Sunday, July 30, 2006

Fortunes of War

Some really interesting headlines from Pajamas Media. The most interesting from the oeprational view was the reported heliborne insertion into the Bekaa. From the political point of view, make sure to read about the mysterious and long gap between the IAF bombing and building collapse. I knew the Hezbollah were low. If what's implied is true, could they be that low?

13:30 PDT Israel hits Beirut - Damascus road at border with Syrian border. (Ynet )

13:20 PDT Lebanon Opens Fire: “Lebanese army soldiers opened fire on IDF helicopters attempting to land in the Bekaa Valley Sunday night and prevented them from landing, according to Lebanese sources quoted by Reuters News Agency.” (INN)

1:57 PDT The Qana Gap: “IDF continuing to check difficult incident at Qana village, and attempting to account for strange gap between time of the strike on the building – midnight – and eight in the morning, when the building collapsed.” ( Ynet )

10:40 PDT The Qana Rocket Battery: “Chief of the IDF Operations Branch, Maj. Gen. Gadi Eisnkot, said in a press conference that “the IDF operated against terrorist target in Qana. The village has been used, since the onset of the confrontation, as a refuge for terror and a launch site for some 150 rockets at Israel, in some 30 volleys.” (Ynet)


Haaretz and Jpost are both reporting that the IAF has agreed to suspend air ops for 48 hours over "over southern Lebanon" while the Qana incident is investigated. It's apparently linked to this: "Ereli said that Israel will coordinate with the United Nations to allow a 24-hour period of safe passage for all residents of south Lebanon who want to leave the region."


Blogger Mrs. Davis said...

And now Israel has agreed to stop aerial ops. Unfortunately Don Sensing is right; a spasm, not a strategy.

So how quickly does the government fall?

7/30/2006 03:02:00 PM  
Blogger just a marine said...

As I read the tea leaves, other plans and efforts are in action in support of an Israeli military campaign plan, long written and modified on the fly as all people do.
All the media reporting today seems to miss all this. Their focus is on the Lebanon cease fire stuff.
The call up of another three Israeli divisions says much. And the reported attack yesterday in the Bekka Valley by an Israeli F-15I ( says the big and long range guns are out. These airplanes are national assets not to be wasted in normal warfare.

7/30/2006 03:16:00 PM  
Blogger fjelehjifel said...

What about surveillance flights?

What about artillery strikes?

What if Hezbollah continues rocket attacks?

There may be alot less to the 48-hour pause than it now seems.

7/30/2006 03:19:00 PM  
Blogger Tipmoose said...

The more I read, the more I find myself in agreement with SarahW. This isn't a "WAR" in any sense of the word. Its a flailing embarassment. Isreal is getting its butt kicked by Hez and the MSM at the same time. Olmert and his gov't are in waaay over their heads.

The only and I mean ONLY "good" thing that will come of this garbage is that oil should drop back to the low 70s, maybe high 60's on the news.

There is no one, anywhere, in this world who is serious about the threat of Islam. We are a nation and world of Chamberlains and we will reap what we sow. Appeasement never works...but we're too spoiled and soft, and used to our precious consumer driven lifestyle to buckle down and get the job done.

This whole embarassing flop by Israel is going to haunt us. Go on, Bush, Blair and Olmert. Fiddle some more. Rome's not burning much. Hardly enough to even notice. I'm sure it will all be juuuust fine. Bah!

7/30/2006 03:25:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

I have apparently missed the egregious acts that leave many to believe that the IDF has lost it’s Mojo. Seems that they are keeping their rear in sight and taking on objectives in careful engagements. They have run a column of tanks up to Beirut before and it didn’t turn out so good. The Bekaa valley is another thing and they appear to be probing it and making an effort to clean up it’s major defenses piece meal. Spasm? Maybe, but this is set piece warfare folks, it’s a campaign and the IDF seems to be doing it their way, which is their strength. They will maintain aerial surveillance throughout any duration and the civies and the jihadis will break like oil and water. Watch the push pins on the map move then annihilate. Rinse and repeat.

7/30/2006 03:48:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

t this IS NOT set piece warfare folks

7/30/2006 03:50:00 PM  
Blogger Matthew said...

I am with A. Mouse on this. It seems many here long for some dramatic and decisive armor advance -- to where and to destroy what, I do not know.

7/30/2006 03:55:00 PM  
Blogger xwraith said...

Annoy Mouse: I agree, the IDF has not been defeated or degraded in any way. However, what I think people are sensing is that Israel is starting to loose the battle over the narrative. The original casus belli, the kidnapping of the two soldiers, seems to have been long lost in the smoke screen of civilian casualties. Anyway read my latest post at, I explain my thoughts in more detail there.

7/30/2006 04:05:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

I wanted to see more ground forces taking on more targets at once. One, perhaps the main, reason I wanted to see this is I thought the window of opportunity was much narrower than it's turned out to be.

However, the window was broader than I anticipated; so, what are the results? Well, they're not too bad, really. The Israeli's have killed a bunch of Hez. They've taken a couple of tough targets, and the last day, or so, they've been steadily taking more.

They've obviously had some SF working here, and there; which we know nothing about. We know, something has been going on in the upper Beqaa. I've got a hunch I'd rather be a private/or general in the IDF right now, than in the Hez.

7/30/2006 04:11:00 PM  
Blogger RattlerGator said...

It's the television age and people have just lost their minds and apparently have no concept of how variable conflicts may be conducted.

It's actually pathetic.

Our saving grace is that the Bush Administration is not given to panic and I doubt if the IDF are anywhere close to despairing over how everything is going.

The Hez are playing from an old script that used to work fairly well.

It ain't going to work this time.

There is no antiseptic, televesion friendly clean and simple way to go forward.

Lets just see how this plays out over an extended period.

7/30/2006 04:13:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

So, AM, if I understand your thinking correctly, while the IAF has not been able to shut down HB, while flying 400 sorties a day, with survaillence and ground spotters, after stopping for a day or two, they will have better intel and really be able to kick ass?

Oil and water, I think it's more like sea and salt, myself.

Is it just me or should you be passing the pipe now?

7/30/2006 04:14:00 PM  
Blogger BoneUSA said...

I don't see any details on how the evacuation from the south will be implemented other than vague reference to UN and Israeli coordination, but doesn't this sound a lot like Wretchard's suggestion in an earlier post about clearing the battlefield of civilians so that Israel's military advantage can be fully exploited?

