On it goes, with the end not in sight.
— The Bush administration is working hard to push through the Security Council a set resolutions — one on the ceasefire and one on the international force, but is doing so without enthusiasm from those involved. Lebanon’s chief objection is that the IDF would be allowed to stay in place after a ceasefire, until international forces arrived. They want Israel to leave immediately. Nothing doing, said Bush today: that would set us back. The Arab League is sending a delegation to NY to strengthen Lebanon’s case. Oh goody.
See Dore Gold’s analysis of the American-French draft proposal at: http://www.jcpa.org/brief/brief006-6.htm — the Jerusalem Center for Policy Affairs.
— We’re still getting hit with rockets in large numbers.
— We’re still hitting hard. Tonight we took out a guided drone that was likely aimed at Tel Aviv.
The chief issue at this point is whether we will increase our efforts and move to the Litani River (a move the military was in favor of last week, but which was vetoed by Olmert). A great deal of pressure is now being put on Olmert to give the go-ahead. Certainly the impetus for this increased with the horrendous attacks yesterday; should the UN fail to put together those resolutions, then we would certainly move forward as well. But even if the UN does succeed in voting on something, there is the time until the vote, as well as time after, should we choose to continue. (The issue of how quickly we would have to stop firing is being debated.)
What must be emphasized again and again is that the Israeli populace is solidly for continuing. I said it before and say it again: I am VERY proud to be an Israeli. The people are courageous. We are functioning like one large family that is facing painful times — supporting each other and determined to come out on top.
— Certain points are clear by now:
The fighting power of Hezbollah — trained, supported and equipped by Iran — is greater than what had been anticipated. The mobility of many launchers coupled with the deep concrete bunkers where rockets are hidden makes it near impossible to take them out completely.
We cannot, however, leave them as intact as they currently are. Their power to do damage again has to be severely diminished.
A brief follow-up to yesterday’s posting regarding fraud in the media:
— Reuters pulled that picture of cloned billowing smoke over Beirut, admitting it was altered. Since then several other photos in Reuters library have been discovered to also be fraudulent. The bloggers who picked this stuff up are doing great work.
— David Frankfurter, who had The Washington Post picture of the dead from Qana — with one corpse sitting up — on his website yesterday, has done a follow-up. He says some people have written to say that the person who is sitting up may really be a corpse, in whom rigor mortis set in. Frankfurter points out that were this the case it would raise other issues, because rigor mortis does not set in that quickly, and this would suggest corpses on display that were dead before the building collapsed.
What makes perhaps for the most fear and heaviness of heart these days is the perversity of the world in dealing with what’s happening in Lebanon. On this I recommend a piece written for National Review Online by Victor Davis Hansen of the Hoover Institute.
Says Hansen, "When I used to read about the 1930s…I never could quite figure out why, during those bleak years, Western Europeans and those in the United States did not speak out and condemn the growing madness…
"Not any longer…
"…here at home reaction to Hezbollah — which has butchered Americans in Lebanon and Saudi Arabia — from a prominent Democratic Congressman, John Dingell: “I don’t take sides for or against Hezbollah.” And isn’t that the point, after all: the amoral Westerner cannot exercise moral judgment because he no longer has any?
"…There is no need to mention Europe, an entire continent now returning to the cowardice of the 1930s…
"It is now a cliché to rant about the spread of postmodernism, cultural relativism, utopian pacifism, and moral equivalence among the affluent and leisured societies of the West. But we are seeing the insidious wages of such pernicious theories as they filter down from our media, universities, and government — and never more so than in the general public’s nonchalance since Hezbollah attacked Israel.
"These past few days the inability of millions of Westerners, both here and in Europe, to condemn fascist terrorists who start wars, spread racial hatred, and despise Western democracies is the real story, not the “quarter-ton” Israeli bombs that inadvertently hit civilians in Lebanon who live among rocket launchers that send missiles into Israeli cities and suburbs.
"Yes, perhaps Israel should have hit more quickly, harder, and on the ground; yes, it has run an inept public relations campaign; yes, to these criticisms and more. But what is lost sight of is the central moral issue of our times: a humane democracy mired in an asymmetrical war is trying to protect itself against terrorists from the 7th century, while under the scrutiny of a corrupt world that needs oil, is largely anti-Semitic and deathly afraid of Islamic terrorists, and finds psychic enjoyment in seeing successful Western societies under duress.
"In short, if we wish to learn what was going on in Europe in 1938, just look around." (emphasis added)
This posting can be found at: https://www.arlenefromisrael.info/current-postings/2006/8/7/posted-august-7-2006.html