Today started off pretty much like any other day this week but with one difference. Israel was amassing tanks and troops at the Lebanese border and preparing for a massive invasion force to go in and clean out Hezbollah strongholds south of the Litani River. It looked like Israel was finally getting serious about achieving their stated goal of disarming Hezbollah. Then word came down that the US had decided to back a UN ceasefire resolution and the tanks stopped just short of crossing the border.
This was about the third time this week that Israeli troops had been given the green light, then it turned red before the mission began. Go, stop, go, stop, made us wonder what was going on with the politicians in the Israeli Government. Even though the vast majority of Israeli citizens wanted to get this job done and done right, there was still division in the Cabinet whether to go through with it or not. Then word leaked out, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had agreed to the UN ceasefire resolution, in complete opposition to his position only a week ago. A shock to the western world, Israel was surrendering.
Yes surrendering, not only to the forces of Hezbollah, but mainly to the forces of the international community represented by the United Nations, the same forces that the Bush Administration had just surrendered to. Both governments defeated by Hezbollah's propaganda machine and the pro Islamic and European antiwar socialist countries that make up the organization. Israeli citizens are outraged and now want to throw Olmert and his party out of office and restore the Benjamin Netanyahu government to power. Israeli Ambassador to the UN, Dan Gillerman's view is that after seeing Israel's response to the Hezbollah aggression, they will think twice before attempting another attack on Israel. That remains to be seen.
We saw this coming weeks ago. We tried to warn the country of what was going to happen if this terrorist propaganda wasn't exposed and stopped but the western media continued to aid the Hezbollah terrorists in their propaganda campaign. Pictures of dead children staged for the cameras and collapsed buildings always carried the dialogue of "innocent civilians" killed by Israeli bombs. Never did we hear of Hezbollah fighters and supporters being killed, it was always "civilians". We saw damage in Israel done by Hezbollah's intentional rocket attacks on civilians too, but Israel does not parade their dead and wounded in front of the cameras for the world to see.
Hezbollah has been awarded victory by the umpires at the UN because the liberal elements of the world can't stand to see the dead bodies that Hezbollah keeps parading in front of them. They can't take any more propaganda about "innocent civilians" killed, or poor people who can't afford to get out of the way of Israeli bombs and get no help in doing so from Hezbollah. They depend on Hezbollah for everything else, why not this? Why not indeed; their deaths help to provide heart wrenching propaganda to turn the liberals, anti-Semites, and Islamic nations in the world against Israel. Showing destroyed Hezbollah headquarters buildings or dead terrorists clutching AK-47s just wouldn't have the same anti-Israeli impact. Hezbollah played on the sympathies of America liberals, European appeasers, and terrorist supporting Islamics, all well represented in the United Nations and promoted under the leadership of their head Muslim, Kofi Annan.
The UN Resolution, drafted by France, approved by the US, and unanimously passed by the UN Security Council today is, frankly, a joke. It offers nothing to Israel other than an excuse to withdraw it's troops from Lebanon. The US and Israel wanted a Chapter 7 resolution but could only get unanimous consent for a Chapter 6 resolution. Israel is not on the UN Security Council but Qatar is and would not consent to a Chapter 7 Resolution. Security Council resolutions can only pass with a unanimous vote of the council.
The difference between a Chapter 6 and Chapter 7 resolution is; a Chapter 6 resolution is "non-binding" and does not carry an enforceable mandate, that is, the use of military force. It's more like an agreement with no authority to enforce it, much like the failed Res. 1559 that is responsible for the current crisis. A Chapter 7 resolution is a "binding" and enforceable resolution with a mandate to use military force if necessary to force compliance.
What this resolution does do is call for a cessation of hostilities by Hezbollah, and a halt to Israeli offensive operations. What that means is that Hezbollah is to cease firing rockets into Israel, and Israel is to stop bombing and aggressing into Lebanon. It does not restrict Israel from defending itself if attacked and there are no restrictions on that part. Which means that if Israel deems an air assault or bombing is necessary to defend themselves, they are free to use it.
It calls for a UNIFIL (United Nations Intervening Force In Lebanon) "peacekeeping" force on steroids to be installed along the border. Since this is a Chapter 6 resolution, UNIFIL has no mandate to use their weapons against Hezbollah except in self defense, they can merely observe. It will include more manpower, up to 15,000 men, better technology, and equipment than the previous UNIFIL force. Their purpose is to provide a buffer zone between Hezbollah and the Israeli border. If that zone is violated by Hezbollah, I guess they have permission to call 911 but not much else. In other words, they should be about as useful as the unarmed National Guard at our Mexican border.
The resolution requires the Lebanese Government to disarm Hezbollah. No one including Condi Rice and the Lebanese Prime Minister has a clue how they're going to do that. Prime Minister Seniora is suggesting that his cabinet sit down and talk with Hassan Nasrallah and Hezbollah officials to work out an agreement for them to surrender their arms. His logic is that as Lebanese troops move into Southern Lebanon to take up defense of the border, Hezbollah, who claims to be doing that job will no longer be needed as a military force.