7/30/2006 04:17:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Thanks for the link Xwraith. But the Israeli’s lost the ‘narrative’ a long time ago. To play to such perception without fruit is to stay in the cave and play puppeteer while the fire and the source of the shadows pass outside. The US itself has lost its ability to control the ‘narrative’ and we, like Israel will wage a lonely vigil. The US is a robust economy and military superpower that is surrounded by the widest and the deepest of oceans. Little Israel is surrounded by the widest and deepest of enemies sworn to their destruction. Our concerns to win the hearts and minds have now become the entrails in which to ensnare and strangle ourselves. We need to get off of the notion that war can be precise and antiseptic when our enemies use their own vulgarity and our humanity against us.

7/30/2006 04:20:00 PM  
Blogger lmae said...

Miss Weddington, I guess I'm on your line, the "sensing-steyn" one: we're not serious in this war, just like the Israeli govt is not serious with hezb.
Your critics are over-optimistic both in the capabilities of US/Israeli military, and also about the Western resolve.

Full steam ahead is needed, or the whole affair will end with nukes.

7/30/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Blogger Cornelius said...

Okay, this is slightly off topic, but did anyone else read that Ireland diverted a US flight of bunker busters destined for Israel to England because it didn't want the plane to land on it's soil? The Irish?!?

And for a real eye opener, read the comments.

7/30/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

You know, Bone; you bring up an interesting point. The Hez supporters might want to be careful what they wish for.

Once the UN has had their "evacuation," what will be the excuse for stopping Israel from bombing at will.

Poor Will; he can't catch a break.

7/30/2006 04:22:00 PM  
Blogger felix said...

Given the tragic events of the day, why not take a break? If the Hezbos violate the ceasefire, then Israel resumes the bombing, and the Hezbos look bad (except to their allies).

We can also move back to the negotiating issue of how to get the Hezbos to leave So. Lebanon or disarm. And they will do neither. Also, talk of who sends peacekeepers and what they are supposed to do (other than be cover for future hezbos attacks). The rhythm of previous Israel wars has been for Israel to beat-the-clock. Maybe start-stop-start, etc. will work in Israel's favor this time.

7/30/2006 04:23:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The IDF claims to have killed a couple of hundred HB.

Even if they are short by half or a third, that is not a "bunch".
Even a thousand would only be 10% casualties, KIA. The Mahdi Army and the IRG have more than matched that with recruits on their way to the Front.

It is unfortunate, but the IDF has killed but a "few" of the HB combatants, by their own count.

7/30/2006 04:23:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

BTW, if they're going to evacuate the non-combatants, who are they bringing the "aid" in for?

7/30/2006 04:23:00 PM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...





7/30/2006 04:24:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

What a horrible mistake for Israel (and the US), to stop fighting. They surrendered in the propaganda war, that's the biggest mistake. All wars cause civilian casualties, they should have been saying. Stopping now is a (false) admission that the UN and media are right, that we just have to surrender to terrorists the first time civilians are bombed.

7/30/2006 04:26:00 PM  
Blogger felix said...

Right let's bring aid to the Hezbos. I think the Israel policy is simply to wear down the hezbos. Unfortunately the price of that has been the continuing missile strikes into Israel.

7/30/2006 04:32:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

Nelson Ascher, who can't get on due some glitch in Blogger, asks me to post this for him:

An incident like this was bound to happen sooner or later in this war. It is ironic, and for the Hezbollah, lucky, that it took place in Qana (a place, by the way, about which our dear Robert Fisk has written so much and with such a sado-masochistic gusto: wait for his next article). In the earlier occasion, Peres was taken by surprise and had to call operation Grapes of Wrath off. The least I can expect from the Israeli military, politicians and diplomats is that they were prepared for such a thing and are, this time, ready to argue their case forcefully. Otherwise, they’ll have proved themselves to have been quite unprepared to fight the propaganda front. As I said, such an incident was inevitable and, thus, let’s see what happens next, that is, if Israel will be able to change relevantly the precedent set during the earlier Qana episode. From the Arab point of view, “Qana 1” may have been just a welcome, if unexpected, coup. From the Israeli point of view, “Qana 2” cannot be seen except as a trap for which the Israelis must have been ready.

But allow me to touch another, related, subject. I’d say that in any protracted conflict, the real rules are set by the more cruel and/or savage side’s behaviour. If you are much, much stronger and if the conflict is not too long, you can allow yourself the luxury of self-imposed restraints. For instance: in a Mogadishu-like skirmish the US can grant the captured Somalis the full benefit of the Geneva conventions while they, the Somalis, kill some prisoners, mutilate their corpses and exhibit them in public. But in the long run, as it happened during the Pacific War against the Japanese, that won’t last. The same happened in WW2’s Russian front: when one of the sides, it doesn’t really matter which one, decided to kill the other side’s POWs, its own captured soldiers were doomed as well.

Now, we do know about WW2 that there was a serious difference in the ways the Germans treated the Anglo-American POWs and the Soviet ones. We also know that that’s what the Germans could expect to happen them: were they to be captured in the Western front, they’d survive the war in reasonable conditions; were they to be captured in the Easter front, they’d never see their hometowns again. This difference wasn’t accidental and resulted ultimately from the Nazis’ decision to fight total war against the USSR. Knowing that to be captured meant certain death, that this wasn’t, as in WW1, a way out, the individual German soldiers had no choice but to keep on fighting. They also knew that, after the atrocities their own side had perpetrated on the Russian civilians, defeat didn’t mean some rather unpleasant peace, but collective punishment. So they fought on.

This tactics might be called “the burning down of the ships”, that is, a way for one of the sides to assure that its own fighters won’t retreat nor stop fighting, no matter what. Couldn’t we say that this is at least one of the logics behind terrorist atrocities? When you take the WTC down or blow up buses and restaurants in Israel, what is it you are really saying? You’re telling your enemy that there’s nothing you want to negotiate, you assure yourself of his/her undying hatred, and you bet on either total victory or total defeat. And that’s also what your telling the pusillanimous on your own side: “Look, after what we did, they want to kill each and everyone of us and, thus, we too have no other choice but to fight to the bitter end.”

Perhaps Al Qaeda’s, Hamas’ and Hizbollah’s tactics, what we call terrorism, have as their goall less “terrorising” (that is, making them too afraid to go on) the Americans or the Israelis than angering them, that is, convincing most of them to keep on fighting. When, for instance, you call someone a coward on his face, you’re not really trying to convince him to back off, but rather challenging him for a fight. terrorism, atrocities and so on are not, usually, a way of winning wars or of leaving your enemy paralysed or impotent, but actually to force him to fight. And one of the reasons for doing so is also to make the war inevitable for those on your own side who’d rather not fight against a more powerful enemy. In other words: terror is very efficient as a motivating factor for both sides whenever you want to make war inevitable.

