Hamas, and their position on Israel's future has been made clear. So I'm not optimistic.

I fault the Bush administration for ignoring the ME and not pressing for such a summit which all Bush's predessors have done in one form or another. The key though to this whole mess is Iran. If Iran can be pressured to recognize Israel at the '67 borders, there might be peace. But it will take a lot of diplomatic arm twisting and the Bush administration is very bad at any type of diplomacy.

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 11:30 AM

Sully:

"But Hezbollah not only did not disarm as the UN resolution demanded, they built up their forces and arsenals right in front of UNIFIL, which did nothing."

Here is the mandate for UNFIL: http://www.un.org/Depts/dpko/missions/unifil/mandate.html

* Confirm the withdrawal of Israeli forces from southern Lebanon;
* Restore international peace and security;
* Assist the Government of Lebanon in ensuring the return of its effective authority in the area.

Other than the first point it is extremely vague is it not? UNFIL was never given any teeth. Has any U.N force ever? Israel has been gathering intelligence about Hezbollah building up its arsenal for years. When did it raise an outcry at the U.N over the failure of UNFIL to prevent this? Did it ask the U.N to change the mandate and makeup of the force, and give it more teeth to accomplish the disarmament? Even after the kidnapping of the two soldiers, when the attention of the world was on the region, it could have successfully argued for changes in UNFIL. It could have laid out its war plans for Security Council members to privately see, so that they could realize what a potential disaster awaited. Now, with hundreds of Lebanese civilians dead, large swathes of the country reduced to rubble, and a majority of the Shia population (from whom Hezbollah derives its support) displaced and their belongings in ruins, the hatred and anger is at a fever pitch. Eventually Israel will have to settle for what it should have lobbied for in the first place, a stronger U.N force. The effectiveness of such a force, and the long term stability of the region, Israel may have destroyed with its brutal and disproportionate response.

Posted by: Zain | July 28, 2006 11:33 AM

Sully,

Your reasoning could not be more flawed. but when faced with having to attepmt to justify a morally reprehesible situation that millions of Jews world wide (both in Israel and the US) abhor, not to the majority of every one else on earth, I can see the logical challenge you face.

Regardless of any other circumstances, regardless of any other rationale,
The settlement movement and the scope of the attacks on Lebanon are simply morally wrong and can never be justified.

What possible positive function can the settelments serve? They are, in and of themselves, adequate justification for restistance and aggressive action against Israel. This is not simply an "Arab" conclusion, but the conclusion of the Majority of the planet, as evidenced by the UN resolutions on the matter. The UN wanted to go in and provide peace keepers and demands the removal of the settlements, and has stated this many times.

US policy on the Settlements calls for their removal and an end to the occupation.
So, it would appear that it is Israel's responsibility to end a policy which has insprired terrorism in Israel and now in the US.

Hezbollah and Hamas would lose a tremendous amount of clout in both money and recruits the day the settlements are brought down. Yes, there still would be residual terrorism, but it would be the beginning of the end.

Your logic, (that although israel instituted a brutal and universally condemned policy which has inspired terrorism the world over, Israel will continue in that policy until terrorism ends) makes absolutely no sense what so ever. Especially in light of the fact that Israel has already acknowleged that the settlements must go. So if they think they are wrong and the rest of the world thinks they are wrong and they inpspire terrorism, (as similar situations would in any other country) then they should simply be ended now regardless of what else is going on. Period.

With regard to Hezbollah and Lebabnon,
try not attcking, destroying, or occupying their country for at least a generation, and then see if their rhetoric cools a bit.
In the mean time, expect a few soldiers to get nabed and a few really poorly designed rockets every once in a while. That's a small price to pay for such unbridaled brutality on Israel's part.

J

Posted by: J | July 28, 2006 11:40 AM

"What is needed is a joint US/Arab summit, including Iran, to forge a peace based on the '67 borders."

Wonderful, at least we agree that what we need is more talking and not more bombing.

"What is the stated purpose of those launching the rockets? To free Gaza? It is free!"

Withdrawing from Gaza is not the same thing as giving the Palestinians an independent state. Think about it. What has changed other than the Israelis giving up a few more acres? Palestinians are still subject to the whims of the Israelis at check points, entry into the territories in controlled by Israel. Nothing about the actual occupation has changed.

There is also the possibility that Hamas and Hezbollah may never agree to peace, so the only way they might be marginalized is by an Arab population living in a free and independent state that will focus on developing their own lives once the shadow of occupation is gone.

Hamas may have fired rockets into Israel or it could have been rogue actors who see nothing but hate and violence. Try explaining the behavior of serial killers. Israel's demands for a 100 percent cessation in attacks are unrealistic. You cannot just turn off a switch. The have festered in the hatred of occupation and the ideology of violence as the only means of resistance. It will take time. The disproportionate responses from Israel just keep setting the clock back.

"You can agree or disagree with their ultimate goals but if you support their fighting you support terrorism."

You are being simplistic, as has the majority of the West in recent history. To use the old adage, "one person's freedom fighter is another's terrorist".
People under duress will fight with whatever means they have. You would be foolish to go up against an Abrams tank with an AK-47 or a pipe rocket.

Posted by: Zain | July 28, 2006 12:01 PM

Who here would support the Saudi proposal to offer Israel acceptance from the Arab world in exchange for 1967 borders?

Posted by: Angus | July 28, 2006 12:23 PM

Zain wrote:
"You are being simplistic, as has the majority of the West in recent history. To use the old adage, "one person's freedom fighter is another's terrorist".

If your freedom fighter uses terrorism, they are terrorists. Terrorism is the act of using terror to achieve one's means. That means purposly targeting civilians to drive them out of an area. That means killing civilians to create panic and destabilize local authority. You will probably say Israel targets Lebanese civilians and so is a terrorist state. Yet the Israelis have denied putposly targeting civilians and we all know mistakes happen in war. They have apologized profusely to the UN about its building being hit. No apologies from Hezbollah for sending thousands of rockets into populated Isreali cities though. That's because those are not accidents or even explained as accidents. Its how they fight. They use terrorism to terrorize their enemies in hopes of driving the population out of Israel. Terrorists use terrorism to achieve their goals. Hezbollah and Hamas use these techniques, Israel as a policy does not. You can give various examples of Israel killing civilians, but in most cases they are investigated and parties held to account. I'm thinking of the commander who shot a wounded girl in the west bank last year. He's in jail now I believe. Which Hezbollah commanders are in jail for purposly targeting civilians with rockets on Haifa? No terrorist should be anyone's freedom fighter.

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 12:33 PM

Zaid,

Here is specifics of resolution 1559 calling for the Israeli's to leave S. Lebanon and Hezbollah and other militias to disarm and disband.

1. Reaffirms its call for the strict respect of the sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity, and political independence of Lebanon under the sole and exclusive authority of the Government of Lebanon throughout Lebanon;

2. Calls upon all remaining foreign forces to withdraw from Lebanon;

3. Calls for the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias;

4. Supports the extension of the control of the Government of Lebanon over all Lebanese territory;

5. Declares its support for a free and fair electoral process in Lebanon's upcoming presidential election conducted according to Lebanese constitutional rules devised without foreign interference or influence;

6. Calls upon all parties concerned to cooperate fully and urgently with the Security Council for the full implementation of this and all relevant resolutions concerning the restoration of the territorial integrity, full sovereignty, and political independence of Lebanon;

7. Requests that the Secretary-General report to the Security Council within thirty days on the implementation by the parties of this resolution and decides to remain actively seized of this matter.


Guess Hezbollah can't read. The Israelis complied, Hezbollah did not (see #3 and #4). Here's the link to the resolution if you want to read it all. http://daccessdds.un.org/doc/UNDOC/GEN/N04/498/92/PDF/N0449892.pdf?OpenElement

My point about UNIFIL is that they were there. They saw Israel leave and they saw Hezbollah not only NOT disarm, but increase its arms. Yet the UN did nothing. Yet you continually blame Israel.

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 12:42 PM

Who here would support the Saudi proposal to offer Israel acceptance from the Arab world in exchange for 1967 borders?

Posted by: Angus | July 28, 2006 12:23 PM


Aye.

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 12:44 PM

Who here would support the Saudi proposal to offer Israel acceptance from the Arab world in exchange for 1967 borders?

Posted by: Angus | July 28, 2006 12:23 PM

I would vote Aye, also. But I would also like to know HOW we would get a formal acceptance from the Arab (and Persian) worlds? Who would enforce this agreement?

Deals have been made since 1967 and have been broken; how do we ensure a lasting peace?

BTW, good to see you, Sully; I miss the Debaters, even Chris Ford!

Posted by: wiccan | July 28, 2006 12:55 PM

Angus,

"Who here would support the Saudi proposal to offer Israel acceptance from the Arab world in exchange for 1967 borders?"

Posted by: Angus | July 28, 2006 12:23 PM

I support Saudi proposal.

Angus and J had an exchange on another blog:

"Angus,

I agree whole heartedly. If there is not an anti AIPAC petition then it's high time.

Question: who here would support an Anti AIPAC petition? feel free to respond.


J

Posted by: J | July 23, 2006 12:43 AM


Angus and J,
I would support an anti-AIPAC petition not only by investing my personal time but also with $$$.

Please help save our beautiful and noble country!

Posted by: | July 28, 2006 01:16 PM

Angus and J - the above post was from me.

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 01:21 PM

"I would vote Aye, also. But I would also like to know HOW we would get a formal acceptance from the Arab (and Persian) worlds? Who would enforce this agreement?"

Well if both sides agree those who are against it become a tiny minority with little to no support on their own side or in popular opinion. The fact that it was a Saudi proposal would at least give it legs in the Arab world & street.

It's much easier to shout down dissenting voices when there is a legitimate plan on the table.

Maybe its simplistic but does anyone here really want their kids, grandkid, great-grandkids still debating this in 50 years -or God forbid - fighting over it?

Posted by: Angus | July 28, 2006 01:49 PM

I rather liked Giora Eiland's remarks about unrealistic expectation based on the use of conventional forces. As we have seen today, Hizbullah rockets are penetrating deeper into Israel. Using a conventional army, Israel would have to go deep into Lebanon to reduce or eliminate the rocket threat to Israel. In other words, they need to push the rockets away from the Israeli border. Further, they would have to remain in Lebanon as an occupation force for an unknown period to keep the rocket threat away from the Israeli border.
The deeper the IDF goes into Lebanon, the more force protection becomes an issue. Along with the army itself, it will have a longer supply chain that will be subject to attack by insurgents. Its right flank will be near the Syrian border, and possibly subject to attack. Israeli intelligence has noted that Syria has gone over to the defense mode anticipating an attack either by Israel or the U.S. I rather doubt that they would attack that flank, but insurgents on that flank can be resupplied by Syria. I think would rather let the insurgents bleed the IDF over a prolonged period.
As we have seen, the Palestinian struggle is a nationalist effort and, they have refused to use foreign fighters directly in combat. However, they have accepted money and material support from various foreign governments, groups, or individuals. I do not know Hizbullah's position on the use of foreign fighters, but we know some volunteers from Iran are on their way to Lebanon. Success has a thousand friends. We can anticipate the Iraq syndrome with a steady influx of foreign fighters from all over the Arab and Islamic world with longer war along with increase militry and civilian casualties. The could be the famous unintended consequences.
I think what is needed is an immediate cease fire, an exchange of prisoners, a settlement of the the border issues between Israel on the one side and Syria and Lebanon on the other side and a non-agression pact on all sides. The other choice is hell on earth.

Posted by: P. J. Casey | July 28, 2006 02:07 PM

Hey wiccan,
Had to find someplace to vent after Emily deserted her post. Good to see you're still around...

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 02:16 PM

Civilians become military target for muslims whether it is a holy war or just war.

What surprises the world is Israel behaving just like Muslim militants. Yes israel may not directly hunat and kill civilians but they know the most people in those apartments are woman and children and bomb the crap out of them. It is a plan to create fear among civilians and make them flee to occupy the empty land.

Posted by: Alex | July 28, 2006 03:08 PM

Alex wrote:
"What surprises the world is Israel behaving just like Muslim militants. Yes israel may not directly hunat and kill civilians but they know the most people in those apartments are woman and children and bomb the crap out of them."

Israel knows there are rockets and mortars being launched from the area. They know Hezbollah's command is housed in the area. These are all military targets purposly placed in civilian areas so the population can act as a deterent to any bombing. Its against all rules of war except the terrorist rule of war, which is that any death is a good death. Enemy dead go to hell and Muslim dead go to paradise. All death is good in their eyes and they have said as much. Israelis nor any civilized people do not act like Muslim militants.

Posted by: Sully | July 28, 2006 03:40 PM

Too much writing sofar. Keep it to the point. Israel was founded illegaly in 1948 becuase the western world felt sorry for the jews killed during WW2. But they stole land from Palestine and setteld millions of European Jews and kicked out Arabs. It is nothing more than a Jewis-Zion Colony from the Western world. Like any Colony it will be reclaimed by the people who were living there (yes, including some Jews - nothing wrong with that).

Posted by: Arab/Jew | July 28, 2006 04:14 PM

That Haaretz article by Meron Benvenisti is a really excellent piece of writing.
The link again: http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/objects/pages/PrintArticleEn.jhtml?itemNo=742762

It could apply just as easily to the 1982 war...or to the Iraq war.

Posted by: OD | July 28, 2006 04:28 PM

Shaloom Freedman
Why, yes, the savage Israelis haven't bragged much lately. They good their clocks cleaned on earlier this week. But they DO lie a lot, (50% of Hez missles gone? No)
And they only brag while they're gunning down stone throwing children in Palestine and women in Jenin, etc. They're really great when against unarmed innocents. Disgusting. The whole world hates them, remember. And their support is only 37% in America now.....and declining.

Posted by: Hates Bullies | July 28, 2006 05:10 PM

Under what possible definition are the savatge Isralies NOT terrorists? Now and in the last half century? Under what definition, given their immigration and citizen policies, are they civilized. Has the whole world ever hated any other group as much? Why not.

Posted by: | July 28, 2006 05:16 PM

Under what possible definition are the savatge Isralies NOT terrorists? Now and in the last half century? Under what definition, given their immigration and citizen policies, are they civilized. Has the whole world ever hated any other group as much? Why not.

Posted by: Bendick | July 28, 2006 05:17 PM

We see a new poll that 82% of Israelis want the war to continue. Well, then let's hear no more whining about homes lost or loss of life. They want the war, they should enjoy it. THey are alwyas at war.

Posted by: Relieved, then | July 28, 2006 06:42 PM

OD, thanks you for the link. Here is the article for everyone.


Last update - 10:28 27/07/2006
The turnabout will come quickly
By Meron Benvenisti

No one can predict when the reversal will come, when all the experts will begin competing for first place in revealing the failures of the war: mistaken strategy, political dilettantism and shooting from the hip; the weakness disguised as courageous determination; the illusions, arrogance and boasting; the addiction to an impulse of revenge; the cruelty and the lack of moral inhibitions.

But the manipulators and the self-declared heroes should not delude themselves, nor should the naive, or those who are drunk with patriotism or those who consider themselves experts: the moment will arrive more quickly than they imagine and within a short while everyone will be hiding behind the pose of "we told you so" when they know which way the wind is blowing.

That is when all the declarations, the assessments and the excuses - that could be uttered and written only in an atmosphere of lack of critical skepticism that prevails when a "state of war" is declared - will be revealed.

It is only in an atmosphere of this kind that serious people can justify the destruction of a country on the grounds that they "are helping its government in this way" to gain the upper hand over Hezbollah - a kind of variation on the theme of "the raped woman actually enjoyed herself." It is only in an atmosphere of this kind that a well-bred person can be glad that the lack of American pressure to stop the bombings makes it possible to continue the killing and destruction.

Only reliance on patriotic emotions, which cloud any rational thinking, makes it possible to state without shame - after many days of multi-casualty pounding and the inexplicable destruction of an airport, highway interchanges, power stations and entire neighborhoods - that actually this activity was in vain, since it was known in advance that the bombs could not achieve their objectives and that a massive ground invasion was unavoidable.

Only people who unabashedly exploit primitive urges allow themselves to personalize the war and focus it on the annihilation of their enemy, Hassan Nasrallah. Only those who are convinced the war will bring down a smoke screen over any cynical or hypocritical act can brag that they are assisting in an international humanitarian activity after they themselves brought about the catastrophe.

No one is able to predict the minute when the opposition to the war and the bloodshed turns from an act of betrayal into a legitimate and even correct stance; when a moral condemnation of the war's evil effects becomes acceptable from a patriotic point of view and when slogans like "uprooting terror," "a war for our homes," "an existential struggle" and their like, turn from resonant war-cries into empty rhetoric.

No one can predict this, but experience teaches us that the turnabout from patriotic criticism to rational behavior based on moral norms occurs sooner or later, sometimes within weeks or months and sometimes after a generation. It seems that in the current outbreak of violence, the change will come very quickly; its conduct, objectives and results do not encourage too much enthusiasm and it has not even been granted the title of "war" since those who waged it are not sure if they want to commemorate it among the state's official wars or if they believe it would perhaps be better to forget it.

They cannot allow themselves to think that all should know their assessments were incorrect, and therefore they will seek a "victory" that will justify all the loss of life and destruction, and the very need for such a victory will merely prolong the suffering and bereavement. The public that supports them will have difficulty demanding soul-searching of them since the tribal solidarity will protect the political and military leaders.

Very soon everything will return to what it was before - apart from those who sacrificed their lives and those who were killed in the shellings and bombings. And the major loser will be the people of Israel who, by an unmeasured reaction to a provocation, established their position as a foreign element in the region, as the neighborhood bully, the object of impotent hatred.

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 07:14 PM

And this is a section from an excellent piece by Richard Engel of NBC (who is doing excellent work)....please read it ...this is one of the reasons why this sh*t needs to stop and it needs to stop NOW...


"When the building was hit and collapsed, it killed a U.N. soldier and his wife, as well as two other women and two children. The efforts under way by the U.N. team were an attempt to recover their bodies.

While we were at the site, they uncovered two bodies. One was a little girl. Her legs and lower body were exposed, and that was all that was really recognizable of her. She was wrapped in a blanket.

About half an hour later, more digging in the same area uncovered an old woman's charred body. They had been in a bedroom of one of the buildings that had collapsed.

Who was this little girl?
We found a picture of the beautiful little girl with ringlet hair and decided to try to find out who this girl was.

We went around to a public building next door, and it was empty. Some of the doors were wide open with no one there, indicating that people had fled the building without even closing the door behind them.

We went to another area of the town where there were some people. We showed them the picture of the little girl and tried to find out who she was. Some people knew her but didn't know her name. But a lot of the people we spoke to didn't know the family because they were refugees from other parts of Lebanon farther south.

Eventually we found a man who knew her uncle. He called the uncle for us, and he in turn put us in touch with the father, whom we went and spoke with.

A father asks why?
The father, Rayes Jumma, 32, had been in the house with them. He thought that the house was safe because a person from the U.N. lived downstairs.

He had left just 15 minutes before the airstrike. He got a call from a friend who needed a set of keys he had in his pocket, so he went off to run that errand. When he was out running the errand, he heard the airstrike and then started to get calls from friends saying, "Hey, there was just an airstrike near your house."

So, he called home, but there was no answer. Then he heard from other friends who were calling and saying, "No, it was actually your house that was destroyed."

Jumma has a grocery store that is right next to the hospital where the bodies of his daughter and his mother-in-law -- the bodies that we saw pulled out of the rubble -- were brought Wednesday.

He has not gone to see them. He has not gone back to see his destroyed house. He says he wants to remember his family as they were.

He lost his entire family: two daughters, his wife and his mother-in-law.

He was confused. He kept asking us, "Who is responsible for this? Who is to blame for all of this? Who am I supposed to complain to? Is it Hezbollah? Is it Israel? Is it America? Is it Condoleezza Rice? Is it Bush? My family is dead, what now? Who do I go and talk to?" That was what he kept repeating over and over. Asking what now? What am I supposed to do?

He didn't cry, he was just bewildered. "

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/14047026/

Posted by: Angus | July 28, 2006 07:37 PM

Its rather amusing to see the arabs and muslims discovering a new concept called "proportionality". Israel's response is "disproportionate" indeed? Lets see:

http://sudanwatch.blogspot.com/2005/04/new-analysis-claims-darfur-deaths-near.html

400,000 Africans, four HUNDRED THOUSAND, systematically exterminated in two years by the arabs, and the arabs (muslims) are shamelessly whining about Israeli strikes, each and every one of which is scrutinized and magnified by the media with heartwrenching melodrama.

Has Israel killed more than 10,000 arabs in all its wars? 100,000? in 60 years? How many africans are worth an arab life?

How many condemnations have been isued by the "arab" league, (the name says it all, a racist organization) against the savage genocide going on in Darfur? Anybody?

There are 52 officially islamic countries covering one-sixth of the planet's landmass, and one fifth of humanity. But they will not allow 8000 sq. miles of land for 6 million jews whose religion and history goes back 3000+ years in that neighboorhood. Its considered "Racist" to have a jewish state. Never mind the "arab" league and "Officially" islamic countries, and the fact that no non-muslim can enter mecca.

Jerusalem is tHe holiest city for the jews. A muslim living south of Jerusalem shows his back to Jersulam to pray to Mecca. Yet these fanatics want this city for THEIR capital.

If Israel falls, do you think they'll stop? This lethal medieval cult, founded by a warlord, divides the world into the house of war and house of islam. Thats right. If you're not a muslim then you belong in the house of WAR.

Don't flatter yourself into thinking that islamic madness will stop if Israel falls. That will only be the beginning.

Posted by: How many african lives equal an arab life? | July 28, 2006 08:11 PM


A Warning to Israel
Smoke Signals from the Battle of Bint Jbeil
By ROBERT FISK

Qlaya, Southern Lebanon

Is it possible - is it conceivable - that Israel is losing its war in Lebanon?

From this hill village in the south of the country, I am watching the clouds of brown and black smoke rising from its latest disaster in the Lebanese town of Bint Jbeil: up to 13 Israeli soldiers dead, and others surrounded, after a devastating ambush by Hizbollah guerrillas in what was supposed to be a successful Israeli military advance against a "terrorist centre" .

To my left smoke rises too, over the town of Khiam, where a smashed United Nations outpost remains the only memorial to the four UN soldiers - most of them decapitated by an American-made missile on Tuesday - killed by the Israeli air force.

Indian soldiers of the UN army in southern Lebanon, visibly moved by the horror of bringing their Canadian, Fijian, Chinese and Austrian comrades back in at least 20 pieces from the clearly marked UN post next to Khiam prison, left their remains at Marjayoun hospital yesterday.

In past years, I have spent hours with their comrades in this UN position, which is clearly marked in white and blue paint, with the UN's pale blue flag opposite the Israeli frontier. Their duty was to report on all they saw: the ruthless Hizbollah missile fire out of Khiam and the brutal Israeli response against the civilians of Lebanon.

Is this why they had to die, after being targeted by the Israelis for eight hours, their officers pleading to the Israeli Defense Forces that they cease fire? An American-made Israeli helicopter saw to that.

In Bint Jbeil, meanwhile, another bloodbath was taking place. Claiming to " control" this southern Lebanese town, the Israelis chose to walk into a Hizbollah trap. The moment they reached the deserted marketplace, they were ambushed from three sides, their soldiers falling to the ground under sustained rifle fire. The remaining Israeli troops - surrounded by the "terrorists" they were supposed to liquidate - desperately appealed for help, but an Israeli Merkava tank and other vehicles sent to help them were also attacked and set on fire. Up to 17 Israeli soldiers may have died so far in this disastrous operation.

The battle for southern Lebanon is on an epic scale but, from the heights above Khiam, the Israelis appear to be in deep trouble. Their F-16s turn in the high bright sun - small, silver fish whose whispers gain in volume as they dive - and their bombs burst over the old prison, where the Hizbollah are still holding out; beyond the frontier, I can see livid fires burning across the Israeli hillsides and the Jewish settlement of Metullah billowing smoke.

It was not meant to be like this, 15 days into Israel's assault on Lebanon. The Katyushas still streak in pairs out of southern Lebanon, clearly visible to the naked eye, white contrails that thump into Israeli's hillsides and border towns.

So is it frustration or revenge that keeps Israel's bombs falling on the innocent? In the early hours two days ago, a tremendous explosion woke me up, rattling the windows and shaking the trees outside, and a single flash suffused the western sky over Nabatiyeh.

The lives of an entire family of seven had just been extinguished.

And how come - since this now obsesses the humanitarian organizations working in Lebanon - that the Israelis bombed two ambulances in Qana, killing two of the three wounded inside. All the crews were injured - one with a piece of shrapnel in his neck - but what worried the Lebanese Red Cross was that the Israeli missiles had pierced the very centre of the red cross painted on the roof of each vehicle. Did the pious use the cross as their aiming point?

The bombardment of Khiam has set off its own brush fires on the hillsides below Qlaya, whose Maronite Christian inhabitants now stand on the high road above like spectators at a 19th century battle. Khiam is - or was - a pretty village of cut-stone doorways and tracery windows, but Israel's target, apart from the obviously marked UN position whose inhabitants they massacred, is the notorious prison in which - before its retreat from Lebanon in 2000 - hundreds of Hizbollah members and, in some cases, their families, were held and tortured with electricity by Israel's proxy militia, the South Lebanon Army.