What Seniora is overlooking is that Hezbollah has little interest in cooperating with the government of Lebanon, they are loyal to the government of Iran and take orders only from them. Seniora is about to find that out. To make it worse, they both know that the Lebanese Army doesn't stand a chance of disarming Hezbollah by force. Nasrallah is free to use the old Nancy Reagan response and "just say no" when asked to surrender their weapons and supply maps.
The plan does not call for a prisoner exchange, nor does it require the return of the two Israeli soldiers who were kidnapped. Instead, it suggests that the two soldiers might be turned over to the Lebanese government who will then decided what to do with them. They may later be used as bargaining chips with Israel. This issue is not specifically addressed in the resolution.
Another issue being addressed by the resolution is Sheeba Farms. This is the territory in the very northeast corner of Israel that Hezbollah claims belongs to Lebanon and wants it returned. The trouble is, it never belonged to Lebanon. It was taken from Syria during the 6 day war. Again, Israel is being asked to give up territory for peace. Been there, done that.
The UN Resolution does not mean there will be an immediate ceasefire. Israel has no intention of leaving Lebanon until a UN Peacekeeping force is deployed to So. Lebanon. The plan calls for Israel forces to withdraw in steps as they are replaced by UNIFIL forces. Total replacement is expected to take as much as 3 months. Those international forces will consist partially of French forces with "never before fired" rifles and may be loaded with a stick and white flag that pops out when fired. It is still yet unknown what countries will provide additional troops for the blue helmet brigade. This is likely to be another failed UN experiment just like the last one. Then on the other hand, it may never even get off the ground if they don't get the volunteers and Israel continues to solve the problem their own way.
There is also a provision to stop Syria and Iran from supplying Hezbollah with additional arms, but at the same time, it also calls for Lebanese ports and supply roads to be reopened and used without Israelis targeting truck traffic. That should be interesting to see how they're going to do that with Syria sneaking in weapons disguised as vegetables.
So why didn't the Bush Administration stand it's ground and insist on a Chapter 7 resolution? Probably because they knew that would never pass the Security Council. The choice was either a resolution that would not be binding on either party, or no resolution at all with continued Israel bashing from the UN. Either way, Israel retains the right to defend itself by whatever means they see fit. Rice says this is only the first in a series of UN Resolutions to deal with the problem. But this also brings up the question of negotiating with terrorists. Although Hezbollah is not a party to the agreement, they are very much involved in it being implemented.
It would appear that instead of eliminating terrorists, the Bush Administration has decided to negotiate with terrorists this time. Has Bush gone soft on terrorism? Are we just going to stand by while Nasrallah and Hezbollah get themselves elected to run Lebanon? Are we just going to sit around and wait until Iran has the bomb and uses it on Israel? Yes, we probably are... because it looks like President Bush has been scared off by the liberals, Communists, Socialists, appeasers, and Muslims that make up "World Opinion" against the United States and her allies. On the other hand, this resolution is toothless and won't stop Israel from finishing the job if that's what they choose to do. It's likely just politics that will have little effect on the actual war.
Considering that there will be further resolutions on Israel and Lebanon before this conflict is settled, Tony Snow says the President will not agree to any final resolution that leaves Hezbollah armed, a threat to Israel, or a state within the state of Lebanon. The fact is that this first UN resolution on Israel and Lebanon is toothless, and almost meaningless and useless, just like most everything else the UN does. Bush knows that but can't say so publicly. Going along with this resolution was a way of appeasing "world opinion" while not actually forcing a ceasefire on Israel until the terms are right.
Does Bush have another plan up his sleeve? Could be. It has been reported that Defense Dept. targeting specialists are meeting with Israeli military and intelligence officials right now. Speculation is that they are discussing smart bomb and Cruise Missile targets in Iran. This has not been confirmed, nor is it likely to be. With the aggressive rhetoric we have been hearing from Iran's Ahmadinejad, we need to be prepared in the event that we would have to come to the defense of Israel or ourselves. Do any of us really have any doubt that Iran is on the verge of starting a major war? Other than being prepared, there is little else we can do until Iran pulls the trigger. Preemptive action would only cause more public outrage in the world community whether it was justified or not.
When Israel went into this war, their objective was to destroy Hezbollah and run them out of Lebanon. But the Bollahs were dug in too deep and the limited force Israel chose to use was not very effective against them, nor was their limited aerial bombing. Israel was afraid to increase their firepower because of all the propaganda about "innocent civilians". Obviously, the UN observers along the Lebanon border never informed them of Hezbollah's activities in South Lebanon over the past 6 years since Israel pulled out. Israel was unprepared for the level of resistance they met on their counterattack and began to question whether their goal was realistic.