Setting a “Qana 2”-like trap works eventually in the same way, that is, it has different functions according to which is the audience. It may, tactically, help to make bring more pressure on the Israelis to stop fighting or to fight more “carefully” (that is, less effectively) while, strategically, it keeps the fires of conflict and the wish for revenge burning among your own followers and backers. Can it be that, when all is said and done, the terrorist’s goal is not so much victory (a victory of which he is not necessarily assured), but rather the continuation of hostilities? I mean: it’s not so much that they’re sure they’ll win, but that they know that if there is no fight then they’ll have no chance of winning at all? That’s their bet: any war, even a unfavourable one, is better than no war at all. And, obviously, there’s no other way of stopping their own “cycle of violence” than defeating them completely.

7/30/2006 04:32:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/30/2006 04:33:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Ah Rat, I imagine it was a lot more than that. I'm sure you probably agree. The thing is, those killed basically comprised "The Teeth," not "The Tail."

I'm sure you will agree, from what you're seeing, that Hez are a bit rarer in the South than they were. As for the rockets, they seem to be hitting the cities less, and less, and the ocean and farmland, more, and more. This can only mean they're getting pushed back.

Like the man said, "This ain't no Thunder Run through Baghdad, but it's getting the job done." Awful damned slow, though.

7/30/2006 04:33:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

The oil and water analogy is speculative as long as Hezbollah continues to hinder civilian movement. The diplomatic advantage is that the IDF can reasonably say, “Hey, we gave them 48 hours to leave”. The Hezbollah is still a force to be reckoned with but the “Missile Count” metric has no basis in military doctrine. Morons who buy the line that the IDF is targeting civilians are stupid enough to believe that the CIA initiated 9-11. The Middle East mindset is primitive, superstitious, and unbendingly prone to conspiracy. F the ME street. They are basically hurling skyrockets into the southland and the Israeli populace is annoyed but jaded enough not to panic. Hell, they wet through enough with the WMD threat during Desert Storm. The IDF has some of the best Tactical Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Intelligence-Surveillance-Recognizance in the world and the capability to monitor ground radar, et al, and there is a tremendous advantage to shuffling the deck. See what goes north, south, and what stays. In fact, the only thing that wont be tracked is that which does not move.

Gave up the pipe in high school thanks for asking.

7/30/2006 04:34:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The massive Hezbollah poster of Rice isn't surprising. Their strategy from day 1 has been to use civilian shields to protect themselves.

It's possible Israel planned this too, that if there were large civilian casualties that they would allow a 48 hour cooling period.

What Israel needs to do know is say that bombing starts again in 48 hours or less: we're not responsible for any civilians left in those areas after this. Now is the time for all the bleeding heart liberals to get the civilians out of harm's way, and then shut up.

7/30/2006 04:40:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I sure hope so, rufus, 'cause the "Thunder Run" through Baghdad never did secure the city,
nor did 3.5 years of Occupation.
Damn shame, but right as rain.

7/30/2006 04:41:00 PM  
Blogger pat said...

Before everyone gets their panties bunched up in a wad, I think that a quick evaluation of the 24 hour suspension is in order. It auctually works in favor of the Israeli's over Hezbollah.

1. Good on the PR front for Israel.

2. Intell will be watching Hezbollah forces to see where they are currently located, attempts at resupply, and other movements. These areas will be targeted in the next round.

Most important.

3. Israeli elite ground and professional troops have been on combat ops for 15 days straight. They are by now completely worn out and exhausted. This will give them a period of much needed rest. It also allows for replacing combat losses.

4. Israeli ground equipment is by now in need of extended maintenence that cannot be performed by the troops using the equipment. This will give maintenence troops to be the equipment up to standard.

5. Israel pilots even more than the ground troops are exhausted. This will rest them.

6. Israeli planes can now get extended maintenence which is more critical than the ground equipment.

7. Reserve callups can now be moved into position for future operations starting tomorrow night.

For Hezbollah, they have only a cokuple of advantages.

1.The media will report the suspension of hostilities as a win for Hezbollah.

2 Hezbollah can try and regroup. Bring in fresh "troops".

3. Try and resupply which will be difficult because Israeli intel will be watching for this.

4..Try and relocate to better and safer locations. But under Israeli intel watching again.

All in all, substantial advantage to Israel.


7/30/2006 04:45:00 PM  
Blogger OnTheLeftCoast said...

"Could they be that low?"

Low enough to repeatedly commit the war crime of using human shields-- standard Hamas/PLO/Hizbollah technique.

Low enough to blow up a building housing women and kids for propaganda purposes?

Can anyone say Muhammad al Durra?

7/30/2006 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...


re: Nelson Ascher


Where does restraint fit into his thesis?

7/30/2006 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger felix said...

Suggestion for Israel: I assume that Hezbo chief Nasrallah, being a certified Islamofascist, has over the years made many speeches and statements. Somewhere along the line he must have expressed support for the worlwide Jihad and specific attacks. Did he ever express support for 911, London subway jihad attacks, Madrid, Bombay, Bali, Belsan, and on and on?

Go find those speeches and publicize them.

7/30/2006 05:02:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

Ditto with the Nelson Ascher kudos.

Like to offer a source of academic treatment of a simular subject...

"Progress or Entanglement?"

7/30/2006 05:02:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The hypocrisy of the world is amazing. Every rocket Hizbollah has launched has been targeted at civilians, and some Israeli children were killed. Yet because of this collateral damage there are calls for Israel to stop.

UN Secretary General went before the Security Council saying that there must be an immediate cease fire. Someone should ask him if the Security Council could just outlaw all war, and ask him why Hizbollah still exists after the Security Council told them years ago to disarm. They could also ask Annan if he thinks all wars should be stopped when civilians are killed, or if he only wants to stop wars Jewish countries are winning.

It's so obvious that everyone just wants Israel to lose.

If the US and Israel buckle now, we'll get lots of terrorist attacks later. That's what triggered bin Laden, after watching the US pull out of Somalia he figured the West was too weak to fight. Drag some bodies on the street or put children's bodies on TV and they fold.

7/30/2006 05:07:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

A bombing pause. Now, didn't Lyndon Baines Johnson try that back in 1968?

7/30/2006 05:10:00 PM  
Blogger RWE said...

Hezbolah rather obviously set an "elephant trap" for Israel in South Lebanon. Israel is refusing to step into it.

