Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Horns of the Dilemma

There's an interesting article in the Wall Street Journal which quotes a UN source who describes some of the difficulties an IDF ground force will have in neutralizing Hezbollah rockets.

... unlike conventional armies, Hezbollah doesn't keep its weapons in armories. It hides them in the homes of supporters, in remote valleys and caves, and in small factories and industrial workshops scattered across Lebanon, according to Israeli and Lebanese military experts and the group itself. Ardent members willing to die for the movement are assigned to protect these sites, many of which are said to be booby-trapped.

"There are no Hezbollah bases anywhere. So the only way to find the weapons is to go on foot and look for them," said Timur Goksel, a former United Nations official who lives in Beirut and has tracked Hezbollah's military capabilities for two decades.

That reality underscores the core conundrum Israel now faces: Defeating Hezbollah means tracking down and destroying its enormous supply of rockets and missiles, estimated at roughly 13,000 in all. Yet to do so Israeli soldiers would likely need to search house-by-house and cave-by-cave throughout the hostile territory of southern Lebanon, many military officials and analysts here say.

And this type of house-to-house campaign is precisely what Bill Roggio thinks has been ruled out, based on an analysis of Israeli call-ups. (Hat tip: Chester)

While there is always the possibility the Israeli government and military officials are conducting a sophisticated information operations campaign, the military is not mobilizing for a large scale invasion of Lebanon. Only three battalions (about 300 troops per battalion) have been mobilized over the past few days. With Israel being a small nation, a large scale call up of troops could not be hidden from public view.

Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, in his analysis of the strategic considerations notes "if Israel were interested in a long-term occupation, it would have had to call up far more reserves than it did." This also applies to a large military operation designed to destroy Hezbollah and pursue them into their rear bases in the Bekaa Valley, where they are supported by elements of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps and the Syrian military. The Beirut-Damascus Road is 35 miles from the Israeli border, Baalbeck and Hermel, two Hezbollah headquarters are 60 and 90 miles from the Israeli border respectively.

So that dilemma creates the obvious incentive for Israel to escalate the war unless another method is found to rein in Hezbollah. The WSJ article continues:

One risk in the coming days is that the sides will remain locked in a series of escalating strikes. If so, some observers here worry Israel may decide that the only way to rein in Hezbollah is to attack Syria and possibly even Iran. Those two countries have long been Hezbollah's primary supporters, providing the group with the bulk of its weapons and aid.

A senior Israeli politician suggested Hezbollah's main foreign sponsors may not be beyond Israel's reach. "We place full responsibility for this crisis on Syria and Iran," said Isaac Herzog, a member of Israel's security cabinet. "We are not ruling out any operation and we will not forget who is responsible."

International and US policy so far has been to acknowledge the premises of the problem without accepting the conclusion. It is the equivalent of saying, "yes you have cancer, but don't operate".

At the Group of Eight meeting in St. Petersburg, key European allies joined the U.S. in beating back a Russian attempt to have the G-8 formally lay the blame on Israel for its assault of Lebanon. What emerged was an American-crafted compromise by the industrialized nations blaming "extremist elements" for triggering the violence and issuing a call for Israel to exercise "utmost restraint." The communique demanded that the militant groups Hezbollah and Hamas return a total of three abducted Israeli soldiers and halt their rocket attacks into Israel.


Blogger Final Historian said...

If Israel intends to go after Syria, it needs to degrade Hizb'allah's capabilities first. It can't simply rush into Syria without jeapordizing its flank. However, Debka, always to be taken with a grain of salt, is saying that the US and Israel are playing this whole thing by ear, escalating whenever they feel they can. I am not sure what, exactly, Israel's political strategy is. Military strategy is, by its nature, flexible. But a flexible Political Strategy can be very dangerous, and Israel should reconsider, if that is in fact its current mode of action.

7/19/2006 02:03:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

That's why Israel knows that it needs to push Hizbollah back and replace them with a friendly force. In fact part of the peace agreement is to have someone else do the disarming.

Israel just warned all civilians to move North of the river, basically evacuating Southern Lebanon.

7/19/2006 02:16:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The ultimate goal is to get the Lebanese army to deploy with international support.

Toward that end, senior administration officials said options considered by the United Nations include:

creating a buffer zone in southern Lebanon along the border with Israel;

expanding the UNIFIL peacekeeping force that was created in 1978;

dispatching an international team to monitor the border;

imposing an international arms embargo for Lebanon, except for the Lebanese army, which is seen as too weak to deploy on its own, andrallying international support for Lebanon, such as a donors' conference, to rebuild the country.

7/19/2006 02:19:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

Israel has a green light for two weeks to do as much damage as they can to Hezbollah. Then after Condi finally gets around to going there on Sunday (no big rush), the Organization of the Nations of Earth comes up with the idea of a buffer zone involving "peace" "keeping" troops. Every night Hezbollah gets off a few more rounds toward Haifa, but this time Israel can't hit back because they might accidentally take out a blue helmet.

7/19/2006 02:19:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The US is hanging tough on the cease fire:

U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will not go on a peace mission to the Mideast before next week, giving Israel time to "defang" Hezbollah, a senior administration official said Wednesday...

Senior administration officials said more time is needed to shape the diplomacy and to create conditions on the ground for a permanent change of the situation -- not merely a cease-fire. Israel needs time to "defang Hezbollah," said one of the officials, who asked not to be named in light of the ongoing diplomacy...

U.S. ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton described calls for a cease-fire a "simplistic" solution to the problem.

He said he would clarify the U.S. position on the crisis after the U.N. team presents its findings.

"Among other things, I want somebody to address the problem [of] how you get a cease-fire with a terrorist organization," Bolton said. "I'd like to know when there's been an effective cease-fire between a terrorist organization and a state in the past.

"This is a different kind of situation and I'm not sure that sort of old thinking, conventional thinking works in a case like this."

7/19/2006 02:20:00 PM  
Blogger enscout said...

I don't know if it's fiscally within the realm of possibilities but it seems that the IDF could use the geography and their air superiority to engage in a type of siege. I realize it's a big area and there certainly would be civilians (there's that word again) caught where they won't enjoy the events, but it may be the only tactic that will work against the guerrillas.

Focus on roads & infrastrcuture - as has been the tactic up to now - and keep up the pressure.

Any type of overland campaign by grund forces would stretch the Israeli army - methinks.

7/19/2006 02:23:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

I think that the US and Israel will demand that from day 1, hour 1 the Lebanese Army is the one patrooling, with international forces acting as quick response teams if they get overwhelmed, like the US & UK support Afghani forces now.

7/19/2006 02:24:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

So, w.w., Israel can, by proclamation declare eveyone south of the river a Combatant?

Just by the geographical location they are so defined?

Would that work in Ramadi?
Maybe Haditha?

Sounds against your ever famous International Law.

Sound like you're about in agreement with this piece in the LATimes Israel's Outrageous Attacks in regard the facts, but not their perception.

7/19/2006 02:26:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

> So, w.w., Israel can, by proclamation declare eveyone south of the river a Combatant?

No, but if all the non-combatants leave, then there are only combatants left.

7/19/2006 02:28:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

And when Lebanon declares, after the next election that HB is the Lebanonese National Army?
Or the two are integrated, in an internal Lebanonese cease fire?

7/19/2006 02:30:00 PM  
Blogger Knucklehead said...

One political strategy could be to make it perfectly clear to the Lebanese and the "community of nations" aside from Syria and Iran that the only way to stop the "disproportionate" assault by Israel against Hezbollah is for Lebanon, with international assistance, to take control of their country from Hezbollah. Accomplishing that would require the house to house, door by door search for and destruction of Hezbollah's arms and munitions. This would, of course, need to be done by Lebanese and other non-Issraeli resources.

Just speculating.

Failing that, Israel is fully capable of grinding on in a war of attrition. I have no idea if the 13,000 number for rockers is accurate. Presuming it is, Hezbollah has consumed something on the order of 1,000 so far. Make resupply difficult and after 15 or 20 weeks Hezbollah's ability to launch rockets fizzles to a few a day. In the meantime southern Lebanon has been converted into a no-man's land where anything that moves may be presumed to be Hezbollah and attacked.

Hezbollah, with the forethought and malice of Iran and Syria, required 6 years or thereabouts to build their current level of arms and munitions. They will consume it within weeks or a small number of months.

This was a very stupid undertaking on the part of Hezbollah and their masters. They cannot win and within a short time they won't be able to maintain a level of assault against Israel that resembles "strength" even by twisted terrorist standards.

Israel can "escalate", Hezbollah cannot. Iran and Syria will not.

7/19/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Shouldn't they have been able to destroy this by now? They bomb every day and mention using bunker busting ammo. I wonder if this is reinforced in some way they didn't expect.

That's why the leaked story about Bush and Iran threatened the use of tactical nukes, and Bush wouldn't rule them out.

Israel targets Beirut bunker

Israeli warplanes dropped bombs early Thursday on a bunker in south Beirut where senior Hezbollah leaders were thought to be, the military said.

Military officials said a wave of aircraft dropped 23 tons of explosives on the bunker. The officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to reporters, said top Hizbullah figures were thought to be there, possibly including Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah.

7/19/2006 02:36:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But if they can not leave, 'cause the bridges have been destroyed...

What good the proclamation?

When the refugees flee, the IAF is reported to strafe them.
Whether true of not, those are the reports, so the influence civilian decisions.

The Israeli, in Lebanon at least will be portrayed as the aggressor, again, whether justified or not.
The Lebanonese Army may well rally to HB, deserting the Government. The IAF has already targeted Lebanonese Army positions.

7/19/2006 02:37:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

enscout; 2:23 PM

This may be what is happening.

___67% of labor force is in service industry
___largest industries
a) banking
b) tourism

7/19/2006 02:37:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The issue for Israel will be the civilian population. Supposedly people are running out of food and water already. Gas in in short supply too.

Even though many would support Israel in the war, it will make enemies if there is really starvation and wouldn't be able to sustain the campaign for months.

7/19/2006 02:38:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

The IRA did a similar thing with no bases and stores of weapons in everything including baptismal fonts (poetic flourish there). The IRA had substantial support and used violent intimidation to those feeling brave. We are still stuck in our nation state mode while Hesbollah has innoculated itself from the conventional cures available to the nation state. The stark remedy doing the unthinkable, the thing recommended by the Curtis LeMay wing of the Belmont Club is not plausible.
Israel has to enduce the Lebanese army to force Hesbollah out. That will not happen. That takes me back to Nato as the only organization that could be a legitimate broker with Lebanon and Israel and still have the military might to remove Hesbollah by force. IMHO, it could be sold to Europe as a preferable means of sending a rebuke to Iran.

7/19/2006 02:39:00 PM  
Blogger brough said...

Israel just warned all civilians to move North of the river, basically evacuating Southern Lebanon.

How does Israel fascilitate that? Last I heard, many civilians are corraled in the south (as human shields) by Hez road blocks.

7/19/2006 02:39:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

That's a previously asked question, w.w.

There will not be preemptive nuclear strikes against Iran, regardless.

Believe that.

If the Israeli did it, nothing would be more pleasing to the Sauds as a Russian counterstrike on Tel Aviv. Tit for Tat.

It's still is a MAD MAD world.

No telling what happens if the genie not only get's out of the bottle, but starts casting spells.

7/19/2006 02:43:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

brough said:

Last I heard, many civilians are corraled in the south (as human shields) by Hez road blocks.

By coming over with massed infantry. We're talking about guys who need women and children to hide behind. Hez itself will remove the roadblocks so they can bug out, lest they get caught themselves in a jam-up.

7/19/2006 02:47:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

In the early days of the war Israel said they could maintain the blockade by being selective and letting food in. Since then there has been absolute silence. At one point the Israeli PM said that the blue helmets were protected to gather casualties. Lately there are reports they've been turned back running missions though. One of Hizbollah's past missions into Israel was in stolen UN uniforms.

It's not clear to me what Israel is trying to do with the blockade of non-military products (if that is what is happening). It seems to be giving an advantage to the enemy, that it lets them fight a propaganda war and press to stop the fighting for humanitarian reasons.

7/19/2006 02:48:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The Lebanese Army has different loyalties. Almost all of the sites targeted by Israel have been in the Hizbollah, South part of Lebanon. In fact the base hit the other day was right next to a Hizbollah base, and the latter said they lost a fighter in the bombing too.

