Jul 13, 2006

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like War...

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Left: Craters line the runways of Beirut's Rafik Hariri International Airport; photo courtesy of AP

(Israel, Gaza, Lebanon) With represenatives of all sides calling the escalation of violence in Gaza and Lebanon "war," the as-yet unnamed cat is now out of the proverbial bag.

Israel stepped up its military actions in Lebanon, bombing Beirut's international airport, setting up a naval blockade, and targeting cities and villages throughout southern Lebanon.

Hezbollah guerrillas retaliated by launching at least 70 rockets into northern Israel, with at least four civilians killed and another 50 people injured. Residents in northern Israel have been ordered into bomb shelters.

Israel's continued targeting of civilian infrastructure brought condemnation by many world powers.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov denounced the Israeli attacks on Lebanese and Palestinian civilians.

"This is a disproportionate response to what has happened," he said. "If both sides are going to drive each other into a tight corner then I think that all this will develop in a very dramatic and tragic way."

French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy condemned Israel's bombardment of Beirut airport as "a disproportionate act of war" that risked sparking a much wider regional conflagration.

"The only solution is a return to reason by both sides," he said. "We are calling for a lowering of tensions."

President Bush continued to focus blame for the hostilities on Hezbollah and Hamas, and reiterated Israel's right to "self-defense."

"The soldiers need to be returned," he said. "It's really sad where people are willing to take innocent life in order to stop that progress (for peace). As a matter of fact, it's pathetic."

The severity of the Israeli response causes me to wonder if Prime Minister Ehud Ohlmert - a career bureaucrat - really has effective control over the Israeli military, or if he finds himself forced by hardliners into a war stance.

The targeting of civilians and civil infrastructure - bridges, power plants, airports, and water supply systems - is on a level of ferocity that can only be characterized as "ruthless," and the conditions in Lebanon and Gaza may soon degenerate into a tremendous humanitarian disaster.

11 comments:

Petrograde said...

It's time to stop the "they strcuk first" crap and get the warring parties to the table before Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia start choosing sides.

liberal_dem said...

Yawn. What's new? They've been killling each other there for the past several thousands of years.

'Can't they all just get along?' - R. King

Dariush said...

Watching CNN right now is completely surreal. There's not even the slightest hint of objectivity in their reporting. Wolf Blitzer's commentary... this is probably what it would have been like to have George Wallace doing live commentary on the Birmingham riots.

"Goaded by seditious commie agitators, the niggrahs are viciously assaulting the fire hoses and attack dogs with their bodies even as we speak..."

Though I suppose I shouldn't be shocked, considering the man's history.


And this from Matt Barganier:

"The American media makes no secret of its allegiances in all matters Mideast, but CNN's coverage of Israel's attack on Lebanon today has been something else. Talking heads Carol Lin and Kyra Phillips have earned their AIPAC gold stars today, as they hilariously chant "we're showing you this from all angles" – all angles from Bibi Netanyahu's left and right shoulders, maybe."


Great analysis from Tanya Reinhart and (especially) Dennis Perrin.

Kathleen Marie said...

I agree with dariush that is does seem surreal and a great comparison to Wallace and the Birmingham riots.

It's a war with no ending at this point and I also agree with petrograde that is will really be something with the other countries start taking sides and getting more involved. This war could really explode.

Borg said...

Oh give me a fricking break, Dee. That's the most overblown, hyperbolic, deceptive comparison you've ever attempted, badly, to draw.

Were the civil rights activists of the sixties responsible for thousands of injured and killed WHITE Americans during that strife-torn era?

Did they collectively proclaim their wish to drive all of White America "into the sea"? I doubt that even the Black Panthers would have thought that possible.

However, in the case of Israel, a nation surrounded by those that actively hate and despise her, her neighbors literally could "wipe her off the map". All the more reason behind Israel's agressive, warlike stance in the face of so much Arab hostility.

Why did the Palistinian issue only become an issue for the Arab world AFTER the 1967 war, when Israel claimed the territories AFTER fending off assaults from her "peace-loving" neighbors? Never did answer that one the last time I asked you. Couldn't a country have been carved out for the Palistinians before Israel took control of the territories?