The USSSR set such a trap for the USA in Central America in the 80's. The US stepped into it - and the Reagan Admin suffered all sorts of home-grown pinko attacks as a result - but Ronald Reagan refused to be deterred from the ultimate objective of winning the Cold War and ultimately did so - and Lt Col Ollie North ultimately turned out to be a damn fine war reporter.

7/30/2006 05:14:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

alexis; 5:10 PM

What are you doing interjecting unflattering historical precedent into an otherwise invigoratingly emotive conversation?

Are you a defeatist in need of a medication adjustment, or something?

Remember, this administration can do no wrong…ever…not with education…not with immigration…not in Iraq…not in Lebanon…nothing, no way, no how. And that’s the truth.

7/30/2006 05:23:00 PM  
Blogger wretchard said...

The most obvious answer to why this campaign seems so shapeless is that it is. The alternative, that there's a shape which is being concealed, is a hypothesis that can only be sustained for so long.

Part of the IDF's public relations problem is that it doesn't set an expectation. If people knew where this was "going", then they would buck up and await the end of the journey.

We are told contradictory things: the ground op is limited; it will go on as long as necessary. A ceasefire is imminent; the Hezbollah will be defeated. But the limited suspension of air ops is all too real. It's an elephant in the living room, tangible proof that the IDF has blinked. Sure it's limited, but again, it sets the expectation that the IAF will not strike. If it does, everyone will forget the words "limited". That will disappear from memory.

We will soon know, once and for all, whether the IDF has been beaten, politically at least, by the Hezbollah. But it won't mean the end of the war. Only that it will continue, just as soon as the Hez can recover, on an even more bloody basis.

7/30/2006 05:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

So with a news Blackout, the terrorists would simply have better things to do.

With Honest Reporting
The Public Relations War would quickly be won, and the Real War would be more quickly concluded.

The Treacherous Media are OFTEN little better than the Terrorists, sometimes it's impossible to make the call.

Some here have said the Media should be held harmless:
That is simply Wrong.

7/30/2006 05:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Can the Blogosphere turn the Rice Banner into another Rather Document Fiasco?
Trying to reach the same level of granularity in a War Zone.
How good can we be now?

7/30/2006 05:36:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

Two militants and a child were killed by a US air strike in Iraq today.

___No special session of the Security Council was called.

___No worldwide condemnation from allies was elicited.

___The White House did not caution restraint.

___Secretary Rice did not express her profound regret.

Instead, the government of the United States took the perfectly sensible approach of stating the obvious: "We believe that countless more Iraqis would have been at risk had we not taken immediate action to eliminate this terrorist cell when we discovered their exact location."

Rather than collapsing in fear and getting its skivvies in a knot about Lebanon, this morning, the administration might have permitted the Israeli government the same cover. That would have taken integrity, though, wouldn’t it?

7/30/2006 05:38:00 PM  
Blogger warhorse said...

Hmmm ... it occurs to me that people may be putting too much emphasis on the propaganda war. As long as the Americans stay onside, the opinion of the rest of the world is largely irrelevant, as far as the Israelis are concerned. President Bush does not seem to be one to worry too much about public opinion either, as long as he believes what he is doing is right. The Israelis may have quite a bit more margin than we think.

7/30/2006 05:43:00 PM  
Blogger BoneUSA said...

Whatever the merits of this bombing pause (putting aside whether we're getting the full story on what's going on, which is doubtful), I do not think there is any chance that Israel will back off. This situation is markedly different than any confrontation Israel has had with the Palestinians or the Qana fiasco in 1996. One third of Israel is paralyzed by Hezbollah's missiles and that paralysis will continue even if Hezbollah declared victory and stopped firing its missiles. What kind of economic development will there be in northern Israel when there lingers the possbility that rockets can come raining in at any time? How many ships will be willing to dock at Haifa port? NYC still has problems filling downtown office space 5 years after 9/11. The rockets may stop falling for a time, but Hezbollah's actions already have created a new reality in which Hezbollah's mere existence is no longer tolerable.

I believe the Israeli leadership recognizes this fact. It seems the Euros do as well (no question about GWB). The question becomes, what does Iran do if Hezbollah's destruction becomes imminent? The same question obtains even if an international force goes in after Israel cleans out south Lebanon, because a Hezbollah that cannot threaten Israel is a useless Hezbollah for Iran.

If you accept these premises -- i.e. Israel's continued prosecution of this war and Iran's refusal to allow the elimination of Hezbollah's effectiveness (and obviously either or both premises could be wrong) -- then is there any outcome to this that doesn't involve overt confrontation with Iran and/or Syria?

7/30/2006 05:44:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

CNN News Alert:
U.N. Security Council calls for end to fighting between Israel and Lebanon's Hezbollah guerrillas, citing "grave consequences for humanitarian situation."
Stop demonizing of Israel for merely defending itself
What other country ,
when attacked in an unprovoked aggression across a recognized international frontier, is then put on a countdown clock by the world, given a limited time window in which to fight back, regardless of whether it has restored its own security?

What other country sustains 1,500 indiscriminate rocket attacks into its cities — every one designed to kill, maim and terrorize civilians — and is then vilified by the world when it tries to destroy the enemy's infrastructure and strongholds with precision-guided munitions that sometimes have the unintended but unavoidable consequence of collateral civilian death and suffering?

Hearing the world pass judgment on the Israel-Hezbollah war as it unfolds is to live in an Orwellian moral universe.
The world — governments, the media, U.N. bureaucrats
— has completely lost its moral bearings.

7/30/2006 05:49:00 PM  
Blogger Joe Buzz said...

I'm with A-mouse on this one...although I didnt give up the pipe until a little later than he.
Lebanon has now become Paliwood north . Wu, the Longfellian point about the rocketry is one that I have also been trying to assert since the begining of the conflict. Nobody wants to hear it as Israel is held to higher moral standards than our enemy. "I shot a rocket into the air..It fell to earth I know not where" unfortunate that there exists no friend with a heart inwhich the song may land...

For the "full steam ahead" contingent. If that is game plan we are playing on the wrong field.

Most recently troubling to me is the report out of Somalia regarding the Russian delivery.

7/30/2006 05:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Some here think the Admin has it.
Some Don't!

7/30/2006 05:51:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...


Thank you!

I believe the Olmert government has betrayed its public, which by a margin of 4:1 is begging for a decisive COMBINED arms assault. When this hiatus enters its third day, the betrayal will be obvious. Perhaps, the Olmert government then will collapse. America will not be so fortunate.