The other main situation I remember was after the Israeli ship was hit with help from Lebanese radar, Israel took out every radar post on the coast.

I think lots of those in the North (and even the South) hate both Israel and Hizbollah. If they won't liberate their country from Hizbollah, they probably won't fight them either.

7/19/2006 02:54:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

Gosh, just think what might be happening in south Lebanon right this minute if Mr. Barak and his good friend Mr. Clinton had not abandoned the SLA to its fate at the hands of Hezbollah in 2000.

A substantial body of armed, highly motivated partisans would sure be helpful behind the Hezbollah line now.

Yeah, with 39% of Lebanon's population being Christian, the SLA could really be a help.

Just say'n

7/19/2006 02:59:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Target civilian infrastructure
Target dual use infrastructure
Target vehicles on the roads

Blockade food and medicines for the civilian population.

Target refugees

Sounds like a War Crimes case developing, not at all an Article 3 Conflict.

When the Lebanonese PM flees the Country, who controls the Army then?

What Lebanonese patriot will believe the Israeli are destroying Lebanon for Lebanon's own good?

Like the US deserved 9-11?

7/19/2006 03:01:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

One of the biggest problems is that this has ended up to be a one sided propaganda war, with the Lebanese government (and the liberal media) demonizing Israel's campaign, and no one fighting back. Bush doesn't want to say that the Lebanese government is full of crap because he wants to prop them up rather than have the country go Syrian.

However sooner or later the point of time will need to come that someone argues the other side of the story. Losing the propaganda war can mean losing the shooting war.

The Bush Administration keeps saying "Israel has a right to defend itself" when it would be more helpful to say "Israel has a right to defend itself AND is fighting a clean war which is not targeting civilians."

7/19/2006 03:05:00 PM  
Blogger Jamie Irons said...

Not entirely OT:

Here is a piece of amusing writing by the fellow who should perhaps be anointed king of the Bush-hatred crowd, Joe Conason, Our Coarse President Can't Fix The Middle East"...

Mr. Conason opines (but I suggest you RTWT):

The overthrow of Saddam has emboldened the mullahs and spurred their quest for nuclear weapons rather than instilling fear in them. Instead of encouraging moderation and reconciliation, the debacle in Iraq has undermined those objectives...

Is that so, Joe?

It must be true, because you are asserting it.

Long before 9/11, in the waning Clinton years, during the Lewinsky kerfuffle, I watched a "debate" on (?) MSNBC between Conason and Christopher Hitchens. Hitchens of course ate Conason's lunch (even in my view, and I was then a Clinton partisan of sorts) but what was really distressing to watch was how quickly Conason descended to ad hominem about Hitchen's (purported) drinking problem.

It was not pretty, and it made Conason look like a weak -- and extremely vile -- character.

Jamie Irons

7/19/2006 03:06:00 PM  
Blogger bjbarron said...

This war is being fought on other fronts than Southern Lebanon. Hisballah and Hamas are down to their last supporters...Syria, Iran, Jew Haters, and Western Moonbats.

That's a much smaller group than would have been screaming for Israeli scalps than you might have found on 9/10.

Non-state actors which are protected by weak or terrorist states need to be attacked where ever they are....period. While we applaud the Cedar Revolution, that doesn't do much good if Hizballah can rocket Israel at will. Lebanon will just have to suck it up if it won't or can't contain or control Hizballah.

Hamas is now a legally constituted government...and is responsible now in ways they never were.

The Izzies fight to be left alone, the Muzzies fight to destroy Israel. There is no middle ground.

Islam is at war everywhere it touches needs to be pushed back into the desert. There is nothing that you can give them to get them to stop...absolutely nothing.

7/19/2006 03:16:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Israel needs to make its case, but its not necessarily wrong to target infrastructure. In fact much of the Serbia war by NATO targeted infrastructure like power facilities and bridges. World war II hit massive amounts of infrastructure.

Blockades are valid, although they need to allow food and other necessities. I haven't heard one way or the other if Israel is letting food in. The Lebanese government and Southern (Hizbollah) village leaders are the only ones talking, and I certainly don't trust them. I just don't know one way or the other if Israel is only squeezing the South or if the entire country is blockaded.

If so, then maybe one purpose of the blockade is to force all civilians to move to the North. If that is the case then what Israel is doing is more merciful than just bombing combatants and non-combatants both.

Soldiers need to have the right to move civilians off the battle field. Otherwise the enemy could win by stationing civilians all over the battle field.

7/19/2006 03:17:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

Oh, and talking about the CIA, Mr. Clinton, and other assorted brain trusts, TigerHawk has a piece nicely entitled "Another intelligence failure?" Don't be fooled by the apparent question; TigerHawk is being too kind.

Long story short, in its Herculean efforts to destroy the Bush administration, our CIA may have missed a few tidbits of information about those rascals Hezbollah.

7/19/2006 03:19:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

They've done that as doctrine for decades, w.w.

That's swimming in the sea.

There is no difference, the people and the force are as one.
Listen to their declarations.
If you are not "with" them, you are not with God and deserve to die. Religion of Peace and all that hijacking stuff.

Sometimes the fish win, some times the fish lose.
Depends on the fisherman

7/19/2006 03:24:00 PM  
Blogger whit said...

What international force will be willing to go into Lebanon and disarm Hezbollah? Indians? Pakistanis? Germans? Japanese?

Forget about it! The UN has been observing the buildup all these years and has done nothing. Nothing!

Let the Israelis do what they need to do. If you can't stand the collateral suffering, don't watch!

7/19/2006 03:25:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...

Omar has a new post today in which he suggests that the Iranian reason behind this crisis is to bring on the hidden Imam. He cites evidence in Iraq.

7/19/2006 03:28:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Life in the new Islamic paradise of Somalia. This shows why Islamic regimes will always be unstable: no one would really want to live under them. The Taliban took over Afghanistan the same way, that people were tired of the chaos.

Since its seizure of Mogadishu, the Islamic group has cracked down on purportedly non-Islamic activities such as a wedding with live music and a World Cup screening — shooting and killing two people who were watching.

It also replaced its moderate main leader with Sheik Hassan Dahir Aweys, whom the U.S. has linked to al-Qaida. Aweys denies the allegations.

Militia raid
In their latest hard-line move, Islamic militiamen with assault rifles raided five halls in northern Mogadishu Tuesday and arrested people who had paid to watch videos, residents said.

7/19/2006 03:28:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

It sounds like there are multiple Hizbollah Beirut bunkers. They are confident that the 23 ton bombing a few hours ago took out at least some of the Hizbollah leadership, if not the top dog himself.

If nothing else the bunker is gone. It is just a "crater" now.

IAF attempts to assasinate Hizbullah leadership

IAF fighter jets dropped over 20 tons in bombs late Wednesday night on a Hizbullah bunker, possibly the hiding place of the group's leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, in the Burj al-Arjana refugee camp in southeast Beirut. It was still unclear who was in the bunker at the time and what their fate was, but IDF sources said the bunker was totally destroyed and that all that was left was a crater.

The IDF obtained intelligence information late Wednesday night that Hizbullah leaders possibly including Nasrallah had taken refuge inside the bunker. A wave of aircraft immediately took to the air and dropped 23 tons of explosives on the bunker.

IDF sources would not confirm that Nasrallah was in the bunker at the time, but said that high-ranking Hizbullah leaders were inside, and that it appeared that the attack was successful.

Since Israel went to war with Lebanon last Wednesday, fighter jets have repeatedly bombed another bunker in the Dahiya neighborhood in Beirut, also said to be the main nerve center and headquarters of Hizbullah.

The IAF has so far carried over 3,000 sorties over Lebanon, and in the past day attacked 200 targets throughout the country, including Hizbullah headquarters, cars carrying terrorists, Katyusha launchers and weapons warehouses.

7/19/2006 03:34:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Those that cannot stand it, whit, watch the most intently.

They are practiced at their craft. They realize it's importance
The status que beckons, and is always superior to the unknown.

Government workers, corporate press, people buyin' gasoline.
The folks that put pressure on the levers of power, even if they do not hold them, themselves.
Here, there, most everywhere in the modern world.

Only "Radicals" favor change

7/19/2006 03:35:00 PM  
Blogger whit said...

I heard a caller on Hannity today: He said his father is Lebanese and that the media isn't reporting it but the Lebanese are secretly hoping that Israel destroys Hezbollah.

That was surprising to me and I'm not sure whether I believe it. Lately, I've been thinking that the Lebanese people suffer from Stockholm syndrome.

Fox News is reporting that 23 tons of ordance has been dropped on a bunker thought to contain the top leadership of HB. We can only hope.

7/19/2006 03:35:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

I only know of one force in the world that's capable of going into Lebanon and doing what needs to be done, but it's kinda busy right now.

7/19/2006 03:36:00 PM  
Blogger Nathan said...

Wretchard, thank you for incidentally clarifying the level of IDF force deployment. Now I can safely agree with Allen that until a general mobilization occurs it seems unlikely that the conflict will be sustained for very much longer.

7/19/2006 03:47:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Hezbollah TV: No Hezbollah leaders killed in mass IAF strike on Beirut (Reuters)

7/19/2006 03:52:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

"But what Israel is doing is imposing deliberate suffering on civilians, collective punishment on innocent people, to force them to do something they are powerless to do: disarm the gunmen among them. Such a policy violates international law and comports neither with our values nor our interests. It is un-American and un-Christian.

But where are the Christians? Why is Pope Benedict virtually alone among Christian leaders to have spoken out against what is being done to Lebanese Christians and Muslims?

When al-Qaida captured two U.S. soldiers and barbarically butchered them, the U.S. Army did not smash power plants across the Sunni Triangle. Why then is Bush not only silent but openly supportive when Israelis do this?

Where are the Christians? asks Pat Buchanan

7/19/2006 03:55:00 PM  
Blogger whit said...

Pat Buchanan can go to...

7/19/2006 04:06:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

And stay there.

7/19/2006 04:19:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

Those Arab comics are such cards! No one can work a room better.

For instance, did you hear the one about the impotent prime minister of a dysfunctional ME country who, after allowing a terrorist organization to attack a neighboring country from his own, demanded reparations of the victim.

Is that the funniest thing you have ever heard, or what?

7/19/2006 04:24:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Pat Buchanan is a hard core pacifist, although a conservative one. He believes in avoiding all foreign wars.

Israel said it is leaving most power supplies in Lebanon operational, not bombing them. In some cases like the airport it bombed the gas supply rather than the power plant itself, so that Lebanon would have an easier time fixing it once the war was over.

NATO bombed power supplies and bridges in Bosnia. (Remember the UN peace keepers chained to the bridges as human shields?) It would be very hypocritical for the Europeans on the security council to blame Israel for doing the same thing.

7/19/2006 04:25:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

> For instance, did you hear the one about the impotent prime minister of a dysfunctional ME country...

So many of his comments are insane. He talks about the horrible damage to property, yet it is only 2 billion dollars so far.

Lebanon & Hizbollah are not even attempting to negotiate, just putting all its efforts into getting the security council to try and stop the war.

I think Bush needs to take that head on, that the security council cannot be used as weapon. If someone starts a war, they pay the consequences.

Even if some of the charges against Israel is true, that's no reason to take away their right to self defense. If the Council did anything at all, the correct thing would be to say to stop the forbidden practices.

7/19/2006 04:39:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

wu wei; 4:25 PM

My friend, you are sadly misinformed. Mr. Buchanan is most certainly NOT a pacifist. He is most certainly an anti-Semite or, more accurately, a Jew-hater.

7/19/2006 04:40:00 PM  
Blogger Aristides said...

And the fire spreads...

The Turkish military is moving forward with plans to send forces into northern Iraq to clear out Turkish Kurdish guerrilla bases, the prime minister said Wednesday. ...

U.S. Ambassador Ross Wilson said Monday and again Tuesday that Turkey should work with Washington and Baghdad and should not take unilateral action in Iraq.

"It is not up to the ambassador or ambassadors to make such a decision," Erdogan shot back. "It is up to the officials of the government of the Republic of Turkey. We make the decision and implement it."

The main opposition party in Turkey's parliament said it supports any cross-border operation.

The Turkish Armed Forces are no joke. "The Turkish Armed forces, with a combined troop strength of 1,043,550 soldiers (Economist Intelligence Unit: Turkey 2005 p.23), is the second largest standing force in NATO after the United States."