This was the same prison complex - turned into a "museum of torture" by the Hizbollah after the Israeli retreat - that was visited by the late Edward Said shortly before his death. More important, however, is that many of the Hizbollah men originally held prisoner here were captives in cells deep underground the old French mandate fort. These same men are now fighting the Israelis, almost certainly sheltering from their fire in the same underground cells in which they languished, perhaps even storing some of their missiles there.

In Marjayoun, next to Qlaya, once the SLA's headquarters, Lebanese troops are trying to prevent Hizbollah guerrillas using the streets of the Greek Catholic town to fire yet more missiles at Israel. Seven-man Lebanese army patrols are moving through the darkened roads of both towns at night in case the Hizbollah brings yet more Israeli bombs down on our heads.

In Beirut, one observes the folly of Western nations with amusement as well as horror, but, sitting in these hill villages and listening to how the US Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, plans to reshape Lebanon is clearly a lesson in human self-delusion. According to US correspondents accompanying Ms Rice on her visit to the Middle East, she is proposing the intervention of a Nato-led force along the Lebanese-Israeli border for between 60 and 90 days to assure that a ceasefire exists, the deployment of an enlarged Nato force throughout Lebanon to disarm Hizbollah and then the retraining of the Lebanese army before its own deployment to the border.

This plan - which, like all American proposals on Lebanon, is exactly the same as Israel's demands - carries the same depth of conceit as that of the Israeli consul general in New York, who said last week that "most Lebanese appreciate what we are doing".

Does Ms Rice think the Hizbollah want to be disarmed? By Nato? Wasn't there a Nato force in Beirut which fled Lebanon after a group close to the Hizbollah bombed the US Marine base at Beirut airport in 1983, killing 241 US servicemen and dozens more French troops a few seconds later? Does anyone believe that Shia Muslim forces will not do the same again to any Nato " intervention" force? The Americans are talking about Egyptian and Turkish troops in southern Lebanon; Sunni Muslims ruling Shia territory.

The Hizbollah has been waiting and training and dreaming of this new war for years, however ruthless we may regard the actions. They are not going to surrender the territory they liberated from the Israeli army in an 18-year guerrilla war, least of all to Nato at Israel's bidding.

Yesterday's assault on the Israeli army in Bint Jbeil proved that. The problem is that the US sees this slaughterhouse as an "opportunity" rather than a tragedy, a chance to humble Hizbollah supporters in Tehran and help to shape the "new Middle East" of which Ms Rice spoke so blithely this week.

It is Israel which is running out of time in southern Lebanon. Its attacks have for the fifth time in 30 years placed it in the dock for war crimes in Lebanon. The toll of Lebanon's civilian casualties has reached 400. And still the US will not intervene to prevent the carnage, even to call for a 24-hour ceasefire to allow the 3,000 civilians still trapped between Qlaya and Bint Jbeil - who include a number of foreign nationals - to flee.

The only civilian walking those frightening roads to Qlaya was a goatherd, guiding his animals around the huge bomb craters in the tarmac. Talking to him, it emerged that he was almost stone deaf and obviously could not hear the bombs. In this, it seemed, he has a lot in common with Condoleezza Rice.

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 09:05 PM

to the person who posted about Darfur:

Very good points, all of them. The world has yet to see and feel the threat from the radical, fundamentalist Muslims.

Posted by: Amazing, isn't it? | July 28, 2006 09:12 PM

I have tried to post comments over the past several days on about someone who hosted a live discussion on Wednesday at The Post but I keep getting the following message and my comments never appear? Can someone help me with this puzzling situation? After all I have posted several comments tonight alone?

A Daily Survey of What the International Online Media Are Saying
Thank you for commenting.
Your comment has been received and held for approval by the blog owner.

Return to the original entry

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 09:18 PM

I see this too about 10% of he times - maybe if you have DSL I believe you get different IP's each time you log on and some of them have been blocked before - it could also be that the site has some sort of profanity blocker that is not that good - not sure really but whenever I do a long post I copy it and if its blocked you can usually repost it immediately..

Posted by: Angus | July 28, 2006 10:05 PM

Angus,

Thanks for the explanation.

But I still can't post anything about this person even though I have tried several times tonight.

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 10:31 PM

Angus,

The link I have tried to attach about this discussion is below.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/discussion/2006/07/25/DI2006072500934.html

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 10:33 PM

Finally, I was able to post the link to the his shameless performance!

I still can't type his name in my poster becasue if I do, I get the message that the "blog owner is reviewing..." and it does not post. This has never happened to me before!

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 10:38 PM

"Detroit, Mich.: Thanks for calling on me. I've done a lot of reading and it seems the pro-Israel bias of the American negotiating team was one of the central reasons that the Arab side was not properly taken into account and, ultimately, a reason why we have this mess today. As one of those negotiators, do you think in the future the US government should only employ mediators who are less biased in the future or must one come from AIPAC to negotiate Arab-Israeli peace ?

Martin Indyk: It's a fair question but perhaps you should ask the Arab leaders whether they preferred people who were committed to making peace between Israel and the Arabs because they wholeheartedly believed that it served American interests and Israel's well-being, or they prefer people now who don't believe in peacemaking or diplomacy?

For eight years, President Clinton and his peace team dedicated themselves to trying to achieve a just, comprehensive, and lasting peace that would have met the reasonable requirements of the Palestinians and the Syrians. Those deals included formal offers, accepted by Israeli governments, of all of the Golan Heights, all of Gaza, and 95-97 percent of the West Bank (with territorial compensation for the rest).

We thought that's what the Arabs wanted. That's certainly what they told us they wanted. So I fail to understand the argument that we didn't take their needs and requirements into account. And that somehow, by pursuing peace with all our hearts and minds, we are responsible for this mess."

Yes, Martin - you and your neoconvicts

Posted by: RB | July 28, 2006 10:42 PM

World knows the Terror of Islam extremists. It is a known problem.

But i completely disagree with israels method. Yes the idea of muslims only understand the language of violence. It is true but i don't think attacking them with force will not help. It only make humans kill more humans.

Cannibalists.

World lacks leadership nowadays. Bush is an idiot.

All it need is one Smart human or idiot human to destroy the world. And we got an idiot BUSH to destroy every moral fiber. He is idiotic and believe in religious crap. what a fool.

I know jews are part of america just like every one else. They have to control the urge to control america to save israel.

Israel is a bad idea. It will be destroyed sooner or later. It will also take down billion muslims along with few million jews.

There are better ways to deal with muslims.

If you see everywhere around the world muslims are the part of the problem. It is a disease. It has to be handled carefully.


Humans are going to kill each other for power until no ones left. If america can elect an idiot, what is the the probablity they will elect again another idiot? very possible.

Before that hope he moves to another planet.

The would caused by Israel on lebanon will never get cured until complete destruction of israel happens.

Human mind is a collective brain. It records every atrocity.

What israel had done in lebanon will showcased Jews brutality if they become world power.

They act exactly like muslim extremeists.

Only difference is muslims do that for allah and jews do that for non existant god.

Both are fools.

Posted by: Alex | July 28, 2006 10:59 PM

World knows the Terror of Islam extremists. It is a known problem.

But i completely disagree with israels method. Yes the idea of muslims only understand the language of violence. It is true but i don't think attacking them with force will not help. It only make humans kill more humans.

Cannibalists.

World lacks leadership nowadays. Bush is an idiot.

All it need is one Smart human or idiot human to destroy the world. And we got an idiot BUSH to destroy every moral fiber. He is idiotic and believe in religious crap. what a fool.

I know jews are part of america just like every one else. They have to control the urge to control america to save israel.

Israel is a bad idea. It will be destroyed sooner or later. It will also take down billion muslims along with few million jews.

There are better ways to deal with muslims.

If you see everywhere around the world muslims are the part of the problem. It is a disease. It has to be handled carefully.


Humans are going to kill each other for power until no ones left. If america can elect an idiot, what is the the probablity they won't elect again another idiot? very possible.

Before that hope humans moves to another planet.

The wound caused by Israel on lebanon will never get cured until complete destruction of israel happens.

Human mind is a collective brain. It records every atrocity.

What israel had done in lebanon showcased Jews brutality if they become world power.

They act exactly like muslim extremeists.

Only difference is muslims do that for allah and jews do that for nameless god.

Both are fools.

Posted by: Alex | July 28, 2006 11:03 PM

Arab-American Psychiatrist Wafa Sultan: There is No Clash of Civilizations but a Clash between the Mentality of the Middle Ages and That of the 21st Century

Following are excerpts from an interview with Arab-American psychiatrist Wafa Sultan. The interview was aired on Al-Jazeera TV on February 21, 2006

"The Jews have come from the tragedy (of the Holocaust), and forced the world to respect them, with their knowledge, not with their terror, with their work, not their crying and yelling. Humanity owes most of the discoveries and science of the 19th and 20th centuries to Jewish scientists. 15 million people, scattered throughout the world, united and won their rights through work and knowledge. We have not seen a single Jew blow himself up in a German restaurant. We have not seen a single Jew destroy a church. We have not seen a single Jew protest by killing people. The Muslims have turned three Buddha statues into rubble. We have not seen a single Buddhist burn down a Mosque, kill a Muslim, or burn down an embassy. Only the Muslims defend their beliefs by burning down churches, killing people, and destroying embassies. This path will not yield any results. The Muslims must ask themselves what they can do for humankind, before they demand that humankind respect them."

Posted by: For Alex | July 29, 2006 01:04 AM

Check out the latest opinion piece (at "http://www.billoreilly.com/currentarticle") written by Bill O'Reilly.

Here is a quote.

"Let's take Lebanon. On July 29, 2004, the Security Council reiterated its strong support for the "terroritorial integrity" of that tiny country. To back up that support, the UN continued to fund a force of soldiers to make sure any misbehavior on the part of terrorists, Syria or Israel was kept to a minimum.

Less than two months later, the Security Council passed Resolution 1559 calling for, among other things, the disbanding and disarmament of all militias inside Lebanon. That means you, Hezbollah.

Well, the Hez guys and Syria and Iran were all greatly amused by Resolution 1559, and soon thereafter thousands more long range missiles began finding their way into southern Lebanon, where some of them were placed in private homes and Mosques.

The UN did nothing.

Then, three weeks ago, Hezbollah attacked, killing eight Israeli soldiers and kidnapping two others inside Israel! Obviously, an act of war, to which Israel responded by bombing Hezbollah positions throughout Lebanon.

UN Secretary General Kofi Annan then swung into action and called for an immediate cease-fire. Annan is real good at doing that. He is an expert at giving peace a chance while innocent people are being attacked. Would Kofi want a cease-fire if thousands of missiles were pointed at his house? I don't think so. Kofi might want those weapons destroyed. Maybe I'm wrong."

What is great about O'Reilly's essay is that O'Reilly makes a value judgment by framing the issue in your local context. In other words, what would you do if a foreign vigilante group (in, say, Mexico) fired missiles into your neighborhood and if the foreign government (in, say, Mexico) refused to stop the vigilante group? What would you do?

After 1 week of enduring vigilante violence, I know what I would do. I would bomb the foreign country to hades. I would kill all the vigilantes. I would kill all the foreigners who supported the vigilantes. I would de-capitate the society of the foreign country harboring these vigilantes.

The Israelis have endured months of vigilante violence. Both O'Reilly and I want to kill the Muslims in Lebanon.

Posted by: atheist | July 29, 2006 02:10 AM

"We see a new poll that 82% of Israelis want the war to continue. Well, then let's hear no more whining about homes lost or loss of life. They want the war, they should enjoy it. THey are alwyas at war."

Posted by: Relieved, then | July 28, 2006 06:42 PM

Amazing. You ignore how this war was started. Tell me and everyone else here, what is Hezbollah's goal? What is their group's mission? Why do they exist? Do you have a clue?

Let me explain: Hezbollah exists to destroy not only the state of Israel but its citizens as well. Killing an Israeli soldier and killing an Israeli citizen are the same thing in their eyes. And worse, they do not mind using the civilians in Lebanon, Christians, Muslims, whatever, as shields for their cause, because they only care about Muslims and if a Muslim dies shielding a Hezbollah fighter, that Muslim goes to paradise, so no harm done. All death is good. Any death is good as long as it leads to their stated goal.

And you wonder why a majority of Israelis would want to get rid of this sickness from their border. I haven't heard such logic twisting since Kruschev telling Nixon how they had all the modern luxuries of the west. Keep fooling yourself.

Posted by: Sully | July 29, 2006 07:05 AM

Sully,

The truth is Israel is illegally occupying and kidnapping and torturing palestenians for decades. When palestenians react, Israel call them terrorists.

Christians calls all muslims terrorists. Muslims calls america and israel state terrorists.

I have to side with muslims on the israel issue. Israel is illegally occupying and intend on creating Greater Israel. EVen 9/11 is Mozzads creation to make american angry at muslims. Watch WTC7 building collapse. It is all over the internet. It is a controlled demolition. Somehows jews own those building knew of the attack and planted the explosives before sept 11.

Israel is and will be the source of all WARS.

Yes mulsims got a excuse for their extreme behaviour. And they are right about israels plan of creating NEW MIDDLE EAST.

If there is a war , muslims probably want china and russia on their side to counter american nukes.

China also knows it is next no 1. enemy of america once america kills billions of muslims for world power.

Most of the war in past 8 years happened because of one idiot called bush. He is another religious fanatic in muslim terrorist mould. He wants to wipe out muslims not by clever method but brute force.

Not a good sign for humanity.

The scary thing for the world is that america will keep electing idiots(republicans). So world will have to find a way to counter america.

At present all countries are just silent and watching carefully at america NWO ambition.

World is acting like coward watching 600 civilian die and no one even dare to condemn israel. Pathetic. These canadian bozo harper can't even dare to condem israel for their own civilian death. Wonder why canada elected harper?. Another impotent leaders. Blair , harper...

There are better ways to handle muslim issue than killing civilians. It only provoke next generation of muslims.

Muhammed intention was not worship many idols but he created the biggest indestructible idol worship of all. Koran.

Killing muslims won't solve muslims problem. Unless muslims modernize koran. Killing muslims won't apply pressure on these leaders. it will only make them revolt more.

World lacks smart leadership atpresent.

Posted by: Alex | July 29, 2006 08:49 AM

Muslim american start shooting at jews federation in seattle.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/5226390.stm

You will see more of it in europe. Europe is sensitive against jews as there are bigger muslim population there. The longer the war goes. There will be protest against jews in europe.

In america jews control everything. There is even a Hardcore military wing of jews in USA. They even bomb mosque to create fear and support for jews in america.

I believe america lost the plot when it start deviate from moral high ground.

Posted by: Alex | July 29, 2006 09:17 AM

It is not Hezbollah or Hamas, it is the Arab World against an illegal Israel. The time has come for Israel and the Western World (primarily USA and Europe) to pay the price for destroying an Arab/Christian/Jewish balance that was there for centuries. For the next few years Israel will fight and kill many more innocent Arabs, trow them in jail, etc. but nevertheless the tide has turned. The Arabs have had enough!

Posted by: European | July 29, 2006 09:49 AM

Hello "European"(assuming you're not an arab posting from Europe),

Scroll up and read the post about Darfur. Just because the arabs make more noise/impact by killing more westerners, doesn't necessarily make the cause more just.

How about the africans and berbers and other minorities oppressed by the arab occupiers for millenia? Yes, no arab children should be bombed or maimed either, but look at the big picture: If Israel is gone tomorrow, do you seriously think the islamist uprising will settle for peaceful co-existence with the rest of humanity?

What has Israel got to do with Denmark? Why were they burning the danish flag, killing and raging for a mere cartoon? Why have the Dutch drawn up their bridges, inspite of having shown extreme tolerance towards islamic immigrants for years?

Any non-muslim who thinks israel is THE source of all islamic violence doesn't understand their history, or any history.

Posted by: Human | July 29, 2006 11:18 AM

Hello "European"(assuming you're not an arab posting from Europe),

Scroll up and read the post about Darfur. Just because the arabs make more noise/impact by killing more westerners, doesn't necessarily make the cause more just.

How about the africans and berbers and other minorities oppressed by the arab occupiers for millenia? Yes, no arab children should be bombed or maimed either, but look at the big picture: If Israel is gone tomorrow, do you seriously think the islamist uprising will settle for peaceful co-existence with the rest of humanity?

What has Israel got to do with Denmark? Why were they burning the danish flag, killing and raging for a mere cartoon? Why have the Dutch drawn up their bridges, inspite of having shown extreme tolerance towards islamic immigrants for years?

Any non-muslim who thinks israel is THE source of all islamic violence doesn't understand their history, or any history.

Posted by: Human | July 29, 2006 11:18 AM

athiest wrote:

The Israelis have endured months of vigilante violence. Both O'Reilly and I want to kill the Muslims in Lebanon.

Posted by: atheist | July 29, 2006 02:10 AM

I am more than willing to chip in for athiest and O'reilly's one way ticket to help them get to Lebanon - anyone else?

Posted by: Angus | July 29, 2006 11:19 AM

To HUMAN---Oh, we all understand Israeli history all right. Too, well.

Posted by: understand | July 29, 2006 11:21 AM

For ALex quoted this:

"We have not seen a single Jew protest by killing people. "

He has obviously never heard of Baruch Goldstein, Yigal Amir, the IDF, IAF, LEHI, Irgun, Hagannah the hundreds of uzi toting settlers who have killed Palestinians for the crime of being Palestinian in Palestine......Irv Rubin another great humanitarian who only failed becuase he was such a dipsh*t trying to blow up the offices of Darryl Issa a US Congressman for the crime of being Lebanese American...

What a crock!!

Posted by: Angus | July 29, 2006 11:25 AM

Oh yes, RB...it certainly is possible the Israeli army is losing. The savage, invincible amy is only invincible when killing Palestininan children armed with stones, refugee women and children in Jenin with bulldozers, and other unarmed innocents. Against a real army they aren't looking so good, are they.

Posted by: probably | July 29, 2006 11:30 AM

Jefferson,
Why this euphemistic language? You write "With the failure of an international conference in Rome to agree on a plan to end the war between Israel and the Shiite militia Hezbollah..." What you mean is: "With the United States having successfuly thwarted the rest of the world's determination to bring about an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Hezbollah."
The U.S., alone, has given the green light to Israel to continue its scorched-earth campaign to kill hundreds of innocent civilians destroy the State of Lebanon -- all in flagrant violation of international humanitarian law.
The U.S. has even accelerated arms shipments to Israel to help it continue to commit these atrocities.
In light of the grotesque imbalance in the killing, with Israel having killed 10 times as many people as Hezbollah, I can only conclude that the true terrorists in this entire sad affair are the governments of Israel and the United States.
The Israeli prime minister, the U.S. president and the head of Hezbollah all belong before an international war-crimes tribunal.
As things stand today, we moderate Arabs who have tried to isolate and reduce support for groups like Hezbollah have been completely undermined.
Hezbollah and groups like it will only surge in popularity as a result of your government's full-fledged support for Israel's terror campaign.

Posted by: Ismael | July 29, 2006 12:19 PM

An Arab wrote, "The U.S. has even accelerated arms shipments to Israel to help it continue to commit these atrocities."

Wrong.

The Israelis are, indeed, racist (as their immigration favoring Jews indicates), but they are not committing atrocities in Lebanon. Again, for the upteenth time, here is the situation facing Israel.

1. Hezbollah, the terrorist group supported by most Muslims, integrated itself tightly into Lebanese society -- with the full support of most Lebanese.
2. Hezbollah, over the course of years, periodically fired rockets into Israel.

Here is Jerusalem's response.

3. The Israelis fire their weapons directly at the Hezbollah militants. The Israelis are not aiming at the civilians.
4. Since the Lebanese civilians support the Hezbollah militants and live in close proximity to them, some of the civilians end up in being killed.

Who is responsible for the deaths? The Hezbollah militants and their supporters (which includes all their Islamic supporters writing in this forum).

What most Muslims (including those in the USA) shout, ad nauseum, is that even if Hezbollah militants fires rockets at Israel and even if the Lebanese government refrains from stopping the Hezbollah militants, the Israelis should never fire at Lebanon -- ever. According to these Muslims, the Israelis should just let "it" happen for all eternity.

Posted by: atheist | July 29, 2006 02:19 PM

Same crock as the stuff you post. Just a different side!

Posted by: For Angus | July 29, 2006 02:20 PM

Folks, do not waste your time in "debating" with the Muslims in this forum.

Rather, just do what I do. Namely, write to the silent readers, who are actually the majority of the readers of this forum. They come from many countries including Thailand, Japan, Russia, etc.

Use this opportunity to point out the difference between a Muslim and a non-Muslim (e.g., a Thai Buddhist or a Russian atheist). What you are seeing in this forum is typical of how most Muslims act and think. The opinions expressed in this forum are not some twisted, extreme form of thought espoused by a minority of Muslims. The public opinions in this blog are common and widespread in the Islamic community, especially communities of Arabs.

Take copies of the discussions in this forum and teach your children how Muslims act and think. Make effective use of this forum especially if you have never met any Muslim.

1. Muslims support the idea of Hezbollah militants using Lebanese as human shields.
2. Muslims support the idea of Lebanese supporting Hezbollah.
3. Muslims support the idea of Hezbollah fired missiles at Israel in retaliation for perceived injustices against the Palestinian. (See the point about Vietnam below.)
3. Muslims oppose the idea of Israelis defending themselves by shooting at Hezbollah militants.

Keep the following thought in mind. Vietnam endured years of chemical bombing by the Americans during the Vietnam War. Thousands of Vietnamese are suffering and dying from the effects of agent orange.

Yet, the Vietnamese do not spend every waking moment trying to kill Americans. You do not see a Vietnamese Hezbollah.

Teach your children the difference between an Arab Muslim and a Vietnamese atheist (or a Vietnamese Catholic). The Muslims are really different from the rest of the world. If you live in Thailand or any other nation being injured by Islamic violence, I encourage you to enforce a zero-tolerance policy. Kill 100% of Muslims who commit violence or who support those who commit violence.

Israel tolerates extended periods of nuisance attacks by Hezbollah before finally responding with deadly. If you live in Thailand or any other nation being injured by Islamic violence, do not be as generous as the Israelis. Enforce a ZERO-TOLERANCE policy. Even after one attack by a Muslim against a non-Muslim, promptly find and kill the Muslims who are responsible. Remember. Justice delayed is justice denied.

If you are Thai, show the world that the conflict is not one between Arab Muslim and White Westerner. Show the world that you, as a Thai, have the determination and muster to kill Islamic thugs.

Posted by: atheist | July 29, 2006 02:38 PM

"If you are Thai, show the world that the conflict is not one between Arab Muslim and White Westerner. Show the world that you, as a Thai, have the determination and muster to kill Islamic thugs."

This is why this is a third rate Forum.

We get nut jobs all over the place.

This little statement makes no more sense then the other sides determination to have Isrealies slaughtered.

Nut jobs, this entire forum.

Posted by: Duck | July 29, 2006 03:41 PM

Athiest, Human,

You both are dispicable. I know muslims have a problem in general. They are the source of all WARS. That is aside.

In this case Israel is the aggressor. They are torturing palestenians for 50 years. It is exactly like how america took the land from indians. Same way. One difference. Muslims are not indians. They will fight to the grave.

I believe israel should n't exist at all. It is created to kill palestenians and muslims in middle east. Muslim world knows this. As long as israel exists , muslim world in danger.

Anyone says israel is defending itself are fools. Israel is attacking and ruthlessly torturing palestenians and make them flee , so they can make greater israel.

You can't stop hizbollah as long as there is one single muslim left in lebanon.

For me Israel made a mistake of killing 600 civilians. Their strikes have n't stopped hizbollah from firing rockets at all. All it enabled the world to think that Israel is most dangerous entity in the world apart from islam.

No wonder hitler got mad at jews. They manipulate all the countries in the world.
Blair is a jew? Seems like he is a impotent guy.

No one should condone civilans death even if it is your enemy. bush and blair's inactions are example of world lacks leadership.


Posted by: Alex | July 29, 2006 06:31 PM

-----WELL GOOD NIGHT MY FELLOW AMERICANS.--- YOU GO TO SLEEP WITH YOUR HANDS DRIPPING IN BLOOD OF INNOCENTS--tonight PARTICULARLY, IRAQIS, PALESTINIANS AND LEBANESE. The Israelis have been busy today. They have to hurry, the American elections will soon turn out the bought and paid for Congress and ruin our dear President, who gave YOUR TAXES, YOUR HARD WORK, TO THE VILE SAVAGE ISRALIS TO KILL AND KILL AND KILL, NOT ONLY TO GRAB LAND BUT BECAUSE THEY CAN NEVER GET PAST REVENGE AND BLOOD LUST. EVEN IF YOU DIDN'T VOTE FOR BUSH, even if you didn't know and would have protested the armaments and dollar giveaways, you are guilty. You ARE guilty. So am I. And I
feel a rage you can't imagine.