What they really needed to do to win was to flatten every structure in So. Lebanon but they allowed "public opinion" to get in the way of achieving a victory in the war. This is the nature of the war on terror that we are fighting today. A war against terrorists can never be won if "public opinion" and human shields are allowed to get in the way of victory, it's just not possible. I thought Israel was going to avoid that mistake but now I see I was wrong. Even after their warning to civilians to evacuate the areas, they were still reluctant to use the force necessary to get the job done.
Defeatists both in the Israeli government and in the international community began saying "Hezbollah cannot be defeated" because it's a "movement", and an "ideology" within Lebanon, it will just come back again. One thing is for sure, they can't defeat Hezbollah if they don't have the will to try, and they can't come back if they're dead. So instead of using all force necessary, Israel moved the goal posts. Now the objective was to just disarm Hezbollah. Israel found that was going to be no easy task as their ground forces were being overwhelmed by Bollahs popping out of underground tunnels, picking them off, and blowing up tanks. Again the goal posts were moved and the new objective was to move Hezbollah back to north of the Litani River and forget about disarming them.
Ehud Olmert's new government is inexperienced in war and don't really know what they're doing. Olmert get fed up with the lack of progress, called up the reserves, and put a new General in charge. The new battle plan was to move masses of troops in from the northeast, from the rear of Hezbollah's positions, and squeeze them south toward the Israeli border to cut them off from re-supplies and give them nowhere to run. This plan began this morning but was quickly interrupted by Bush's acceptance of the UN resolution however, troops have been airlifted into areas along the Litani River. It has been rumored that it was Olmert himself who asked Condi Rice to accept the ceasefire to give him a way out. A few hours later, it was announced that Olmert accepted the ceasefire resolution.
Consider the propaganda value for Hezbollah with this ceasefire. They prevented Israel from achieving their goal or winning the war. They survived to fight another day and Nasrallah will claim that again, they forced Israel out of Lebanon if Israeli troops leave. Not only will they have they won the propaganda war, but they have avoided defeat and reaffirmed the value of the Islamic tactic of using propaganda to defeat any enemy. This is one of their most powerful weapons of war and just as they have been using it in Iraq, they will continue to use it in every war they are involved in until the free world wakes up to the scam.
In the 6 day war, Israel fought 3 Arab armies at one time and defeated them all in just 6 days. Now, in this new kind of terrorist war, it seems Israel can't even defeat an organization like Hezbollah in battle. This creates a huge problem for the entire free world. If Israel cannot defeat Hezbollah, then how can we expect to win in the war on terror all around the globe? I have little doubt that Israel could defeat Hezbollah militarily in a relatively short period of time, but half of this kind of a war is fought in "public opinion" and as long as terrorist hide behind innocent civilians they will win by default. The first priority should be to win the war. The second priority should be to protect innocent civilians.
Can you imagine the US winning the war in Europe or the war with Japan if we had worried about innocent civilians the way Israel is expected to do today? Our east coast would be speaking German while our west coast would be speaking Japanese. When will the western world understand that when people are in a battle zone, if they're not ours, they are considered to be the enemy and will be killed. To win a war, either you have to kill every single soldier, or break the will of the opposing force to fight. Dead soldiers don't break the will to fight nearly as much as dead civilians do. That is why Hezbollah and other Islamic terrorists targets civilians in their war.
As I've stated before, a "politically correct" war cannot be won. War is dirty and brutal and people die, but that's what was is and what it has to be to stop people from starting them. Radical Islam started a war with the free world. Hezbollah, as part of that radical Islam, started a war with Israel. We cannot run from war or our enemies or we will be crushed. Innocent people die in wars and always have. That is something that people have to accept when they start a war or respond to it. Our media is acting like this is something new, unexpected, immoral, and unnecessary. What war experience does anyone in our media really have? Who are they to set moral standards for war?
It has now become perfectly clear that the United Nations and the "world community" have no interest in the defeat of global terrorism or in the support of western countries that do. What they have done to Israel over the past month bares this out. Their first reaction to the war in Lebanon was not to support Israel for doing their part in the war on terror, but rather to try to stop them from defeating Hezbollah. The UN mistakenly saw their roll as peace umpires, making rulings and calling time outs as though it were some football game. Why isn't the UN involving itself in the terrorist war in Iraq or in other parts of the world if they want to be useful? Why did they choose Israel to pick on? Why did they choose Hezbollah to protect? Peace at any cost is not an option for the United States and the free world, but what does the UN care? They are not the target of terrorism.
That was the immediate mission of the UN, not to side against a terrorist organization, but to stop the fighting and restore an artificial peace at any cost. This is the attitude that has allowed Islamic terrorism to grow and fester in the antiwar society's cesspool of peace. Don't confront them, don't offend them, just leave them alone while they go about beheading nations and imposing their Shiria law on the world. This is what we get from the UN and still we give them 23% of their funding. How much longer do we have to put up with this? Tomorrow, the UN will be changing their name to "The UNI" - "The United Nations of Islam", to more accurately represent their views.
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