My question: doesn't Israel's adventure in Lebanon justify Turkey's incursion into northern Iraq? Cross-boarder attacks are cross-boarder attacks, terrorist groups are terrorist groups, and weak governments are weak governments. Or am I missing something?

7/19/2006 04:45:00 PM  
Blogger Mike H. said...

What the pope said

7/19/2006 04:47:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

wi wei; 4:39 PM

Only, and let me say that again, ONLY Israel is held to the obscene standard of fighting a foreign aggressor humanely.

Under law, Israel could reduce Lebanon, the aggressor, to a cinder. That it has not behaved as the Russians at Groznyy is by choice. This reluctance to waste life is then misappropriated as a rule, applicable solely to Israel.

I am preaching to the choir, am I not?

7/19/2006 04:51:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...


Quit that!

7/19/2006 04:51:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

It looks like the UN gets it, or at least the Bush administration got the point across that this is all they can get.

The United Nations is working toward a new diplomatic arrangement between Israel and Lebanon that will be based on implementation of Security Council Resolution 1559, calling for the disarmament of Hezbollah, the restoration of Lebanese sovereignty, and the deployment of the Lebanese army to southern Lebanon.

The arrangement will be based on principles concluded at the G8 summit in St. Petersburg earlier this week, which include the unconditional return of the abducted Israeli soldiers, cessation of rocket attacks against Israel, an end to the Israeli assault on Lebanon and the Gaza Strip, and the release of Hamas officials arrested by Israel following the raid on Kerem Shalom in late June.

The UN delegation visiting Jerusalem yesterday told senior Israeli officials there is no value in a cease-fire without a broad diplomatic agreement. If Lebanon refuses direct talks with Israel, the arrangement will be negotiated through mediators or anchored in a new Security Council Resolution. The UN diplomats assessed that achieving an agreement would take weeks, perhaps even months.

The visiting UN diplomats told Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni that their aim is to bring a real change to the strategic reality on the ground. "If we return to the situation that existed before the current confrontation, it will only be a matter of time before the fighting is resumed," they said.

7/19/2006 04:53:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

aristides; 4:45 PM

Always compasssssionately, without excessive force or disproportion.

7/19/2006 04:56:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Allen, I've got a hunch that Israel had better quit worrying about "world opinion," and call up a couple of hundred thousand soldiers.

After that firefight this morning, things ain't looking very promising. If this deal plays out like it's looking like it might, it could be "A Hell of a Mess."

7/19/2006 04:56:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

I think it is important for us to make a distinction about civilian targets, because the enemy, the left, is trying to trick us into saying that killing civilians is ok. Then they will say that means that suicide bombing is a good thing. They will say that means Israel = Al Qaeda = Hizbollah.

7/19/2006 04:56:00 PM  
Blogger Pyrthroes said...

In normal circumstances, means and ends should be commensurate. But Islamic terrorists, Jihadis, who violate every conceivable "rule of war" as death-to-infidels, deserve nothing but response in kind.

Waffle and fuss as they may, "humanitarians" of every stripe avert their gaze from circumstance, and thereby foster barbarism. If civilian populations are targeted, it is Islam that targets them. Blanket operations against terrorists deploying "human shields" reflect upon the terrorists, not forces fighting them.

When Islamists --Salafists and their Wahabi paymasters-- conduct themselves like human beings rather than infected swine, we may accord them minimal respect. Skulking assaults on non-combatants, torture and murder justified by sectarian delusions of grandeur, a nihilistic death-cult glorifying only self-destruction-- against these, all means are justified.

We in the West, alas, have seen this vile depravity before. Fascism went its way, then Communism (though pockets linger)... religions all, whose Gods have failed but whose appeal to infantile regressive Statists, "socialists" of every stripe, perennially surfaces in collectivist milieus. Now comes Islamic Terrorism. If civilization cringes before this inchoate menace, incapable of fighting fire with fire, the Mullahs will gleefully rev up their chainsaws. The West will have proved feckless,weak, as e'en the Prophet hath foretold.

In my community, no Muslim ever rears a head in protest-- never, not a one. Whatever they may call themselves, citizen or no, these neighbors are complicit in the Mullahs' enterprise. Would they rise, to murder my infidel family in
our beds? Perhaps not... but why take the chance? Everything we see of Islam and its devotees argues that these reptiles strike at will.

Americans never have faced such a down-home threat. Who can believe that outwardly normal people would turn to murder in an instant against defenseless innocents? But overseas, we see it every day. Muslim immigrants danced in the streets in Queens on 9/11. Why let them forever bleat "misunderstood"?

Eveyone is heartily sick of this charade. If we cannot eradicate murderous terrorism from Islam, we can at least purge ourselves of Islam's terrorist potential in our midst. Too broad a brush?-- the onus is on you, my Mecca-slumping friends. Your welcome has expired. Depart from hence, and take your burkas with you.

7/19/2006 04:59:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

As I said earlier today, a lot of Catholics supported the IRA and their bombings, but Great Britain still did the right thing by not killing every Catholic in Northern Ireland, or every Catholic on earth because they were possibly in a conspiracy together.

There was also terrorism by Jewish settlers in Palestine against the British who "owned" the area. The UK ended up better off for not having tried to kill every Jewish person in Palestine in response.

7/19/2006 05:06:00 PM  
Blogger PossumTater said...


Top Secret
General Lemay Wing of Belmont Club
Memo: 2164
Classification: 4-F
Action: 0300 Infantry, non-flying
A damn good man, one we'd like to recruit but he doesn't seem to want to be put up on war crimes trials after the war. Recommend promotion to damn smart man.

Sign.... P. "napalm 'em Tater

7/19/2006 05:12:00 PM  
Blogger brough said...

stratfor chief analyst isn't exactly sitting on the fence. Speaking on O'Reilly this hour: A week from now we will see Israeli tanks, infantry "pouring across the border" to Litani River, to deliver an "Israeli hammer" blow against Hezbollah.

...this based on the call-up of those three divisions. Four days ago I wouldn't have doubted it, but for some reason assessments like this are beginning to appear tainted by a lot of wishful thinking.

7/19/2006 05:29:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

It sounds like the Israeli ground battle wasn't as bad as it sounded. They knew they were going into a heavily fortified area, but have a need to go anyway. The two Israelis shot were a medic and a paramedic.

This also explains why Israel needs to move the Lebanese population back. This gives a clear military reason for it.


A senior IDF Northern Command officer told Ynet that Hizbullah has set up an extensive underground bunker network not far from the Israeli border...

Hizbullah terrorists were hiding out in the fortified underground bunkers some 40 meters (roughly 120 feet) underground, along with mass weapons caches, the officer said. “Despite the results of the event, we’ll continue with this operation,” the officer stated. “There are missions that the Air Force cannot carry out and they need to be completed by other means.”

Vice Premier Shimon Peres also mentioned the issue of the bunker network during a recent meeting with European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana. “Hizbullah dug tunnels under extensive areas of south Lebanon and rigged the area with a half ton of explosives,” Peres said.

The IDF defined the operation in the area as “shaping the border.” Wednesday’s operation, which ended in two fatalities, revealed the challenges the army would have to face to reach this goal. The destruction of Hizbullah bases along the border is only one aspect of the activities, and this mission too is steeped in no small danger, as hundreds of kilograms of explosives have been planted in the area.

And further underground, as well, it turns out, there is no small amount of activity. Hizbullah has built a sophisticated system of bunkers, constructed of poured concrete, some of them equipped with communications systems. The IDF knows if they don’t demolish this bunker system, there will not be quiet along the border after the operation in Lebanon.

The Magellan unit’s mission was precisely to defeat this threat. "There was a short- and mid-range confrontation," the senior officer explained. "There were a number of exchanges of fire. The medic and paramedic where hit by small-arms fire and were killed. The area is meticulous planned out by the Hizbullah. There were launchers and many gunmen there. That’s where the rocket fire towards Safed, Hula Valley and the area was carried out from. This isn’t a continuous security operation – it’s a war. We have successes, but sometimes things work out less well."

According to the officer, the IDF would continue various operations on Lebanese territory to bring about a change not only the appearance of change, but real change on every square meter near the border. “There are dozens more bunkers, caves and tunnels. It doesn’t surprise us. We expected it and must overcome it,” he said, adding that the army was determined to complete the mission, including in the area where the two soldiers fell Wednesday.

The IDF called on hundreds of thousands of southern Lebanon residents in dozens of villages and town to evacuate their houses for the north to avoid coming to harm. The IDF intends to extend it attacks deeper into Lebanese territory, up to a couple dozen miles from the Israeli border. The army is aware that hundreds of thousands of Lebanese have evacuated, but many more remain in the targeted area.

7/19/2006 05:29:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

rufus; 4:56 PM

Do you think we still have those old vintage WWII flame-throwers in storage somewhere? There is nothing better against bunkers, although napalm on target is pretty nasty.

Yeah, the Israelis seemed to have the same leadership this morning that our guys had the first time in at Fallujah. Worse yet, I don't think they had even reached a bunker complex.

Don't get me wrong, but you may recall that the Marines really moved on Iwo and Okinawa once the brain trusts were out of the picture and the kids just got on with the job of killing the Japanese, one ___ at a time.

7/19/2006 05:31:00 PM  
Blogger luc said...

Some time ago you suggested that some might consider creating their own Blog rather than taking over this one with umpteen comments. I thought it was a good idea because one individual may spil the fun of reading the comments by posting too many. Do you think Wu Wei understood?
Keep up the excellent work!

7/19/2006 05:37:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

pyrthroes; 4:59 PM

Hold on, now.

Swine, infected or otherwise, are intelligent beasts that never soil their homes.

Did I mention that pigs are also loyal.

7/19/2006 05:38:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

I don't think Iwo and Okinawa had bunkers anything near as sophisticated and lethal. I thought most of the flame throwing was against caves, not sophisticated bunkers 120 feet underground with hidden entrances. I doubt if even Hitler had a bunker as sophisticated and lethal as this.

7/19/2006 05:40:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

brough; 5:29 PM

I am hoping to be proved wrong, but I understand the Israelis mobilized 3 battalions (about 900 men, as I recall), NOT 3 divisions.

7/19/2006 05:42:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Damn Allen, that's exactly what occurred to me, in the exact order. Flame Throwers, and Napalm. Iwo Jima. Exact same order.

Man, the "World" would go Crazy. I would have to start buying my beer by the truck-load.

7/19/2006 05:48:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

3 Divisions = 75,000 troops

7/19/2006 05:53:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Oh yeah, Wu. The bunkers on Iwo were reinforced, deep, and impenetrable from above. We bombed the piss out of them to no avail. It took a PFC and a blowtorch to get the job done.

7/19/2006 05:55:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

People do not want to believe, rufus.

It is all so easy, like "Combat!" and "McHales Navy".

Never in the past has it been like it is now. Hubris

7/19/2006 05:59:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

I think you ought to kick Habu off the island. He's done brought a vicious marsupial/veggie into our midst. What's next?

7/19/2006 06:00:00 PM  
Blogger informasian said...

re: brough @ 5:29

"...this based on the call-up of those three divisions"

Wasn't it just 3 battalions, as opposed to 3 divisions, as per Bill Roggio?

7/19/2006 06:03:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

wu wei; 5:40 PM

Not atypical even in ancient times - WWII Okinawa

"General Kuribayashi's command center had 5 ft. thick walls, a 10 ft. thick roof. This cement capsule was under 75 ft. of solid rock."

"Typical of the thoroughness employed in the construction of subterranean defenses was the main communications center south of Kita village, which was so spacious that it contained a chamber 150 feet long and 70 feet wide. This giant structure was similar in construction and thickness of walls and ceilings to General Kuribayashi's command post. A 500- foot-long tunnel 75 feet below the ground led into this vast subterranean chamber."

"As projected, this passageway was to have attained a total length of almost 17 miles (27 km). Had it been completed, it would have linked the formidable underground installations in the northern portion of Iwo Jima with the southern part of the island, where the northern slope of Mount Suribachi alone harbored several thousand yards of tunnels. By the time the Marines landed on Iwo Jima, more than 11 miles (18 km) of tunnels had been completed."

"Positions constructed underground ranged in size from small caves for a few men to several underground chambers capable of holding 300 or 400 men."

The Maginot Line was pretty formidable as well.

7/19/2006 06:06:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

The London Times. Has a few comments about Isreal's capabilities to prosecute the war.

"BRITAIN fears that Israel’s assault on Hezbollah is failing to cripple the guerrilla group and that continued bombardment will bring huge civilian casualties in Lebanon for little military gain."

