Monday, July 31, 2006

leave or let die

Well, it only took the lives of some 54 Lebanese civilians (more than 30 of them children) to get Bloody Condi to do what the voices of the entire civilized world (present company excepted) could not.

Thanks to an errant bomb and a snub from the Lebanese PM, the US State Department got to pretend they gave a damn by engineering/brokering/inventing a 48-hour suspension of Israeli air strikes to provide time for the UN to coordinate a 24-hour evacuation of South Lebanon for all those “who want to leave the region.”

Hmmm. On the surface, that sounds OK, right? If you can’t stop the whole damn war, at least evacuate the innocents—what’s wrong with that?

A lot.

You see, the time provided for the exodus of all innocent civilians, by deduction, or, really, reductio ad absurdum, means that those who do not leave know the risks and chose to stay. If you choose to stay in a combat zone even when given the chance to flee, then you must be a combatant, no?

Well, of course no, but such conclusions are not without historical precedent (I’m pretty sure of this, but lack the citation—I will work on it), and are easy to see as falling well within the thinking of the “if you’re not with us, you’re with the terrorists” gang. Those remaining in southern Lebanon after this limited cease-fire will no longer be granted the moral cover of the "trapped innocent"
in the eyes of Israel and the United States, those who remain must be Hezbollah fighters or Hezbollah sympathizers.

Weeks into this war, I am still at a loss to understand Israel’s objectives (the realistic, not fantasyland, ones, anyway), but I am becoming increasingly aware of the results: a strengthening of Hezbollah’s support in and outside of Lebanon, a re-alignment of Arab governments (toward supporting Hezbollah’s actions and condemning Israel and the United States), a further unification of once fractious Shi’ia movements throughout the region, a strengthening of Iran’s influence, a boost to both anti-Israeli and anti-Semitic sentiment throughout the world, a denigration of the reputation and tactical ability of Israel’s military and intelligence agencies, a weakening of democratic forces inside Lebanon, a new well of hatred for a new generation of terrorists to draw upon, and the senseless deaths of innocent civilians of all races and religions on both sides of the border.

Why, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Rice couldn’t have planned it better themselves.


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12:44 AM  

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