Despite being a decades’ long fan of Mr. Netanyahu, I would not bet the farm on him bucking the Department of State for very long.

7/30/2006 05:52:00 PM  
Blogger fjelehjifel said...

Here's the complete U.S. Department of State announcement concerning the 48-hour suspension of air attacks. Note the part about Israel reserving the right "to take action against targets preparing attacks against it." I'd be surprised if the suspension lasts 48 minutes.

Suspension of Aerial Activity in Southern Lebanon

Israel has agreed to a 48-hour suspension of aerial activity in South Lebanon while it investigates today’s tragic incident in Qana. Israel has, of course, reserved the right to take action against targets preparing attacks against it.

During this time, Israel will coordinate with the UN to allow a 24-hour period of safe passage for all residents of South Lebanon who wish to leave. Humanitarian convoys remain in effect. We expect that Israel will implement these decisions so as to significantly speed and improve the flow of humanitarian aid.

The United States welcomes this decision and hopes that it will help to relieve the suffering of the children and families of Southern Lebanon.

7/30/2006 05:52:00 PM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

I have been critical of Israel's political leadership but that is something quite different from writing off the IDF's capability.

All it takes from Olmert is a "Go" and a get-out-of-the-way and the IDF can and would exterminate every HB fighter, ammo carrier and water carrier in the Bekaa.

Unfortunately, Olmert gives us no reason to believe the Go will ever come.

7/30/2006 05:56:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

But what would
"The World Community"
Time for a Manhatten Project for a World Community Weapon.

7/30/2006 06:00:00 PM  
Blogger BoneUSA said...

There certainly is reason to question Olmert's leadership thus far, but for those who think (fear) the 48-hour deal is just the beginning of Israel caving, think about this -- why all this civilian evacuation business if there's no plan to keep on fighting?

7/30/2006 06:13:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Guys, they're Still Running Ground operations; artillery is still firing.

Over/under is now 5 hrs, 25minutes.

7/30/2006 06:27:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

"The Security Council expresses its extreme shock and distress at the shelling by the Israeli Defense Forces of a residential building in Qana, in southern Lebanon, which has caused the killing of dozens of civilians, mostly children, and injured many others,"

The Security Council was not shocked by Darfur or Tibet, apparently. I am sure they will take up those matters tomorrow - not.

The United States did not exercise its veto in defense of its ally Israel. Keep an eye on Mr. Bolton; he does not well abide fools, and may decide to spend more time with his family.

7/30/2006 06:29:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Qana is the town where Jesus worked His first miracle.

7/30/2006 06:33:00 PM  
Blogger Joe Buzz said...

Who is the guy smiling in the background on the Dr. Rice banner?

7/30/2006 06:33:00 PM  
Blogger greer rants said...


Powerline wants to know how long it would take to produce such a thing. I put question at end of last thread for any Graphics experts here and at Just One

So far, feedback is that is looks like vinyl which takes long production time/ special equip.

Qana reported ~8:30AM and this is ready to hang few hours later = ready to go.
The wording on the banner is current to Qana.

A MUST READ:Farewell to the United Nations? | The Brussels Journal

This is a longish article with links to documents.
It does not bode well for Western Civilization as the UN facilitates Islam.

A keeper that deserves own post and lots of discussion
and RAGE.

7/30/2006 06:35:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Oh, I guess we're supposed to veto a "statement" that expresses shock and dismay at the death of children, is that it?

C'mon, Allen; you're sounding silly.

Palestinians attack the UN building, and you attack Bush. I don't know which is more incomprehensible.

By the way, we're going to find out that that building was brought down by a "secondary" explosion.

8 hours later.

7/30/2006 06:38:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

You'd think that Kofi could AT LEAST have referred to 1559 today, and the year of missiles on Israel.

7/30/2006 06:42:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

BTW, Haifa wasn't hit, today.

Just a coincidence, I suppose.

7/30/2006 06:43:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

rufus said:

BTW, Haifa wasn't hit, today.
Just a coincidence, I suppose.

Well we can't have competing images of wounded Israeli kids when the Hezbos are in full court press mode. I wonder what kind of games the Lebanese children play in the missile sites while they are waiting to be "bombed" and if they really want to be martyrs like the Iman screaming at the sappers on the phone from somewhere safe says they do.

7/30/2006 06:51:00 PM  
Blogger Roach said...

Let's face it, contrary to its claims of being really concerned about human life, it's simply not true that the Israelis are super careful. They regard Arab lives as less worthy as the lives of Jews, even when dealing with its own citizens.

There is absolutely no way to engage in this kind of bombardment without forward observers and not have massive collateral damage, yet that is exactly what Israel has undertaken. Worse yet, a quick land campaign likely would have been more effective at rooting out Hezbollah, but that would have endangered (Jewish) lives. So, when there is a conflict of Jewish and Arab life, even when that conflict is between Jewish combatants and Arab noncombatants, Israel will always choose the Jewish lives, contrary to its self-serving claims that it always embraces "purity of arms."

There is ample evidence of this in previous Jewish campaigns, whether it was the 1982 shelling of South Beiruit that led even President Reagan to register a protest to lesser events like the use of hellfire missiles against terrorist targets in crowded refugee camps in Gaza and the West Bank. The rest of the world sees what we refuse to: Israel is being negligent in its conduct of this and most of its wars in a way that leads to the deaths of innocent Arab civilians who are not part of Hezbollah and are under no definition combatnats.

7/30/2006 06:54:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

It is interesting to note that southern Lebanon is not Iraq and the combatants are neither Saddam loyalists nor Arab insurgents. Where Iraq is a vast, far off and varied geography populated by multitudinous peoples and sects, the terrain of south Lebanon has been on the border and on the minds of Israel for the past 55 years. They no doubt understand the lay of the land and have the surveillance technology to peer into the enclaves of the Hezbollah redoubts. Whereas US surveillance efforts over Iraq amounted to viewing a playing field through a soda straw it is easy to believe that Israel has many soda straws and the intelligence to know where to look through them. That is not to say that all will end well but to date I see no glaring faux pax. The best technique to a mobile insurgency is an equally mobile counter-insurgency.

7/30/2006 06:55:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

It IS plausible. In fact, consideringh how abruptly the same sort of incident has stopped Israeli counteroffensives in the past, and considering what a bunch of low dogs the Hezs are, it almost hard to believe they WOULDn't have an emergency incident on the shelf, to cook off in the event of really needing a breather.