7/19/2006 06:09:00 PM  
Blogger brough said...

apologies, wishful mistyping. Yeah, he based this assessment (in the interview, at least) on Tuesday's call-up of the 3 infantry and engineer battalions, which is why it seemed like an extreme conclusion to draw.

7/19/2006 06:18:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Pat Buchanan is a smart non-doctrinaire intellectual street fighter and he calls them like he sees them.He is one of the best political pundits in the business. I do not always agree with Buchanan. He perplexes me. He has plenty of criticism about Israel and in his opinion, the inordinate amount of influence it exerts for a small country, with a small US demographic, on US foreign policy. That is not a taboo subject. Israel and American Jews are not entitled to an automatic pass when the subject of Israel comes up for discussion. They are not entitled to dismiss critics as unworthy commentators and bigots. I put Buchanan in the intellectual category of a Christopher Hitchens and both men are not afraid to speak their minds. It amuses me that some American Jews believe there has to be a litmus test for someone to criticise Israeli policies. It must come as a surprise to many Israelis that often have raucous disagreements about Israeli policies amongst a political spectrum that is dazzling by American standards.

All of us have prejudices, but an honest civil discourse need not fear sometimes unpleasant disagreements.

7/19/2006 06:22:00 PM  
Blogger PossumTater said...

As"Just a Marine" pointed out in his earlier excellent briefing on arty there now exists ordinance that will suck the air out of a vaccum tube...same as naplam uses up all the oxygen and suffocates as well as burns ... I like the burning part for the psy-effects Therein lies the advocacy of MOABing the Bekaa Valley (I just noticed I'm out of character so just throw in some Trans- Mississippi- Baja-Georgia language and you'll get that Tater version)
I just love the smell of naplam in the morning ... it smells like ...victory.
The preceeding brought to you by the eventual winners, the Gen. Curtis Lemay Group.

7/19/2006 06:29:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

rufus; 5:48 PM

I think you can use the stuff. We may not because some photographer might snatch a grizzly picture of a crispy critter.

You remember when WP was used at Fallujah? The usual suspects were out in their mincing conga line, hissing about war crimes. Even some bone head Air Force theatre commander was ready to join the chorus.

It turns out (major drum roll) WP is perfectly legal, even when used as an anti-personnel weapon. Now, there is one restriction (now, a really, really, really long drum roll, followed by ominous organ chord): It may not be used indiscriminately near civilians. Well, Duh!

7/19/2006 06:30:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

2164, as you (and Allen) know, I've had a few things to say about Israel. Also, about Democrats, Republicans, Frenchmen, and 7th day adventists.

But, Pat Buchanon is on record as being, basically, a Nazi sympathizer. Adjectives that come to mind are Jingo, Xenophobe, racist, isolationist, and Looney. I don't know why I typed all this. I just have a visceral reaction to the man. I think it's because people keep trotting him out for a "conservative" perspective, and it drives me completely nuts.

Sorry. //rant off

7/19/2006 06:35:00 PM  
Blogger Jamie Irons said...


Israel and American Jews are not entitled to an automatic pass when the subject of Israel comes up for discussion...

There is little danger of that, given the anti-Semitic tenor of most of what passes for "intellectual" discourse in the world and, alas, in this country.

Buchanan is objectively bigoted. He seemed ready enough, though, on the morning after the 2000 election Palm beach fiasco, to accept the votes of the confused elderly Jews (if that's what they were,)

7/19/2006 06:37:00 PM  
Blogger HK Vol said...

"Israel asked the United States in 2004 to sell it airborne “bunker-buster” bombs in what security sources said was part of preparations for a possible strike on arch-foe Iran’s fortified nuclear facilities. Pentagon approval for the sale of 100 of the GBU-28 bombs came through last year. But Israel’s Defence Ministry, amid steep budget cuts, said it decided against making the purchase."

Reckon Israel is reconsidering that decision?

7/19/2006 06:46:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

I am a semi-fan of the underdog but a defender of Israels right to exist. So much for the lead paragraph that is suppose to let the reader know where the hell you're going.
I wholehearted agree with you about Pat Buchanan. His supposed anti-semitism once forced Bill Buckley (a staunch Catholic and very smart man) to devote an entire issue of National Review to Buchanan's defense. It was Buckley at his best as he wrote almost the entire issue. Buchanan was writing for the National Review at the time.
Pat Buchanan knows his history, is intellectually brilliant, pugnatious and is one of the few not to get PC'd over the last ten years. I met him once at a political conclave in Orlando, where all the top Republicans were sweeping up money.He let me buy him a Coke.
I guess in summation I would say that he is not anti-semetic, he just has a view currently not in vogue and refuses to curry favor with Bill Kristol.

7/19/2006 06:47:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

I just read some about Iwo. Didn't know they dug out and tunneled the whole island like that.

The problem now is that the public would never tolerate casualties like that. Israel loses two men and everyone makes it sound like Hizbollah won the war. I hope we are strong enough.

7/19/2006 06:48:00 PM  
Blogger brough said...

Re that Times article. Britain obviously fears something. Two Type 42 destroyers, a type 23 frigate, one carrier (the RN flagship) and the latest Commando Assault/Amphibious Landing ship (500 Marines if at full complement) have been tasked to the evacuation of 4000 Guardian readers.

Will be interesting to see if the fleet sticks around off Lebanon into next week.

7/19/2006 06:48:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

After all we had in Paris?

Listen closely, "Tater is sleep'in", but there's a reason for Tater..ever eat MRE'S froever or were you like me a P-38 on a neckchain with K's. Well if things get bad I figure tater-helper will go a long way toward sweet'in up some collards and lawn clippings.

7/19/2006 06:56:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

We should send Buchanan in that riding coat and black hat he wore in Arizona, armed with a dozen Coney Island knishes.

7/19/2006 06:57:00 PM  
Blogger Jamie Irons said...

Perhaps it's good that we disagree here at Belmont Club about, inter alia, Pat Buchanan:

“Kos (and DU and, for all I know, Free Republic) are Cass Sunstein’s nightmare of self-selecting ideological segregation come to life. These sites are obsessed with the party line and punish the smallest deviation. A commenter who dares to suggest, on DU, that maybe the 2004 election wasn’t stolen is dismissed as a Freeper. On Kos, he’s made invisible. But these sites are not, in the BrothersJudd sense, blogs.”

David Cohen@ Brothers Judd

(From Pajamas Media)


Jamie Irons

7/19/2006 07:01:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

2164th & habu_3,

Love you guys. We'll just have to agree to disagree on Mr. Buchanan and get about the business of defeating the bad guys.

Where do I find the beer?

7/19/2006 07:06:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Did Habu just mention a necklace, of ears or something? How'd you get it home?

Is it just me, or is this war in slo-mo giving you the shits, too?

7/19/2006 07:11:00 PM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Habu keeps it in surplus wing tanks.

7/19/2006 07:12:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

Wretchard has produced a masterful work here. Opinions are just that and he recognizes there will be a divergence of them. His control is light but meaningful as withness by the demise of Eighteen Wheeler,Wei-Wu, and the kitchen sink.
He has a sense of humor allowing PossunTater to exists for a bit of levity during these serious times.
Kudos my man

7/19/2006 07:12:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

When the shit gets deep you lay down your differences and fight with the men beside's my canteen.

7/19/2006 07:16:00 PM  
Blogger brough said...


There was also terrorism by Jewish settlers in Palestine against the British who "owned" the area. The UK ended up better off for not having tried to kill every Jewish person in Palestine in response.

The British in Jenin - BBC

The story of the demolition of Jenin begins with the assassination of a local British official, Assistant District Commissioner Moffat... the British authorities decided that the only way to meet terror was with force. The Arabs needed to be taught a lesson. Whitehall files detailing these communications were released only in 1989 - they were held back an extra 20 years after the normal period because they were considered so sensitive. The files show a decision that there should be a ‘reprisal’ against Jenin and that "a large portion of the town should be blown up"...

7/19/2006 07:19:00 PM  
Blogger whit said...

My last word on Buchanan.
He's smart. He loves his country.
But his isolationist tendencies and rhetoric just don't make sense in a post 9/11 world. As far as being a jew-hater, he has spent the last weeks whining about the Israelis in Gaza. He denigrates neo-cons. He associates with some pretty extreme people. And now, he's invoking Christ on behalf of the Lebanese.

That all adds up to a pretty strong bias to me.

7/19/2006 07:26:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

PossumTater and Beer. Ain't no bad plan.

Iffen he don't eat you first. Watch them teeth, they're sharp

7/19/2006 07:27:00 PM  
Blogger Tony said...

Thank you PossumTater, Rufus, for bringing out the WRITING CLASS Nature, of the Belmont Club. It's always been the Philosophy / Writing blog, right? With war stories.

Here's my latest typing:

How long is it going to be before 'common knowledge' notes that there is a world war going on?

The enemy is not hiding. The world is averting its gaze.

As if every little tumor is something unique, separate, deal-able ... while the Cancer that pops the tumors is somehow invisible.

In this case, our enemies are openly declaring war against us and acting upon their declarations, and we pretend each little tumor and rocket is some individual boil or wart, and not the Cancer at root.


War is so annoying, can't imagine what it was like to huddle under the Blitz in Britain, but do remember that Mad Bomber Harris executed at least one strategy in response to such deadly, and in the long run suicidal, threat.

7/19/2006 07:35:00 PM  
Blogger whit said...

I meant to mention this yesterday when it was reported. In Iraq yesterday, a van pulled up to a group of day laborers and the driver told them he had plenty of work. After they all piled in, he detonated a bomb killing himself and all the men who thought he was giving them some work.

Depravity has no bottom.

7/19/2006 07:40:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Habu, you're smarter than me; did me and p'tater just get insulted.

Where's my 12-Gauge?

7/19/2006 07:42:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

rufus said:

I've got a hunch that Israel had better quit worrying about "world opinion," and call up a couple of hundred thousand soldiers. After that firefight this morning, things ain't looking very promising. If this deal plays out like it's looking like it might, it could be "A Hell of a Mess."

Well, if Kristol and Wolfowitz thought America could make the Middle East safe for democracy with a fraction of the ground forces that the generals asked for, surely Israel Herself can get away with deploying even fewer troops.

7/19/2006 07:43:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Well, Whit, if they're killing workers the Belmonters oughta be safe.

7/19/2006 07:46:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Teresita, we were sized pretty good for defeating a messed up Army like Saddam's.

If we'd known we were going to run into a sh-tstorm insurgency like we did, I'm sure we would have figured it a little differently.

7/19/2006 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger DanMyers said...

As unimaginable as it may seem....

The new dialogue in the MSM is - "Is this WWIII?".

I seem to remember some very long hijacked posts about this on Belmont Club.

Differences abound, discussions heated, opinions dissected for truth or fallacy. The consensus never achieved, but the truth of it apparent.

Why did it take the anti-democrat (Newt) to open the discussion with the rest of the country?

7/19/2006 07:48:00 PM  
Blogger bobalharb said...

Rufus--Have wondered that myself--doesn't anybody here work for a living?

7/19/2006 07:49:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

I exaggerated when I said a couple hundred thousand, but it looks like they're going to need quite a few.

7/19/2006 07:50:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Bob, I don't know about the rest of you, but I told my wife that "workin" wasn't good for your health.

7/19/2006 07:54:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

War Changes the Israeli Army
by Doug Mohney
September 19, 2004
"... Another change has been to shift the IDF force structure from a small regular army based on a large reserve force into a larger and more professional army with a smaller role for reserve units. More infantry battalions were established and a number of reserve tank units – traditionally the heart of IDF ground combat power – have been shut down, with hundreds of tanks decommissioned. ..."

7/19/2006 07:58:00 PM  
Blogger bobalharb said...

Rufus--It isn't good for you. Witness Santa's elves, all withered up from overwork. Old theme in mythology. The Greeks knew.And also, work is the curse of the drinking class. Farming is an exception to the above however. That is good for you, body and soul

7/19/2006 07:58:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7/19/2006 07:58:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Yeah, Bob; but it got a lot better after the advent of prilosec, and Nexium.

7/19/2006 08:02:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Like Travis McGee

Take it while you can enjoy it

7/19/2006 08:03:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

bobalharb; 7:49 PM

We are the Sentinels.

7/19/2006 08:06:00 PM  
Blogger Utopia Parkway said...