Posted by: HAD IT | July 29, 2006 07:37 PM

For Angus wrote:

"Same crock as the stuff you post. Just a different side!

Posted by: For Angus | July 29, 2006 02:20 PM "


What a great comment - you are so smart - kudos on your debating skills.

Posted by: Angus | July 29, 2006 07:43 PM

Some of you above are critizising me for saying that Israel is illegal and on-the-way out. Just for the record, I'm NOT an Arab playing some game of hide-and-seek. In fact I am a European Jew and lost family in Aushwitz. I visited Israel as a teenager in 1965 and realized that it was artificial as opposed to places like Turkey, Syria, and Jordan. Later visited most of the Middle East including Gaza and constantly concluded that Israel just is not for real. As I mentioned before, the Arabs have been pushed too far. Now they have better weapons, and more-and-more world opinion in their favor. All of that put together tells me that Israel is on the loosing side which has nothing to do with whose side I'm on - pure reality.

Posted by: European | July 29, 2006 08:06 PM

"For Angus wrote:

"Same crock as the stuff you post. Just a different side!

Posted by: For Angus | July 29, 2006 02:20 PM "


Dude - what a lame ass post - at least challenge their points..

Posted by: Wimpwatcher | July 29, 2006 09:02 PM

Wikipedia offers an excellent and fair description of the current military conflict between Israel and Lebanon. Just go to the following link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel

Scroll down to the middle of the web page. The gist of the matter is that (1) Hezbollah (and other Islamic thugs) caused the current conflict by kidnapping some Israelis, (2) the Israelis are defending themselves from Islamic hostility, and (3) there is some controversy over whether the Israeli response is excessive.

From my perspective, which is the American perspective, the response is just and fair. If a Mexican vigilante group fired missiles from Mexico and either blew up my neighbor's house in San Diego or kidnapped my neighbor, I fully expect Washington to act immediately by killing the Mexican vigilantes and all their supporters. Note that most Lebanese support Hezbollah and are getting what they deserve.

Posted by: atheist | July 29, 2006 09:36 PM

Alex, Not all jews in israel are european immigrants; jews have had a continuous presence in the land for millenia. It IS their holyland and HAS been for millenia. There are millions and millions of people like atheist and myself - probably we are the silent majority, who wish no ill on others, encourage tolerance for all nutty beliefs and prophets - AS LONG as they dont seek political/physical supremacy and keeep threatening bloody war as "religious duty".

But Islam is in a league of its own. Its PRIME premise is political supremacy backed up by holy WAR. This can not be accepted. Hard justice should prevail. NO arab/muslim or moral-equivalencing liberal/bush-hater/anti-semitic right winger is even LOOKING at the 400,000 deaths in TWO YEARS in Darfur!! How many of you geopolitical experts are even AWARE of these BRUTAL killings and rapes! If so, why is there so much SILENCE on the subject in the world media? WHAT makes these deaths..ONGOING..so much less important than wahts going on in lebanon and gaza? what makes any of you moral-equivalencing people and (self-hating jews like "European") think that the fall of israel will end ANYthing? (WHERE is your sense of proportionality?) It will only be the beginning of suffering for the REST of humanity. I'm neither a liberal nor a right winger, have no religion, neither an atheist nor a believer, do not love/hate jews or muslims or anybody else. Live and LET LIVE. Israel hasn't attacked Jordan or egypt now, has it? since the peace treaty?
Disproportionate wars are what end mayhem. The japanese killed 30 million chinese from 1933-45 before the "evil" americans nuked them into sense. (60 years later the face of the no2 economy - japan -is cutesy-wootsy pikachu ;) ) Whos evil in the big picture/long run? What criminal agenda do you think America is running in Europe having liberated and FED the grandfathers of today's Europeans (Marshall plan)? Look at the big picture. Yes, the suffering arab children on TV...its heartbreaking. but firm justice/punishment is what STOPS future, EVEN MORE MASSIVE suffering. What would you RATHER have? Israel dropping laser guided conventional ammunition or dropping nukes in response to hezbollah nukes?

Does it occur to you, that, people who are utterly neutral are tired of this lunacy being perpetrated under the name of false "tolerance"? Tolerance for what? Bloody threats and spectacular mayhem that takes up frontpage space and HIDES the even bigger calamities like Darfur? Have more (proportionally OR absoulte) arabs killed in gaza? or more tibetans killed in Tibet? whos the native where? Tibetans or Han chinese? they outnumber the tibetans now.

Who is being disproportionate? and racist? there are 52 "islamic" (racist?) states but there shouldnt be ONE jewish (racist?) state? Islam occupies 1/6th the world landmass, Israel - a mere 8000 sq.miles..Judaism's homeland. As for the Indians here, they have their own "Nations" and even places like mount rushmore and blackhills may return to them as their holy grounds. Thats eminently reasonable.

Posted by: Human | July 29, 2006 09:46 PM

Wikipedia offers an excellent and fair description of the events arising between Israel and the Palestinians. Just go to the following link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel

Scroll down to the middle of the web page to find an insightful bit of history.

In 2000, Washington brokered a compromise solution to end the conflict between the Palestinian thugs and the Israelis. Jerusalem agreed to give 94% of the West Bank and 100% of the Gaza strip to the Palestinians to create their own independent state. The resulting independent state would have had a Palestinian population density that is roughly the population density of Japan.

The solution was fair and just. Unfortunately, the Palestinian thugs actually opposed the compromise because they could not get 100% of the West Bank.

The thugs then proceeded to commit more violence against the Israels.

Posted by: atheist | July 29, 2006 09:52 PM

another notable item: the christian enclaves/sunni enclaves in northern Beirut are carrying on as if theres no war. so far only TWO artilelry shells have hit these neighborhoods. You can choose to read about this any news site you want. Just google for "christian enclaves lebanon". This is no random, blind retaliation as a whole. "Lebanon" is not being attacked.

Posted by: human | July 29, 2006 09:55 PM

Keep up the good work, atheist! You need to keep presenting the facts!

Posted by: | July 29, 2006 10:04 PM

Human - you make such sense. Hope you can at least attempt to show some of these brain-washed, hateful people posting on this site some insight into this conflict.

Posted by: Wow! | July 29, 2006 10:08 PM

HAD IT - good for you! i'm glad you've had it. you may feel guilty, but i sure don't. i think the "vile, savage Israelis" are doing the world a favor when they attempt to rid the world of still more terrorists. i'm glad my country supports the longest-standing democratic ally we've had in the Middle East. there are anger management classes for people who feel so much rage. perhaps you need to take one.

Posted by: Keep it coming! | July 29, 2006 10:18 PM

European-It's a terrible tragedy that you lost your family in Aushwitz. Now it seems that you don't appreciate how important it is for the world Jewish population to have Israel. It means that the family that perished in Aushwitz, the family that was killed just because they were Jewish, died while you denounce the right of Jews to exist in a Jewish homeland. Contrary to what you may believe, Jews have EVERY right to be there. There are biblical, historial and religious ties to the land that is present-day Israel. There have always been Jews in that region. The Jews who were forced out were generally persecuted in their adoptive lands and always had the desire to return to their homeland. There is nothing artifical about Israel, a country that was created by our good friend, the United Nations. It's a shame that you are so negative about Israel after your relatives perished purely for who they were. I wonder what they would think...

Posted by: | July 29, 2006 10:30 PM

European-It's a terrible tragedy that you lost your family in Aushwitz. Now it seems that you don't appreciate how important it is for the world Jewish population to have Israel. It means that the family that perished in Aushwitz, the family that was killed just because they were Jewish, died while you denounce the right of Jews to exist in a Jewish homeland. Contrary to what you may believe, Jews have EVERY right to be there. There are biblical, historial and religious ties to the land that is present-day Israel. There have always been Jews in that region. The Jews who were forced out were generally persecuted in their adoptive lands and always had the desire to return to their homeland. There is nothing artifical about Israel, a country that was created by our good friend, the United Nations. It's a shame that you are so negative about Israel after your relatives perished purely for who they were. I wonder what they would think...

Posted by: to European | July 29, 2006 10:30 PM

To whoever wrote this:

"It's a shame that you are so negative about Israel after your relatives perished purely for who they were. I wonder what they would think...


Posted by: | July 29, 2006 10:30 PM "


You are a gutless coward - its pretty obvious that you are someone who has posted here before - at least have the balls to put your "handle" on the post if not your name..

Posted by: Angus | July 29, 2006 11:47 PM

America and israel is pushing lebanon into civil WAR. If you see all muslims houses destroyed and christian houses are standing. That will irk all lebanese muslims. And also they might feel lebanese army deserted them. They don't need a impotent govt as it is now.

Things can go bad and these refugees may start to kill lebanese christains. It is a good possibility.

Well done america.

Started Iraq civil war. Now Lebaon civil war. Well done.

Posted by: Alex | July 30, 2006 03:05 AM

first, to Atheist,

You are a thoughtless bigot who seems contented to indict an entire religion due to the actions of a tiny fraction of it's adherents. Your arguements are without fail lame rehashings of lies which have been debunked many times before on these forums but due to your inability grasp or unwillingness to acknowledge earlier posts that refute your assertions completely you continue to maintian them. It is a testament you your natural propensity towards ignorance.

An obvious indication of your lack of logical abilty is your use of universal condemnation of all Muslims. It is simply impossible to make blanket assertions about such a diverse and large group, but in your twisted morality, the only way that you can justify such brutality against Muslims in the territories and Lebanon is to brand them all as "evil".
Trust me, you have only convinced people here of your moral bankruptcy, Hatred, and lack of intelligence.

As to your assertion that Israel offered the palestinians 94 percent of their land back, well, it is a further indication of either your ignorance or desire to simply attempt to lie to a lot of poeple here that you must imagine don't know anything about these issues.

The main probelm with the fair deal you refer to (lie about) is that the parts that Israel wanted to keep were spread throughout the west bank, doting the map with some big and many little settlemts. those settlements were each connected with roads and each settlement was to be subject to "Natural Growth" which allowed them to expand in the future. the roads that connected each of these were israeli territory and crisscrossed the territories with promises of future harassment and checkpoints. Furthermore, some of the segmented parts of the West bank that remained would still be under Israeli military control. There are many other utterly ridiculus qualities to this " fair deal" that I will not go into here, but suffice it to say that no country in the world would accept or is currnetly configured anything like what the Israelis sugggested and Arafat was right not to accept the offer, as was maintained by the authors "The Israel Lobby" (Walt and Mearsheimer, U of Chicago and Harvard) and many many others.

By the way, atheist, what 6% of the US would you be willing to give up? How would you explain you decision to your fellow americans?

regarding your constant fantasy of mexican radicals firing rockets at america? All I can say, Again, is why indeed do you suppose mexican terrorists are not firing rockets at the US? could it be because we are not currently trying to settle large Mexican population centers in mexico and keeping the residents who we displace in a large ghettos? if we did, rest assured there would be mexican terrorism.

Your ignorance, and thoughtlesness are simply astounding.

One last thing for you, Atheist. Feces is a brown, smelly matter that is the end result of the human digestive process. Shinola is also brown, but is a type of shoe polish. carefully examine the two until you can reliably tell the difference and then get back to the rest of us here with your insights about the ME.


I, as an American, apologize for the sentiments of people like atheist. most people in the US do not think like this person and in fact find this kind of thinking to be sickening and shameful.
Most people here respect Islam and do not harbor the bizzare and ill conceived notions that Atheist seems doomed to repeat on these forums ad nauseum.

J

Posted by: J | July 30, 2006 04:50 AM

"Dozens Killed, Hurt in Israeli Airstrike
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS 12 minutes ago
At least 50 people - more than half children - died in a southern Lebanese village in the deadliest attack in 19 days of fighting."

Olmert of Israel realy is the new Hitler in town. Bush is his sidekick.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 30, 2006 07:32 AM

It's a shame that you are so negative about Israel after your relatives perished purely for who they were. I wonder what they would think...
Posted by: to European | July 29, 2006 10:30 PM

My relatives from Auschwitz would totally agree with me. Family members who did survive stayed in Europe and rebuild their lives as pride Jews. They did not hide by fleeing to the Middle East and then killing Arabs.

Posted by: European | July 30, 2006 07:40 AM

Olmert of Israel realy is the new Hitler in town. Bush is his sidekick.
Posted by: Anagadir | July 30, 2006 07:32 AM

Anagadir, you may have a point. Condo Rice was just told by Lebanon to stay away from Beirot. They have no more use for America. What kind of guy is Bush. Discusting!

Posted by: Jack.Chicago | July 30, 2006 07:48 AM

"Jordan's King Abdullah II condemned ''the ugly crime perpetrated by Israeli forces in Qana,'' calling it ''a blatant violation of the law and all international conventions." - NYTimes

For the Jordan King to condem Israel for "ugly crimes" is the same as saying "Israel you are finished, you're no longer welcome, just get the hell out of here!"

Posted by: MM | July 30, 2006 08:02 AM

Maybe it's rabies.

The jews must have rabies!

Posted by: observer | July 30, 2006 08:25 AM

As i said many times, Israel intention is to provoke syrians to get into the war. Israel has failed. And it looks like Killers in the worlds eyes.

You can't kill and 50 civilans sleeping in the building and tell the world hizbollah is using them as cover.

The reason Israel hit that UN post is to keep UNK off their deliberate attempt to scare and make lebanese flee.

No wonder these people wants israel destroyed.

Posted by: Alex | July 30, 2006 08:32 AM

We all know there is a islam problem. I think what we are facing in lebanon is not a muslim problem. It is illeagal occupationa nd creation of state of israel provokes every nerves of palestenians to react and fight.

There will never be peace as longa s israel exists. Who is going to answer those 600 civilians?

Do you expect muslims to be quiet? No way.

All this will be called martyrdom in their language.

I really believe we have idiot running america and israel. They have no clue. All they do is just bomb and bomb until someone react. Well this kind of tactics woke up the world.

Every country will try to get nukes. They know there is war coming in another 50 years. They all have to be ready.

I realy don't want to side with muslims. But as long as israel exists , The justice side with muslims. Especially until palestenians gets what they want.

Then it will become totally different war.

Atpresent the worlds enemy is america and israel. They killed 600 civilians for aimless tactic. Flawed idea.

World can be destroyed with an idiot called George Bush. EVen with so many restriction in laws , america elects idiot. Go figure.

I have to say You have to be a leo to be president of america as condition. Hahaha.

Clinton was leo.


Posted by: Alex | July 30, 2006 08:42 AM

"Rice Cancels Trip to Beirut After Qana Airstrike. Todays NYTimes"

What nonsense. Rice was just fired by Lebanon. The US is nothing but a slave of Israel. Bush, are you really that stupid or start drinking again?

Posted by: NewYork | July 30, 2006 09:54 AM

So, its the threat of more violence from Arabs that requires the sacrifice of an entire country? So, you will pay more attention to injustice in Darfur - a thousand times magnified - only if these Africans start becoming efficient terrorists causing spectacular attacks on arab capitals and cafes?

So its not the idea of JUSTICE - but just the desire for "less bad news on TV" and the FEAR of arab/islamic violence thats driving the entire debate?

Massive genocide is being perpetrated someplace else; the so called Israeli "atrocities" PALE in comparison to this:

http://www.sudanreeves.org/modules.php?op=modload&name=Sections&file=index&req=viewarticle&artid=509&page=1

""We saw five Arab men who came to us and asked where our husbands were. Then they told us that we should have sex with them. We said no. So they beat and raped us. After they abused us, the told us that now we would have Arab babies; and if they would find any Fur [one of the non-Arab or African tribal groups of Darfur], they would rape them again to change the colour of their children.' (Three women, 25, 30 and 40, October 2004, West Darfur)" (page 1)
"

Yes its the same Jan Egeland (U.N) mentioned in these articles, but he's only nominally outraged, as there isn't much publicity involved with THIS crisis.

Posted by: Human | July 30, 2006 09:55 AM

"I, as an American, apologize for the sentiments of people like atheist. most people in the US do not think like this person and in fact find this kind of thinking to be sickening and shameful."

J-You have much more to apologize for than the sentiments of people who disagree with you. Your thinking could also be called sickening and shameful, and your scatalogical references are just plain immature. I'm disgusted with the way you and "Anger" lord over this post as if you are the only two people with the right ideology. I respect the fact that you have your opinions about the situation in the Middle East. How about attempting to respect the opinion of others who disagree with you in a more respectful way?

Posted by: Disgusted | July 30, 2006 10:21 AM

'Atheist' can make all the bigoted generalizations he wants about Muslims and Arabs. Doesn't change the fact that Bush and Rice, by egging Israel on in its barbaric scorched-earth campaign against Lebanese civilians, is bolstering Hezbollah and every other radical Islamist group, including al-Qaeda, around the world.
Muslims look at this conflict and see the U.S. aiding and abetting the side that has done by the vast majority of the killing. We conclude that the U.S. holds Arab life in contempt, and will support Israel no matter how vile its crimes.
I've tried to argue the case for moderate, tolerant democratic politics in the Arab world, and for openness to the West and what is good in American values.
I've now lost that argument. In fact, I don't even buy it myself any more.
By egging Israel on in its campaign of atrocities against civilians, the U.S. has shown that it is indeed the enemy of the Arab people.
I regret that I was wrong. I now realize that the U.S. is not our friend; it is our enemy.

Posted by: Ismael | July 30, 2006 11:10 AM

The Big Lie at heart of anti-Israel sentiment

By MIKE FORSYTHE

I'M amazed at the sheer volume of hysterical accusations levelled at Israel day after day. Hypocrisy and falsehoods permeate any and all discussions of the topic. With notable exceptions, many in the West display an irrationality and a willingness to turn objective truths on their heads (as seen, for example, in CUPE Ontario's boycott of Israel). The words "apartheid" and "genocide" are hurled at Israel by the malefic, gullible or ignorant until they no longer have meaning.

Hamas and Hezbollah lobbed thousands of rockets specifically at Israeli civilians (no leaflets warning innocents to flee, since THEY were the targets). Launch sites and weapons caches are deliberately and cynically situated among Arab civilians so as to virtually guarantee civilian casualties and that all-important PR.

Hezbollah are the hatchetmen for a hideous regime which hangs teenaged rape victims for "adultery." How can Westerners express "solidarity" with these killers, chanting "We are all Hezbollah"? Israel is always incorrectly perceived as "Goliath" and its enemies as "David," no matter how evil "David" is and how treacherous his methods.

Why this enormous, pathological hatred of Israel from those who should know better? The blind acceptance of one colossal lie since the mid-1950s has convinced many that Israel is as evil as Nazi Germany. This pillar of the Palestinian victim mythology was printed in a July 16 Herald opinion article: "In 1948, Israel drove the majority of Palestinians out of their homeland," as if a mighty Zionist army magically appeared in 1948, cleansing Palestine of its peaceful Arabs. Considering how outnumbered and outgunned Israel was in 1948, the very notion is ludicrous in the extreme.

The UN itself voted to partition Palestine in 1947, bringing an immediate increase in Arab violence. Jews were attacked by Palestinian Arabs plus a volunteer "Arab Liberation Army." Other Arab nations publicly stated their intention to invade the moment Israel declared itself. Up to 30,000 well-off Palestinian Arabs fled immediately to "wait it out."

The UN Palestine Commission named the instigators correctly: "Powerful Arab interests, both inside and outside Palestine, are defying the resolution of the General Assembly and are engaged in a deliberate effort to alter by force the settlement envisaged therein." When Israel declared statehood, five Arab armies invaded with genocidal intentions while the world simply watched. Azzam Pasha, secretary-general of the Arab League, said: "This will be a war of extermination and a momentous massacre ..."

The flight of Arabs into neighbouring countries (often assisted by the British military) was reported exhaustively by the world media at the time. While common knowledge, there were no charges of mass expulsions, not even from Arab leaders. Civilians with somewhere to go will naturally flee fighting, but Arab leaders recklessly encouraged some Palestinians to leave temporarily and return when the area was cleansed of Jews.

"We will smash the country with our guns and obliterate every place the Jews seek shelter in. The Arabs should conduct their wives and children to safe areas until the fighting has died down." - Iraqi PM Nuri Said

"Since 1948, we have been demanding the return of the refugees to their homes. But we ourselves are the ones who encouraged them to leave." - Syrian PM Haled al Azm

"Arab armies entered Palestine to protect the Palestinians from the Zionist tyranny but, instead, they abandoned them, forced them to emigrate and to leave their homeland, and threw them into prisons similar to the ghettos in which the Jews used to live." - Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen)

Spreading stories of Jewish atrocities didn't galvanize local Arabs as hoped, but scared more into fleeing. Jews didn't have the option of travelling a short distance to safety; it was win or be destroyed. In the aftermath of the Arabs' humiliating defeat, refugees lingered in the camps while Jordan illegally annexed Jerusalem/West Bank and Egypt annexed the Gaza Strip.

As UNRWA's Ralph Galloway noted in 1958: "The Arab states do not want to solve the refugee problem. They want to keep it as an open sore, as an affront to the UN and as a weapon against Israel. Arab leaders don't give a damn whether the refugees live or die." The refugees were used as a pretext for violating every single facet of the ceasefire agreement, and have been used as a cudgel ever since.

The blaming of Israel for the refugees only occurred years later as Arab leaders tried to deflect criticism from themselves. Repeated endlessly, it's now "common knowledge." Much of the rancour towards Israel stems from this monstrous lie (and the fact that many people want it to be true). To many, it justifies the 57 years of murderous attacks on Israeli citizens.

A refugee is quoted in 1954: "The Arab government told us, 'Get out so that we can get in.' So we got out, but they did not get in." Arab states failed in their bid to finish Hitler's dream, but then, as now, there was no attempt to take responsibility for their own actions.

The rest of the world operates on the premise that if you launch aggressive action, you lose territory; that's the price tag. With Israel's enemies, a disconnect exists between aggressive action and the inevitably unfortunate results.

Posted by: Who started it? | July 30, 2006 11:34 AM

Disgusted,

You would defend the bigotry that is espoused constantly by Atheist? I will not.
In fact, I am as disgusted by It as I am the Anti semitism that is often expressed here which, If you actually have read my earlier posts here you would see that I have treated in a similar manor.

With regard to my scatological reference, I felt it encompassed a fair and accurate assessment of Atheist's reasoning ability and was also uttered in frustration at his constant repeating of issues that have been debunked both here and in the wide world many times. His description of the Deal offered Arafat was absolutely incorrect. It was a lie. A commonly debunked lie. a pedestrian lie. a frustrating and avoidable lie. I gave you some of the facts that debunk that lie. If you have a rebuttal, please bring it. Otherwise, here is my humble suggestion for you.

Have the guts to use only one moniker so that your comments can be cumulatively assessed.

If you find something factually or Morally wrong with something that I've said, point it out and bring an actual arguement that includes some facts to defend it. That is the purpose of this forum. If you refrain from bigotry, (not just disagreeing with the actions of a group of people, but condeming a billion plus people on a wholesale basis) I will never treat you as I do Atheist (a rabid Bigot)and the white supremecists/Nazis, ect.

No scatological reference could ever be as vile and offensive as the hatred that Atheist and the other bigots regualarly spew.

With regard to my apology.

There are people from many other countries that read this forum. I will apologize for the small minority of American bigots such as atheist and his nazi cohorts and reassure them that most americans value the constitution, which promises equal rights and protection to all peoples and religions in this country and that we extend that same good will to others world wide. I would also suggest that America is a religious nation, with many beliefs represented, and that the majority of the people here would be prevented by their spiritual understanding from ever falling into the simpleminded, sould killing trap of bigotry that atheist has fallen into.

What are your views on the constitution, which ensures that any citizen in America, regardless of race or religion whether arab, jew, or caucasion, whether beleiving in Islam, judaism, christianity or anything else enjoys all the same rights as any other citizen, as it pertains to atheists views? Do you even care? Does it matter to you? Have you no other moral objections to Atheists Bigotry? I'm serious here. I would like to hear your defense of him instead of your baseless attacks on me and others here. Say something. stop lurking and just atacking others while offering no information or insights.

J

Posted by: J | July 30, 2006 11:38 AM

Not sure if atheist and "disgusted", "|" etc are the same person? Nonetheless I just scrolled up and couldn't see any post where atheist is advocating the suspension of civl rights/constitutional rights for any group? What "bigotry"? Also, its about the "ideas"; no personal attacks please. Its SO easy to type personal attacks, but it gets rather boring unless you're new to the web. After all we are ALL "lurking" , just like all the fearless leaders everywhere ;) No use trying to attach too much importance to the personalities on a virtual forum. Discuss ideas and facts instead.

Posted by: Human | July 30, 2006 11:52 AM

Qana Incident

The latest Israeli airstrike in Qana is regrettable both in loss of life and economic destruction, but it is important to remember that these are as Dr Condoleeza Rice aptly put it "the birth pangs of a new Middle East".

President Bush with his usual insight has described this Israel initiative into Lebanon as a "great opportunity" to change the middle east. It is not for us to question this great man's judgement, the anti-Israel lobby notwithstanding.