7/30/2006 06:56:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

You'd think that Resolution could AT LEAST have condemned the practice using of human shields.
Does it?

7/30/2006 06:58:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

6:56 PM - The MSM has been BEGGING for it for years.

7/30/2006 06:59:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Roach: Israel values the lives of it's own soldiers over Lebanese lives.

And, your point is?

7/30/2006 07:03:00 PM  
Blogger Annoy Mouse said...

That’s pretty harsh Roach,
I suppose you’d be content with the idea that the US forces would put the lives of US forces over sanctimonious Jihadists.

The Joos put lives of their own people first. First and foremost it is their concern for life that endears me to them the most. It is the utter contempt that the Hezbollah holds for the surrounding populace that devolves them in my mind to animals. They believe that they, following “Gods will”, are the final arbiters of who lives and dies.

If I ever get in trouble with the law I should just grab a four year old by the neck and shove a pistol down their throat. That will give me the legitimacy to make my get away and to gain your respect.

7/30/2006 07:05:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...

Both the immoral and moral west is having a hard time getting their heads around this enemy that will put their own innocent women and children in front of themselves in combat they initiate. Much less, as wretchard's comment imply, can we imagine they would murder the same innocents for propaganda purposes.

Don't expect, regardless of the outcome, the left, the MSM or the supporters of jihad to accept, let alone report/admit, this to be a reality.

Their die has been cast.

G-d is separating his people.

7/30/2006 07:06:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

rufus; 6:38 PM

It might be silly of me to expect this administration to insist on a clause reflecting the disappoint of the UN with Hezbollah's ongoing use of "Holy Human Shields". You will recall that last week one of he UN's own made just such a criticism, saying, as I recall, that Hezbollah was cowardly. Of course, to insist on this would have been insensitive, lacking compassion, and the administration certainly couldn't have that.

I will take my silliness over that of the Bush administration. We will all live through mine. The same may not be true for theirs.

7/30/2006 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Roach, all the terrorists have to do is "stop", and then there will never ever again be any chance of any collateral damage. If the terrorists gave a sh*t about their own people, would they fight from among them?

My hat's off to IDF that there isn't far, far more of it.

If the shoe was on the other foot, there'd be Israeli collaterals too many to count.

7/30/2006 07:10:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Buddy, the building came down at 8:00. An hour (or less) later the palestinians in Beirut had a 30 ft banner (somebody said they thought it was vinyl, which evidently requires special equipment, etc.)and a protest in full flight.


7/30/2006 07:11:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

But we're WAY past moral equivalence, Buddy:
Their lives are ALWAYS worth more than ours.
Esp our GI's.

7/30/2006 07:12:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

roach; 6:54 PM

Refresh my memory: Why was Israel shelling south Beirut again?

You will recall that Mr. Reagan also gave Hezbollah a free pass on the little matter of the Marine (peacekeeper) barracks.

Wasn't it the Reagan administration that also roundly criticized Israel for destroying Iraq's French reactor inter alia?

Just asking.

7/30/2006 07:13:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

See my 5:36 PM

7/30/2006 07:13:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Doug, we may be WAY past moral equivalence, and we may be WAY past it even making any difference if Hez blew their own building. "Well, they HAD to, they needed some relief from the Zionist invader!"

This is madness. Those people--from Allen Colmes to Nasrollah, are literally gone round the bend. Once human life is worthless, the species is a goner.

7/30/2006 07:23:00 PM  
Blogger redaktør said...

Israelis are livid mad that the Olmert government was forced to issue apologies while Israelis have been forced to accept a barrage of 4,000+ rockets on their towns. They are livid mad that the US and the EU play along with these jihadi media stunts and that the Israeli government is forced into such publicly humiliating positions.

Should the Olmert government again be forced into such an embarrassing position, the Olmert government will lose its political support. The opposition can already make a credible case that the IDF is operationally handicapped. If that becomes the prevailing belief in Israel, Olmert is history.

7/30/2006 07:23:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Allen Colmes just happened to be on tv blurting about this all being the fault of UN242, when I was writing--sorry for the weird reference.

7/30/2006 07:25:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...

I don't know why those who post here continue to wring their hands every time the UN comes out with another ridiculous resolution.

They're the reason all this came to pass in the first place.

If the UN had actually enforced their resolution in S Lebanon for the past six years, Hezbollah would not be a force there now.

A labyrinth of tunnel works, tons of sophisticated weaponry, ample supply - all on Israel’s doorstep and under the UN's smarmy nose.

The UN has no accountability in this??

How could Israel OR THE US not see the UN as an enemy?

7/30/2006 07:29:00 PM  
Blogger fjelehjifel said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/30/2006 07:33:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Enscout, because we always want the legitimate things it is supposed to do--like 1559 for instance.

7/30/2006 07:34:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...


In the immortal words of Bush the Elder, "It wouldn't be prudent."

Not to worry, enscout, real Americans are painfully aware of the cesspool on the Hudson. If we can ever unite long enough to get am American administration, we might even be rid of it.

7/30/2006 07:36:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Allen, you're losing perspective.

Maybe you're expecting too much from an "American" President.

7/30/2006 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger fjelehjifel said...

The U.N. Security Council issued a mere "presidential statement," not a legally binding resolution. While the statement deplored the Qana attack, it did not call for an immediate ceasefire or condemn Israel.

7/30/2006 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

rufus; 7:37 PM

No doubt, but my only son, who may be off to West Point next year, would expect no less of me.

7/30/2006 07:40:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

As far as the Qana incident, the thing is, IAF did hit it, so Hez would've had to order up the banner, and put the demolition in play, on the fly. And what about talking survivors--can they all be in on a timing story? Let's be careful and not go off on a tangent--

7/30/2006 07:41:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...

buddy; Don't we all.
We are fools if we think that the UN will enforce anything they declare.

Everyone on this thread knows that an imposed ceasefire would only be expected from the Israeli side. The only way Israel or the US should agree is if it gives them strategic advantage as pat's 4:45 post indicates.

7/30/2006 07:43:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

Despite our differences, with only rare exception, everyone contributing to this site is a patriot. Our differences are to means, not ends.

It is an honor, ladies and gentlemen.

On that pap, I retire to the patio to enjoy those vices near and dear my little two chambered heart.

7/30/2006 07:46:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Allen, George Bush is very relieved, and hopes you drink long and hard.

7/30/2006 07:50:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Buddy, you're right. The world has gone stark, raving mad. Let's me and you and Habu and Possumtater get a few cases of beer (apiece) and go trot-lining.