Buchanan is a Jew-hater and an Israel-hater.

This is not a complete Fisking of the link posted by DR but includes a few of his remarks and my comments. Sorry for the length.

Asked in St. Petersburg if he would urge Israel to use restraint in its airstrikes, Bush sounded less like the leader of the Free World than some bellicose city councilman from Brooklyn Heights.

Why mention Brooklyn Heights? Perhaps because the JOOS live there.

Olmert seized upon Hezbollah's capture of two Israeli soldiers to unleash the IDF in a pre-planned attack to make the Lebanese people suffer until the Lebanese government disarms Hezbollah

The whole piece is filled with innuendo. He doesn't say that the Jews killed Christ and should die because of it but he's thinking it. In his mind they are evil. Why does he emphasize "pre-planned attack?" Why does he say that the point of the war is to "make the Lebanese people suffer?" Of course the war was pre-planned. Just as the HB attack and their current defense is pre-planned. Syria and Iran also have plans regarding this war. This whole stew has been cooking on a slow boil for years. All the combatants have plans. He just wants to emphasize his opinion that the Jews are to blame and are merciless and evil. He also mentions similar evil intent against the Palistinians. It's pure Arab propaganda.

Then, Israel instructed the United States to terminate all aid to the Palestinian Authority, though Bush himself had called for the elections and for the participation of Hamas. Our Crawford cowboy meekly complied.

He's just getting started on his theme that the JOOS control America, and the world. "Instructed?" "Meekly complied?" i.e., the JOOS control America and the President.

One family of seven was wiped out on a beach by what the IDF assures us was an errant artillery shell.

This is simply a lie. The IDF never said any such thing. They said that they had nothing to do with the explosion. Regardless of whether they did or not, Buchanan's statement is a lie. I assume he can read the paper as well as anyone else so the only explanation for this lie is that it is deliberate and it serves to paint the JOOISH military as both evil and deceitful.

Such a policy violates international law and comports neither with our values nor our interests. It is un-American and un-Christian.

He's using the international law cudgel, we all know about that one. "un-American and un-Christian?" Oh yeah, evil.

When al-Qaida captured two U.S. soldiers and barbarically butchered them, the U.S. Army did not smash power plants across the Sunni Triangle. Why then is Bush not only silent but openly supportive when Israelis do this?

Israel's soldiers weren't butchered. They were kidnapped, by barbarians. Why are the Jews alone not allowed to fight back to retrieve their kidnapped soldiers?

Israel and her paid and pro-bono agents here appear determined to expand the Iraq war into Syria and Iran, and have America fight and finish all of Israel's enemies.

i.e., the JOOS control America.

That Tel Aviv is maneuvering us to fight its wars is understandable. That Americans are ignorant of, or complicit in this, is deplorable.

i.e., the JOOS control America. Notice how he refers to the capital of Israel as Tel Aviv? Arab propaganda.

Already, Bush is ranting about Syria being behind the Hezbollah capture of the Israeli soldiers. But where is the proof?
Who is whispering in his ear? The same people who told him Iraq was maybe months away from an atom bomb, that an invasion would be a "cakewalk," that he would be Churchill, that U.S. troops would be greeted with candy and flowers, that democracy would break out across the region, that Palestinians and Israelis would then sit down and make peace?

"whispering in his ear" i.e., the JOOS control the president. This is right out of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion.

"The same people" i.e., the neocon JOOS control the president. What about that Chalabi guy?

Face it, Buchanan is a Jew-hater. On other subjects he is merely conservative, in his isolationist way. On the subject of Israel and the Jews he basically repeats Palastinian propaganda and is so biased as to be completely uninteresting. File him next to Fisk.

Would he send the Jews to the ovens? Probably not. But he would stand and watch.

7/19/2006 08:47:00 PM  
Blogger Jaimo said...

For what little it may be worth, there ARE Belmont Club readers with full time day jobs. (It's just that productivity has really slacked off reading all the great comments of the "rest" of you...)

7/19/2006 08:49:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

rufus said:

If we'd known we were going to run into a sh-tstorm insurgency like we did, I'm sure we would have figured it a little differently.

We had a general who said we were going to run into a sheetstorm of an insurgency and were going need 250,000 troops. This didn't fit on Rummy's spreadsheet. So he was treated like the crazy uncle in the attic and allowed to retire, I think with one less star too.

7/19/2006 09:07:00 PM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

Worked for 45 I'm inheriting money from dying relatives. Buried three this year. I dabble at tading options on the stockmarket being an ex broker and bankrobber.
also selling off my basball memorabilia balls signed by Babe Ruth nad about 20 other hall of famers who played in the late teens and 20's and 30's..grand dad was a pro for 17 years..Braves, Reds, and 1932 Nat League Champ Chicago Cubs...don't know what it'll all fetch but I ain't worried neither

7/19/2006 09:09:00 PM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Right after 9/11 Bush could have had whatever he wanted to fight the terror war. I'll never understand why he didn't ask Congress for another 100,000-150,000 troops.

7/19/2006 09:18:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Well, Here's a Productivity-Killer. Iraq the Model has an "interesting" take on Hezbollah, Iran, and Al Sadr.

7/19/2006 09:21:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

Wu Wei said...

Right after 9/11 Bush could have had whatever he wanted to fight the terror war. I'll never understand why he didn't ask Congress for another 100,000-150,000 troops.

Maybe he wanted to fight the Wu Wei Way, that is "action without action."

7/19/2006 09:21:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Now I got it; possumTater kills'em, and you split the loot. Not Bad.

That must be quite a source of pride. 1932 National League Champs. I'm sure, late some nights, you take out a certain picture, and look at it and wonder what it was like.

7/19/2006 09:32:00 PM  
Blogger allen said...

Sometimes we lose a sense of proportion when we at Belmont advise Israel in the current battle with Hezbollah.

According to a CNN site, 2,555 American troops have died in Iraq. Proportionately, if Israel were to suffer the same loss in Lebanon, that would be the equivalent of 153,300 American dead. Compare this number to US casualties in its various wars to get a real perspective.

Israel has taken such losses in the past, but only when faced with an existential fight, i.e. when it had to fight or die.

Apparently, Israel does not or cannot face its present struggle against Hezbollah as existential. If it does not, then, it is making a strategic blunder, in my opinion. If it cannot, then, it must be that US is unwilling to supply the strategic reserve or the political cover necessary for victory - a strategic blunder on the part of the Administration, in my opinion.

If Israel calls for general mobilization, I think it safe to assume imminent war with Syria. If there is no general mobilization, Israel has embarked on a war from afar, i.e. a war of attrition. That being the case, it will make some headway tactically in the short run, but in the long-term will ultimately be abandoned by the Administration and lose politically.

7/19/2006 09:42:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Teresita, you know what a plan is:

"A list of things that aren't going to happen."

The plan could have been better, but "we're in the game." Means, we got a chance to win. Something you can't do from the bleachers.

7/19/2006 09:51:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

"It took a PFC and a blowtorch to get the job done."


Gonna take pretty much the same this time.

7/19/2006 10:01:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Allen, I really don't buy into the "Green Light from Uncle Sugar" meme as regards this war. But, if I'm wrong, and there was one, I don't think there's any chance that Bush will pull the plug on him.

We would have very little to win, and a lot to lose. I think your reading of the situation is correct. If Israel has miscalculated here, and underestimated the difficulty of what they're trying to do, it could have a horrible result.

I'm going to hope for the best. I just hope Olmert's planned for the worst. I'll bet he has.

7/19/2006 10:04:00 PM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

rufus said:

The plan could have been better, but "we're in the game." Means, we got a chance to win. Something you can't do from the bleachers.

We got our revenge for 9-11 in Afghanistan, and we got off the hook from doing the "No Fly Zone" stuff by digging Saddam out of his hidey hole. Now it's time to bring the boyz home. If the Iraqis aren't ready to "stand up" by now, it's amazing how fast they'll get ready when they see our taillights. Ditto for any other country where they tell us "Yankee Go Home", like South Korea or Germany or even Cuba. No more adventures in Somalia, Haiti, Philippines, or the Balkans. Spend the peace dividend on ray guns that can shoot down missiles so we can say the DoD is the Department of Defense again without looking like Pinocchio.

7/19/2006 10:08:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

I'm afraid you're right, Trish. It looks like it might be some pretty tough going.

They're going to have to dismount, and take those IED's out on foot. That leaves them open to all kinds of indirect fire from rockets, and mortars if they have them.

Then there's the old jump out of the hole and start firing, tactic. Starting to sound a lot like Nam. Israel made their reputation in maneuver warfare. I don't know if they've ever trained for this. I hope they've had some troops out at Ft. Hood, and Ft Benning. I've got a hunch they haven't.

7/19/2006 10:15:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Gotta finish off Iran first, T. We'll stall on the withdrawal until that's resolved. We might even find time to pay a vistit to Baby Doc. Depends on the polling in Sept.

T, there's a good chance we're going to be fighting somewhere for a long time to come. It's just part of being "Empire." You reap the rewards, but you have the "Burden."

7/19/2006 10:21:00 PM  
Blogger For Freedom said...

No turning back, the US is in Iraq for a long, long time. Iraq is prime real estate. With Afghanistan the US has Iran in a pinch and we can keep an eye on other undeclared enemies like Pakistan. Bush is too gentle, wants to make republicans out of savages. I wish him the best. Also, the Israelis are too gentle. Too much precision, not enough carpet-bombing. I wish them the best. Make Iran burn.

7/19/2006 10:29:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

"They're going to have to dismount, and take those IED's out on foot."

Do MiCLiCs work against the IEDs?

7/19/2006 10:33:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Trish, those Iranian, Shaped Charge boogers can be hid in the bushes and detonated by laser trigger. The trick is spotting them. They can take out a tank. Anyone in an APC or HUMVEE is just dead. Witness the two tanks that the Israeli's have already lost.

Luckily we've only run up against a few of those in Iraq, but I've got a feeling the bushes are full of them in Lebanon. As far as I know, the only thing you can do is dismount, and beat the bushes.

7/19/2006 10:51:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

As for the MICLIC, I think it might get some, and miss some. You're talking about a twenty foot wide swath against conventional anti-tank mines. That's kind of right on the margin. If you were going to take the time, I think I would just as soon get out, and get some exercise.

7/19/2006 10:57:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

Still doesn't answer my question. I know what the IEDs can do. I just wondered if MiCLiCs are effective, and if so to what degree, against these particular IEDs. In the right circumstances, they'll clear a path wide enough for a tank in short order.

I'm assuming that the Israelis have same or similar thechnology.

7/19/2006 10:58:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

If I remember correctly, those SC IEDs are deadly up to about fifteen or twenty feet. Let's assume that, not being dummies (it will be Iranian advisors supervising this operation,) they have set them back about 15 feet. Iffy for the miclic, I think.

7/19/2006 11:02:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Trish, see my 10:57

7/19/2006 11:08:00 PM  
Blogger informasian said...

Pardon my ignorance as I am not familiar with such matters. If each MiCLiC can clear a swath 20 feet wide, wouldn't it stand to reason that ideally, two MiCLiCs, one to the side of the other, could ideally clear a swath 40 feet wide? Assuming some overlap, perhaps a swath 30 feet wide?

7/19/2006 11:13:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

I did. Thank you.

And I need a tactician - the household tacticians being soundly asleep.

I do not underestimate the present challenge faced by Israel. Not sure I would have accepted the engraved invitation into Lebanon - as opposed to changing the game - and not sure Israel will either, as expected anyhow.

7/19/2006 11:19:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Informa, sounds like a heck of an idea. It would be kinda slow, but it certainly seems like it would work. It'll be interesting to see if that happens. Thanks.

7/19/2006 11:25:00 PM  
Blogger rufus said...

Trish, this looks like one of those "classic" cases where you are absolutely damned if you do, and damned if you don't.

They might have this all figured out, and just getting ready to bring out the "Magic" bullet. Then again ...

Well, my computer is about gave out. I'm going to have to call it a night. Wake me up if the shootin starts.

7/19/2006 11:34:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

"this looks like one of those 'classic' cases where you are absolutely damned if you do, and damned if you don't."


But I'd leave out the absolutely.

7/19/2006 11:43:00 PM  
Blogger trish said...

Leave out the absolutely and there's plenty of room to work,

7/19/2006 11:47:00 PM  
Blogger Gary Rosen said...

"Would he send the Jews to the ovens? Probably not. But he would stand and watch."