So let's not be hasty with a ceasefire. Olmert has told Rice he needs another 10-14 days to finish the offensive in Lebanon, according to a senior Israeli government official. Let us give him that time. I have full confidence that President Bush will ensure that Israel gets the the time by blocking any Security Council action.

The bleeding liberals should take courage. What are a few hundred innocent deaths in the great scheme of events? As for the economic destruction of Lebanon, well in another generation it can be re-built. A small price to pay for democratization. President Bush is bringing his vision to the world.

Posted by: Oscar | July 30, 2006 12:01 PM

Qana Incident

The latest Israeli airstrike in Qana is regrettable both in loss of life and economic destruction, but it is important to remember that these are as Dr Condoleeza Rice aptly put it "the birth pangs of a new Middle East".

President Bush with his usual insight has described this Israel initiative into Lebanon as a "great opportunity" to change the middle east. It is not for us to question this great man's judgement, the anti-Israel lobby notwithstanding.

So let's not be hasty with a ceasefire. Olmert has told Rice he needs another 10-14 days to finish the offensive in Lebanon, according to a senior Israeli government official. Let us give him that time. I have full confidence that President Bush will ensure that Israel gets the the time by blocking any Security Council action.

The bleeding liberals should take courage. What are a few hundred innocent deaths in the great scheme of events? As for the economic destruction of Lebanon, well in another generation it can be re-built. A small price to pay for democratization. President Bush is bringing his vision to the world.

Posted by: Oscar | July 30, 2006 12:01 PM

Who started it,

the simple answer? the zionists. the harder answer, who caused the situation to remain horrific and out of control for the next 50 years? The settler movement. the desire for "greater israel". The stealing of the lands that the palestinians, run ourt of their original homes, had left to them and turning their remaining territories into prison camps with armed guards lack of basic human rights and generations of lives destroyed.

No one could reasonably assert that the creation of Israel, especially an Israel which must always remain under exclusively Jewish control, would occur without a violent response from it's origianl inhabitants and neighboring countries.

It could, however, be very reasonably asserted that the violence would have abated over time if the settlements and other expansionst moves had nor occured and persisted for 40 plus years.

These are utterly indefensible actions that are condemned by the entire world and which even Israel now realizes must come to an end. As long as the settlements exist, Israel could no more claim moral superiority or even moral parity with the Arab/Muslim world than the US could in the days of slavery.

The settlements must go, and then you will see the eventual end of Hamas and Hezbollah.

One last thing, It's now just sort of cute the way that the arguement keeps trying to be brought back to whether Israel should "exist" in the first place, as though that were even seriously in question under any circumstances. It's like the transparent attempt of a small child to try to try to pull the subject away from the terrible thing they are doing and probably will do again to something that leads nowhere, as though the adults will simply forget what's currently happening. Stop the bombing, tear down the wall, raze the settlements
and end the occupation. Then complain about how badly "You're" being treated.


J

Posted by: J | July 30, 2006 12:06 PM

Another Israeli massacre and war crime:

A least 60 civilians including at least 34 children were killed in Qana by US-Made Israeli bombs.

This is the same village in which Israel killed 102 civilians by bombing a UN shelter few years ago.

Boycott Israel.

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 12:07 PM

Sully

"It's the rich Jewish lobby that has our dear republic hostage to supporting their monstrous brothers in Israel. Funny it was that same rich Jewish lobby that helped slavery last so long in the US and profited the most from it, in owning the slave ships, and selling insurance on slaves.

I'm not anti-semitic, but the people of Israel and Jews as a whole need to start giving people reasons to love them instead of despise. Perhaps then terrorism would be abated. Their destruction of Israel does not help their cause."

It is precisely this deeply anti-Semitic rhetoric that causes Israelis and Jews as a whole to overreact the way current Israeli policy is. First off, American support of Isreal has little, if nothing, to do with "rich" Jewish loobyists. It simply boils down to oil. See, oil=$, and Bush is a Texas oilman. The only state in the Middle East, aside from Jordan, that can truly be seen as a US ally is Israel. Thus, it is not the "rich Jewish lobby" supporting Israel, but the Christian conservative Bush administration.

Oh, and that whole "rich Jewish lobby" thing.... That is a real stereotype there. The same as saying that our homicide rate in the US is due to "violent black people." Sure, there are some wealthy Jews. There are also quite a few without much. Try heading to the Jewish Ethiopian neighborhoods in Los Angeles for instance.

Secondly, prove to us that Jews were behind the American slave trade. From what I understand from myriad sources, American slaver (i.e. not Brazilian, Venezuelan, or Latin American) was funded and backed by British companies.

Lastly, Jews should not be, nor ever have been, required to "prove" to the world why they should be loved and respected. I thought that love and respect was something intrinsic to our collective model of modern societies. No group should have to "prove" their worth. And to imply that Jews are the reason why terrorism exhists today is pure anti-Semitism. Do a google search and check out some of the ways local Palestinian populations dealt with the British occupation of their land prior to the 1948 founding of Israel. Hmmm.... Even though Jews were being systematically murdered by a world that did not want them, they were somehow responsible for the aggressions of both British AND Palestinian "terrorist" groups???

Oh, and I not a homophobe, I just think that gay people need to keep their disgusting beliefs and behavior out of our lives (and country) and give us a reason to like and respect them.

Think about that. Sounds like veiled homophobia to me. Be careful what you choose to preach and believe.

Posted by: dm | July 30, 2006 12:40 PM

dm:

"First off, American support of Isreal has little, if nothing, to do with "rich" Jewish loobyists. It simply boils down to oil. See, oil=$, and Bush is a Texas oilman. The only state in the Middle East, aside from Jordan, that can truly be seen as a US ally is Israel. Thus, it is not the "rich Jewish lobby" supporting Israel, but the Christian conservative Bush administration. "

Perhaps I could remind you that Israel does not have oil or control any oil reserves.

So in terms of oil, Israel is not an ally but a LIABILITY.

I also could remind you that the only oil embargo that was ever enforced against the US was because of Israel.

In terms of policy towards the middle east, AIPAC holds congress hostage. The religious right is a new comer in this, and is influenced by AIPAC.

Congress is literally scared of AIPAC. It can not pass anything that is critical to Israel.

How can this be reasonable when congress is free to criticize the white house or even the President but not Israel???

We have been saying for a long time that Israel and its cronies in the US (AIPAC and others) has become a huge liability for America.

It is time to wake up and ask AIPAC supporters whether they are rooting for USA first or Israel first.

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 12:59 PM

Too much lengthy analysis of why Israel is killing people in Lebanon, why Bush is sitting on his a-s, etc. The bottom line (no pun intended Mr. President) is that Israel is the immature son of rich parents. The more you read Asian and European papers the more you realize that Israel and the USA (to some extend because of all this) are rapidly loosing trust and confidence from the rest of the world. The USA can recover but Israel is finished. It will be overflooded by Arab hatred and nothing is going to stop it.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 30, 2006 01:49 PM

If you are a reasonable participant in this forum, do not attempt to "debate" the other participants. You are not likely to convince the other participants of anything.

Rather, you should write to the larger but mostly silent audience reading this blog. Due to the popularity of the "Washington Post", many people in Thailand (which also suffers from violent Islamic attacks in the southern part of the country), Japan, Poland, etc. This audience is quite reasonable.

For the benefit of this audience, I point out that Wikipedia offers an excellent and fair description of the current military conflict between Israel and Lebanon. Just go to the following link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel

Scroll down to the middle of the web page. The gist of the matter is that (1) Hezbollah (and other Islamic thugs) caused the current conflict by kidnapping some Israelis, (2) the Israelis are defending themselves from Islamic hostility, and (3) there is some controversy over whether the Israeli response is excessive.

From my perspective, which is the American perspective, the response is just and fair. If a Mexican vigilante group fired missiles from Mexico and either blew up my neighbor's house in San Diego or kidnapped my neighbor, I fully expect Washington to act immediately by killing the Mexican vigilantes and all their supporters. Note that most Lebanese support Hezbollah and are getting what they deserve.

The position of the Muslims (in Iran, Lebanon, etc.) is that you (1) should sit tight in your house in San Diego and (2) wait until Washington peacefully convinces the Mexican vigilantes to stop their brutal violence. According to the Muslims, if the vigilantes refuse to stop, then (1) Washington should not, in any way, militarily attack Mexico, which is enthusiastically giving safe harbor to the vigilantes and (2) you should just accept the situation and live with the occasional violence commited by the vigilantes.

There is one caveat: according to the Muslims, if the person living in San Diego is a Muslim, then Washington should immediately attack Mexico. Indeed, the Muslims cheered Washington, when it repeatedly bombed the civilian infrastructure in Serbia in a successful attempt to force the Serbs to stop killing the Muslims in Kosovo. Even when the Serbs were using civilians as human shields (just as Hezbollah is doing now by hiding among the Lebanese civilians, of whom most actually support Hezbollah), Washington continued the military operation. Guess what? The Muslims in several Middle Eastern nations cheered the USA.

Therein lies the crux of the difference between the Muslim position and the non-Muslim position. You decide which position is the position of hypocritical bigotry.

Posted by: atheist | July 30, 2006 02:27 PM

Wikipedia offers an excellent and fair description of the events arising between Israel and the Palestinians. Just go to the following link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel

Scroll down to the middle of the web page to find an insightful bit of history.

In 2000, President Clinton arranged a compromise solution to end the conflict between the Palestinian thugs and the Israelis. (Note that President Clinton is the same president who ordered the American military to bomb Serbia repeatedly until the Serbs stopped killing the Muslims in Kosovo.) Jerusalem agreed to give 94% of the West Bank and 100% of the Gaza strip to the Palestinians to create their own independent state. The resulting independent state would have had a Palestinian population density that is roughly the population density of Japan.

The solution was fair and just. Unfortunately, the Palestinian thugs actually opposed the compromise because they could not get 100% of the West Bank. (Note that in a compromise, neither party gets everything that it wants. Getting 94% of the objective is an excellent achievement -- unless you think like a Muslim.)

The thugs then proceeded to commit more violence against the Israelis.

As a side note, Wikipedia provides a plethora of sources that you can use to check the accuracy of the Wikipedia article about Israel. The use of facts seems to bother many Muslims and the occasional Israeli extremist. So, Wikipedia has taken care to protect the content of the article about Israel. At the top of the article, Wikipedia has pasted an informational notice indicating that several anonymous militant thugs have tried to deface the Wikipedia article.

We should ask Wikipedia to pass the Internet-Protocol addresses of the thugs to (1) the US Office of Home Security, (2) the Israeli Defense Force, and (3) the Thai army (which occasionally battles Islamic extremists in the South). Perhaps, these government agencies can help Wikipedia by eliminating the militant thugs -- swiftly, cleanly, and quietly.

Posted by: atheist | July 30, 2006 02:51 PM

I wrote the following in the article dated July 30, 2006, 02:27 PM.

----------
Rather, you should write to the larger but mostly silent audience reading this blog. Due to the popularity of the "Washington Post", many people in Thailand (which also suffers from violent Islamic attacks in the southern part of the country), Japan, Poland, etc. This audience is quite reasonable.
----------

I meant to write the following.

----------
Rather, you should write to the larger but mostly silent audience reading this blog. Due to the popularity of the "Washington Post", many people in Thailand (which also suffers from violent Islamic attacks in the southern part of the country), Japan, Poland, etc. read this blog. Unlike some of the participants in this forum, the audience is quite reasonable.
----------

Posted by: atheist | July 30, 2006 02:57 PM

Atheist:

In response to the misleading information that you are polluting this blog with in your defense of this messianic violent and fundamentalist God-promised Israeli state, please allow me to clarify few points:

1- Lebanon is not a Muslim country. It is an Arab country with almost no religious majority. Christians in Lebanon are about 40%. The Lebanese President is christian and has condemned Israel with the strongest terms.

2- Israel has been violating Lebanese airspace in the last 30 years with impunity. Israel never respected Lebanese sovreignity.

3- Israel has occupied Southern Lebanon for 22 years and in 1982 It killed 19,000 Lebanese and injured over 30,000 people. No criminal Israeli leader was ever held responsible for all those massacres.

4- Israel still occupies The Shebaa farms in violation of UN resolutions. The Shebaa farms are not part of Israel and Lebanon has requested Israel to leave them.

5- Hezbollah attacked a military target in Israel, not civilian.

6- Israel still occupies the Palestinian territories in violation of countless resolutions and in violation of the basic rights of 3.8 million Palestinians who have been ruled by military force against their will for 39 years.

7- The (coward) Arab states have a duty to defend any Arab nation that is under attack or under occupation in accordance with the Arab league treaty signed by all members of the league.


8- Israel is an apartheid state and the leading violator of UN resolutions in the entire world. Israel's 5 million citizens rule 3.8 million Palestinians against their will and deny them all basic rights including freedom of movement and the right to live in their own native homes.

9- Israel is driven by a fundamentalist radical view of the world in which somehow God decides where people are allowed to live.

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 02:58 PM

"The solution was fair and just. Unfortunately, the Palestinian thugs actually opposed the compromise because they could not get 100% of the West Bank. (Note that in a compromise, neither party gets everything that it wants. Getting 94% of the objective is an excellent achievement -- unless you think like a Muslim.)"

Who decides that it is fair and just?

Oh let me guess..the US administration!

During the negotiations you mention above, the US envoy was Dennis Ross.

What you probably don't know is that Dennis Ross served as an executive director at AIPAC. Oh but should that have any influence on fairness or justice? Of course not!!!

Arafat refused the so-called offer for good reasons and I supported his decision.

Unless Israel complies with UN resolutions, including allowing Palestinian refugees to return to their homes, no Israeli "offer" should be accepted.

It is already enough that we Arabs accepted that Israel, that was founded by Zionist-Russian gangs, gets away with the lands its stole from the natives.

In 1948, on Israel's so-called independence day, 70% of its citizens were foreign born.

Don't think we will ever forget about this.

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 03:22 PM

Only points 1 and 5 are valid, without requiring any context.

"8- Israel is an apartheid state and the leading violator of UN resolutions in the entire world. Israel's 5 million citizens rule 3.8 million Palestinians against their will and deny them all basic rights including freedom of movement and the right to live in their own native homes."

The so-called "occupied" territories were fairly won from the arabs in a war of aggression which THEY started. "Apartheid" indeed? Are there any blacks/Africans reading these threads? Especially from south africa? Can you explain to the arabs/muslims what "Apartheid" REALLY MEANS? How come the arab-israelis enjoy the highest standard of living of ANY arab population? and how come there are arab members in the knessett? So, ANY country becomes officially islamic (there are 52) when the muslim population exceeds 50% (Malaysia) whereas the jews can't even have a SINGLE state of their own?

"
9- Israel is driven by a fundamentalist radical view of the world in which somehow God decides where people are allowed to live."

Read response above. Also a non-muslim can not even enter mecca, nor pray in public anywhere inside saudi arabia, cant even display a CROSS , yet muslims continue this astonishingly hypocritical diatribe. :-) "Radical" indeed.

The Number ONE "duty" of the arab league is NOT to go to war against Israel because its fighting for its survival, but to go to war against the janjawid in DARFUR. The body count of the non-arabs getting killed there has exceeded 400,000.
Or is Justice not apparently a familiar concept with the arab culture?. Its always about their own dominance. Thats understandable, but the rest of the world is not going to stand by and allow this supremacist agenda to succeed. Thats what it is; 300 million arabs are claiming "occupation" because Israel is/was occupying a measly 2000 sq.miles of land which was taken from the arabs in a WAR of aggression THEY started. (And Israel pulled completely out of Gaza last year!) This is a question of fairness. Doesn't matter if you are a jew or not.

Posted by: Human | July 30, 2006 03:41 PM

Human:

"The so-called "occupied" territories were fairly won from the arabs in a war of aggression which THEY started."

I disagree.

In 1967 Israel launched a full scale invasion against Egypt and then Syria and it was during the same war that Israel bombed USS liberty (but I doubt you care, Israel comes first).

The only war that was started by Arabs was the 1973 war, but even then Israel was still occupying the Egyptian Sinai. So they were justified to attack the illegal occupier who was in violation of UN resolutions.

All Arab wars were conducted to get Arab territory back from either Russian-Zionist gangs in 1948 or from the Israeli state itself that never stopped to enlarge itself or evict natives out.

Why should you blame Arabs when a group of fanatical people from Europe showed up after 2000 years to supposedly reclaim their God-given ancestors lands?

2000 years?! It is outrageous, my friend. No sane person could have accepted this MESSIANIC madness. Sadly, messianic-injustice won but they can shut us up.

"Are there any blacks/Africans reading these threads? Especially from south africa? Can you explain to the arabs/muslims what "Apartheid" REALLY MEANS?"

They already did.

I hope you know who Desmond Tutu is.

Here is his open letter against Israeli apartheid:

http://www.merip.org/newspaper_opeds/Tutu_IU_Israeli_Apartheid.html


"How come the arab-israelis enjoy the highest standard of living of ANY arab population? "

Excuse me? Arabs in Israel have a better standard of living than people in Dubai or even Kuwait?

You must kidding.

Arabs in Israel are 2nd class citizens and do not enjoy equal rights under Israeli laws.

I am not even talking about "popular xenophobia" which is rampant in Israel against Arabs ("death to Arabs" chants during soccer games, "Evict Arabs out" billboards in Tel-Aviv, etc), I am talking about the LAW in Israel.

In other words, In Israel there isn't universal citizenship that is equitable to all, regardless of religion or ethnicity.

For instance:

93% of the territory of the State of Israel (not the occupied territories) is reserved under law for Jewish citizens only.

Remember that in South Africa, 87% of the territory was reserved under law to white citizens only.

Arab citizens of Israel looses their citizenship if they choose another one. Jewish citizens of Israel don't.

Now is this apartheid or not?

If we look at the occupied territories, it is even worse. Israeli-Arabs enjoy a good amount of rights, but the Arabs under the occupation have none.

What matters in the occupied territories though is that an Arab under occupation is ruled by different laws than a Jewish-settler living in the SAME territory.

What else do you need to know to be convinced that Jewish citizens get first treatment in Israel by law?

It is apartheid, and you should be condemning it not defending it.

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 04:16 PM

Atheist, you make eminently sensible points, but kindly don't undermine these, with statements and notions such as this:

"Perhaps, these government agencies can help Wikipedia by eliminating the militant thugs -- swiftly, cleanly, and quietly"

This may be the modus operandi for arab/islamic cultures - not anglosaxon civilizations or lands which derive their idea of liberty from English common law and/or American models of individual liberty. There will be no mass punishments. No "disappearances". No mass executions. No secrets. The Rule of law -with complete transparency, is the state "religion". ;-)

Posted by: Human | July 30, 2006 04:16 PM

"Also a non-muslim can not even enter mecca, nor pray in public anywhere inside saudi arabia, cant even display a CROSS , yet muslims continue this astonishingly hypocritical diatribe. :-) "Radical" indeed."

1- This is not about Muslims exclusively or about Saudi Arabia either.

2- Israel's messianic founders challenged both Muslim and Christian natives ownership of the lands on which they were living because they were not Jewish.

3- Saudi Arabia does indeed restrict access to certain sites to Muslims only. Many religions do this (Hindu, Mormons for instance) and it has not resulted in any suffering or harm. If you really want to visit Mecca, all you have to do is pretend to be Muslim. Can Palestinians pretend to be Jewish and be allowed to go back to their homes? Obviously not. Israel bans people from their own homes. This is inhumane.

4- Saudi Arabia does not hand Saudi lands to anyone who claims to be Muslim. In fact, Saudi Arabia imposes a strict visa requirements to all Muslim visitors (except the neighboring Gulf states).

5- I condemn certain Saudi practices and certain of their laws. No one is defending Saudi Arabia here but you are defending Israeli inhumane practices and policies that have resulted in the suffering of MILLIONS of people.

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 04:30 PM

Israels killing in Lebanon this morning just started WW3. The Arabs are angry and will not forget. This Ehud Olmert is a very dangeros man and is leaning hard on a crazy USA President. The World is in deep sh*t!

Posted by: WW3 | July 30, 2006 04:41 PM

Human:

"This may be the modus operandi for arab/islamic cultures - not anglosaxon civilizations or lands which derive their idea of liberty from English common law and/or American models of individual liberty."

Why don't you consider the assassination of the UN mediator Count Bernadote by Zionist groups (led by future Israeli prime ministers)?

In fact, it was the first assassination of a UN official in modern history, and Israeli founders did it.

Yitzhak Shamir was never charged or brought to justice. Instead he was elected TWICE by Israeli!

And by the way, Shamir was born in Poland.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Folke_Bernadotte

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 04:45 PM

First,Karim,

I appreciate your contributions here. You, Angus and many others make this forum interesting and informative. I do enjoy the contributions of other people here who seem to disagree about a number of things but remain civil and leave bigotry out of these discussions. Keep up the good fight.

Human,

I'm glad to see that your reading Atheist's post's a little more carefully although if you really look, you'll see wonderful instances of human understanding such as:

"The Israelis have endured months of vigilante violence. Both O'Reilly and I want to kill the Muslims in Lebanon"

Kill the Muslims? Hezbollah maybe, but why all the members of a religious group? this is stupidity and open bigotry."

"Teach your children the difference between an Arab Muslim and a Vietnamese atheist (or a Vietnamese Catholic). The Muslims are really different from the rest of the world"

Human, do you condone this? this guy is a vile bigoted loon who offends the sensibilities of any normal person.

Disgusted, do you think this is anything less than Disgusting? If so you seem as utterly morally compromised as atheist.

J

P.S.

Stop the bombing (the Israeli generals must believe that Hezbollah and Hamas are run by children because they seem to target them regularly) Tear fown the settlements, bring down the wall and end the occupation.


J

Posted by: J | July 30, 2006 05:14 PM

HUMAN? You are not

Posted by: fresh | July 30, 2006 07:12 PM

Washington, with the full support of the American people, repeatedly bombed Serbia in 1999. We Americans wanted to stop the Serbians from killing any more Kosovo Muslims.

The Serbians responded by using human shields -- in the exactly the same way that Hezbollah is using Lebanese women and children as human shields. Nonetheless, Washington continued to aggressively destroy the civilian infrastructure in Serbia. Washington warned the Serbians that any civilian deaths are the responsibility of the Serbian aggressors.

The Muslims in many parts of the Middle East cheered Washington.

Before you can understand the situation in the Middle East, you must first understand Islamic hypocrisy and bigotry.

Finally, note that the American military forces in Iraq often dropped leaflets to warn the civilians to leave before bombing the Islamic thugs to hades. The Israeli military in Lebanon has also dropped leaflets to warn the civilians to leave before bombing the Islamic thugs to hades. Both the American military and the Israeli military are professional military forces that defend two well established democracies.

Posted by: atheist | July 30, 2006 07:20 PM

J.
Everyone on this post knows what you are. You think we're stupid?
And as of 1 a.m this morning in Quana everone knows what you and yours are. The world's always known. It's just that this time it's crunch time. Too far. Speaking of opportunity.

Posted by: | July 30, 2006 07:23 PM

To understand the history of the prior conflicts between Lebanon and Israel, click on the following link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lebanon

Wikipedia is fair and unbiased and is well-known in the largely liberal community of engineers and computer scientists. When Islamic militants try to deface Wikipedia, its management locks up the article and undoes the defacement.

Read that information about Lebanon closely. At the end of the top quarter of the web page, Wikipedia explains that the prior Israeli invasions of Lebanon was caused by continuous military attacks that Palestinian groups hiding in Lebanon (with the full support of the Lebanese people) initiated against the Israelis.

Again, read that information closely. Compare that information to the "information" that numerous Muslims have posted in this forum. Some of you kind folks have never met a Muslim. I encourage you to copy articles (in this forum) written by Muslim and use those articles teach your children that Muslims are very different from non-Muslims. The concept of right and wrong of the typical Muslim is very different from the concept of right and wrong of the typical non-Muslim (e.g., Thai, American, German, Japanese, Swede, and the like).

This difference is clearly obvious by just comparing the Wikipedia information about Lebanon and the Muslim-written information about Lebanon. Someone is lying. That someone is not the authors of the Wikipedia article.

Again, allow me to emphasize what instigated the current crisis in Lebanon. Hezbollah repeatedly, over the course of months and years, attacked Israelis. Hezbollah used Lebanon -- with the full support of the Lebanese -- as a base from which to initiate the attacks. Finally, after Hezbollah kidnapped 2 Israeli soldiers, the Israelis attacked.

Israelis are 100% justified in bombing all the locations (in Lebanon) where Hezbollah is hiding. The Israelis are 100% justified in using overwhelming military force.

In much the same vein, if a Mexican vigilante group fired missiles from Mexico and either blew up my neighbor's house in San Diego or kidnapped my neighbor, I fully expect Washington to act immediately by killing the Mexican vigilantes and all their supporters. Note that most Lebanese support Hezbollah and are getting what they deserve.

Posted by: atheist | July 30, 2006 07:44 PM

QUOTE FROM NYTIMES: "John R. Bolton, the American ambassador, said, "Our view for quite some time has been and remains that we need to work toward a permanent solution for the problems of the region.

I fully agree with Mr. Bolton. It is also obvious that the only permanent solution would be to get rid of Israel. They are illegal and they are the killers. To put it symplisticly, Israel is the thief and murderer in your backyard.