Maybe, while we're spending a week down on the river, the world will either blow it's sorry ass up, or miraculously come back to sanity.

7/30/2006 07:57:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

I keep thinkin the same thing, rufus--go fishin or gonna pop a gasket, what'll it be--

7/30/2006 08:03:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

All good points, Buddy; but, on the other hand, have you ever heard of a building falling down and killing tens of people 8 hrs after getting hit by a JDAM. My experience has been, if they're going to fall, they fall.

Some witnesses did cite a "second" explosion. I think the jdam jarred the old kyutushas up pretty good, and when one of the slopedopes went to get a couple of rockets out of the basement for the days work one popped as he was handling it. Or, Something like that.

Just seems fishy, that's all.

7/30/2006 08:09:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Buddy, I'm half-way out the door.

See ya

7/30/2006 08:11:00 PM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

Could well be--one thing's for sure, there are some eyeballs on the case. So this one should resolve. Unlike so many others in years past.

7/30/2006 08:13:00 PM  
Blogger Roach said...

My point on Israel's scale of values, rufus, is that the whole concept of the noncombatant/combatant distinction is that soldiers of all nations must incur costs, including greater risk to life, in order to limit the harm of warfare. And this means that things that might save Israeli lives, such as carpet bombing Lebanon, are not permitted even if the alternatives such as infantry-intensive operations require greater risk to life.

Two things have become apparent:

The much-vaunted IDF is not so great at dealing with a capable enemy, which they've essentially never had to face before.

And, two, the IDF will respond to this dilemma with massive, indiscriminate firepower. How else can we explain things like bombing random cars on the roads in and out of the South, bombing evacuation routes, bombing apartment complexes, etc. And this is all inevitable because IDF intelligencein Lebanon is totally lacking as is a ground presence.

7/30/2006 08:24:00 PM  
Blogger ledger said...

Wretchard notes:

...the mysterious and long gap between the IAF bombing and building collapse. I knew the Hezbollah were low. If what's implied is true, could they be that low?


One could imagine that if Hezbollah had a group of human shields that did not die on que (at the time when Rice was in the area) that they may have just lent a helping hand with some explosives. The MSM loves dead bodies.

Continuing on greer rant's and What is Occupation's posts, PL also points to the construction extremely well time banner of Rice which plays on the civilian death theme:

[Power Line]:

This photograph shows Beirut demonstrators with a giant poster of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice that was used in a rally protesting the accidental killing of civilian human shields, along with terrorists, in Qana:

[picture of huge photolithic banner of Rice with blood on lips]

What seems odd about this is that the banner was unfurled within hours after the Qana attack took place. The building where the civilians died was bombed on Sunday morning... I have no idea what kind of facility it takes to produce a 30-foot-high banner like this one. It is obviously professionally done. It would be interesting to know where this banner was produced; who designed and paid for it; and how its production was expedited so that it was ready for use, on the street, within hours after the event being protested... was the image of Rice produced in advance, awaiting a pretext for its use... I've often been curious about the logistics of pro-terrorist demonstrations, and this seems like an especially curious example.

See: Just Wondering

I am for the cessation of aerial bombing in southern Lebanon - as long as the aerial attacks continue on other needed targets within the region (Other wise there should be no aerial cease fire).

7/30/2006 08:24:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

There is a gallows humor that pervades the last 15 days worth of threads. It has become more evident as the trends continue.

aristides takes the realities, adds in a dash of hubris and can devine a US/Israeli Strategy.
Good old PB is shocked that the Israeli are following the US Army's Iraq playbook and declares an end of history. Ms Weddington sees a vast empty hole, where once the undefeatable IDF stood.

Me, I'm gonna ride with the Supremes and the rest of the Federals, there is no International Islamic conspriacy nor War. The Mohammedans are not interconnected and each individual Terrorist deserves a jury trial.

Feels so much better to not be concerned any more. The future is in good hands.
The Good Guys never lose.

7/30/2006 08:25:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

'Rat 8:25 PM
Why the Middle East Crisis Isn't Really About Terrorism

7/30/2006 08:34:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Another Saudi volley, their troops are on the march.
Yesterday, Brent Scrowcroft, now Time Magazine.

The drum beat continues, may as well march to it.
The President and Ms Condi do.

7/30/2006 08:38:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Back to the Future!

7/30/2006 08:40:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

wretchard wrote:

Can it be that, when all is said and done, the terrorist’s goal is not so much victory (a victory of which he is not necessarily assured), but rather the continuation of hostilities?

That goes without saying. Israel had evacuated South Lebanon for 6 years, and had just evacuated Gaza, but as Michael Corleone said in Part III, "Just when I think I'm out they pull me back in!"

The entire culture of the Palestinians and the Hezbollah is not geared to building infrastructure and growing the economy, but purely to destroy the Zionists, and it can not and will not change.

For a long time the Israelis did a tit-for-tat destruction of Pallie infrastructure after each suicide bombing, hoping to create a negative feedback loop that would bring the attacks to a halt, starting with the destruction of Arafat's helicopters and his "international airport". All the Israelis succeeded in doing was to create conditions where millions of people are totally dependent on outside aid to exist (even utilities from the very entity they have sworn to destroy), thus perpetrating an endless victim status to justify more attacks.

Because it is the attacks that are the central thing. They wouldn't even begin to know what to do with the land if all the Jews did pack up and leave. The whole area would be a giant tumor, like Gaza, but writ large, and then the Pallies would turn on their own neighboring Arab "brothers" because that's all they know.

We already know what the Egyptians think of them, they've got an Israeli-style wall across the border with Gaza, only this one doesn't have the scorn of the media or Roger Waters doing concerts in front of it to try to get it torn down.

7/30/2006 08:41:00 PM  
Blogger Jamie Irons said...


You said, "Despite our differences, everyone on this thread is [still] a patriot..."

I'm pretty sure of that, but even more certain everyone on this site is a mammal, even though you referenced your "two-chambered heart."


Jamie Irons

7/30/2006 08:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

You remind me:
Google news had an article that mimicked the TIME article:
I Clicked, and it was in Chinese!
When I came back, it was no longer the Headline.
I'll see if I can find it in my history.

7/30/2006 08:42:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Norcal Guy:
No Bi Here:
I be Tri, the all loving amphibian!

7/30/2006 08:44:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Bless little P-tater's heart:
Marsupials store extra love in the pouch-chamber.

7/30/2006 08:46:00 PM  
Blogger ledger said...

Cornelius said:

...anyone else read that Ireland diverted a US flight of bunker busters destined for Israel to England because it didn't want the plane to land on it's soil? The Irish?!?