100 % wrong. Pat would be feeding Jews into the ovens in an orgasmic frenzy, as long as he weren't personally in danger.

Other data points:

Pat idolizes Hitler.
Pat mocks Holocaust survivors.
Pat pimps Holocaust deniers.
etc. etc. etc.

7/20/2006 12:40:00 AM  
Blogger Gary Rosen said...

Don't hold your breath waiting for a column by Buchanan condemning the Hez rocket attack on Nazareth. I've heard Nazareth has something to do with Christianity, but what do I know, I'm a "neocon".

7/20/2006 12:43:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

There was a discussion and a disconcertment several weeks ago in The Belmont Club, regarding a change in format. The change forced the frequent and less frequent posters to consider what happens in this forum. The Belmont , like a corporation, is a creation of the vision and efforts of the founder, Wretchard. It has done what most successful entities do and has developed its own personality and being. Its essence is both part of and unique from the host or any class of poster. It became the Belmont Club with its own etiquette, pace and breadth of subject around the most important topics. It has the best level of discourse, bar none of any blog on the net. It is a blogger's blog. It does not suffer fools well, but tolerates and encourages disconcert to achieve truth. No mean feat. A post by the great American Ed Koch, in RealClearPolitics, reminds us of what we are in common.

..."Yes, Americans and other Westerners, Christians, Jews, Hindus and a majority of Muslims love life, and I am glad that we do. We will not convert, we will not pay tribute. We will fight to defend our freedom and our way of life, and we will win.

There will be a ceasefire in the current hostilities, but the war of civilizations will go on."

-Ed Koch, former Mayor of New York City.

7/20/2006 01:28:00 AM  
Blogger ledger said...

Now for some unbiased news from Pravada:

US government attempts to make profit on people's evacuation from Lebanon

Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

'Israel violently attacks Lebanon simply to demonstrate its military power'

By Vremya Novostei, Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

'Israel levels Beirut to the ground'

[picture of bombed buildings and 2 chubby old ladys with head scarves in rubble]

See: Israel Levels Beirut

'North Korea frightens USA with Taepodong-2 tests'

See: Taepondong-2

'Putin extremely disappointed in Bush after G8 summit'

See: Putin disappointed

'Chinese Internet violates human rights, experts say'

See: Chinese violate rights

'Pamela Anderson appears to be a soccer mom at heart'

See: Anderson a soccer mom at heart: by Alexander Timoshik

Ooops. How did she get in here?

[Moving to China]

Xinhua News:

[pictures of Nasrallah and burning buildings]

Israel searches Hezbollah leader Nasrallah

7/20/2006 01:51:00 AM  
Blogger Cedarford said...

Utopia Parkway - He's just getting started on his theme that the JOOS control America, and the world. "Instructed?" "Meekly complied?" i.e., the JOOS control America and the President.

Well, it IS a problem for you if Buchanan turns out to be mostly right, and his track record is pretty good on issues he has analyzed and normally leads other conservative thinkers by years on.

From the "Clean Break" document the neocons prepared for the Likudniks, to the PNAC, which in turn led to the sprinkling of neocons all over the Bush Administration in key policy or advisory positions, to how the neocons got Bush's patronage so much they came close to dictating US foreign policy from 2001-2003...I believe the history books will not be kind on the neocons. And the honest histories cannot overlook the number of rabidly pro-Israel Jews in their ranks that sought to have America fight war after war to "defend our Special Friend".

Buchanan believes that Jews, particularly the neocons who got Bush II's ear -strong allies of the Jewish cause like Rumsfeld & Cheney, their bought Gentile flunkys like Woolsey and Larry Franklin, and AIPAC - hijacked US foreign policy. Time will tell if he is right.

And outside the neocons, Pat and many foreign-born journalists that did not start in a largely Jewish-owned media are quite willing to blow past the "Jews in the left or Right must never be criticized", taboo, and point out the many past sins (Communism) and present Jewish-owned or Jewish-operated organs of the Jewish Left (Hollywood studios, ACLU, Southern Poverty Law Center, Lawyers Guild, Center for Constitutional Rights, Brady Handgun Control Center, NYTimes, Soros Foundation).

Some one pointed out that Buchanan is one of the very few who does not fear Jewish media mogels blacklisting him. Mel Gibson is another, as is Chris Hitchens.

Hitchens anti-Zionist posts exposing the plethora of Zionist lies about 1948, Jim Crow system for Palestinians, and many other misleading hagiographies of Israel and it's leaders believed still in America but known to be BS in all other countries are considered classics in iconoclasty and sealed his reputation as the best 2nd half of the 20th century essayist outside Napual and his hero, Orwell. His essay "Broadcast" ranks right up with his Devils Advocate debunking and personal trashing of Mother Theresa as a stupid peasant woman who mismanaged donated funds, was a vain PR seeker, who gave Christianity a bad name in Kalkota (Calcutta), and killed more Indians than she saved through more clinic operations mismanagement...

7/20/2006 02:27:00 AM  
Blogger Buddy Larsen said...

I agree with Cedarford. We've fooled around and let the negroes, chinamen, and latinos forget their place, but we can still try to find a solution to the Jewish problem.

7/20/2006 03:28:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Now, now, buddy.
That Texas sun adle your brain?

Myself, gotta get up 'fore the sun, just to go outside and not melt.

D+9, Reports of a couple of firefights on the border, Blue Line, not US/ Mexico.

Israelis reported killed and wounded, ones & twos. No reports of HB casualties.
Those cowards and rats, they're dug in deep and don't seem to run at the sight of an IDF battle tank.
No, not at all.
Not to cowardly. Not to mobile, either. The avenues of approach are known, fires preplotted, oh and maybe the Arabs were trained to aim, as well. Damn Iranians.

Glory be, it be serious stuff!

The IDF was to just dash up to the river, sweeping the enemy before them, 'cept that first 500 meters is a bit more difficult than was first imagined.
The Israeli did not expect to encounter cruise missles at sea or bunkers near the Blue Line.

It was supposed to bea "slam dunk".
Is the Mossad slipping?
Takin' lessons from the CIA?

7/20/2006 04:10:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

Cedarford said... Well, it IS a problem for you if Buchanan turns out to be mostly right, and his track record is pretty good on issues he has analyzed and normally leads other conservative thinkers by years on.

Pat is pretty good about every EXCEPT WHEN IT COMES TO JEWS, Just like you C4, anything you say is very good, except for when you RANT about JEWS, that is where you and Pat are the same...

C4: From the "Clean Break" document the neocons prepared for the Likudniks,

wow, lets look at this "smoking gun"

Increase U.S. Congressional Support “Electrify and find support” of key U.S. congressional members

Strategic cooperation with U.S. on missile defense

Gain more support among members of Congress with little knowledge of Israel

Harness support to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv

Identify Israel with the U.S. and “western values”

Utilize Cold War rhetoric to make Israel’s case to the American people

“Peace for Peace” Palestinian Solution

Eliminate movements toward a “comprehensive peace” and substitute with the “Peace for Peace” strategy

Stress “balance of power” as sole test of legitimacy, enforce agreements

Nurture alternatives to Arafat

Seek legitimization of “hot pursuit” of Palestinian militants

Eliminate “land for peace” concept, use negotiations only as a forum for communicating resolve

Establish a joint monitoring committee with the U.S. for measuring Palestinian compliance

Withhold U.S. aid to Palestinians

Promote Human Rights among Arabs to isolate Palestinians in Arab Constituencies

Legitimize 2000 year old historical land claim

Foment Arab recognition of Israel in exchange for peace

Contain, Destabilize, and Roll Back Regional Challengers

Challenge Arab countries as “police states” lacking in legitimacy.

Fortify regional alliances. Work with Turkey and Jordan to insert hostile Arab tribes into Syria

Syria: Publicly question Syrian legitimacy, assume treaties with Damascus are in bad faith

Contain Syria, strike select targets

Reject “land for peace” concept on the Golan Heights
Iraq Install a Hashemite monarchy in Iraq

Isolate and surround Syria with a friendly regime in Iraq

Lebanon: Engage Syria, Iran and Iraq in Lebanon

“Wean” Lebanese Shiites from Iraq toward Jordan

Economic Reform: Eliminate Social Zionism from the economy.

Reform the overall economy, cut taxes

Show maturity and economic self reliance from the United States

Eliminate need for defense by U.S. military forces

Remove U.S. aid leverage over Israel

Relegislate a free trade zone, sell off public lands and enterprises

Zionism: Rebuild Zionism, rejuvenate the national ideal

“Shape the regional environment” in favor of Israel, “transcend foes” rather than contain them

Pre-emption as the preferred national defense strategy

34 distinct and actionable goals eloquently stated within the document, they may be summarized in five overarching policy goals:

1. Increase U.S. Congressional Support
2. "Peace for Peace" Palestinian Strategy
3. Contain, Destabilize, and Roll Back Regional Challengers
4. Economic Reform
5. Rejuvenation of Zionism

Ok C4, these sound terrible.... peace for peace, wean israel off the american tit, hold the palestinians to task...

now on to your next point:

"to the PNAC"

ok, so what do they say and who are they?


June 3, 1997

American foreign and defense policy is adrift. Conservatives have criticized the incoherent policies of the Clinton Administration. They have also resisted isolationist impulses from within their own ranks. But conservatives have not confidently advanced a strategic vision of America's role in the world. They have not set forth guiding principles for American foreign policy. They have allowed differences over tactics to obscure potential agreement on strategic objectives. And they have not fought for a defense budget that would maintain American security and advance American interests in the new century.

We aim to change this. We aim to make the case and rally support for American global leadership.

As the 20th century draws to a close, the United States stands as the world's preeminent power. Having led the West to victory in the Cold War, America faces an opportunity and a challenge: Does the United States have the vision to build upon the achievements of past decades? Does the United States have the resolve to shape a new century favorable to American principles and interests?

We are in danger of squandering the opportunity and failing the challenge. We are living off the capital -- both the military investments and the foreign policy achievements -- built up by past administrations. Cuts in foreign affairs and defense spending, inattention to the tools of statecraft, and inconstant leadership are making it increasingly difficult to sustain American influence around the world. And the promise of short-term commercial benefits threatens to override strategic considerations. As a consequence, we are jeopardizing the nation's ability to meet present threats and to deal with potentially greater challenges that lie ahead.

We seem to have forgotten the essential elements of the Reagan Administration's success: a military that is strong and ready to meet both present and future challenges; a foreign policy that boldly and purposefully promotes American principles abroad; and national leadership that accepts the United States' global responsibilities.

Of course, the United States must be prudent in how it exercises its power. But we cannot safely avoid the responsibilities of global leadership or the costs that are associated with its exercise. America has a vital role in maintaining peace and security in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East. If we shirk our responsibilities, we invite challenges to our fundamental interests. The history of the 20th century should have taught us that it is important to shape circumstances before crises emerge, and to meet threats before they become dire. The history of this century should have taught us to embrace the cause of American leadership.

Our aim is to remind Americans of these lessons and to draw their consequences for today. Here are four consequences:

• we need to increase defense spending significantly if we are to carry out our global
responsibilities today and modernize our armed forces for the future;

• we need to strengthen our ties to democratic allies and to challenge regimes hostile to our interests and values;

• we need to promote the cause of political and economic freedom abroad;

• we need to accept responsibility for America's unique role in preserving and extending an international order friendly to our security, our prosperity, and our principles.

Such a Reaganite policy of military strength and moral clarity may not be fashionable today. But it is necessary if the United States is to build on the successes of this past century and to ensure our security and our greatness in the next.

Elliott Abrams Gary Bauer William J. Bennett Jeb Bush

Dick Cheney Eliot A. Cohen Midge Decter Paula Dobriansky Steve Forbes

Aaron Friedberg Francis Fukuyama Frank Gaffney Fred C. Ikle

Donald Kagan Zalmay Khalilzad I. Lewis Libby Norman Podhoretz

Dan Quayle Peter W. Rodman Stephen P. Rosen Henry S. Rowen

Donald Rumsfeld Vin Weber George Weigel Paul Wolfowitz

C4:, which in turn led to the sprinkling of neocons all over the Bush Administration in key policy or advisory positions, to how the neocons got Bush's patronage so much they came close to dictating US foreign policy from 2001-2003...

Not possible that these people actually EARNED their positions through hard work, dedication and simple success?

C4: I believe the history books will not be kind on the neocons.