Posted by: IVEHADITWISRAEL | July 30, 2006 07:50 PM

I concur. The only solution is israel should n't exist. There should be no state based on religion.

Before that happens , Islam has to be democratised. Until then Israel can exist.

But the problem though the jews in america will exploit this anger against arab to create GREATER ISRAEL and try to make JEWS SUPER POWER.

They will have fake democracy as they only allows jews to settle.

I have a suspicion about rightw ing jews. I don't mind all israelis move to america. America is diverse society even with all the problems.

I don't think Israel should exist at all for the sake of humanity.

But firt job though is modernize islam. To do that israel has to keep quiet not trying to create trouble everywhere to expand itself.

Posted by: Alex | July 30, 2006 07:58 PM

Atheist:

On Kosovo, you wrote:

"The Muslims in many parts of the Middle East cheered Washington."

I certainly did not and I am from Morocco.

Besides, do you have any statistics or polls to back your claim up? Shoot us a link with the cheering.

Cheering Washington, the government that backs the leading violator of UN resolutions in the M/E, Israel, with weapons, money and political support, because it somehow fought the Serbs would be no different than cheering Saddam Hussein who called for the end of the occupation of Palestine while he invaded Kuwait and occupied it. Note Saddam tried the same tactics to fool Arabs into believing that he is the "good guy".

Do you really believe we are that dumb and gullible to buy into your government PR propaganda?

If you do buy into it so easily, all I can say is that I pity you. Your government must have it so easy.

Let me remind you that Ms Albright after which the Kosovo war is nicknamed (Albright's war) was the same official who few years later stated on record, with no shame and with a straight face, that half million dying Iraqi children was worth the price.

This is also the same official who, when she served as US ambassador to the UN, stated that all UN resolutions related to Palestine are irrelevant and inapplicable (except for the one that created Israel!).

So how do you want people to believe in your alleged "good will" of the US government when its actions point to the opposite?

The US government bombed civilian sites in Serbia, including TV stations. That was uncalled for and is in my view a form of terrorism. These people who were killed in the TV station were civilians, not combatants.

As much as I criticize Israeli actions, I am also opposed to hitting Israeli civilian targets whether by "mistake" or otherwise. That includes bridges, roads and such.

Posted by: Karim | July 30, 2006 08:26 PM

John Bolton says ""Our view for quite some time has been and remains that we need to work toward a permanent solution for the problems of the region."
Translation: Hey, Israel, go ahead and keep dropping the bombs we send you on innocent Lebanese civilians while we jawbone about a "permanent solution" everyone knows is unattainable.
Thanks, John, for your cold-eyed decision to sacrifice all those hundreds of innocent Lebanese lives so that your ideological soulmates in the Zionist-fascist movement can work out their dark revenge fantasies.
I imagine the "permanent solution" Bolton has in mind is a lot like the "permanent solution" the U.S. dreamed up for Iraq. That "remaking" of the Middle East is working out just great, isn't it.
Bolton is a deeply evil person. With him, we will have nothing but war.

Posted by: Constantino | July 30, 2006 08:34 PM

Indeed Constantino, John Bolton says "Our view for quite some time has been and remains that we need to work toward a PERMANENT SOLUTION. This "Permanent Solution" statement from Bolton is excactly the same that Hitler said around 1940 when he wanted to get rid of the Jews. Quite frankly, a scary repeat of Jewish History - except the roles of who-is-who seem to have changed a bit!

Posted by: IVEHADITWISRAEL | July 30, 2006 09:15 PM

Same old story....how many more times to we have to hear a press release from Israel beginning...."We deeply regret......"

If they regret it so much why does it keep happening over and over and over again....not just Lebanon either ..this has been going on for 60 years..non-Jewish civilian life means absolutely nothing to the Israeli government and they are showing it every day.

Posted by: Angus | July 30, 2006 10:18 PM

Thanks Karim for those useful facts. Need to research those links you had posted. I guess most of the visceral support for Israel arises from the loathing thats been generated through targeted killings of school children and civilians that the islam jihadis continue to inflict on the non-believers, all over the world.

And no, I do not agree with the general characterizations of "muslims" (of which I'm guilty myself). After all, Fareed Zakaria and Her Majesty Queen Rania are "muslims". My issue is with Islam - not muslims. All religions are outdated cults but Islam is more emphatically so. And "J", no I do not condone, have never advocated random violence against "muslims". As for people who think they're on the side of humanity against terrorism... its even more incumbent upon them to distinguish between fanatical islamicists who follow the qu'ran and the small (unfortunately, from circumstantial evidence) percentage of muslims who are humanists inspite of what the errant portions of the Qu'ran urge them to do in the name of "God".

Posted by: Human | July 30, 2006 10:22 PM

There is something I cannot understand: why there is so many people here (and also giving their opinion in the media)that believe that violence and killing is the solution to it all?

Extremists? Bomb them and kill them in their beds. Did we kill their wives and children, and perhaps some other families around them? That's "collateral" damage, go on with the bombing.
Dictators that don't agree with us? Bomb their countries too. Other dictators? They are OK, as long as they support us. Otherwise, "take them out" too.

How do you people can reconcile this type of thinking and speech with your religious beliefs?? This is truly a mistery to me.
Isn't God merciful? Didn't Jesus die in the cross and forgave his enemies?

Posted by: Lucia | July 31, 2006 12:40 AM

To anonymous,

You wrote:

"J.
Everyone on this post knows what you are. You think we're stupid?
And as of 1 a.m this morning in Quana everone knows what you and yours are. The world's always known. It's just that this time it's crunch time. Too far. Speaking of opportunity"

Every one here knows who I am? Well your rather cryptic (a kind description) statement seems to indicate two things:

1) you don't actually read these forums or simply don't care about what is written but rather just desperatly want to try to shut down opinions you disagree with. Therefore you don't see that most people (and I would have to say, most normal poeple, obviously excluding yourself) are anti settlement, seriously question US support for Israel in light of Israel's actions, and are outraged at Israel's use of indiscriminant Violence that will certainly only serve to radicalize the region further, ie, the massive renewed support for Hezbollah and the prime minister of Lebanon's praising Hezbollah.
So far, you are the only person to suggest I am somehow in the minority. Furthermore, It seems unlikely in the extreme that you could possibly speak for "everyone" here, in that you are too cowardly to even use a moniker.

2) You are an innarticulate moron with a serious paranoia problem. (and yes, as you suggest, I do think that that you, personally, must be very stupid)

Please rewrite your post. attempt to be clearer about your views. Have the guts to get a moniker and stick to it so that people here understand who is responsible for which statements and can address their rebuttals appropriately.

J

P.S.

Stop the bombing. Tear down the Wall, Raze the settlements, end the occupation and and bring security and peace to the US, Israel, and the entire ME.

Posted by: J | July 31, 2006 12:43 AM

Human,

The US policies in the middle east have been aimed, I beleive, at softening up the region. That is to say, that it has been aimed at keeping chaos high and the abilty to defy our will low. It makes oil flow more predicatable to shore up our certain allies and sow chaos in the countries of anyone who does not immediatly comply with our goals.

Here are a few of the actions that we have taken to acheive that.

We installed a dictator in Iran, who, although a brutal tyrant, was still our guy. Please try to grasp what that actually must have meant for the Iranians.

They eventually overthrew him and he was replaced with a radiaclized religious government, who, predicably, hated the US.

We began to partner with Saddam in Iraq in order to encourage a war between the two. We took Saddam off the terror list so that we could further fund him and even provide him with WMD to use against the Iranians.

The ensuing war caused one million casualties in total. One Million.

In the 80's, the Iran Contra scandal broke, in which it became clear that we were providing Iran with weapons as part of a larger scheme to raise illicit money.

So, was it Iran or Iraq we were trying to help out, or was it simply chaos that was
being sowed?

Our support of Israel seems to have that function as well. It helps to inflame radicalism ( which means chaos and disorganization) and divides loyalties which helps prevent counties from forming strong alliances.

The situation in Afghanistan is even more appalling. We essentially laid the ground work for al queada by funding the mujhadeen to fight the soviets. We all know what that led to and the situation that it created in Afghanistan.

I will not go on, but their are many, many other examples.

It would appear that we are engaging in the same behavior with regard to Lebanon. sowing chaos. WE are furthering radicalization, which give us license to do as we wish. All to lead towards war with Iran and Syria, which in turn will, as in Iraq, lead to futher chaos and fragmentation, rather than any type of supposed democratization.

So, none of this was done in the name of religion. We assisted in and encouraged One Million casualties in the Iraq and Iran war alone. We laid the groundwork for the Rise of the Taliban and Al Qeada in Afghanistan.

Both you and Atheist seem convinced that Islam has some sort of special patent on brutality and destruction. You might do a little more research before you advance that claim further. (Atheist, Wikipedia has info on all of the above mentioned US actions and many more if you really care to look for it)


The real answer to the end of all of this lies in fundamentally changing the US policies in the middle east. Outlawing AIPAC as the agent of a foreign nation.
focusing more seriously now thatn ever before on domestically availabel renewable energies, and rooting out the NeoCons from government.


J.


P.S.

Stop the bombing, Tear down the wall, raze the settlements, end the occupation and bring lasting peace to the US, Israel, and the ME.

Posted by: J | July 31, 2006 01:42 AM

this is a test

Posted by: test | July 31, 2006 02:06 AM

Check out the article at the following link.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-0607270199jul27,1,142541.story?coll=chi-newsnationworld-hed

Here is the key quote: "The Israeli bombing destroyed the UN outpost near the village of Khiam and killed the four unarmed observers from China, Austria, Canada and Finland as they sat in a bunker that collapsed, UN officials said."

Throughout this military campaign against the Hezbollah Islamic thugs, the Israelis have made every attempt to aim their weapons only at the Hezbollah Islamic thugs. Unfortunately, since the thugs deliberately hide among the civilian population and behind the United-Nations outposts, the artillery from the Israelis sometimes accidentally hits civilians -- and, in this case, a United-Nations outpost.

Posted by: atheist | July 31, 2006 02:19 AM

War is messy. People die.

Yet, the current conflict is the direct result of the Hezbollah Islamic thugs' repeatedly launching military attacks against the Israelis. Hence, the Israelis must continue their current military campaign until, in the words of the American government, an enduring ceasefire can be arranged.

Posted by: atheist | July 31, 2006 02:24 AM

An enduring cease fire means deploying 8000 soldiers supplied by Western nations.

Posted by: atheist | July 31, 2006 02:34 AM

An enduring cease fire means jettisoning the United-Nations peacekeepers and deploying 8000 crack NATO troops supplied by Germany and other Western nations. Japan should contribute 2000 soldiers. NATO should use all necessary force, including hunting down and killing all members of any Islamic vigilante group.

NATO should heed the advice of Wafa Sultan (see "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wafa_Sultan"). She repeatedly and utterly condemns Islam.

If any Lebanese girl runs to the NATO peacekeeping force and begs it for help because some Islamic thug raped her, then 100 NATO peacekeepers should hunt down, kill, and gut (like a fish) her assailant. NATO should show the world that it will not tolerate Islamic bigotry, Islamic hypocrisy, or (especially) Islamic misogyny.

Wafa Sultan correctly states that what we are witnessing in the Middle East is "a battle between [Western] modernity and [Islamic] barbarism". I wish godspeed to the next missile that the Israeli military fires into Lebanon.

Posted by: atheist | July 31, 2006 02:38 AM

(The following full article replaces the 4 immediately preceding articles. Due to a connection problem with the blog server, my full article was inadvertently partitioned into preceding 4 smaller articles. I apologize for the inconvenience.)

Check out the story at the following link.

http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-0607270199jul27,1,142541.story?coll=chi-newsnationworld-hed

Here is the key quote: "The Israeli bombing destroyed the UN outpost near the village of Khiam and killed the four unarmed observers from China, Austria, Canada and Finland as they sat in a bunker that collapsed, UN officials said."

Throughout this military campaign against the Hezbollah Islamic thugs, the Israelis have made every attempt to aim their weapons only at the Hezbollah Islamic thugs. Unfortunately, since the thugs deliberately hide among the civilian population and behind the United-Nations outposts, the artillery from the Israelis sometimes accidentally hits civilians -- and, in this case, a United-Nations outpost.

War is messy. People die.

Yet, the current conflict is the direct result of the Hezbollah Islamic thugs' repeatedly launching military attacks against the Israelis. Hence, the Israelis must continue their current military campaign until, in the words of the American government, an enduring ceasefire can be arranged. An enduring cease fire means jettisoning the United-Nations peacekeepers and deploying 8000 crack NATO troops supplied by Germany and other Western nations. Japan should contribute 2000 soldiers. NATO should use all necessary force, including hunting down and killing all members of any Islamic vigilante group.

NATO should heed the advice of Wafa Sultan (see "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wafa_Sultan"). She repeatedly and utterly condemns Islam.

If any Lebanese girl runs to the NATO peacekeeping force and begs it for help because some Islamic thug raped her, then 100 NATO peacekeepers should hunt down, kill, and gut (like a fish) her assailant. NATO should show the world that it will not tolerate Islamic bigotry, Islamic hypocrisy, or (especially) Islamic misogyny.

Wafa Sultan correctly states that what we are witnessing in the Middle East is "a battle between [Western] modernity and [Islamic] barbarism". I wish godspeed to the next missile that the Israeli military fires into Lebanon.

Posted by: atheist | July 31, 2006 02:42 AM

Even mel gibson agree with me. Unfortunately he will be crucified by right wing jews extremist who is running america. Poor mel gibson.

The world knows the jew problem. It has to be tackled after muslim problem. Any attempt to make greater israel has to be stopped. Then the world will be in danger with ruthless criminals with nukes.

Here is mel goibson tirade against jews.

http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2006/07/31/1154198047210.html

According to the report, in addition to threatening the arresting deputy and trying to escape, Gibson said: "The Jews are responsible for all the wars in the world". He then reportedly asked the officer, James Mee: "Are you a Jew?"

Atleast one person other than me know of jews conspiracy to take over the world through amnerican military power.

Posted by: Alex | July 31, 2006 02:59 AM

I don;t mind whole america is jew country. That is ok. What is not ok is religion based state which is invariably will hate all other non jews.

Israel should n't exist. It should n't allow to occupy other countries.

Bush is a puppet. He was there to serve all right wing jews who has taken over his administration. How many jews in bush adminstration. That is trivia question.

America and world is side tracked with muslims problem and Israel calmly try to get bigger. i know. Israels actions are tells a true story.

Now i start to see why Muhammed wanted to create a religion which can counter jews. He did it. He created a indestructible concept. Even though i disagree completely with its ideas.

It is really funny. if you are racist , you can survive in america. But you are ant-semite , you will not be allowed to work again in america. Melgibson to come back will be tough act even with his million apologies. But if there is one who can do i, that will be mel gibson.

The pity thing is even the jews who killed jesus christ , controls all christians in america. Mel gibson is a devout christian and he believes strongly against jews for killing jesus.

It is simple , jews believe their religion better than christianity and jesus.

Posted by: Alex | July 31, 2006 03:12 AM

What israel did is a planned massacre to make civilians flee so that they can occupy and expand israel.

What is the use of occupyingthe land with muslims in it?.

So israel is basically wiping out all muslims surrounding Israel.

If syria get involved , israel will attack civilian population and massacre them.

That is the main reason Iran has to get nukes to prevent itself wiped out of the map.

America is coming after all muslims states who opposes israel. Who is america? Right wing jews took over the control of america. Now they want pure JEWS super power.

May be i am over stretched conspiracy theorist. But i believe there is something else going on than simple muslim problem.

Israel will be acting as proxy for middle east up to few decades then it will be its own super power.

Then they will come after rest of the races. They are using america to make Israel super power.

The only stumbling block is if anyone have nukes. They ensure than Iran don't acquire nukes so that they can wipe out palestenians first. They look like some flea to israelis. They want to get rid of them for long time. Now they decided to do it with america on its side.

Israel will not exist if america is not controlled by jews.

Even mel gibson will feel the brunt of jewish force in america. Welcome to the real world mr. Mel gibson.

Posted by: Alex | July 31, 2006 08:12 AM

In todays NYTimes I read about Israel killing some 50 kids in Lebanon (p1) and large scale circumcision in Kosovo (p4). May sound weard but it hit me that we are still living in the Stone Age. Grown-ups killing or mutilating innocent children that can't fight for themselves is pretty sad. None of these kids ever will experience a real life the way nature intended.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 31, 2006 09:17 AM

Thanks, Condi, for giving Israel the green light to keep murdering innocent Lebanese civilians. You -- and the entire United States of America -- now have the blood of 37 more children on your hands.
American bombs killed those kids.
You and your Israeli friends must be held accountable for these atrocities.

Posted by: Dwayne | July 31, 2006 09:58 AM

Dwayne, you are absolutely right. We in the USA have blood on our hands. No doubt about it.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 31, 2006 10:23 AM

Dwayne, I almost forgot. Your being from a Western Country are equally guilty. I know some of the other country leaders protest but you are still a member of NATO, send your prime-Ministers, Presidents, etc. to see Bush and Rice, etc. Get it? We are all part of this mess.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 31, 2006 10:27 AM

The USA and Britain has blood on their hands, Israel has blood on its hands, Hezbollah and Hamas has blood on their hands, Iran and Syria has blood on their hands. The UN has blood on its hands. Who is righteous? Not a damn one.

Instead of screaming at each other that "It's all your fault", how about everyone working up some guts and admitting the wrong they've done and start working towards peace?

Posted by: wiccan | July 31, 2006 10:51 AM

That's a great idea, wiccan, except that everyone in the world is calling for an immediate ceasefire -- except the U.S. and Israel.
That means the U.S. and Israel have a great deal more blood on their hands than other western nations.
Rather than call for a stop to the carnage, the U.S. has essentially given Israel the green light to keep murdering children.
Nice idea that everyone's equally culpable. But it's not true.
The U.S. supplied the bombs. And the U.S. is now providing Israel with the cover it needs to continue its killing spree.
Ten times more people have been killed by Israelis as have been killed in Israel and we're still cheering on the Israelis.
Sickening.

Posted by: Dwayne | July 31, 2006 11:08 AM

Wiccan you're absolutely correct: we are all guilty. It started in 1948 because as Western Countries we felt so guilty, sad, etc. for the killing of the jews by Hitler and friends. Also then, except USA and Canada and European UnderGround, did absolutely nothing to fight Hitler - in fact many Europeans brown-nosed him. Right now the shoe is on the other foot and we now have to say "Get Out" to Israel. They are an illegal country, killing, stealing land that is not theirs. The only solution is to tell Israel to move on. Does Europe have the guts to tell them that, to invite them back to a civilized Europe, make them part of it all? Think about it. Quite frankly I doubt it. Anti-Jewish feelings are on the rise in Europe. Meanwhile the Arabs are made the scapegoats.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 31, 2006 11:15 AM

Dwayne,

Do you really believe Israel is bombing Lebanon for the sheer joy of seeing children die? Is Hezbollah bombing Israel for the sheer joy of seeing their children die? Where did Hezbollah get those bombs? Isn't the country supplying Hezbollah with these bombs as guilty as the US?

Both sides need to stop the killing NOW.

Posted by: wiccan | July 31, 2006 11:19 AM

I've had enought of the arab and fundamentalist islamic double standards. Arab terrorists and governments have been committing atrocities for decades and REJOYCING at the murder of americans and europeans (women and childer.) When an atrocity is commited against the arabs they scream to high heaven and demand an international outcry. From New York to the Phillipines, from Karachi to Beslan, radical muslims are waging war not on Israel but on western and mainly Christian civilization. Churches are bombed in Pakistan and missionaries and converts are prosecuted to the point of execution in some arab countries. All this while arabs and muslims still demand a recognition of THEIR human rights.
If the arabs think the Israelis are a hand full, wait until the Christian world stops turning the other cheek.

Posted by: AMF | July 31, 2006 12:54 PM

Something everyone should see:

http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,,19955774-5007220,00.html

Proof that there's blood on the hands of Hezbollah as well. When will they offer their regrets?

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 02:49 PM

AMF:

"I've had enought of the arab and fundamentalist islamic double standards. Arab terrorists and governments have been committing atrocities for decades and REJOYCING at the murder of americans and europeans (women and childer.) "

No one rejoice when innocent people are killed. Few people do when emotions run high but all Arab terrorists that attacked America or Europe have been sought by Arab governments and many have been convicted.

Remember that Saudi Arabia will convict Bin-Laden if they catch him.

Now, tell me who was convicted in America when your so-called western government killed over 2 million in Vietnam?

The murderers of Vietnam who napalmed and bombed villages left and right ended up getting medals of honor and many of them are still getting money from the government to thank them for their "job well done" up to this day. Shameful. There are Vietnam memorials all over.

All of the Arab/Muslim crimes COMBINED can not match the number of human beings that the US government killed directly and indirectly since the end of WWII.

Besides the US government is the leading exporter of weapons in the entire world. No Arab nation is involved in such immoral business.

Your disgraceful government (and previous governments by the way) is making money out of weapons that KILLED and still KILL human beings all over the world.

Finally, I shall remind you that Christianity came from the Middle East, not the West.

Posted by: Karim | July 31, 2006 03:24 PM

Who in there right mind believes zionism is a peaceful cause.It is a racist ideology calling for a jewish majority amongst a billion arabs.How does our goverment see that as democratic.These Israelis thinking they have the moral high ground is absurd.When they kill, they kill for there ideology,one that tells them they are superior to the Arabs.Im not an Arab but i would be insulted if some one came to renounce who i am, by building a state in my back yard.I see all these blind Christians throwing money to the jews,jews who call Christians lost and following a false prophet.Some have harsher words for the evangelical,but this is not the place.So any one who opposes zionism is undemocratic,unpatriotic,and an enemy of freedom,or worse yet cursed.I wonder what Perle and Fieth are saying amongst there bretheren.We have achieved a jewish state at the expence of the middle east being flipped upside down,we have also set lebanon, the land of the goyim back 20 years.Thank God Arabs are the lesser of Gods children.How many wars will the world fight, so that the jews can have a jewish majority state.And will other races be alloted the same privalages under the protection of the UN.Or is this a one time deal to a superior race.America feels that Palestinians have not the right to fight for there land,but as you can see they(palestinians) are not being very coopertive.We ask why dont they want freedom,why dont they want democracy.They in turn are asking what the hell are you talking about.You remove me from my land my home and you talk to me about freedom.Are you nuts, or have the many Native Americans on the reserves in America stopped fighting,is that your reason to believe we will follow suit.And how dare hezbollah ask for the release of the some 200 prisoners that were to be released some time ago but still languish in Israely jails along with 9000 palestinians who have had there self dignity taken away,Why, because they opposed the occupation.12 million American Indians were killed in the American occupation,so whats a million over there.It is good to see man stand up against an occupation.If jews want a jewish majority amongst a billion Arabs,let them understand that from there personal gain there is another mans loss.The zionists may think they will neuter the middle east by bombing the goyim in lebanon to dust,but it will just produce children to fight a another war maybe in 28 years.Christians are you not at all worried about were you will get your ceder from to fulfill prophesy.Is that not why we allow Israel to bomb lebanon because of prophesy.I wonder if they would of bombed ghandi.Probably,after all he was a goyim and has no real standing in the big picture of the biblical prophesy that we spend a trillion dollars a year to perpetuate.I ask how does zionism fit into the 21st century.Is time to have an open debate on zionism and its effects on the middle east.Let us ask is it legitimate to oppose zionism.Zionism is a jewish phnomenon,islam is its by product.If zionism is an accepted ideology and that ideology does not sit well with the majority in the region,what is a legitimate responce.I have one question for zionists, whats in it for me.No Christian replys please.


Posted by: Goyim | July 31, 2006 05:14 PM

Really nice tirade there, Goyim. Do you feel better now? There are so many points to argue with what you wrote that they can't even all be addressed. All I can say is that you really need to calm down a little and think rationally before you hurt yourself.

First of all, Islam is NOT a byproduct of Zionism. You might want to read up on the beginnings of Islam. I doubt if Muslims appreciate your comment much.

Second, Jews aren't looking for a majority amongst the billion Arabs, as you are suggesting. First, it would be statistically impossible since there are only about 11 million Jews in the entire world. Jews are only looking to keep the tiny area of land known as Israel that was legitimately created by the United Nations in 1947 on land to which the Jews always had biblical, religious and historical ties. Goyim, how many Islamic countries are there in the world? Did you know that non-Muslims aren't even allowed to set foot in Mecca or Medina? That there are countries that are run predominantly on Islamic law? Why is that okay, but the concept a Jewish homeland is unacceptable to you?

Third, the reason many of the prisoners have not been released is due to the high rate of recidivism of previous prisoners that Israel has released. Yes, once they are out of prison, they are up to their old antics of plotting suicide bombings against innocent Israeli civilians. No expressions of regret from the democratically elected Palestinian government for this behavior either. Also, how is the release of several hundred Israeli-held prisoners a fair exchange for 3 Israeli soldiers? How do you put a price on the 8 Israeli soldiers killed by Hezbollah the first day of this conflict?