Now you tell me: What did Israel get for its trouble after disengaging last year from settlements where Jews and their families had lived for decades? Do you know?

More terrorist attacks, that's what.

Furthermore, what country BESIDES Israel has ever given back territory it gained from a defeated enemy AFTER it defeated that enemy's unprovoked attack? Name one.

The Palistinian issue will NEVER be solved because the Arabs want the Jews out. Period. End of story.

Nothing less will satisfy Hamas and Hezbollah. However, if you have an idea of what would, I'd sure like to hear it right now.

Come to think of it, all you really ever do is tell us what you HATE. How about filling us in on how you would go about solving all these problems. Or can you do that?

I'm gonna guess you can't, because I'm guessing your solution would, in all honesty, be the Final Solution.

It's no good for a propagandist to overplay his hand.

Dariush said...

EB: "Come to think of it, all you really ever do is tell us what you HATE. How about filling us in on how you would go about solving all these problems. Or can you do that?

"I'm gonna guess you can't, because I'm guessing your solution would, in all honesty, be the Final Solution.

"It's no good for a propagandist to overplay his hand."


How bizarre! Aside from repeated use of the first person plural (an EB trademark) I was going to post nearly the exact same thing in reply to you.

Quite the introspective little bugger, aren't you? Accurately analyzing yourself like that.


Yo, Ebes, in the midst of all this excitement I don't know if you've been paying attention to what's been happening in my neck of the wooods or not.

Well, it seems as though our fair city now finds itself having to deal with a "crime emergency" -- 14 people have been murdered in less than a month, along with an 18% rise in robberies and 14% increase in assaults with a deadly weapon.

A British tourist even had his throat slit from ear to ear in Georgetown -- unconfirmed rumour has it that they gave him a full Colombian necktie just for the heck of it.

It's pretty clear now that things can't continue like this. Indeed, they mustn't be allowed to continue like this.

We can no longer tolerate the savagery of these murderous subhuman beasts and allow them to terrorize us as they please. Just because they choose to live in filth and revel in their ignorance and backwardness, while at the same time being jealous of our success, doesn't give them any right to deprive us of our lives and livelihood whenever they damn well please.

The good Rev. Bobby Singleton drew up a plan of action several years ago, that I propose we implement immediately for D.C.

See what you think:


America Should Battle Minorities and Aliens the Way the Israelis Do!

By Rev. Bobby Singleton

As a life-long admirer of the Jewish people and supporter of the state of Israel, I have always taken the Jews to be a pattern for my own life and my relationship with the Almighty. Now, as I watch prophetic events unfold in Israel, I am stimulated to believe that it is time America learned a policy lesson from the Jews and applied Israel's solutions to our own domestic crisis.

I am of course talking about the Negro/Afro minority amongst our beloved nation, as well as the aliens from Mexico who threaten to inundate us at our border.

Increasingly, predominantly black cities in America are no-go zones for Americans. We are raped, robbed, assaulted and even killed when we visit. These acts of terror spill over into non-black towns and cities. As a result, Americans are not safe on their own land! Meanwhile, Catholics from Mexico invade our country, undermine the Protestant character of our nation and perpetrate more crime and terrorism. There would seem to be no end in sight to the violence perpetrated by these groups and the violence must end!

The Jews in Israel use the following methods for curtailing Palestinian migration and violence, and we should do as the Chosen People of God Almighty do.

1. CLOSURE. Cities with a black majority are sealed. Blacks are not allowed to leave their towns and they may not enter our towns for employment or any other reason except certain cases of medical emergency. Whenever there are clashes with our police and an outburst of violence from Afros or Latinos in America, we should seal ghettos and barrios the way Israel sealed the Palestinian cities at the beginning of 2001. This way we can enjoy relative security while collectively punishing all the blacks and Mexicans for the violent clashes their leaders agitate and condone. I recommend this for Christian Europe as well. When violence erupts, Germans can close predominately Turkish towns in Germany, the French can close African areas of France and the British can seal Brixton and Bradford, closing access by minorities to the outside world for months on end, like Israel does.

