Wednesday, August 08, 2007

What's Up, Doc?

Charles Levinson of the Conflict Blotter discovers the dark side of dealing with Hezbollah. "Their interaction with the press borders on fascist. ... It is clear there are chilling developments going on in southern Lebanon, especially north of the Litani that I will address in later blog posts." Meanwhile, the Counterterrorism Blog wonders why Hezbollah is getting its own dedicated comm network in Southern Lebanon. Any ideas what could be up?

Whatever is going on is happening right under the noses of UNIFIL. Noah Pollak writes at the National Review.

UNIFIL's size was increased from a few thousand to almost 14,000 troops with the approval of 1701, and the new "robust" and "enhanced" force was supposed, at long last, to fill the power vacuum in southern Lebanon and prevent Hezbollah from rebuilding its terrorist nation on Israel's northern border.

But the new UNIFIL has of course done nothing. Actually, worse than nothing: In the year since the end of the war, Iran and Syria have been rearming Hezbollah at a torrid pace, this time with better weaponry than before, and UNIFIL has barely even pretended to be interested in disrupting the arms flow. UNIFIL's rules of engagement prevent the border with Syria from being patrolled, and UNIFIL blue-helmets have neither the desire nor the means to confront Hezbollah.

Nothing follows.


Blogger PeterBoston said...

Unless Levinson is couching his words for Hezbollah friendly eyes (most likely) he is displaying a level of naitivity that makes going anywhere near these goons a death wish.

Why would you see any Swinging Richard in Hezbollah as anything other than a target? The amount of willful stupidity governments and organizations exercise dealing with Islamist thugs is staggering. There is such a thin veneer of civilized behavior in the best of countries that every moment the powers to be tolerate or even worse excuse the blatantly uncivilized behavior of the Islamists threatens to unravel it all.

8/08/2007 06:47:00 AM  
Blogger John J. Coupal said...

Does the United Nations have a purpose? Any purpose?

8/08/2007 07:37:00 AM  
Blogger LarryD said...

John, the UN's purpose is to facilitate tyrants and would be tyrants keeping anyone from intervening in their domains.

Of course, that's not what is on the literature, it's just the purpose that the UN actually serves.

We need to use the concept of accessory in arguing with some of the UN's supporters. Any one who interferes with cleaning up the UN is ipso facto, an accessory to the criminal/immoral activities needing to be cleaned up.

8/08/2007 09:05:00 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

"Does the United Nations have a purpose? Any purpose?"

I always think of the UN as a sort of professional association of government leaders. It's where government leaders go to talk shop, compare notes, and generally shoot the breeze with their peers.

Since the UN is composed of a majority of dictators, kleptocrats and assorted other international micreants, the shop talk probably centers around how best to put down rebellions, keep their people in line, and methods of bilking the democracies for as much aid money as possible.

So yes, the UN does serve a purpose. I guess.

8/08/2007 09:53:00 AM  
Blogger F said...

"Does the UN have a purpose?" In the course of a long afternoon's rather contentious conversation with the Secretary-General of a foreign ministry in an African nation that was going through a particularly anti-American phase, I was note-taker during a long discourse on the value of the UN, from which the S-G had just returned for a domestic assignment. The bottom line for this career diplomat was that the UN was a debate forum which offered less-than-friendly nations the chance to engage in dialogue so they would abjure armed conflict. That conversation took place 32 years ago, and in the meantime the UN has come up with Food-for-oil, Congolese peacekeepers who rape and pillage, Kofi Anan's personal venality, and too many other scandals, large and small, to count. I was a junior diplomat then, and unaware of the UN's corruption.

I'm older now, more experienced, perhaps more agnostic. And I've seen enough to answer the question above: yes, the UN has a purpose, and it is inimical to US policies and good governance. I am not ready to say the UN needs to be put out of business, but I definitely think the UN needs to be moved out of the US and it needs to find more of its support -- financial and logistical -- elsewhere. In the meantime, we as a nation are only enabling dishonest and dysfunctional behavior with our support of the status quo. F

8/08/2007 10:27:00 AM  
Blogger El Baboso said...

Meanwhile, the Counterterrorism Blog wonders why Hezbollah is getting its own dedicated comm network in Southern Lebanon. Any ideas what could be up?

It knows that Israel can intercept it's radio transmissions and suspects (or has evidence) that Israel is bugging the Lebanese telecoms.

Land line is one of those low-tech asymmetrical solutions that drives planners nuts. It isn't mobile, but it can't be monitored by an adversary and works pretty well if you are running a static defense composed of interlocking strong points. Now where did I hear about someone using that defensive tactic before?

8/08/2007 07:50:00 PM  

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