Yes I did. And, no I am not surprised.

There has been a long standing partnership between the IRA and the PLO (or it's armed factions including Hamas and their buddies Hezbollah). It's only natural that the Irish government not help destory their old partners in crime.


Students of terrorism can easily trace the IRA's connections to the PLO and its numerous factions back to the 1970s and 1980s, when IRA and PLO operatives trained together in Libya and the Bekaa Valley... Following the Israeli incursion into Jenin earlier this year, Paul Collinson, a British explosives expert working with the Red Cross, identified hundreds of explosive devices found there and noted that "the pipe bombs I found in Jenin are exact replicas of ones I found in Northern Ireland."

See: IRA plus PLO equals Terror

7/30/2006 08:48:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Latest Google Headline
(chinese one came out on Google 2 hours after Time Version!)
The Wisdom Of Retreat

7/30/2006 08:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Here' the Chinese Version of the Time Article:
Why the Middle East Crisis Isn't Really About Terrorism.

7/30/2006 09:00:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

yep, them Sauds are mobilizing their Forces.
Expect to see Dr K. and George Mitchell weigh in tomorrow or Tuesday.

The only way I'd ever vote for a a Republican, for President in '08.

Big John will never get my vote.

7/30/2006 09:02:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Do Roaches have Hearts?

7/30/2006 09:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

You remind me again Rat:
This one said Rudy's 9-11 Patina would quickly wear off in a Campaign.
A Huntin I will go again.
(I fear Rudy's not pure enuf for the primaries:
I he has a drink now and then, you'd STILL vote for him?)

7/30/2006 09:10:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"if he has a drink"

7/30/2006 09:11:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

aristides takes the realities, adds in a dash of hubris and can devine a US/Israeli Strategy.

And here I thought I was adding a pinch of optimism. Must have switched the bottles.

7/30/2006 09:17:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

4-chambered Embryos Evolving Stances

7/30/2006 09:18:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

That's what we should do w/'Rat, Aristides!

7/30/2006 09:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Slip him a Gibson Gimlet.

7/30/2006 09:32:00 PM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

allen - You will recall that Mr. Reagan also gave Hezbollah a free pass on the little matter of the Marine (peacekeeper) barracks.

Not really. George Shultz and Cap Weinberger were just a little more subtle than the Neocons are capable of being.

For the 79 Tehran takeover, the Beirut Embassy bombings, torture-murder of Buckley and other hostages, and the Marine Barracks bombing - folks were dispatched to Iraq to give Saddam all sorts of need info he needed to kill Iranians. US aid likely meant we helped kill quite a few of the 440,000 Saddam dispatched. Five years after the Marines got whacked there was the "little boo-boo" of the Vincennes whacking 290 Iranian Islamoids out of the sky.

That said, someone at the Marines should have swung. Reagan taking blame was a coverup for the inexcusable failure of Marine Commanders to engage in force protection. The barracks bombing did not come out of the blue. Marines had already lost over a dozen in firefights while dispatching almost 100 Shia and Druze in August in Beirut and in the hills. In September, a US nuclear cruiser and FFG were ordered to shell Druze and Shia positions as they fought the "Lebanese Armed Force" - which were Christian Phalangists and Israel's proxies - at Israel's urging since the FAL was on the verge of defeat. The shelling of the USS Virginia and John Rogers amounted to 338 5 inch shells and killed 80-90 "proto-Hezbollahs".

Thus a month later, after all the killing between the USA and Lenanese factions - it was widely known that we had gone from "peacekeepers" to siding with our "Special Friend" in active hostilities - and there was absolutely no excuse for Marine Command to not have any defense of it's highest value assets.

Payback in the last 23 years has been tit for tat and then some -exacted on the Iranians....the ones who escaped retribution were the Marine and joint peacekeeper force command that ordered guards not to defend their compound. They're the ones who go to their graves knowing they screwed up badly and killed friendlies through incompentence and lack of situational awareness.

7/30/2006 11:53:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

On CNN Frontpage, the video has two tabs:
"Most Popular" and "Best Video"
as of now, if you click best video, the list includes
"Marines Remember Beirut Bombing"

2 Guys that were there, one describing what C-4 relates.
Says Marines won't let it happen again.
What about if they're under orders where they would have to to follow the orders?

7/31/2006 12:16:00 AM  
Blogger HK Vol said...

I daresay General William Sherman wouldn't be allowed to operate today. But, he ended the war in the south and it never seriously threaten secession again.

"You cannot qualify war in harsher terms than I will. War is cruelty, and you cannot refine it; and all those who brought war into our country deserve all the curses and maledictions a people can pour out."

7/31/2006 02:24:00 AM  
Blogger HK Vol said...

In one sharp piece of analysis, Thomas Friedman gets it exactly right:

In part, though, this madness is home-grown. I sat at a swank rooftop restaurant the other night with some young Syrian writers and listened to a discussion between a young woman dressed in trendy clothes, talking about how she would prefer to see Israel disappear, another writer who argued that Nasrallah was an Arab disaster, and an Arab journalist who described the "pride" and "dignity" every Arab felt at seeing Hezbollah fight Israel to a standstill.
When will the Arab-Muslim world stop getting its "pride" from fighting Israel and start getting it from constructing a society that others would envy, an economy others would respect, and inventions and medical breakthroughs from which others would benefit?
There will be no new Middle East — not as long as the New Middle Easterners, like Rafik Hariri, the former Lebanese prime minister, get gunned down; not as long as Old Middle Easterners, like Nasrallah, use all their wits and resources to start a new Arab-Israeli war rather than build a new Arab university; and not as long as Arab media and intellectuals refuse to speak out clearly against those who encourage their youth to embrace martyrdom with religious zeal rather than meld modernity with Arab culture.
Without that, we are wasting our time, and the Arab world is wasting its future. It will forever be "on the eve of modernity.",1249,640198383,00.html

7/31/2006 02:31:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...


I will agree to the extent that the attack on the barracks was the result of gross criminal negligence.

7/31/2006 05:50:00 AM  
Blogger Laocoon837 said...

"... could they be that low?"

Of course they could. They are a creation of the current Iranian regime, one of whose defining early acts was to firebomb a theater of innocent folks - just so they could blame it on the Shah. Why the Shah would want to do such a thing was never explained, nor was any explanation broadly demanded: horrible acts fit the public perception, and so were accepted without question.

Again, of course they would do something like bomb a building - and they would not even consider it 'stooping'.

7/31/2006 01:56:00 PM  

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