2. DEMOLITION. Once having closed these areas, American intelligence agents can pinpoint the homes of the most violence-prone black and Mexican gang-members and rioters and demolish their homes, leaving their families on the street where they belong. The Israelis have had great success doing this for years to the Palestinians. House demolition is a real deterrent not soon forgotten!

3. ENTRENCHMENT. After closure and demolition, entrenchment is the next step. In late February and early March of 2001 the Israelis completed excavation of a two-meter deep ditch encircling the Palestinian city of Jericho. The entrenchment of other Palestinian cities is under way. This ditch prevents not only cars driven by violent Palestinians from leaving Jericho and entering Israel, it keeps any Palestinian from driving any car out of the town without permission from Israeli authorities. This is a fabulous idea for Watts, Harlem, the south side of Chicago, portions of East Los Angeles and many other areas in America with a predominately Afro or Mexican population. It is a well-known fact that, like the Palestinians, minorities in America are fond of using automobiles in the commission of drive-by shootings and similar violence. We can prevent this by digging a deep ditch around their communities, just like the Israelis do!

4. SHOOT RIOTERS. Any time a black or Mexican child throws a stone at an American policeman they should be shot! Policemen should try to wound rather than kill these children, but if the police in America kill a few dozen black or Mexican children every year, it is the parents' fault for allowing their children to be out in the streets. The US State Department reports that in the year 2000, Israel shot more than 11,000 violent Palestinians, including hundreds of violence-prone Palestinian children. The Israeli police and army killed almost 400 Palestinian demonstrators and rioters. We need to implement these policies in the US. We have muzzled our police for too long in the face of black and Latino violence. Let's teach these coloreds in America the way the Israelis are teaching those heathen sand niggers in Palestine!

5. CITE THE EXAMPLE OF GOD'S CHOSEN. When supporting the implementation of these measures in America (or Europe), be sure to tell your Congressman, or member of the Bundestag or Parliament; your teacher, pastor, priest or media person, that you have learned these tactics from Israel and believe this is the best solution to minority violence, as most Jewish solutions usually are.

To ensure the success of our campaign to end minority violence in America, it is important to stress the teaching role model of Israel. If you do not, there is a good chance that human rights activists will denounce you.

By citing the Israeli model you can win powerful allies to our cause. Human rights groups like the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the Morris Dees outfit, the Simon Wiesenthal Center and the media, will not condemn our plan for minority and alien crime control if they know we are only doing as Israel does.

Without the Israeli parallel, our platform to counter minority violence would be rapidly denounced as racist and neo-Nazi. However, as soon as the Human Rights groups understand that we are merely imitating Israel, our program will be immune from all but token criticism!

After all, the Israelis have been able to do all these things to the Palestinians without being stopped by anyone and without incurring any meaningful protests from Morris Dees, the ADL, Wiesenthal or the media. In fact, these groups are all assisting Israel in one form or another in her campaign to end Palestinian violence at all costs, as Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has said.

In an effort to keep Israel safe from minority violence, the great Sharon himself has had to kill thousands of minority and alien civilians in both Israel and in Lebanon. We can do the same thing in America to the violent minorities and aliens here, if we carefully emulate the policies of God's Chosen People. If it's good for Israel, it's good for America too!

historymike said...

I am in agreement with the commentary about US media coverage being overtly pro-Israel in this latest escapade.

The rocket attacks into Israel were described as a "major escalation" by CNN, and "act of terror" by FOX. Of course, this is despite the fact that Israel had been warned by Hezbollah that attacks on Lebanese civilian targets would be met in kind.

Now - I am not getting into the chicken-and-egg argument about who "started" this round of violence, because that is a pointless exercise in circular analysis.

I will, though, agree that the US media is solidly in the Israeli camp at this point.

I fully expected FOX to jump behind Israel (O'Reilly's sycophantic pro-Zionist "Talking Points" last night was a hoot), but I was surprised that CNN took such a slanted view.

I'll be weighing in more in the next day on the "Hezbollah=terrorists, Israel=righteous" debate later today.

Dariush said...

Speaking of FOX, one of their video crews came under Israeli fire.

Oh sweet, delicious irony.

Then, to top it all off, one of the first things out of the mouth of that blonde guy who cohosts their morning show (forget his name) is "these things happen".

????