I could go on and on, but my sense is that you just needed to rant and rail against a group of people that you hate. And, aside from the fanatics that you can find in any race or religion, Jews don't all hate Arabs.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 06:26 PM

I'm very worried with Bush. He realy is shortsided and single dimensional (meaning, he's stupid) and this whole Middle East thing is pretty complex. We need someone like Bill Clinton to help out here. For Condo Rice to be replaced by the PMs of France and Iran (see NYTimes)to negotiate with Lebanon says it all.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 31, 2006 06:29 PM

Yeah- Bill Clinton would have nipped this in the bud by lobbing a few missiles in somebody's direction as he did after the attack on the U.S.S. Cole. He was so great at dealing with the al-Quaida problem before 9/11. Somebody call him, quick!!!

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 07:04 PM

Is this Dan Gillerman for real.He sounds like a thug.Not the mouth piece of the enlightened.He sounds like any other thug of any other race.Untill we stop categorizing people based on jewish writings.We will have this hate,i dont for one second teach my children that there are Gods people and Gods other people.So to be enlightened or be blessed as they say by the God of the jews, i must pray and support Israel,dont think so.So some jewish scribe wrote that all that bless them will be blessed and all that attack them will be cursed.HMMM what a concept.Couldnt the greeks come up with a comparitive writing to capture the hearts and minds of the goyim.After watching the jews rally behind there God(god did not become singular untill later in scripture)and become a close knit group, they must surely have seen the benefits of a one god bringing them together.Volia,Christ is born.But this should of been a time of rejoiceing, jews and romans brought together under God.But it wasnt,jews called Christ a fraud a teacher but surely not the messiah.Easy enough for Christians to explain,write that it is Gods plan, to put a stumbling block in zion.THen make the jews not hear.Just like God had made the pharoah dumb, while he poured curse after curse on the egyptions(all though the egyptions have no recorded history of these events).So here we were with jews and Christians praying to the one God.Man the Arabs must of felt left out in this one,but like the romans they must of seen how it brought people together and made them a force to be reckoned with.Voila mohhamad is born.turns out he has close ties to the jews,because of his great great great slave grand mother slept with the enlightened Abrham and had a wild child named ishmael.Why all the confusion,were did we go wrong,were jews to recruit all men to God or was that the job of Christians,and did christians not understand that by destroying and conquering the Arabs in war, that they might miss spreading the message of Christ, and thus force them to find there own God.The holy land,with all its love and peace, it is a sight for sore eyes.So many are praying for end times, so Christ will come and kill all the pagan dogs.What should we do,Japan is a peaceful nation,China has problems but no civil war,the hindus have not bombed any one in recent history,but shouldnt Bush send his Christian war machine into these countries,to promote salvation(i mean democracy).Lets get these countries to have a dog in the fight.Sorry about the sentence structure but grade six only goes so far.

Posted by: Goyim | July 31, 2006 07:19 PM

Goyim, you're writing nonsense and too much of it. Keep it short and focus on how Israel, hopefully VERY soon, will move to the end of the Earth - is the only way to get some stability in the Middle East.

Posted by: Anagadir | July 31, 2006 07:49 PM

SM-So the jews dont want a jewish majority in Israel.Tell me though why should i support Zionism.I never said all jews hate arabs or that all arabs hate jews.So what do you think is legitimate resistance for a palestinian or a lebanese person driven from there land.You have your view, the palestinians as ive said are fighting back.Do you want me to support the zionists,and leave the palestinians behind.To bad my friend it aint hapinin.Zionism is something i dont believe in.As for you saying i support the muslem run states.Tell me where i said that.Like ive said the American indian was labeled a savage,for what, defending his home.By the way the biblical homeland thing,Do you except Christ as your savior as the bible tells us.

Posted by: Goyim | July 31, 2006 07:58 PM

IT IS UNBEARABLE TO BE ON THE SIDE OF ISRAEL. AS A 10TH GENERATION AMERICANS, PROUD OF OUR CONTRIBUTION, IT'S ALMOST BEYOND THOUGHT. NOW OUR TAXES NOW GO FOR BOMBS FOR THE SAVAGE BLOODTHIRSTY ISRAELI TERRORISTS. AND THE WHITE HOUSE RUSHES MORE. GOOD GOD. SUNDAY THOSE BOMBS KILLED 37 CHILDREN, AN EVENT DIFFERENT ONLY IN THAT THEY WERE IN MASS. IS EVERYONE MAD?

Posted by: IT'S UNBEARABLE | July 31, 2006 08:13 PM

The whole middle east is built on hate and racism, by all sides.Let us remove God out of the equasion,then all we see is man killing man.So i am conciderd a hate monger because i feel for the palestinins.Oh well, i have my reasons,and those reasons i can live with.From the reserve to the refugee camp, this ones for you.

Posted by: Goyim | July 31, 2006 08:25 PM

Let me tell you the truth that is not repotrted.

Condi rice is not longer welcome in lebanon.

That says everything about bush's foreign policy. You can't blame condi though. She is between jew extremist who are intend on killing and annihilating civilains for the bigger plan for greater israel.

It is unfortunate that world do not have leadership in the world. This is what happens when only one super power exist and it turn the side of evil.

What remains is more DEATH AND DESTRUCTION.

It is astonishing to see how America is cowed by few right wing jews. WOW!.

Posted by: Alex | July 31, 2006 08:43 PM

To IT'S UNBEARABLE -
I agree with you completely about the horrible tragedies of this conflict. But I want to remind you that HEZBOLLAH bears a good portion of the blame for the bloodshed. It's been documented this time around as well as in previous incidents around the globe that they routinely HIDE themselves and their rockets in civilian areas, even in apartment buildings, hospitals and mosques. They have fired about 2000 rockets into Israel from these locations. They have put the innocent Lebanese civilians at huge risk.

See this and read about what Hezbollah is doing:
http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,,19955774-5007220,00.html

I don't hear any sounds of remorse or regret from Hezbollah, and that's just as disturbing as everything else that's happening here.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 09:23 PM

SM
The Israeli soldiers killed WERE...using THE CONSTANT ISTARLI TERM 'militants".
No doubt.
The ISRAELIScross borders daily and hourly to kill and "assassinate" militants all the time. (whetherthey are just children and women, accidents or
fodder for target practice...oreally "militants. But kill two Jewish militants and...RAMPAGE! Please argue as you like, of course, but you digust me.

Posted by: | July 31, 2006 09:35 PM

To Goyim-I said nothing about leaving the Palestinians behind. I completely understand their plight and their desire for a nation of their own. The issue is where to have such a country. That doesn't mean that the entire area of present-day Israel should be handed over to them.

In 1947, the Palestinians were offered a good portion of land. Here's some information from Wikipedia.com:
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Palestine#UN_Partition)

"On 29 November 1947, the United Nations General Assembly passed the United Nations Partition Plan for Palestine (United Nations General Assembly Resolution 181), a plan to resolve the Arab-Jewish conflict by partitioning the territory into separate Jewish and Arab states, with the Greater Jerusalem area (encompassing Bethlehem) coming under international control. Jewish leaders (including the Jewish Agency), accepted the plan, while Palestinian Arab leaders rejected it. Neighboring Arab and Muslim states also rejected the partition plan. As armed skirmishes between Arab and Jewish paramilitary forces in Palestine continued, the British mandate ended on May 15, 1948, the establishment of the State of Israel having been proclaimed the day before (see Declaration of the Establishment of the State of Israel). The neighboring Arab states immediately attacked Israel following its declaration of independence, and the 1948 Arab-Israeli War ensued. Consequently, the partition plan was never implemented."

If you go to the link and click on the map, you'll see just how much land the Palestinians were offered. If you'll notice, the Jewish leaders at that time ACCEPTED the plan, while the Palestinians and neighboring Arab countries rejected it. So here we are 60 years later in the same struggle.

According to Wikipedia, Zionism is defined as "a political movement and ideology that supports a homeland for the Jewish people in the Land of Israel, where the Jewish nation originated over 3,200 years ago and where Jewish kingdoms and self-governing states existed up to the 2nd century."

You don't have to support Zionism. It's purely a personal choice. Since you asked...repeated violence against innocent civilians in the form of suicide bombings, firing rockets(which has occurred for years),etc. is NOT a legitimate way for the Palestinians to make their causes heard. Diplomacy works if you're willing to work hard at it, and if you're willing to GIVE and take. The Israelis pulled out of Gaza. Yet, the Palestinians have yet to change the wording in their charter that calls for the destruction of the state of Israel. There are many things they were requested to do diplomatically that have not happened. Maybe when they do, there will be a better chance at peace. I truly believe that the Israelis want to have peace with them as they have peaceful enough relations with both Egypt and Jordan.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 09:36 PM

Anyone blame Hezbolah for the thsi gruesome killing is a fool. The amount of killing Israel has done , it has to be nuked.

And it will be.

Israel has to backdown and be a victim. It is easy to win a war being victim not as aggressor. Weapons can be bought, people can be born. Ideas remain same.

Eliminate israel.

I believe the idea is to provoke syria and make them react and wipe out syria. Then provoke iran and nuke iran.

No wonder if i am iranian , iw ill try to get as many nukes as possible.

That is the only way for muslim to survive.

I am all for chaning koran and i am against kill millions of civilains for religious beliefs.

That is worst evil ever committed to humanity by humans.

And holacaust never happend. After watching Israels aggression on lebanese , i have to believe holacaust is a myth.

Posted by: Alex | July 31, 2006 09:38 PM

to "anonymous" - If you truly expect me to believe what you wrote ("The ISRAELIScross borders daily and hourly to kill and "assassinate" militants all the time. (whetherthey are just children and women, accidents or
fodder for target practice...oreally "militants."), then I have to laugh for the first time in days. Cross the borders daily and hourly? As if they have nothing better to do with their lives? Target practice? That's just too ridiculous. Please post your sources so I can read whatever you're reading.

The soldiers who were killed were in ISRAELI territory. When Hezbollah crossed the border into ANOTHER COUNTRY and killed and kidnapped soldiers, it declared war on that country. Hezbollah started this and must deal with the consequences of their actions. Unfortunately, they have dragged many innocent civilians into this conflict.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 09:43 PM

Israel released footage showing alleged Katyusha rockets being fired from the proximity of alleged civilian structures. From what I understand of Katyusha rockets, they are highly mobile, easily transported in pickup trucks or even by foot. I also understand that the policy of Hezbollah fighters is to assemble, fire, and then immediately disassemble and scatter. The Israeli's know this. Bombing an alleged "launch site", as the Israelis are trying to paint the massacre in Qana, is just smoke and mirrors. When Israel knows that Hezbollah fighters are gone minutes after rockets are launched, bombing those locations (especially so close to civilian structures) is mindless and suspect.

Posted by: Zain | July 31, 2006 09:56 PM

Zain-Just because the Katyushas are mobile doesn't mean that Hezbollah is disassembling and moving them that quickly. It still doesn't absolve them from firing them from CIVILIAN areas in the first place. There have been 2000 rockets fired into Israel from these types of locations. Are the Israelis supposed to sit on their hands and allow their citizens to be at risk so Hezbollah can declare their victory? C'mon on!

If Hezbollah was really concerned about the Lebanese citizens, they wouldn't be placing these people in harm's way by placing HUGE weapons in their apartments, in tunnels under their towns, etc.

READ THIS!!!
http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,,19955774-5007220,00.html

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 10:03 PM

ISN'T IT INTERESTING that all the arrogant
pro-Israel types seek to "eduate" the stupid rest of us. How typical. A Cliche.
Isn't it perfect.

Posted by: educated | July 31, 2006 10:05 PM

sm
My sources are the New York Times, the Post, ABC NBC CBS CNN, ect forever. How many times a week do we hear the Israelis have crossed over the BORDER into Palestine
and "assinated" a militant. DO you read or just write stupid posts.

Posted by: | July 31, 2006 10:09 PM

The Lebanese envoy to the U.N said it well:

"When mistakes are a pattern of behavior, they deserved to be called something else. They are war crimes."

The carte blanche to do as it pleases, given to Israel by the U.S, needs to be retracted. If we can call civilian deaths caused by Hezbollah and Hamas terrorism, let us not try and paint the deaths caused by Israel as anything else.

Posted by: Zain | July 31, 2006 10:10 PM

Educated-All of us "pro-Israel types" could certainly make the same claim about the rest of you. (With the exception of Alex and Goyim, who seem to just spout off crazy opinions and misinformation). It only depends which "side" you support, and everyone's entitled to his or her own opinion. You can remove the chip off your shoulder now.

Posted by: | July 31, 2006 10:11 PM

No right-minded person wants to see innocents killed in a war, but it happens -as it always has - and it is always tragic. That said, not enough is written, seen or bloviated upon by "experts"(such as many at this site) about the stupefying double standard at play here. The Israelis are seeking to eliminate Hezbollah -- its ability to make war, terrorize and its malignant stranglehold on Lebanon. Civilian casualties are not intended, but happen. On the other hand, we have Hezbollah (and Hamas, Islamic Jihad, Fatah and...can't remember all of them but it's a long list), an organization committed to the literal destruction of Israel...an organziation that actively seeks out opportunities to kill innocents and does so with little to no consequences. Until now. The shameful inability of our self-loathing crowd to distiguish between these two may cause us distress (and send our European "peace in our time" allies into apoplectic fits), but, thankfully, the Israelis know the difference, and they are united to do something about it. Put the wood to them boys.

Posted by: TG | July 31, 2006 10:14 PM

anonymous:
"How many times a week do we hear the Israelis have crossed over the BORDER into Palestine and "assinated" a militant. DO you read or just write stupid posts."

Hmmm... last time I checked I didn't know there was a country called Palestine. No, I guess I just read stupid posts.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 10:15 PM

J,

Thank you for your honest and detailed commentary about US actions to destabilze the ME for our own interests. It is interesting to note how we made Iran hate us by our actions and now you never see this mentioned in our media.

I am grateful that at least one fellow American understands our gov't complicity in the ME mess.

Posted by: J | July 31, 2006 01:42 AM

Posted by: RB | July 31, 2006 10:17 PM

Zain -
Please let's not start quoting U.N. envoys and representatives. The U.N. is a powerless organization. Have they been able to stop the horrific violence in Darfur and in other African nations? They only condemn what suits them.

The deaths caused by Israel, while completely tragic, are NOT terrorism. Israel is not purposefully targeting civilians and has tried to notify civilians ahead of time to encourage them to leave areas where they are attempting to root out Hezbollah. Hezbollah and Hamas have ALWAYS targeted civilians along with the Israeli military. Please try to recognize that there is a difference.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 10:18 PM

Here is a link to great articles about the current ME mess in Tikkun magazine.

http://www.tikkun.org/rabbi_lerner/news_item.2006-07-17.9426591429

Below is from Jewish Voice for Peace:

Finally, a bill we can support in the House!

Finally, we have a bill in the House of Representatives that we need to support. Brought by Dennis Kucinich and with 23 co-sponsors, H. Con. Res. 450 calls for an immediate cease-fire, multi-party negotiations and an international peacekeeping force. Click here to take action.
http://www.jewishvoiceforpeace.org/

Posted by: RB | July 31, 2006 10:22 PM

"Just because the Katyushas are mobile doesn't mean that Hezbollah is disassembling and moving them that quickly."

Check this link out. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BM-21)

"The BM-21 can be packed up and ready to move in two minutes, which can be necessary when engaged by counter battery fire. Reloading is done manually and takes about ten minutes."

The katyusha name is applied to a variety of systems, the version used by Hezbollah is the BM-21 (or a variant). The time mentioned is for the multiple barreled systems atop a dedicated vehicle. What I was able to glean from various websites is that Hezbollah does not use multi barrel launchers atop dedicated vehicles. Rather its rockets are pipe, or rail fired, and tend to be one or two. That reduces the time to disassemble and scatter to a few seconds (a couple of minutes tops. By all accounts Hezbollah is very well trained in using its weapons systems.).

"Are the Israelis supposed to sit on their hands and allow their citizens to be at risk so Hezbollah can declare their victory?"

No, but murdering 500 plus innocent Lebanese is barbarism I discussed diplomatic routes Israel could have taken in an earlier post. In the end Israel will never be able to completely wipe out Hezbollah completely. It is going to have to depend upon an international force to do it (or occupy Lebanon again and we all know how that ended last time). Its recent actions have sown even more hatred among the Lebanese, and especially the Shiites (with whose support Hezbollah survives), making the job of any international force to disarm Hezbollah extremely difficult. At this point, this barbarism does not seem to leave very many face saving options for Israel.

Posted by: Zain | July 31, 2006 10:38 PM

Zain-Of course Israel is going to be even more hated by the Lebanese (if that's even possible), and I don't think Israel cares about saving face. Israel is doing what it feels it must do to keep its northern border safe from the threat of Hezbollah. There have been rockets periodically fired into Israel from southern Lebanon for years. This is not a new thing. Israel is a small country and cannot afford to allow an organization hell-bent on its destruction to build up a strong force right on its border.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 10:42 PM

When this blog started I read it to see what is "too much" for the supporters of Israel - yet again the message comes loud and clear - NOTHING -

The IDF/IAF for all their much vaunted technical superiority have killed probably 10 times as many civilians as they have hezbollah fighters - aren't most of these bombs supposed to be "smart" if so doesn't that mean that the dispatchers are either incompetent or vengeful.

I suppose the victims and families of those at Qana (both times) and the UN posts should take comfort in the fact that they were targeted by mistake and the bombs were really meant for the hb terrorists - who while apparently firing from those areas remarkably managed to not be around when the bombs came a calling.

Olmert must be happy as it seems it is a badge of honor to have the blood of hundreds of dead Arab children on your hands ...maybe having a father in the terrorist Irgun group must have left him with the same pathalogical hatred for Arabs that seems to be endemic in the Likud and now Kadima parties.

I would suggest a new party song for Kadima from the Kaballah espousing Ms. Britney Spears...

Oops I did it again......

Posted by: Angus | July 31, 2006 10:45 PM

"Please let's not start quoting U.N. envoys and representatives."

Please do not try and tell me who I can and cannot quote. The Lebanese envoy's statement made a very important point. How many apologies are we supposed to continue to get from Israel? Just because Israel apologizes, after bombing areas that it knows have civilians, and no military value, does not wash away the blood off its hands.

Lebanese Envoy to U.N:

"When mistakes are a pattern of behavior, they deserved to be called something else. They are war crimes."

"The U.N. is a powerless organization."

Agreed, and that is because the "Five" (especially the United States) have made it so. Perhaps if it was not so powerless it would have enforced all the resolutions that Israel has violated which would have resulted in a completely different middle east than what we have now.

Posted by: Zain | July 31, 2006 10:49 PM

"and I don't think Israel cares about saving face. Israel is doing what it feels it must do to keep its northern border safe from the threat of Hezbollah"

SM, saving face includes eliminating the threat that Hezbollah poses and the route that Israel has taken will not give them a complete victory without doing what I stated above. Therefore Israel will have done nothing to keep its citizens safe, only made the environment more dangerous.

Posted by: Zain | July 31, 2006 10:53 PM

Zain-There's only been one apology that I've seen from Hezbollah, and that was the one for the two Arab brothers who were killed by a Hezbollah rocket. Otherwise, I've not seen or heard any regrets or remorse on their part for the civilians that have been used as human shields while they carry out their war.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 10:53 PM

Zain-
"Therefore Israel will have done nothing to keep its citizens safe, only made the environment more dangerous."

The environment is only more dangerous because of the uncivilized way in which people in that region respond or attempt to get their demands met. If people would actually work at diplomacy, they might be able to work out differences and find a lasting solution to these issues that keep resurfacing. Instead, the suicide bombings, the missiles fired, etc., contribute to making the entire region unsafe for civilians and tourists. Let's be honest here. The issue is not just about land; it's about the fact that Israel exists at all. My guess is that as long as there is one Jew in the Middle East, the Arabs will not rest, and there will not be peace.

Posted by: SM | July 31, 2006 10:58 PM

It has barely been a year since Syria was kicked out of Lebanon. Hezbollah was widely seen as an agent of Syria. The anger and resentment felt towards Syria by the Lebanese people was being channeled towards building momentum to disarm Hezbollah. In Gaza, the political wing of Hamas had signed on to the "prisoner's document" which advocated the establishment of an independent Palestinian state within the 1967 borders (an implicit recognition of Israel's right to exist). Abu Mazen was also working on Hamas agreeing to a referendum among Palestinians on Israel's right to exist. If you look at all these events together, there was a noticeable momentum building towards a political solution. Israel's brutality towards the two kidnapping events may have completely destroyed whatever hope was building. It will never be possible to eliminate ALL violence as Israel demands (how many countries are completely crime free?). There will always be rogue elements who will seek to provoke Israel and destroy the peace process. Israel played right into their hands (Or does Israel want the status quo to continue?). By retaliating the way it did, Israel caused more deaths, both Israeli and Arab, than would have occurred in several years. The fledgling peace process should have been allowed to continue by the Israelis. That was the best way for Israel to defend itself.

Posted by: Zain | July 31, 2006 11:12 PM

Oh, and lets not forget that the Arab League has already offered a peace plan to Israel under which they would extend full recognition to Israel if it withdrew to the 67 borders.

Posted by: Zain | July 31, 2006 11:15 PM

Zain,

Those are excellent points. Have you considered that there are elements within Israel and the US who are committed to never allowing peace so they can hang on to as much of the West Bank and East Jerusalem as possible?

If I may, I will also add that in the weeks before the events that set off this heinous, massive over reaction, Israel had killed about 30 innocent civilians in Gaza,
many of them children, as though they were desperately trying to inspire actions that would get them off the hook from having to acknowledge Abu Mazen's upcoming referendum, which, as you suggest, would have forced the Israeli's to deal with him again in earnest about a negotiated peace, which certainly would have involved a much speedier and larger withdrawl from the West Bank.

If the US ever cuts off the funding to Israel (3 to 6 billion) per year and stops excercising our veto in the UN to protect them from the repercussions that would normally arise from their dysfunctional behavior, Israel would have to abandon the settlements and the occupation, which are the engine that drive all these conflicts in the first place.

But that is why few politicians ever want to discuss any of these issues, because the responsibility for the ongoing suffering, bloodshed, and weakening of US world image lies, at least to some extent, on their shoulders. Someone is approving all this money and all the UN vetos and yet never wants to actually take credit for it.

J

P.S.

Stop the Bombing, tear down the wall, Raze the settlements, end the occupation and watch peace break out in the ME.

Posted by: J | August 1, 2006 12:00 AM

J-Do you truly believe that giving the West Bank and Gaza to the Palestinians will bring lasting peace? It always seems that it's the rest of Israel, or rather the existence of Israel at all, that's the main problem.

Posted by: SM | August 1, 2006 12:14 AM

As for the "moral" supremacy of the arab governments in not selling weapons to other countries and the "victim" status of arabs/muslims in general, and the "blood" on the hands of US or Britain:

Lets put things in perspective and use some "proportionality" ;)

1. Lets start from the begining. Arabs invaded Europe in the year 732. The fact that they were utterly defeated by Charles Martel at Poitiers' France(the very heart!)doesn't mean they didn't START the "clash". Arabs can hardly claim to be "victims" of anything. If the efforts for domination are crushed, this doesn't necessarily make one a victim. (yeah, this can be used as an argument against israel or u.s or thailand or whoever, but as you'll see below..its about the context/intent ;) )

2. Crusades were a response to the arab/islamic occupation of the christian "holy" lands. The fact that the crusading armies were made up of savages who had very little to do with Jesus' teachings, does not negate the REASON why it started. Once you start a war, you should't complain if the retaliation is disproportionate. Personally I think the parliament should vote to remove the statue of Richard from westminster. He was neither a christian nor an "English"man.

3. What Iran is doing to the arab world now - by egging on hezbollah among other things- could be considered a blowback spanning centuries. A higher civilization -persians -were invaded and the original culture extirpated in favor of arabism. If Hezbolah succeeds in convincing the world they've "won" , Iran begins to dominate the region, and the arabs have a new enemy, far more lethal and populous than Israel.

4. Are the arabs not selling weapons because they are NOT making any, they CAN'T make any? OR because they are a peaceable people with no standing armies,air forces or very averse to war? ;) following the same logic of innocence, We might as well congratulate Monaco for not invading Poland?

5. Slave trade had been going on for MILLENIA - arabs had transported over 17+ million africans as slaves in recorded history. The count is 13-15 million for "europeans". There were slave trading centers in Iran where even russians were being sold as slaves as late as the 1850s. However, The distinct honor of "ending" slavery without EXTERNAL impetus belongs to England. In 1830s england ruled the oceans (and could've sold off the african continent for profit) was the sole "super"power , having defeated napoleonic madness. Yet the parliament PAID the slave-owners to liberate their slave populations. As for America, 400,000 WHITE americans lost their LIVES and countless wounded, scarred, to complete the emancipation. again, with NO external impetus. This is a KEY difference. All so called "morality"/light comes/came from within.

However, slave trade is STILL going on in the arab world; the estimate is around 900,000 africans are being held in arab lands as slaves.