Whos History books? The Saudi's or the Palistinians? or maybe the Berkley crowd.. a statement such as "i believe history books..." says nothing...

C4: And the honest histories cannot overlook the number of rabidly pro-Israel Jews in their ranks that sought to have America fight war after war to "defend our Special Friend".

Why are pro-israel jews "rabid"? do you use this term to describe Mel Gibson and his Christ passion? and as for having America fight war and after war for Israel, last time i checked america has it's own interests and actually screwed the jewish state in 1967 by NOT living up to it's commitments and just opening up the strait of tiran, thus CAUSING the 67 and 73 wars that israel fought (without ONE american solder)

c4: Buchanan believes that Jews, particularly the neocons who got Bush II's ear -strong allies of the Jewish cause like Rumsfeld & Cheney, their bought Gentile flunkys like Woolsey and Larry Franklin, and AIPAC - hijacked US foreign policy.

"hijacked" "bought gentile flunkeys" wow nice buzz words

C4: Pat and many foreign-born journalists that did not start in a largely Jewish-owned media are quite willing to blow past the "Jews in the left or Right must never be criticized", taboo,

yes he learned that when he was an anti-semitic speech writer for nixon, and we all KNOW how nixon LOVED the jews, so much in fact i heard nixon even had a top 50 jewish friends list... ops, not friends, blood sucking feins

C4: Some one pointed out that Buchanan is one of the very few who does not fear Jewish media mogels blacklisting him. Mel Gibson is another, as is Chris Hitchens.

then maybe the jews dont control the media if they cant get one fat old crusty jew hater like pat off the air.....

c4: Hitchens anti-Zionist posts exposing the plethora of Zionist lies about 1948, Jim Crow system for Palestinians, and many other misleading hagiographies of Israel and it's leaders believed still in America

actually, not quite, go to the front page and read hitchens own words, he does have some issues about building on lands from 1967 but your discription is quite specious..

once again, c4, your distorted points of views are back... so sad....

7/20/2006 04:19:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

First HB "ejects" Israel from Lebanon, then denies them their "right of return".

For a day, nine, or more.

The propaganda gains just keep building up for HB, even if they are gettin' the stuffin' beat out of 'em. Which ain't seen on the news or read in the reports, damn reporters.

Just reports of the Israeli being beat back at the Blue Line and ever more pictures of Israeli destruction of Lebanonese noncombatants lives and property.

Innocent people, far from the front, running for their lives, just tryin to "get away", to Cyprus.

7/20/2006 04:23:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Ledger, thank you for the interesting Pravda links. Eva, well worth the oops. Being linking challenged, I refer to another interesting Pravda snippet:

"Tight belts and low waits jeans produce the effect of heat castration for men and women alike

The USA celebrated a rather original holiday titled No Pants Day a month ago, in the beginning of May. The holiday is not only a day of fun, it gives a good reason to lead a healthy lifestyle, when people bid farewell to a very bad habit of theirs (at least for one day) - wearing pants."

I missed that holiday. It won't happen again.

7/20/2006 04:31:00 AM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

Thursday 20July06

It's unlikely too many blogger will make it down this far on the scale before a new post is analyzed by our team BUT
DVH has a great post today on RCP about the West, options, and patience.
Good reading.
The one thing that continues to strike me as surreal is that even a VDH, in the end seems to hold to some hope that the Islamists will eventually leave Israel alone.
Folks, that's NEVER gonna happen. They'll always be a state or non state Islamic faction demanding death to all Jews. It has NEVER been otherwise and will never happen until T-Rex roams the earth again.
Why do we tolerate Islam? OIL. We can solve the problem by taking it or killing Muslims by the acre.

7/20/2006 04:36:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Man, Mr Model is sure gloomy, think he may "know" something?

Says he read the banners.

Hezbollah, the model

7/20/2006 04:39:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

Gents, If Hezbollah gets away this time, Habu will be checking tire pressures on those BUFFs. I need to hear the Israeli version of "losing is not an option".

7/20/2006 04:44:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

More likely we'll hear an Israeli General, when asked if they are winning, say
"Well, we are not losing"

Perhaps the another cause of the turmoil can be found here
"Beirut's Party goes POOF"

How else does a religious radical stop hithe cultural decline to decendence?

7/20/2006 04:54:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

what is "occupation"

Good job and well done!

Not to be discouraging, but the choir will read it and be relieved. Those of a different persuasion will not bother.

Ours is to do our best; the rest is up to G-d

Again, well done and thanks

7/20/2006 04:57:00 AM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

DR,2164 ..gud day mates...

Pressures look OK on the BUFFs

DR, you were too cryptic for me. I haven't even had my first coke yet.
Let's hope things get worked out in the ME so we can all go back to the dogfight of domestic politics.

Looks like war though from here to forever .. I'm counting on our crackerjack intel people to drill down deep into the bedrock of intel and cipher the answer ...well, like I said war forever.

7/20/2006 05:00:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The blog vs the banner

Which has got more Battalions

We know which has the guns
Mr Model will not lift one, he loves his keyboard, blogging to victory

Mr al-Sadr, he's slogging to victory.
We'll see who gets there, first.

Mr Model believes in the US model
Mr al-Sadr does not.

Mr Model will not pick up a weapon
Mr al-Sadr, no hesitation in telling others to, so as to defend their lives and property.

Mr Model waits for US to provide Baghdad security, in vain.
Mr al-Sadr takes it upon himself, the defense of his people from the Insurgents.

6,000 dead in 60 days.
Multiply by 12 for the proportional US loss.

Worse than Katrina.
Worse than 9-11

& Courage

7/20/2006 05:08:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Worse than Korea or 'Nam
In 60 days

7/20/2006 05:13:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat,

"Well, we are not losing"

I take it that you also found the General's assessment inspirational. Doubtless, the kids on the line will be motivated.

Had the equally quick witted MSM bothered to follow through, we might have learned General Shoomaker's assessment of what it would take to win.

As you may recall, I have expressed little confidence in our flag officers. In my opinion, as proved by General Shoomaker, they are, on the whole, old school, out of their depth, and demoralized. Given the marvelously talented cadre of company and field grade officers available for advancement, we can do better.

7/20/2006 05:16:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

That my friends is anarchy
No spin about it.
On the US's watch

7/20/2006 05:16:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I agree and said so, allen, years ago, now.
The trend line don't lie.
Just depends on when it's noticed

7/20/2006 05:19:00 AM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

DR..LA Times articles ...another lefest rag but that story did have the "Slouching toward Gomorrah" theme in the reticle.
Yes, as Hericlitus said 2500 years ago, "Nothing is constant but change"
So there is hope that today Israel will nuke the Bekaa. Inside a 10 mile wide valley the pics should be awesome and no doubt will soon become inserts for playstation games ... lets just keep on slouching.

7/20/2006 05:20:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

having a nice day is not getting a registered letter from what is "occupation".

7/20/2006 05:33:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...


You'd find a way to lose a hand of five card stud with a Straight Flush.

7/20/2006 05:41:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

desert rat,

Like our friend habu, my blood serum caffeine level is not yet up to par; however, let me run this by you.

It was Napoleon, I think, who observed that the victorious general is the one with reserves at the end of the day. This must be the thought of the Israeli general staff as well; hence, its reluctance to frontally assault Hezbollah’s Blue Line fortress.

I have no doubt the IDF could do the job; at what cost is the question. If the engagement proves as sanguinary as some here believe, Israel will have exhausted its reserves. Consequently, while it may be the tactical victor, like Pyrrhus, it will be strategically vulnerable, possibly for a generation.

All this returns me to my original analysis: Israel must fight an existential war that of necessity requires the total defeat of Hezbollah via Syria.

7/20/2006 05:42:00 AM  
Blogger Habu_3 said...

One of the contributions talked of America being the world's preeminent power.
I believe even with our ten trillion dollar economy that statement can be challenged by virtue of our lack of projecting that that you've all gone crazy, ready to cite Iraq etc. i would say that to be preeminent you must be able to alter the equastion...the last 40 years we've been in retrograde in that crucial area. It's really hard to choke down given the mass production of American flags flying from car windows after 9-11, but 9-11 might as well be 1066 now....anyway those drivers treated that flag like a rag until finally just the little sun bleached plastic holder was left whistling in the wind. More slouch please

7/20/2006 05:43:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

2164th said...
having a nice day is not getting a registered letter from what is "occupation".


7/20/2006 05:50:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The prime minister of Lebanon now says that Hizbollah needs to be disarmed. He then negates that by saying that we need an immediate cease fire [so Israel can't disarm Hiz.] and that the Lebanese people aren't willing to do it.

The concept I guess, is that 10,000 UN troops somehow disarms Hiz. in peace time, which Israel could not do during a long occupation.

All in all, the PM just wants victory by cease fire for Hizbollah.

"It's not a mystery that Hizbullah answers to the political agendas of Teheran and Damascus," Saniora was quoted as saying by Corriere. "The entire world must help us disarm Hizbullah. But first we need to reach a cease-fire."

Saniora said Lebanon is still too weak to attack Hizbullah's stranglehold in the south of the country on its own.

"The important thing now is to restore full Lebanese sovereignty in the south, dismantling any armed militia parallel to the national army," he said. "The Syrians are inside our home and we are still too weak to defend ourselves. The terrible memories of the civil war are still too alive and no one is ready to take up arms."

7/20/2006 05:50:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If one looks back to D Day, allen, the first post of the thread was the call
"On to Damascus"

It has not been heeded.
Instead an assualt on Lebanon was decided upon.
A week or two, it was said.
Now four or five, or ten?

To announce a War and then demur, at friendly first blood, is defeat.

So Israel has to "clear" to the river, or have it's military myth of invincibility shattered.
Worse than bad, in the long run of the "Long War".
Demographics and all that.

But it's not part of the War on Terror, just another local dustup, the Supremes have ruled, who am I to revolt?

Hell, I'm sworn to defend the Decision. Wish the Congress and the President would set it right, though.

They could, at will, you know.

7/20/2006 05:53:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Why would Israel open up another front, attack Syria, when they are having problems finishing off their first opponent?

7/20/2006 05:57:00 AM  
Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

Why would Israel open up another front, attack Syria, when they are having problems finishing off their first opponent?

because you kill a snake by cutting it's head

the ONLY thing that will scare them is a missile up their asses

7/20/2006 06:00:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The HB rocket attacks upon Israel, like the Iraqi car bombs, are militarily insignifgent. Politically bad, but militarilly, nada.

But go back and read the other threads, the arguements were laid out there, reality is proving them accurate.

7/20/2006 06:12:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...


This is a good article on the Lebanon bombing: what Israel is trying to do, compare to NATO Serbia bombing, etc.

7/20/2006 06:18:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

Here's one quote. They say the US is a champion of bombing infrastructure.

Classic strategic bombardment campaigns aim to flatten key economic resources and are usually designed to bend the targeted government to the will of its attacker or turn the populace against the government.

The United States has been one of the chief proponents of strategic bombardment, launching campaigns in Vietnam, Iraq and Serbia. In World War II it targeted factories, railroads, bridges, ports and, in some cases, residential neighborhoods.

7/20/2006 06:19:00 AM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

habu_3 said:

Why do we tolerate Islam? OIL. We can solve the problem by taking it or killing Muslims by the acre.

Here's a less bloody-minded solution:


7/20/2006 06:30:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Funny thing,
When the Mohammedans advanced to Vienna, were ruling Spain and marching towards France, OIL had nothing to do with it.

It may be why we are concerned, but it just funds their War. They'd be at it, whether we were concerned about OIL or not.

There are no wells in Israel nor Lebanon nor Gaza. The OIL argument for the War is a straw man.

7/20/2006 06:36:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

OIL, like TERROR, has become a weapon in the Mohammedan quiver, but neither are the cause nor reason for the War.

Just along for the ride.

7/20/2006 06:39:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

It's foolish to call a tie game a loss in the second inning when you haven't even batted yet.

In case you forgot Israael is a tiny country. Large scale mobilization is harmful to the economy and avoided except in dire circumstances. Today's circumstances do not appear dire. The Israelis aren't dumb and they have struck the force balance they feel meets their best interests even if it cannot accomplish the ideal outcome.

One outcome, which I do not expect, would be a US-light NATO force under the auspices of the UN or not in country with the ability and direction to disarm the militias as per 1559. Syria would throw HB under the bus in a heartbeat. That would likely be enough to fracture its alliance with Mullahville.