Un friggin' believable. I guess when you've been a butt-kissing sycophant for so long, there's really no off switch. Not even when your own colleague and co-worker is nearly killed.

Dariush said...

Re: The 1967 "Six Day War" that you keep going on about, EB.

Here's the popular account: Israel was sitting there minding her own business when 250 million Arabs started sneaking toward her borders with the intention of driving her into the sea so against zillion-to-one odds teensy weensy little Israel at the last instant launched a Pre-Emptive Strike and just like David miraculously frigged Goliath itsy bitsy little Israel Michael Jordaned out a last second underdog victory against the Devils of the Desert.

Now here's the part of that account that's actually true: There was a war, it started on June 5, it lasted six days, and Israel won it. The rest is pure fertilizer. Two Israeli generals and one prime minister get us a little closer to the truth.


Menachem Begin: "The Egyptian army concentrations in the Sinai approaches do not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with ourselves. We decided to attack him."

General Rabin [IDF Chief of Staff in 1967] : "I do not think Nasser wanted war. The two divisions he sent into the Sinai, on May 14, would not have been sufficient to launch an offensive against Israel. He knew it and we knew it."

General Peled: "The thesis that claimed genocide was suspended above our heads in June 1967, and that Israel was fighting for its very existence was only a bluff."


Author Stephen Green (who compiled the above quotes) follows the truth wherever it leads:

"The third major Middle East war was inevitable from around 1965 until it occurred in June of 1967, and the outcome of that war was absolutely certain." --from Taking Sides by Stephen J. Green

Green quotes source after source from our State Department's archives that come to the same conclusions:

* Israel was looking for an excuse to attack the Arabs.

* Israel's army was (and is) much stronger than all the Arab armies combined.

* When the war starts -- not if, when -- Israel will win it within a week.

Walt Rostow, LBJ's closest foreign policy adviser, kept him informed. On the first day of the "war" Rostow's report was accompanied by a note: "Mr. President: Herewith the account, with a map, of the first day's turkey shoot. W.W. Rostow."

Israel had carried out a massive sneak attack, destroying 300 Egyptian airplanes (while they were still on the ground) in the first three hours, then after the Arabs agreed to a U.S./UN/Russian-sponsored ceasefire, Israel kept gobbling up territory. Israel didn't even start on the Syrians until after the ceasefire, after which Poor Widdle Israel spent two full days blowing the hell out of various parts of Syria.

Calls for a cease-fire started pouring into the UN "almost as soon as the fighting started." But it took the UN two full days to issue a cease-fire order. Why?

Because America's delegation to the UN, led by Ambassador Arthur Goldberg, resisted any ceasefire resolution that would (a) brand Israel as the aggressor or (b) include a demand for troop withdrawal to the June 4 borders.

Israel was the aggressor. Ambassador Goldberg knew that Israel was the aggressor. Yet he stalled the ceasefire for two full days so that:

1. Israel's lie would go on record as The Official Truth.

2. Israel would have time to kill more Egyptians, steal more territory, and get some momentum on killing Syrians and stealing Syrian territory.

By the time the Six Day Turkey Shoot was over, Israel had stolen -- "annexed" is a bullshit word -- stolen the Sinai Peninsula, the Gaza Strip, East Jerusalem, and the West Bank.

And what reward did the U.S. government get for fulfilling its role as the ever-faithful ho? A big, fat pimpslap right across the friggin' face.

Kate said...

mike - I don't think it's the chicken and the egg conversation at all. Lebanon is begging for help from the UN. They have apologized for not controlling Hezbollah and responding to earlier requests to do so.

I think it'd be like bombing Toledo b/c they didn't get the gangs under control in a specific time frame. It is a grossly unfair situation on every side. But Hezbollah most certainly did begin the border raids and taking Israeli soldiers by force. During a truce. And Lebanon is screaming the apology and asking for help.

Hooda Thunkit said...

Mike,

Maybe we should name ”…the as-yet unnamed cat…” by year, such as “the unnamed cat” of 2006?

On second thought, maybe the year should be preceded by the season (i.e., Summer, Winter), etc.

On third thought, make that the month.

Civilization will flourish in the region when ALL of the (human) parasites have been eliminated and plants reclaim the land...