6. At the end of WWII, America stood a colossus - there are and probably will never be parallels to such POWER, unbridled, mind-boggling, whatever word you choose. A single nation constituting 50% of the world GDP and the ONLY state with nuclear weapons. The soviets got their nukes only in 1948. How many here think, ANY nation would have resisted the temptation to USE the nukes at such a monumental turning point in history, to complete the alleged "imperial" domination? If you think this was normal/expected behavior, its very likely that you think "Allah" spoke to the prophet.

7. Talk about morality and bloodletting. Japan had killed 30 millions chinese/east asians. Stalins collectivistic madness led to the death of 20 million. The numbers of russians and other nationalities killed by Germany (oh yeah, even discouting the "myth" of the holocaust ;)) run into millions. thent he chinese killed off millions after their collectivist/cultural revolution. (Circa 2006, it sounds strange, but China owes its freedom to America. Go study history) Anyway, after defeating these monsters, what do you think evil America did? Yes, MacArthur rewrote the japanese constitution to create a NEW japan..raising it literalyl from the ashes, and American support is how Japan is now the number 2 economy and is living in peace. Same with Germany - the Marshall plan lifted up Germany into what it is today. The fact that today's Europeans are understandably resentful of this generosity doesn't change the FACTS.

8. The vietnam war needs to be looked at the context of containing the soviet union. It WAS the right thing to do from a big-picture perspective. (After all Khuruschev's (who promised to "BURY" america) son is now an American citizen.) And the russians continue to astonishingly high favorable ratings of America in public opinion polls. (Perhaps a zionist conspiracy eh? ;) ) . Coming back to vietnam; YES "crimes" agasint humanity were committed - but NOT as the ultimate goal. After all ALL WARS are crimes against humanity. How can it be otherwise? The distinction lies in the intent. If the soviets had killed off 20 million of their own, in pursuing mad collectivistic experiments, what fate lie in store for other countries that were still outside the soviet fold?
NO innocent death is "justifiable". Its all about the INTENT/context. Why arent Japanese today the slaves of Americans? after all they were "nuked"? or the Germans? THATS how the world worked until the rise of Britain, France and U.S. in world history. Thats the way the arabs/turks/islamic armies/mongols/native americans/africans...EVERY SINGLE culture on the planet worked.
(The VERY WORD SLAVE - comes from "slav" - the people who were brutally occupied and tortured as a nation by the invading hordes from central asia.)
Conquered/defeated populations were always SLAVEs to be dominated and exploited. Think big picture. So, if an American-made bomb falls in an clearly erroneous attack on civilians in a war started by Hezbollah, your conclusion is that America has more blood on its hands than everyone else? Sit back and think: What do you think will happen if America really DID behave the way you are describing (I'm sure its temporary emotional upset, and not clearly thought-out rational argument) -and decided to use its force to target "Arabs" or "muslims" as you guys describe here. Do you or do you not realize that its the public opinion and commonsense thats holding the enormous destructive power back in the western world? This is beginning to sound like the story of the boy who cried wolf.

(That reminds me, a single seawolf submarine can "take out" the major centers of "arab"/islamic civlizations. I'm saying this NOT as an implied sense of superiority or idiotic boast, but its just COLD HARD practical TRUTH. Whats holding this back? Do you think the russians/chinese would risk their survival for Arabs/muslims? What held it back after such a monstrosity as 9/11? Kindly stop this nonsense of America "wanting" to exterminate anybody, let alone muslims/arabs.)

9. THE MOST DAMNING and direct rejection of ANY Arab claims to morality and decency?
DARFUR. 400,000 Africans killed in 2 YEARS!!! and its STILL going on and the arab league is talking up the random bombs from isralie jets!!! 400,000+ blacks do not equal 60 arabs in Qana? How many resolutions have been called for by the OIC or the arab league to stop this? There are some humane arabs/muslims as exceptions, but as a culture/civilization its morally BANKRUPT. No "moderate" voice anywhere in the arab world is calling attention to Darfur.

10. I also saw some arguments about how america's policies in the M.E are to blame for islamic bloodletting, but why are the islamic terrorists killing off innocents in the Phillipines? india? Sudan? THAILAND? can you think of any other place so disconnected with any american strategy? THAILAND? :>

Posted by: Human | August 1, 2006 12:27 AM

Human-"Why are islamists killing off innocents in philipines,india, sudan"For the same reason Bush and America is on its eastern crusade.

Posted by: Goyim | August 1, 2006 01:25 AM

Human,

So in short, your suggesting that the last thousand years of historical events simply lock the ME in a deterministic pattern that (conveniently for your POV)
force Arab's, Muslims, Persians and Jews into rigid roles and that the Israelis are, solely as the consequence of past events, always somehow morally superior, regardless of how ridiculously brutal and universally condemned their actions are.

Might I suggest to you that the diplomats at the UN, from just about every major country in the world, from widely disparate cultures and historical backgrounds, are also aware of the history of the region, yet still seem to be able to condemn Israel for their actions (ethnic cleansing, apartheid policies, the settlements, the occupation, a security wall built on someone elses territory! ) based on current events alone, because those are the only things we can ever actually do anything about.

regarding your observation that we have the capacity to destroy the ME but have not, and that somehow makes us special,
I would say to you that it only means we are not insane.

Aparently, though, neither are the Pakistani's who hate Israel as much or more that Iran, who are almost certainly harboring OBL and who also have nuclear weapons.

You claim the US and Israel have such incredible restraint in comparison to russia. You forget the Beslan school massacre, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds of children and innocent people, an event which is so dramatically more awefull than Israels that Israel appears to be utterly without morals of any kind if you measure their response against Russia's. (Not to mention the movie theatre hostage situation)

The russians did not go in and Punish the Chechens and destroy their infrastructure and murder their people in retaliation. they kept working dillegently and recently killed Basayev. So what exactly is your point?

To use Historical events as a cover for Isreals very recent and real crimes agaisnt Humanity is lame and reprehensible.

It is also lame and reprehensible to use events that occured hundreds of years ago to brand an entire race or religion as somehow less human than everyone else.

The Occupation has been going on for 40 plus years right up to this very day.
At this very moment, plans to expand the settlements are being acted upon. At this very moment, more of the wall, built on
someone elses land, is being constructed.
These are obvious crimes against humanity and they are utterly morally indefensible.

regardless of what else is going on, these actions should be ceased immediatly. certainly regardless of what may have happened 750 years ago. For christs sake, 400 years ago, the US was populated by 10s of millions of native americans, who were utterly wiped out by us. using your logic, present day america is occupied by poeple whom history must branded as evil and beyond repair. I happen to disagree, although I do think that the Native American genocide was despicable. (And by the way, do you think that they, like the Israelis, should get all of their lands back while the rest of us just return to our native countries? )
If you apply this measure to any country or people, you come up with very similar results. Deal with the present. It's the only thing that can be changed.

SM,

You wrote:

"J-Do you truly believe that giving the West Bank and Gaza to the Palestinians will bring lasting peace? It always seems that it's the rest of Israel, or rather the existence of Israel at all, that's the main problem."

yes, I do. Remember Tim Mcveigh? The US is a great place with a great people and great governmental system (even if it is being abused now)yet he wanted to bring it down and actually caused a great deal of damage and suffering trying to strike against it. Why is it he didnt get further or have others follow up on his actions? because virtually nobody agrees with him. He was a radical nut. But if you start to keep a lot of US citizens in enforced, occupied ghettos and give them few rights and a guarantee of a really terrible life for themselves and their children, suddenly a guy like Tim Mcveigh ( a Nut) becomes one of many desperate insurgents in the US and all hell would break loose.

So, yes, if you tear down the settlements, tear down the wall, end the occupation and allow the palestinians to form a stable state, Hamas will be reduced eventually to Tim Mcveigh like outcasts, capable of creating some trouble, but dealt with harshly and immediatly by the vast majority of other poeple who simply want a good life for themselves and their family, just like you and I.

It is not a coincidnce that for the 40 some years the settlements and occupation have persisted, terrorism has increased dramatically. It is no coincidence that almost every single nation in the world condems the settlements and the occupation. It is no coincidence that Osama bin Laden rails constantly about the Palestinian situation and says that the inspriration of 9/11 was the first Israeli bombing of the towers in Beruit, which occured as the result of Israel's desire to assainate the PLO leaders that had moved there.

The occupation and the settlements are the oxygen that Hamas, Hezbollah, The Iranian Mullahs and all the other radical organizations need to survive. Remove them, and you end their funding and recruitment campaign, or, as Bill Clinton put it during a Charlie Rose interview, a fair and equitable end to the Israeli Palestinian conflict would " remove the Philosphical underpining of terrorist recruitment in the ME". I think he's qualified to assert this, and probably being candid , in that he said it after he left office.

J

P.S.

Stop the bombing, tear down the wall, raze the settlements, end the occupation and watch peace break out in the ME.

Posted by: J | August 1, 2006 02:27 AM

There goes the Israel apologist Richard Cohen once again, using his perch at the Washington Post to label all in the world rightly horrified by Israel's atrocities in Lebanon as anti-Semitic bigots.
Unable to defend what Israel has done with facts or arguments, you see, Cohen instead resorts to the Big Smear.
"The world is having a Mel Gibson moment,' he writes. "If it does not quite hold Jews 'responsible for all the wars in the world,' then certainly it is ready to blame Israel alone for the carnage in Lebanon..."
And so who else are we to blame, Richard?
You and your pals in the Israel-right-or-wrong crowd put all the blame on Hezbollah.
Problem is, Israel has killed more than 10 times as many innocent civilians as Hezbollah. So whatever Hezbollah is guilty of, Israel is guilty of 10 times over.
Hezbollah "started it," you say?
That's an awfully convenient tale, considering that Israeli media have reported that Israel had planned this war long ago and was just looking for the right "opportunity" to strike.
No, Richard Cohen, the world is not having a "Mel Gibson moment."
The world sees the war crimes being committed by Israel with a clear eye.
The world is rightly disgusted. With Israel. And with its patron, America, for helping it do the killing.
No amount of "anti-Semite" slurs from you or the rest of the Washington Post's stable of Israeli apologists and zealots can erase the fact that Israel has committed war crimes.
We called them war crimes when the Serbs did it to the Kosovars.
We were right then.
And we are right now to call what the Israelis are doing to the Lebanese war crimes, plain and simple.
No propaganda from the likes of Richard Cohen can change that.

Posted by: Saul | August 1, 2006 03:05 AM

Richard Cohen writes: "The strike into Lebanon has almost universal support in Israel, the most contentious of all societies, because of a deep and justifiable sense of grievance. What more can it do? What else will be asked of it? Who picked this fight, anyway?"

What else will be asked for it? Well for starters, how about asking Israel to sto;p occupying ALL Palestinian lands and to give up on its mad plan to carve up the West Bank in to bantustans while reserving the best land there for Israeli "settlers."

How about stopping treating Palestinians like dirt?

How about stopping inflicting massive collective punishment on civilians for acts they did not commit?

How about returning to legality and agreeing to live within Irael's internationally recognized borders?

Giving back the fetid ghetto of Gaza was hardly a huge sacrifice for Israel. Giving back bits and pieces of the crummiest land on the West Bank isn't a sacrifice either.
If Israel wants peace, it must stop being an outlaw state and start respecting the United Nations resolutions that direct it to end its dreadful policy of annexing Arab lands for Israelis.

It's that simple, Richard.

Start obeying international law, and your friends in Israel will have a lot less war on your hands.

Posted by: Saul | August 1, 2006 03:13 AM

Saul

Cohens comments are despicable. His message? The entire world, outraged by Israel's actions, is Anti-semitic.
That worn, faded, race card, which has grown so thin and ragged that you can see daylight right through it, is held up by Cohen in, just as you suggest, the absence of any thing else he could write that could possibly justify Israel's actions. So he takes this time to smear Kofi and Mel in the same way that he tried to smear Walt and Mearsheimer, the authors of the Israel lobby, one of whom is the acedemic dean of the Kennedy Government School at Harvard. Mr. Cohen simply has no limit to the shameful and less than journalistic practice of smearing innocent people with accusations of racism.

Regarding Kofi's accusation concerning the bombing of the UN obsevers, I suppose It could be the same reason that Israel routinely, and I mean ROUTINELY, shoots cameramen, reporters and peace workers in the Occupied territories. They don't want anyone they can't easily discredit to witness their barbarity and they resent the attempt to curb their actions.

Perhaps Mr. Cohen should watch the frontline investigative report that documents the relentless shooting of camera men in the west bank. It's so common there that the camera men who work the area have made a pact to keep filming to document the shootings as they occur. These are not mistaken shootings.

Why did they Crush Racheal Corrie? Why did they shoot the young peace worker trying to guard very young palestinian school children from beatings and worse at the hands of the IDF and the settlers.

Mr. Cohen brings shame upon his whole profession, and diminishes the credibility of the paper that employs him.

J

Posted by: J | August 1, 2006 04:06 AM

The following was quoted directly from an article written by prof. Judt (he is Jewish)for the Israeli jewish newspaper Haaretz. The entire article cane be read from the links provided at the end of this post.

["....This - the charge that criticism of Israel is implicitly anti-Semitic - is regarded in Israel and the United States as Israel's trump card. If it has been played more insistently and aggressively in recent years, that is because it is now the only card left.

The habit of tarring any foreign criticism with the brush of anti-Semitism is deeply engrained in Israeli political instincts: Ariel Sharon used it with characteristic excess but he was only the latest in a long line of Israeli leaders to exploit the claim. David Ben-Gurion and Golda Meir did no different. But Jews outside of Israel pay a high price for this tactic. Not only does it inhibit their own criticisms of Israel for fear of appearing to associate with bad company, but it encourages others to look upon Jews everywhere as de facto collaborators in Israel's misbehavior. When Israel breaks international law in the occupied territories, when Israel publicly humiliates the subject populations whose land it has seized - but then responds to its critics with loud cries of "anti-Semitism" - it is in effect saying that these acts are not Israeli acts, they are Jewish acts: The occupation is not an Israeli occupation, it is a Jewish occupation, and if you don't like these things it is because you don't like Jews...."]

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/711997.html

Also see,

http://www.jewishvoiceforpeace.org/publish/article_627.shtml

Posted by: Steven | August 1, 2006 04:57 AM

I don't mind Jews have temple or whatever in Israel and feel some place call home. Nothing wrong with that.

Whati can't agree or world can't let is let Israel expand beyond itsborders. I know the plan of systematically executing Palestinians bycreating "self created" terrorist attacks by mozzad to blamePalestinians.

It is happening for past 60 years. Palestiniansare systematically tortured , abused , harassed and blamed forterrorism when they react to this aggression.

At present notmany "smart" Jews in America is not moving to Israel. Once Israelexpands , you will see all smart jew Americans will move back toisrael. Even Intel will move its Head Quarters to Israel.

Once all Jews moved , America will not be America as it will become hardcorereligious state as there will be no Jews to fight for church and govtseparation. America will become weaker without jews. And jews willbecome powerful.

It may not happen immediately but if Israelexpands it will happen. Once Israel wipe out Palestinians , you willstart to see things moving towards Israel. America will become colonyof Israel. Role will be reversed.

I am not creating conspiracy theory. It is a possible path when there is "space" available for Israel for more Jews.

As long Israel stays its place , there is absolutely nothing wrong with America supporting Israel and Israel being victim.

Ithink there is some war going to come. America and Israel are goingafter Syria. They will continue to pound Lebanon and make Syria reactangrily. Then they will wipe Syria out of the map.

May be thepath to Greater Israel differ slightly but i believe the goal of rightwing Jews is to make Israel next super power. They are using Americanmilitary and American lives to achieve their goal.
They want to give it back to the world for all 2000 years of humilation and running around.


America is duped.

Posted by: Alex | August 1, 2006 05:11 AM

Alex,
You have some valid points in your post. Take a look at the link below and see for yourself how israel and its agants at AIPAC almost always succeed in framing arabs and muslims for their own jewish/ israeli terrorist acts agains this country.

http://www.apfn.org/apfn/WTC_STF.htm

Have you heard of the LAVON AFFAIR? or how about the USS LIBERTY?

Look up these jewish/israeli atrocities and judge for yourself.

Condom Leeza Rice,
"US" Secretary of State and Israeli conspirator.

Posted by: Condom leeza Rice | August 1, 2006 06:02 AM

J,

"Deal with the present. It's the only thing that can be changed."

Hope you realize the irony of this statement. ;-) Thats what the arabs need to do - deal with the present - accept the reality of israel that has existed for 60 year and recognize its right to exist within its borders. Then the world opinion can be brought against settlements in westbank. If Israel attacks Jordan or Egypt, with whom they have a peace treaty, millions of Americans (including myself) would be condeming Israel.

Anyway, that post was about putting America's role (and Britain's) in perspective, not Israel. Lumping "America and Israel" together is somewhat ridiculous. These are not to be grouped toegether. They have no "shared" history of any significance. Frankly I do not care too much about Israel and their policies as much about the sheer injustice of the arabs claiming to have moral upper hand. Until they stop the genocide in Darfur, their claims to being a "moral" people and "victims" are laughable. (I'm "dealing with the PRESENT" here, of course;) not past history)

Nobody is defending any brutal israeli policies. I brought out all ancient history to show its not just a temporary anamoly but arabs have been just as brutal as the Israelis WHEN THEY COULD.

However, as long as the arabs remain silent on 400,000 african deaths and continue to maintain their indifference, they'll have very little respect from the rest of humanity who are inclined to be "neutral" parties in the arab-israeli conflict.

Americans are not remaining silent when innocent iraqis are being killed; there are always protests - against the war, against any perceived brutality by american soldiers, condemnations, demands for inquiries/JUSTICE. Bin Laden's driver just won a lawsuit against the president. THATs America for you. Not to be confused with any other country, including Israel. I am neither pro-israel,anti-arab,pro-jew,antijew and whatnot.. LIVE and LET LIVE. Why isn't Israel attacking Jordan or EGYPT if the "zionists" are hellbent on occupying more lands? Israel withdrew from gaza and lebanon. Let the arabs DEAL with the present, as you say, and try to reach a peace agreement. If Israel attacks them without ANY provocation, then you'll see the public opinion moving stradily against it. The American public aren't any more inherently "pro-israel" than they are "pro-Botswana". Do you think the American public will support Israel if they round up Lebanese women and children EXPLICITLY and hold them hostages, a la islamic style? Hezbollah broke some basic rules. Thats why Israel is getting the support.

Theres ONE way to "defeat" israel. USE NON-VIOLENCE. Lets see hamas and fatah going on mass hunger strikes, and see how the American public responds to THAT, instead of blowing up kids and firing rockets. No, that wont happen. The arabs want to achieve this through violence; then punishing retaliatory fire shouldn't surprise them.


Answer these questions, if you care to respond again:

1. Why hasn't Israel attacked Egypt or Jordan since the peace treaty, if Israel is expansionist that wants to swallow up its neighbors?

2. WHAT would explain the Arab silence on Darfur? Arabs have killed 400,000 blacks and CONTINUE (this is the CRUX! dealing with the present) to kill. Do they even care? or do any pro-arab apologists even care about these deaths? If Israel is a "nazi" state for its targeted strikes that have killed 4000 palestinians in 6 years, what term should be used for Arabs who remain silent on their OWN atrocities which are exactly a 100 times worse?

3. As a corollary, how many african lives equal an arab life? Lets talk "reprehensible".

Posted by: Human | August 1, 2006 09:33 AM

"The russians did not go in and Punish the Chechens and destroy their infrastructure and murder their people in retaliation. they kept working dillegently and recently killed Basayev. So what exactly is your point?"

Caught off-guard on this one!!!

Are you serious?!! "Didn't destroy their infrastructure?" Thats probably one of the most astonishing statements I've read here. Ever hear of GROZNY?

Ask any muslim about what the Russians did to Grozny. Do a google search. Read "neutral" history, if you think "pro-israeli" reprehensible propagandists are talking fake history ;-)

The RUSSIANS RAZED GROZNY to the ground. sheesh.

http://users.westnet.gr/~cgian/grozny.htm

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/wideangle/shows/chechnya/index.html

Posted by: Human | August 1, 2006 09:56 AM

Please read this very interesting information:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/em/fr/-/1/hi/world/middle_east/4314423.stm

Who are Hezbollah?
Hezbollah - or the Party of God - is a powerful political and military organisation of Shia Muslims in Lebanon.

It emerged with financial backing from Iran in the early 1980s and began a struggle to drive Israeli troops from Lebanon.

Hezbollah guerrillas
Hezbollah presents itself as a force of resistance for Lebanon and the region
In May 2000 this aim was achieved, thanks largely to the success of the party's military arm, the Islamic Resistance.

In return, the movement, which represents Lebanon's Shia Muslims - the country's single largest community - won the respect of most Lebanese.

It now has an important presence in the Lebanese parliament and has built broad support by providing social services and health care. It also has an influential TV station, al-Manar.

But, it still has a militia that refuses to demilitarise, despite UN resolution 1559, passed in 2004, which called for the disarming of militias as well as the withdrawal of foreign (i.e about 14,000 Syrian) forces from Lebanon.

As long ago as 2000, after Israel's withdrawal, Hezbollah was under pressure to integrate its forces into the Lebanese army and focus on its political and social operations.

But, while it capitalised on its political gains, it continued to describe itself as a force of resistance not only for Lebanon, but for the region.

Syria

The Islamic Resistance is still active on the Israel-Lebanon border. Tension is focused on an area known as the Shebaa Farms, although clashes with Israeli troops occur elsewhere.

Hezbollah, with broad Lebanese political support, says the Shebaa Farms area is occupied Lebanese territory - but Israel, backed by the UN, says the farms are on the Syrian side of the border and so are part of the Golan Heights, which Israel has occupied since 1967.

South Lebanon
Another casus belli cited by Hezbollah is the continued detention of prisoners from Lebanon in Israeli jails.

The movement long operated with neighbouring Syria's blessing, protecting its interests in Lebanon and serving as a card for Damascus to play in its own confrontation with Israel over the occupation of the Golan Heights.

But the withdrawal of Syrian troops in Lebanon last year - following huge anti-Syrian protests in the wake of Lebanese ex-Prime Minister Rafik Hariri's assassination - changed the balance of power.

Hezbollah became the most powerful military force in Lebanon in its own right and increased its political clout, gaining a seat in the Lebanese cabinet.

Analysts say Hezbollah has adopted a cautious policy since the Hariri assassination crisis erupted on 14 February 2005 - an event widely blamed on Syria, but which Damascus has vigorously denied.

Hezbollah leaders have continued to profess its support for Syria, while not criticising the Lebanese opposition. They have also stressed Lebanese unity by arguing against "Western interference" in the country.

Starting out

Hezbollah was conceived in 1982 by a group of Muslim clerics after the Israeli invasion of Lebanon.

It was close to a contingent of some 2,000 Iranian Revolutionary guards, based in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, which had been sent to the country to aid the resistance against Israel.

Hezbollah was formed primarily to offer resistance to the Israeli occupation.

It also dreamed of transforming Lebanon's multi-confessional state into an Iranian-style Islamic state, although this idea was later abandoned in favour of a more inclusive approach that has survived to this day.

The party's rhetoric calls for the destruction of the state of Israel. It regards the whole of Palestine as occupied Muslim land and it argues that Israel has no right to exist.

The party was long supported by Iran, which provided it with arms and money.

Passionate and demanding

Hezbollah also adopted the tactic of taking Western hostages, through a number of freelance hostage taking cells.

In 1983, militants who went on to join Hezbollah ranks carried out a suicide bombing attack that killed 241 US marines in Beirut.

Hezbollah has always sought to further an Islamic way of life. In the early days, its leaders imposed strict codes of Islamic behaviour on towns and villages in the south of the country - a move that was not universally popular with the region's citizens.

But the party emphasises that its Islamic vision should not be interpreted as an intention to impose an Islamic society on the Lebanese.

Please note the following paragraphs taken from above:

"The party's rhetoric calls for the destruction of the state of Israel. It regards the whole of Palestine as occupied Muslim land and it argues that Israel has no right to exist."

This is why Israel is concerned.

Posted by: SM | August 1, 2006 09:59 AM

"Israeli chief of Staff Dan Halutz this week ordered the Air Force to bomb 10 buildings in south Beirut for every rocket that falls in Haifa "

That is strangely reminiscient of the tactics the Nazist used to have in Italy duuring WWII against the italian resistance.
For every German killed, ten Italian were executed.
The most (in)famous one in Rome. Thirtyfour German died in a bomb attack and 370 Italians were killed at the Fosse Ardeatine. The German officer (if I remember) was criticized by his superiors for the "extra" 30 Italians killed.
What does it tell about Israel now?

Posted by: Michele | August 1, 2006 10:17 AM

Michele,

Israel's strong-arm tactics/humiliations of innocent arab civilians are to be condemned. In the same breath, are you also asking these questions?

1. Why hasn't Israel attacked Egypt or Jordan since the peace treaty, if Israel is expansionist that wants to swallow up its neighbors?

2. WHAT would explain the Arab silence on Darfur? Arabs have killed 400,000 blacks and CONTINUE (this is the CRUX! dealing with the present) to kill. Do they even care? or do any pro-arab apologists even care about these deaths? If Israel is a "nazi" state for its targeted strikes that have killed 4000 palestinians in 6 years, what term should be used for Arabs who remain silent on their OWN atrocities which are exactly a 100 times worse?