7/20/2006 06:39:00 AM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

gary rosen wrote:

Don't hold your breath waiting for a column by Buchanan condemning the Hez rocket attack on Nazareth. I've heard Nazareth has something to do with Christianity, but what do I know, I'm a "neocon".

I think it is because Pat knows that Christianity isn't tied down to physical holy places like Islam and Judaism are. In the New Covenant, the Kingdom of G-d is "within you" (Luke 17:21) and Christian's own bodies are the temples of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19).

7/20/2006 06:45:00 AM  
Blogger Papa Bear said...

What there is of the Lebanese government is unwilling to take effective measures to rein in Hezbollah. This is because they are more afraid of Hezbollah than they are of the consequences of not keeping a lid on them.

What needs to happen is for everybody in Lebanon to come to a viewpoint that allowing Hezbollah to commit acts of war against neighboring countries involves far worse consequences than taking them down.

7/20/2006 06:45:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

"What is "Occupation" said...
2164th said...
having a nice day is not getting a registered letter from what is "occupation".


That was an oblique nod to your ability to make a rebuttal. A dry metaphor, obviously unsuccessful, as to receiving an eighty six page registered letter from a law firm with one hundred and sixteen partners and offices all over the planet all for the express purpose of ruining your day.

7/20/2006 06:51:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

papa bear

That's my take on the Lebanese government's public speak. It's probably the best measure of the effectiveness of the Israeli offensive. When the Leb PM starts talking tough about the Army taking control of the South we will know that HB as been severly attrited.

7/20/2006 06:57:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The Six Day War was an Israeli victory that created a myth.
The 18 year Occupation of Lebanon and Israel's pull out created another, different myth.
HB's ascendency to military parity.

D+9 confirms the "black pajama" myth.

Perhaps meaningless, but given the humiliation that a stalled Israel will cause the Sauds, Egyptians, et al. And the morale boost for the jihadi, it's a bad day in the desert.
Israel's "right of return" has been revoked. That is a terrible outcome, if that is what transpires

As in that other local war, Somalia, the jihadi program advances. The West's best efforts stalled or in retreat. Civilians die, in Lebanon and Iraq.
Cascading failures, for the moment at least.

At the UN the Russians are speaking for the Council when ...
"... Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said the council wants an answer sometime soon to a June 5 package of incentives that six world powers offered to Iran if it stopped enrichment. But he stressed the council is not trying to push Tehran.

"We are not in a rush at all," Churkin said. "We do not want to ambush Iran in any way. We're very much in a negotiating political mode. We do not want to dictate things to Iran."

"Nobody's pushing Iran anywhere," he said. ...
...A draft circulated by the United States calls for the International Atomic Energy Agency, the U.N. nuclear watchdog, and other international experts to verify Iran's suspension of uranium enrichment. Enriched uranium can be used to produce both nuclear power or weapons. Iran has said its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only.

The draft did not set a deadline for Iran to comply.

Russia offered an amended resolution on Wednesday that would weaken the document significantly, but would ask the IAEA to report back on Iran's compliance by August 31. ..."

WaPo: HT Steve @

7/20/2006 07:00:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

What Israel needs at this point is to open a second front by fighting back in the propaganda war. Their leadership has done an awful job overall in communications, and that needs to change. It seems like a dozen cabinet members and leaked articles with different views appear every day. Too much intelligence information is given away.

Most importantly, Israel is letting itself be smeared as a killer of civilians. Finally today the Israeli Vice Premier said that the Lebanese casualty statistics are lies. Israel needs to fight back against this as hard as they do on the battle field.

7/20/2006 07:04:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

No, w.w., Israel is killing civilians. No doubt of that.

It admits to a nonproportional response, brags on it, no less.

Collective punishment of the Lebanonese civilians is the admitted battle plan.
Set Lebanon "back 20 years" was the stated goal.

Compare the dozen or so dead Israeli civilians to the hundreds of Lebanonese and Palistinians and then try to claim moral equivilency in a propaganda war.
Tough nut to crack.

7/20/2006 07:11:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...


You really have to learn the difference between an event and an outcome.

7/20/2006 07:12:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The events become the outcomes, in a "Long War".

The propaganda battle does not wait for "Mission Accomplished" to be announced.

Where are the good guys on the march?

The equivilent of 72,000 dead US civilians in Iraq, 6,000 in 60 days, is an Outcome, PB.

Much more than it is an Event.

The Final Outcome, actually
for those 6,000 people.

On the US's Watch

7/20/2006 07:22:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

what is "occupation"; 6:00 AM

Thank you.

7/20/2006 07:37:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

If the Iraqis or whoever want to kill each other in large or small numbers they will continue to do so no matter who's watching them.

There's a whole story about pearls and pigs but that's for another time.

7/20/2006 07:43:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

> No, w.w., Israel is killing civilians. No doubt of that.

I don't think it has been proven and even if it was, the mere fact of killing civilians proves nothing. It is targeting them that matters. That has never been proven. No one will ever know the answers until an independent source investigates. There are so many questions to be answered: are the casualty figures faked? are some of those said to be civilian actually Hezbollah in street clothing? Are the so-called civilians actually combatants who have missiles in their houses? Has Hizbollah committed war crimes by basing their troops and missiles in a civilian area (and therefore excused the Israelis for the civilian casualties)? How many of those people were actually killed by Hizbollah "friendly fire"?

We need to shoot down the idea that wars must have zero impact on civilians. I never said that and neither does the law. It is an idea made up by leftists and pacifists for political purposes. Targeting civilians is different from accidentally killing them as part of a hit on a military target.

The NATO bombing campaign in Serbia targeted civilian infrastructure and caused hundreds of civilian deaths. It seems that NATO would be hypocritical to say that Israel is wrong to do the same thing. Historically, bombing things instead of people is seen as being merciful, since it avoids the need to kill. Making someone uncomfortable is less bad than killing them. In Israel's case the bridges have military purposes too. It is direct self-defense, that the enemy is rearming and shooting Israel via those roads.

But the 78-day NATO bombardment of Serbia had clear international legitimacy and was more gradual. Air crews targeted Serbian military and communications sites first, and when that didn't persuade the Serb military to pull out of Kosovo, planes hit civilian and government targets.

Targeting was far more discriminatory. Despite tens of thousands of sorties, NATO is thought to have killed 500 civilians in the 2- 1/2 month campaign. By contrast, Israel has killed more than 250 Lebanese in eight days.

7/20/2006 07:45:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

"Watching them"
That is the US Mission,
to watch them?

So, PB, the US force in Iraq is, in reality, no more effective than the UN force in Lebanon.

Less so, in fact. The civilian death rates are higher in Iraq.
The militias just as violent and almost as well armed.

Get our boys "Pink Helmets", by comparison they do not even qualify for Blue.

7/20/2006 07:49:00 AM  
Blogger Woman Catholic said...

desert rate wrote:

Get our boys "Pink Helmets", by comparison they do not even qualify for Blue.

Don't be knocking the Tough Women Attack Team or I'll go all Xena on you.

7/20/2006 07:51:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

Like I said DR. You would find a way to lose a five card stud hand with a Straight Flush.

7/20/2006 07:51:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

And the other countries in the Middle East, they will all want to replicate the Iraqi and Lebanonese experiences, as per the Democracy Expansion Plan?

Is that answer classified as just some more Events or as Outcomes, PB, you can decide for all of US.

7/20/2006 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

But again, PB, no links to cite, so when the water drains to Boston's Bay, say hello to Teddy.

And for a copter pilot from the Cambodian skies to not know about infra red homing on SAM 7's ...

7/20/2006 08:01:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

The Iraqi Shiites and Kurds are much better off now than they were under Saddam, and they'd never want to go back. At l

The civil wars have nothing to do with democracy. Both of those groups rebelled against Saddam's dictatorship, which was a Sunni tyranny over them.

It was probably inevitable that the Sunni vs. Shiite fighting would continue for awhile once democracy came. The wrong approach for us would be to be like Saddam Hussein in trying to suppress fighting by the people by killing tens of thousands, etc. If we wanted a brutal dictatorship then we could have just left Saddam in charge.

7/20/2006 08:10:00 AM  
Blogger Wu Wei said...

It looks like Lebanon might finally have to take sides.

The Lebanese Minister of Defense warned Israel Thursday that if IDF ground forces are sent into southern Lebanon, Lebanese troops will fight along with the Hizbullah against Israel.

7/20/2006 08:15:00 AM  
Blogger PeterBoston said...

I don't get up in the morning surprised and disappointed that the world and everybody in it is not perfect.

It's a good thing that the US is militarily engaged against Islamism. Some days are better than others, but we're way ahead on where things would be if we all just sat around, did nothing, and complained about everything.

7/20/2006 08:16:00 AM  
Blogger rufus said...

Dayam, Rat, go back to bed. Get your nap out. You're down-right grouchy this mornin.

7/20/2006 08:21:00 AM  
Blogger 2164th said...

In the WOT , it is important to hang together. Our Friend Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatazero has other thoughts

Israel: Spain relations hurt by PM's accusation IDF uses 'abuses force'

By Reuters

Israel's envoy to Spain said on Thursday the two countries' relations had been damaged after the Spanish prime minister accused Israel of using "abusive force" during an event at which he also wore a Palestinian scarf.

7/20/2006 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

An occupying force should maintain order or leave.

But to do neither, to not even have the courtesy to withdraw to strong points and "get out of the way", while claiming neutrality.

Instead we attempt to retain Authority while delegating Responsibility.
It does not work that way, taught as much in Primary NCO school.

You can delegate Authority but not Responsibility. That's the Rule.

Iraq's internal security is our tar baby 'til we hand the Authority over, along with the Responsibility.

As of now, in Iraq, the ;ocal government and our policy is cascading to failure, the death tolls and rates are proof of the pudding.

Whether mearly events or outcomes, what the hey, let's go to the beach.

7/20/2006 08:25:00 AM  
Blogger brough said...

I bet this is the only blog on these events to quote Heraclitus (even if it was in the same breath as PlayStation!). :)

Another pertinent fragment:

Greater deaths win greater portions.

Revealing development from the Leb PM's camp/puppet theatre:

StratFor: Hezbollah has created "a state within a state" in Lebanon and must be disarmed, Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora said in remarks published July 20 in Italy's Corriere della Sera newspaper.

Cue flurry of headlines this morning that Lebanon wishes Hezbollah to disarm -- Siniora's spokesman now working overtime to disavow these remarks...

Unless US 'betrays' a willingness to to intervene regionally by pressuring Syria on the ground, I fear China and Russia will assume US is still bogged down in Iraq and not dug-in for the long term due to an evolving strategic commitment. Iran and the NorKs will sleep easier; China and Russia will start having wet dreams and ramp up their interference.

Speaking of which, the South just discounted the unsourced APF report (mentioned earlier) that Nkor were quitely mobilising to a full war footing -- but this denial, another anon source, came from the Unification Ministry.

7/20/2006 08:45:00 AM  
Blogger allen said...

we wei said,

“The Lebanese Minister of Defense warned Israel Thursday that if IDF ground forces are sent into southern Lebanon, Lebanese troops will fight along with the Hizbullah against Israel.”

If this fine fellow has been accurately quoted, he has done us all a favor by clarifying what for some was a muddle. For instance, TigerHawk, today, attempts to make a distinction between Lebanon and "Southern Lebanon."

Some have thought that not only is Hezbollah a proxy for Iran and/or Syria, but it has also functioned as the de facto military for the government of Lebanon, whereby the cowardly, impotent Lebanese could take cheap shots at Israel. The Minister has made it so.

At first glance, an actual state of war may now exist between the legitimate, elected governments of Lebanon (aggressor) and Israel (defender). Upon reflection, the government of Israel may determine that this condition permits a far less discriminatory target policy.

With the Minister of Defense’s declared alliance with Hezbollah, speaking ex cathedra, Israel may add the members of the Lebanese government to its list of legitimate military/strategic targets, I would hope. Perhaps, the removal of the Lebanese hierarchy would go far in limiting the time and scope of military operations.

7/20/2006 08:50:00 AM  
Blogger Gary Rosen said...

"I think it is because Pat knows that Christianity isn't tied down to physical holy places like Islam and Judaism are."

No, it's because Pat doesn't give a damn if he can't blame it on the Jews. He was jim dandy with the Nazis' slaughter of 3 million Polish Catholics, even though he himself claims to be Catholic.

7/20/2006 08:55:00 AM  

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