3. As a corollary, how many african lives equal an arab life? Lets talk "reprehensible".

Posted by: Human | August 1, 2006 10:37 AM

wE'RICHARD COHEN recently wrote a column agreeing that Israel was a mistake. The Jews must've done their thing on him...because his last 2 or 3 columns have been sufficiently bloodthirsty and savage to please even that tribe. We could laugh if it weren't so horrid and typical of the FREE PRESS in the US. There are so many little orgs that do nothing but hector journalists who dare to criticze anything Jewish.

Posted by: POOR COHEN, NOT | August 1, 2006 10:44 AM

I just heard Howard Deans comments from a couple of days ago when he called the Iraqi PM an Anti Semite because he condemned Israel as an agressor.

If it was not so pathetic it would be hilarious.

Posted by: Angus | August 1, 2006 10:49 AM

Human:

1. Most of the people posting here against Israeli politics are referring to its expansionist policies with regards to the occupied territories. If building settlements in land that was occupied in war (and is central to the Palestinians in the establishment of their state and therefore central to the peace process), is not expansionist then what is?

2. You are using an extremely flawed line of reasoning. I am not sure where to correct you since there are so many angles to approach it from. First, what does Darfur have to do with the Middle East conflict? The Arabs in the Middle East and some of the Northern African states have had stronger cultural and ethnic ties with each other than with other Muslim countries. It would stand to reason that they would be more concerned and feel more emotion for events that occur in parts of the world that they do have ties with. Just as the media in the U.S focuses on events that they think will interest Americans more, so does the media in Arab countries. The result is not a lot of information about the brutality in Darfur. For that matter, the media in the U.S has not done much about reporting on it either, and if there was need to get rid of a "authoritarian regime" then perhaps the U.S should have gone to Africa instead. When help was needed in Somalia, the U.S ran off with its tail between its legs after the Blackhawk incident. What about the massacres and torture by the Lords Resistance Army (a fundamentalist Christian group) in Uganda? I do not see Christians up in arms over their atrocities. I cannot even remember when I last saw an article about their activities.

The entire world is responsible for forgetting about Africa. Picking one conflict and then blaming Arabs for not criticizing it (the coverage in the Arab/Muslim media about African conflicts has been pretty much on par with the coverage in the West and maybe a little better than the coverage in the U.S) smacks of opportunistic baiting. As human beings we all share the responsibility for forgetting about Africa. Perhaps if the superpowers were not so obsessed about their "strategic" objectives, and actually let the U.N flourish into the powerful organization it can be, we might be able to prevent the famines, genocides, and wars that plague the continent.

3. The question should be how many African lives equal one European, American, Asian, Jew, Arab... life. We are all responsible.

Posted by: Zain | August 1, 2006 11:18 AM

If the U.S. Senate and House allow the United States to be dragged into a broader war with Syria or Iran, simply because this President doesn't slam the door shut on transfer of new weapons, ammunition, equipment ... then they should all be turned out in the Fall. That includes the caviling Joe Lieberman, who, it might be noted, dissed many of his Democrat colleagues with being "cut and runners" a lå Bush. For his sense of superiority, Connecticut voters ought to oust him. Whether the folks in CT who vote to align themselves with ANY Pro-Israel stand offset those Dems in the State who say they've had enough of Lieberman, I don't know.
Israel should not be allowed to bomb Syria or invade Syria.
George Bush needs to go before Congress if there are any linkages between the Administration and Israeli on ... we'd really appreciate it if you attacked Syria while you're on a roll ... the Iranians and Syrians have an alliance and mutual defense pact ... to attack one means attacking the other.
This is a horrific replay of the "Guns Of August," if Bush and Cheney simply provide Israel with enough weapons to take on Israel ... and Congress does nothing.
The Administration should be pulled up before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and asked, point blank:
ON THE RECORD, in OPEN hearings:
Has this Administration made ANY overtures to Israeli questions about what our response would be if Israel attacked Syria?
Has this Administration stated, unequivocably, that an Israeli attack on Syria will NOT be supported by the U.S?
If so, what is the authority for that committment when Congress has not been consulted?
A wider war will mean a Draft.
Any reporter now, including Mr. Morley, who does not add that fact to reports about a worsening climate between Israel and Lebanon ... and possible implications of attacks against Syria and Iran .. isn't doing his or her job.
The Draft will shock millions of young people who've never been exposed to the concept, much less, the reality. We Baby Boomers, who fought in Vietnam, grew up in an era where the Draft was part of "coming of age."
The young people who have been born and grown up since 1972, simply won't know what to do.
On the other hand, if Bush commits the U.S. secretly to a new, broader, wider war ... should be eligible for Impeachment.
Every Congressional Representative who voted for a Draft now should be castigated and thrown out of office.

Posted by: Ramparts | August 1, 2006 11:35 AM

Angus:

Ai yai yai...I actually liked Dean when he ran for president. He seemed a breath of fresh air and at the time even talked about taking a different approach to the Mid East conflict. I wish the democrats would actually grow some b***s. In the absence of any moral standing among the members of either party, I guess I have to vote for whoever has the more liberal social stance.

Posted by: Zain | August 1, 2006 11:49 AM

Human,

First, Grozny happened years before Beslan.
My entire point was that when faced with that horrible terrorsit crime, The russians did not go back into Chechnya and punish the civilian poplulation there, Because they have a sense of proportion, fairness and decency which the current regime in Israel lacks. That there was a war there and bad things happened put's the russians in about the same boat as every othercountry in teh world at one time or another. It's just that doing what Israel has done Lebanon over several captured soldiers is simply indefensible. That is why most of the world condemns it.

Second, your entire premise regarding "Arabs" is ill conceived, thoughtless and racist. Your simply saying that all Arabs are the same and blaming the sins of a few on all of them. This is fundamentally flawed thinking, in fact it is exactly the type of thinking that inspired the Nazi's to assume that all jews were same and then act upon that horrific conclusion.

regarding the situation in Darfur, It is the shame of the entire world that no one else, say like the US, who actually has the resources to go in and change things, has not acted. Don't lay this on the Arabs, as though the palestinians (who live in a very pluralistic society) could do anything about it.

Regarding Egypt and Jordan, the reason the Israelis no longer attack them is because their dreams of greater Israel have largly been crushed. They did indeed want to expand into their territry at one time, but that time is gone.

The Isaelis are, However, still desperately trying to hang onto big parts of the west bank and east jerusalem despite seeing the hand writing on the wall. It is this 40 plus year brutal, soul killing action which drives the support for these other conflicts which we are seeing now. TO suggest that Israel will end the occupation and settlements after the other violence has died down is such a ridiculous statement that it bears no further discussion.

J

P.S., you are really engaging in wholesale racism here. Personally, regarding Israel, I blame the Settler movement in the US and Israel for the vast majority of Israels current problems. This is a diverse group of people with a wide range of horribly mistaken beliefs.

In the future, try to be more specific in your accusations, unless you really don't mind being a racist. In that case please just come all of the way out of the closet. Come right out and say you hate Arabs so that we all can Identify you correctly.

J

Posted by: J | August 1, 2006 11:57 AM

Zain,

You scooped me! By the time I had responded, your post had aleadt appeared. I'm glad to see others view Humans statements similarly!


J

Posted by: J | August 1, 2006 12:07 PM

Thats right. ;-) If you question why the arab league hasn't acted more strongly against Darfur, you're a "nazi".
(The same tired old technique.)
After all we are "ALL" responsible, for Darfur, arent we. (especially the Finns, I'm sure) Whereas only the Israelis are to blame in the israeli-palestinian conflict.

As for the comment: "whats darfur got to do with Israel-arab conflict" - that pretty much summarizes arab/islamic morality. Its got EVERYthing to do with it. But the islamic teachings apparently calcify the adherent's thinking into make a CLEAR distinction between the faithful and the non-believer that the striking hypocrisy(from a non-muslim's perspective) doesn't even REGISTER on their conscience!.
So a japanese businessman is japan is not justified in protesting an israali guard's humiliation of an arab musician.
Hey, no context, no connection, no relevance, local headlines are more concerned about something else anyway? The japaese guy should mind his own business?


IF darfur and israel have no connection/relevance, what relevance does arab-israeli conflict have with 5/6 of humanity who are not muslims? and why should the UN spend so much time/energy on 2 million arabs' troubles as opposed to 3-4 billion poor people elsewhere? Astonishing. Think in terms of humanity not just "your" people, "your" religion. (and think "proportionate")

We are all opinionated little nazis arent we? no wait..its just people who question arabs/muslims ;)

Posted by: Human | August 1, 2006 01:12 PM

Correction:
Think in terms of humanity not just "your" people, "your" religion. (and think "proportionate")

should read:

Think in terms of humanity not just "your" people (if you're an arab), "your" religion(If you follow islam). (and think "proportionate" - if you dont fit either category)

Posted by: Human | August 1, 2006 01:29 PM

Human,

I initially wanted to post a reply to your response regarding my points about US governments adventures in the world but elected not do so in order to keep the discussion focus on the subject of this blog entry. For Sudan though, since I am Arab myself, I can tell you that the response of the league or the Arab governments was shameful. I strongly condemn their response and their stance on Sudan.

Unlike you, I don't owe anything to any Arab government and I don't blindly repeat their propaganda like you do with your own government and the messianic Israeli government that you are defending here with a straight face.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict despite being localized has grown to be a worldly conflict and has been threatening world peace. What's a stake is respect, trust, and mutual understanding between East and West. Darfur is a localized conflict and perhaps if the world has not been busy with this never-ending Palestinian-Israeli conflict, they would have had the time and the ability to focus on it. The sad thing is that many Arabs believed that America was trying to use Darfur as a political ploy, which is not completely false (many pro-Israel groups suddenly started defending darfur refugees).

Let me tell you something:

The Palestinians are the victims of Israel. Not the other way around.

Palestinians only want to live in peace where they actually lived, not where some imaginary ancestor lived.

Israeli want to live where their imaginary 2000 years-old ancestors lived.

How insane is this. How can any reasonable person defend this madness.

Israeli have not given up this biblical Israel stuff.

They still call West Bank by its biblical name, completely ignoring the reality on the ground 2000 years later.

So long as Israel doesn't divorce itself from its messianic dogma and doesn't leave that in synagogues where religious beliefs belong, the world must stand up to this madness that is trying to reverse the clocks of the world.

If Israeli only wanted peace, safety and the ability to govern themselves like any free people, then they wouldn't have gone to the Middle East, a place they left 2000 years ago.

They wouldn't have built countless settlements in the middle of their enemy under the continous protest of the world community including western nations.

Let's be honest here, Israeli have gone too far. If you want to join them in their messianic crusade, then please say so instead of hiding behind "humanity".

Posted by: Karim | August 1, 2006 11:29 PM

Karim-
You wrote:
"Palestinians only want to live in peace where they actually lived, not where some imaginary ancestor lived.

Israeli want to live where their imaginary 2000 years-old ancestors lived."

and

"Israeli have not given up this biblical Israel stuff.

They still call West Bank by its biblical name, completely ignoring the reality on the ground 2000 years later."

Huh? Excuse me? Imaginary ancestors??? Let me refer you to this:

"The first historical record of the word "Israel" comes from an Egyptian stele documenting military campaigns in Canaan. Although this stele which referred to a people (the determinative for 'country' was absent) is dated to approximately 1211 BCE, [5] Jewish tradition holds that the Land of Israel has been a Jewish Holy Land and Promised land for 3,000 years. The land of Israel holds a special place in Jewish religious obligations, encompassing Judaism's most important sites -- including the remains of the First and Second Temples of the Jewish King, Solomon. Connected with these two versions of the temple are religiously significant rites which stand as the origin for many aspects of modern Judaism. [6] Starting around the 11th century BCE the first of a series of Jewish kingdoms and states established intermittent rule over the region that lasted more than a millennium.

Under Assyrian, Babylonian, Persian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, and (briefly) Sassanian rule, Jewish presence in the region dwindled due to mass expulsions. In particular, the failure of the Bar Kochba Revolt against the Roman Empire in 132 CE resulted in a large-scale expulsion of Jews. It was during this time that the Romans gave the name Syria Palaestina to the geographic area, in an attempt to erase Jewish ties to the land.[7] The Mishnah and Jerusalem Talmud, two of Judaism's most important religious texts, were composed in the region during this period. The Muslims conquered the land from the Byzantine Empire in 638 CE. The area was ruled by various Muslim states (interrupted by the rule of the Crusaders) before becoming part of the Ottoman Empire in 1517."

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel#Historical_roots)

Judaism predated Islam, and so Jews have had a biblical, historic and religious claim to that land for centuries. Imaginary ancestors? I don't think so.

Posted by: SM | August 2, 2006 01:10 AM

Karim -
I didn't finish my last post...

"If Israeli only wanted peace, safety and the ability to govern themselves like any free people, then they wouldn't have gone to the Middle East, a place they left 2000 years ago."

First of all, the "Israelis" didn't leave 2000 years ago. Many of the JEWS were expelled by numerous rulers over centuries; however, there were always Jews who remained in the area that is present-day Israel.

Second, they wouldn't have had the issue of the settlements at all if they hadn't been constantly been attacked by their neighbors for years after the country existed. And especially because their neighbors for years didn't even acknowledge their right to exist (and some still don't). As you know, the settlement land that is now contested so hotly was captured by Israel in a war during which they were attacked.

Why was the 1947 Partition Plan rejected by all the Arabs in the Middle East? Go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1947_partition_plan and see how much land the Palestinians turned down. Could someone please explain to me WHY?

Also, please tell me how Jordan and Egypt have managed to have a semblance of peace with Israel but the other Arab nations cannot.

Posted by: SM | August 2, 2006 01:22 AM

---SM--Are you "MISINFORMED" or what?
The minute the Jews came to Israel the
STERN GANGS began wiping out enclaves of Arabs, or anyone else around. It was violent and brutaland constant. Everyone knows. And at the time Israel's leaders talked about how they had to push the Palestinians back and take over the land.
Israel has always been a big treat.

Posted by: Sick of it | August 2, 2006 09:50 AM

SM:

Imaginary in the sense that no Jewish person in 1948 knew exactly who their ancestor was from 100BC. Did you think David Ben-Gurion could point exactly where his own ancestor lived 2000 years ago? You bet he couldn't and neither couldn't the Zionist Russian gangs that created Israel itself. That's what I mean by imaginary.

Besides you are mixing religion with historical facts which is commonly used in Israel to indoctrinate people and take advantage of their faith.

Again, this is not about Islam, Christianity or anything.

A native Palestinian has every damn right to change their religion and to adapt whatever beliefs they want and still BE A NATIVE unlike the Zionists who came from Europe.

To suggest that one has to stay Jewish in order to keep their own native land is prosperous.

The Israelites conquered the land from the Canaanite people after they exterminated them. From the very beginning, Israel was founded on injustice. This perhaps explains why the Romans destroyed it and why in the future, Israel will again be dismantled as long as Israeli continue to believe that history only starts with their lost kingdom, and that everything else before goes in the bin. Such arrogance, contempt for others and disregard of their history must be confronted.

Posted by: Karim | August 2, 2006 11:05 AM

STATISTICS ABOUT LEBANON

1. Lebanon has 18 religious communities
2. It has 40 daily newspapers
3. It has 42 universities
4. It has over 100 banks (that is banks and not branches of a bank)
5. 70% of the students are in private schools
6. 40% of the Lebanese people are Christians (this is the highest
percent all the Arab countries)
7. There's 1 doctor per 10 people in Lebanon (In Europe & America,
there's 1 doctor per 100 people)
8. The name LEBANON appears 75 times in the Old Testament
9. The name CEDAR (Lebanon's tree) appears 75 times too in the Old
Testament!!
10. Beirut was destroyed and rebuilt 7 times (this is why it's
compared to The Phoenix).

11. There are 3.5 Million Lebanese in Lebanon
12. There are around 10 Million Lebanese outside Lebanon!

OTHER INTERESTING FACTS

1. Byblos (city in Lebanon) is the oldest, continuously living city in the world.
2. Lebanon's name has been around for 4,000 yrs non- stop (it's the oldest
country/ nation's name in the world!)
3. Lebanon is the only Asian/African country that doesn't have a desert.
4. There are 15 rivers in Lebanon (all of them coming from its own mountains)
5. Lebanon is one of the most populated countries in its archeological
sites, in the world!!!
6. The first alphabet was created in Byblos (city in Lebanon)
7. The only remaining temple of Jupiter (the main Roman god) is in
Baalbeck, Lebanon (The City of the Sun)
8. The name of BYBLOS comes from the BIBLE!!!
9. Lebanon is the country that has the most books written about it.
10. The Phoenicians (Original People of Lebanon) built the 1st boat, and
they were the first to sail ever!
11. Phoenicians also reached America long before Christopher Columbus did.
12. The 1st law school in the world was built in Lebanon, in Downtown
Beirut.
Isn't it a real Crime Against Humanity to destroy a country with such history?

Posted by: Why? | August 2, 2006 11:24 AM

"Sick of it"-
No, sadly, it is YOU who is misinformed. Why don't you actually READ some history? I provided some links to some good information so you can educate yourself.

There were Arab-Jewish clashes years before the Stern Gang. Read about Hebron in 1929.

I will repeat. THERE WERE ALWAYS JEWS IN THE LAND THAT IS NOW PRESENT-DAY ISRAEL.

Posted by: SM | August 2, 2006 11:41 AM

Sick of it-

Since you obviously lack intelligence and any knowledge of history, I think you should keep your nasty, racist comments to yourself. This country was built by immigrants from every race, nationality and religion, and it's one of the things that has made the United States great. I'd love to know where your ancestors are from and how they would feel about having a descendant who is so blatantly misinformed.

Posted by: SM | August 2, 2006 02:40 PM

SM, Well, were there always Jews in America? I don't really know. Excpet that the founding fathers were not fond of such.
And I know that just before and during and after WWII
Americans didn't want any of the refugees here. Turned away boats and such. You're
SO good at history. Please let us in on the real truth, as you always do.

Posted by: sick of it | August 2, 2006 03:12 PM

Karim:
My apologies for not repsonding sooner to your response to my posting 2 days ago.

Your first point regarding arab governments convictions of terrorist is appreciated but my problem is with the "arab street." There is a not so silent admiration for these criminals, likely because their actions in some way give the common arab a feeling of empowerment. Yet as an american it is enraging to see video of thousands of common arabs cheering american deaths
while also seeing arabs enraged when their own people are being killed. You are correct that the Saudi's would prosecute and probably execute Bin Laden if they found him; but they wont because thousands, and likely millions of arabs admire him and would protect him.

I'm not too sure what you meant with your second point regarding the Vietnam War and U.S. atrocities there. The major intention of Vietnam was not to conquer or kill the Vietnamese but to contain the expansion of communism in southeast Asia. The only difference between Vietnam and Afghanistan is that the U.S. lost in Vietnam. I dont see anyone in the arab world complaining about the U.S. support the Mudjahadeen against the Soviet Union. The Vietnam war memorials are to the foot soldiers who perished and not a political statement on the war nor a repudiation of the atrocities commited there.

Your next point concerning U.S. arms sales is appreciated as well. Lets not forget that the arab world is also one of the worlds greatest suppliers of Heroine and other drugs (at times state sponsored as well) - so we don't have a monopoly on immoratlity.

Your final point regarding Christianity's roots in the Middle East is indisputable but I fail to see what that has to do with the current debate.

As an American who was educated in our public school system I was formally taught that Islam is one the world's 3 great monotheistic relgions. My education regarding Islam was admittedly rudimentary but Islam was always regarded with great respect. God only knows what curriculum regarding Christians and Jews are being taught throughout the arab world. Our respect for Islam is fading as the silent majority of moderate muslims allow the fanatics to take over. An islamic theocracy exists in Iran and much of the arabian penninsula. It used to exist in Afghanistan and may become a reality in Lebanon. Can you even begin to imagine what would happen if a Christian or Jewish theocracy (armed with a large nuclear arsenal) comes to blows with arab world?
It's time for the arabs to stand up and join the world community as secular democracies, otherwise the arabs nations with NEVER have peace nor prosperity.

Posted by: AMF | August 2, 2006 03:25 PM

"Sick of it" -

Since you so are so obviously ignorant of history and seem to have a racist attitude, it might serve you well to keep comments like your last posting to yourself. You only reveal your true, nasty nature. This country was built on immigrants of every race, religion and nationality, and it's one of the things that has made the United States great. I'd love to know where your ancestors were from and how they would feel about having a descendent who is so misinformed and full of hatred.

Posted by: SM | August 2, 2006 04:27 PM

--SM----YOU ASK ABOUT MY ANCESTORS? We've been here from the VERY beginning. English since you inquire.
They've fought in every war, served this nation in capacities large and small. Always with fine reputation. And you?

Posted by: sick of it | August 2, 2006 04:53 PM

Your English ancestors were here from the very beginning? So they were here before the Native Americans? That's so interesting. I've been unable to find that information in any historical reference.

Let me set something straight for you . .. the English came AFTER the native populations here in this country. That means they were immigrants at one time, too. Any questions?

Posted by: SM | August 2, 2006 04:58 PM

SM, Did the immigrants you referred to come to 'India' as Columbus apparently called it or America? I mean you said "this country was built by immigrants from every nationality, etc etc etc. And
silly me, I didn't realize you were talking about the Indian territories!
And so you win again. You're so superior, you must be used to it.

Posted by: | August 2, 2006 08:25 PM

--SM---by the way my family would be proud to be called as, and included in, any immigrant population in this country, at any time.
WHAT THEY WOULDN'T BE PROUD OF, AND CERTAINLY I'M NOT , TO BE ALLIGNED WITH THE SAVAGE ACTIONS OF THE ISRAELIS--TODAY MORE OF IT-- OR TO PAY FOR THE BUTCHERY. THEY'VE HAVE BEEN MORTIFIED AND UNBELIEVEING. BUT READ THE PAPERS TODAY, THAT'S ABOUT TO CHANGE.

Posted by: sick of it. | August 2, 2006 08:33 PM

Alright now. America's "revolution" was about the question of whether the English parliament can be the ultimate authority over taxation. It was more of a "civil war" inside the anglo-saxon world rather than a 'revolution" for "freedom" from "foreign" oppressors. 98 out of 99 signers of the declaration of independence were British protestants (Carrol was an Irish catholic) ;-) The founding fathers' main grievance was to be accorded the liberties that are the rights of all Englishmen. Thats what Benjamin Franklin was pleading in front of the English parliament in the 1760s.

So lets not bracket the "English" as "immigrants". The English are in the "settlers"/"creators" category just like the dutch. Everybody ELSE is an "immigrant"

Anyway, we digress. We dont know for sure if anyone here is actually mayflower material anyway. Anybody could claim to be the Queen's distant cousin. Whos to prove otherwise ;-)

Posted by: Human | August 2, 2006 08:35 PM

Karim,

I wanted to see if any moderate arab individual can bring himself to explicitly condemn the arab league's brazen indifference to such WANTON slaughter in Darfur - without any "hanging" qualifier about "palestine". thanks.

Israel's precision strikes are despicable when they hit neutral/completely innocent people. However, civilians and innocents are TARGETED by the militants everywhere. Huge difference.

Anyway, I understand how the arabs perceive people who bring up darfur as "pro-israel" or the idea is a "ploy" (indeed..400K deaths are pawns in an argument ;-)). Once again, this goes back to paranoia - why is this not the concern for ALL humanity rather than the american government? and allegedly "pro-israel" people? Moderate arabs need to address this tendency for paranoia, the blame for which can be placed squarely on islamic teachings that program the adherent into thinking they are under constant attack. The Dar el-islam , Dar-el-Harb dichotomy, that permeates the arab/muslim psyche. This is why we have islamic militancy in THAILAND, where Americans arent involved.

The big 3 - Islam, judaism and christianity - in that order, are doctrinally violent, outdated CULTS. We have to concentrate on de-programming sincere adherents of all three cults into sane humans who are willing to listen to other people's view points. Its more of a messianic neutrality crusade? ;-) But we need to focus on muslims first (while not completely ignoring the sins of other crazies), as, the sins of islam are more widespread, more intense,more numerous, more persistent and more inhumane. Relatively speaking of course. Hezbollah- the army of "God" - is lobbing missiles at RANDOM! hoping to kill infidels of any age,size. (and apologize for any muslims "martyred" by accident of course)

People of other religions kill and slaughter - The Japanese top this list -but NOT because their "religions" teach contempt for, and urge to target all "infidels". Those are political sins which can be "cured" by statecraft /p olitical /military policies, and do not span MILLENIA, as historical evidence suggests. The china-japan feuding is the last remaining infidel feud thats threatening to go out of control for now. But its not an existential threat to civilization.

Posted by: Human | August 2, 2006 09:47 PM

Karim,

Can you refer me to a current blog that is actually used by Lebanese bloggers and not dominated by Israeli bloggers?

Posted by: sherri | August 8, 2006 11:00 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.

 
 

© 2006 The Washington Post Company