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[crossposted at Seesdifferent: the blog]

I would like to see an honest assessment of the massive imbalance in civilian casualties, killed, wounded, displaced, and damage to property and infrastructure in the Levant.

Let's start with "killed."  A minimum of 350 Lebanese have been killed. Of these, the Israelis are claiming (??) 100 are Hezbollah. That is bullshit but lets let it lie, so at least 250 innocent Lebanese have been killed.  This piece has the numbers on Israelis:

Already, 19 soldiers have been killed in the latest conflict. Another 15 civilians have been killed in Hizbollah rocket attacks since the fighting started.

The Telegraph estimate agrees.

So, of some 34 Israeli killed, 19 have been soldiers, not civilians. That leaves 15 Israeli civiiians killed, compared to at least 250 Lebanese.


Further, the Israel wounded are also being falsely inflated not only by the number of non-civilian soldiers wounded but also by this bullshit "in shock" group of people who are apparently not hurt. They may be "shocked," scared, angry, indignant....but they aren't wounded, and they aren't medically "in shock." They make up the largest number of the "casualties."

From this story we can see the ratio:

At least 11 rockets hit Haifa, Israel's third-largest city, and five people were wounded, with 23 treated for shock.

Lebanese wounded are estimated at about 500. That makes sense, compared to the number killed. There is no reason to think that the real Israeli wounded number isn't also about twice the number of killed, or about 30.

Okay, by this calculus, adding killed and wounded, we have 45 total real Israeli civilian casualties, vs 750 Lebanese.

The estimates of Lebanese displaced is estimated at 500,000. I don't see many Israelis moving, and if they are, its not because their homes are destroyed. The damage in Lebanon is estimated at 2 billion. Haven't seen any estimate re Israel...but it is not exactly in that order of magnitude, clearly.

The Brits seem to have figured out the math a little before Biff and The Geniuses, and it's not goin down easy.

Foreign Office minister Kim Howells has criticised Israel's bombardment of Lebanon, while on a visit to Beirut. He said Israel had not carried out "surgical strikes" and attacking the Lebanese nation was not the answer. Downing Street said the prime minister would stand by Mr Howell's comments, adding the British government had "always urged restraint on Israel". Meanwhile thousands of people across the UK have joined demonstrations against Israeli attacks on Lebanon.
In fact, (and maybe its just a reaction to Biff's G-8 imitation of Bluto Blutarski at the Animal House), but the Brits appear to be calling bullshit on the idea that there is solid evidence of the neocons Iran/Syria/Hezollah connection:Foreign Secretary Margaret Beckett told the `Financial Times`
. "I am sure that Israel would weigh very carefully any suggestion of a ground incursion because, after all, it took them a long time to get out of Lebanon the last time they went in," the daily quoted her as saying. "I think everyone understands the position in which Israel finds itself. We have been urging caution and restraint on Israel from the beginning and we continue to do so with ever greater concern as time goes on," she said. Beckett told the daily there was no concrete proof Iran and Syria were behind the Hizbollah`s attacks. "I`m not sure that any government anywhere in the world would tell you that they`ve got cast-iron proof (of Iranian and Syrian involvement)," she said. "What I can tell you is that almost every government in the world shares our view." The report said Beckett also backed UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, who has called for a halt to hostilities.
Now, I realize that Alan ""torture is okay with me" Dershowitz has a new definition of "civilian", but, people, you can't FIND A FREAKING WAR WHERE IT CAN'T BE SAID THAT THE CIVILIANS GIVE SOME AID TO THE MILITARY. That is why the rules of war were written. Geez. Let's get fuckin real...Can we GET FUCKIN REAL ABOUT WHAT IS GOING ON THERE?????

Originally posted to seesdifferent on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 05:50 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  tips/toes (7+ / 0-)

                            I have no choice but to tell these
                            bums that they should do whatever is
                            necessary to recover their money
                            from you, Jeffrey Lebowski.  And
                            with Brandt as my witness, tell you
                            this:  Any further harm visited upon
                            Bunny, shall be visited tenfold upon
                            your head.

                  Between thumb and forefinger the Dude holds up the contents
                  of the package--a little toe, with emerald green nail polish.

                            ...By God sir.  I will not abide
                            another toe.

  •  i understand & sympathise (0+ / 0-)

    i'm not sure how helpful this statistical analysis is.
    i'm thinking "stop the killing" may be more to the point than trying to keep score.
    please don't take this as a personal knock, i understand exactly where you're coming from.
    the killing must end.

    i'm an agnostic, i'd be an atheist if it weren't for mozart

    by rasbobbo on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 05:59:05 PM PDT

  •  An article that makes the same point (5+ / 0-)
    Israel's New Math: 2 = 500,000
    For 2 kidnapped Israeli soldiers who are still kept alive, 500,000 innocent Lebanese civilians are displaced. For 2 abducted Israeli soldiers, Lebanon, a sovereign state, is brought back down on its knees. Its civil infrastructure is `gone'. Some of its capital's residential quarters and southern villages are already wiped out. Indeed, `two equals half a million' is the new arithmetic the Israelis insist upon imposing on the region.

    (I used to be restrained in my linking to Counterpunch at dKos, but when it comes to Israel and Lebanon, I have dropped that restraint, since there is no way to begin understanding what is happening without turning to ideas that are restricted in America to the Left (and true conservatives, Paul Craig Roberts being a good example).)

    Liberalism is the origin and center of American politics. Thus, to reject liberalism is to reject America.

    by Alexander on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 06:16:55 PM PDT

  •  What's your point? (0+ / 0-)

    I haven't seen anyone suggest that more Israelis than Lebanese are dead.  But the tone of this diary is, quite frankly, disturbng and disgusting.  You are completely dismissive of any Israeli casualties, as if the fact that there are more Lebanese ones somehow excuses the murder of Israelis.  I am perfectly fine with a diary that says any killing of civilians is wrong, though I personally feel that Israel's actions are justified.  What i wont stand for is one that suggests that Israeli civilian casualties somehow dont matter, as if the murder of 15 civilians doesn't count.

    The probability that we may fail in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause we believe to be just. 0.0, -1.74

    by Trinitrotoluene on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 06:18:12 PM PDT

    •  disproportionate (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      anonymousredvest18, Petronella, RAZE

      and immoderate.

    •  It shows an important point (4+ / 0-)

      Hezbollah is attacking Israel with Katushya missiles, which have zero accuracy.

      Israel is attacking Lebanon with planes and the latest US technology, including the latest in laser guided technology.

      But still, Israel has killed a much higher percentage of civilians. Why is that? If Israel can target its weapons, then why have there been so many innocents killed?

      You might find the answer for that by considering, too, the number of other civilian targets Israel has hit. Israel has hit the Beirut airport three times. It attacked and took out broadcast (but not satellite capabilities) of one of the largest Christian TV stations. Again, it hit it three times. This is a station northwest of Beirut, far from any Hezbollah stronghold. This is a station that has been critical of Hezbollah in the past. But Israel, with all the guidance technology in the world, took it out.

      And there are other, even more senseless targets. Like a milk factory. What threat did that milk factory present to Israel?

      Hezbollah has little choice about what it hits, but somehow it has managed to hit primarily military targets. As the rules of war require.

      Israel, though, has a choice. And it is becoming increasingly apparent that it is choosing to hit targets that have nothing to do with Hezbollah and that present no threat to Israel.

      This is the way democracy ends Not with a bomb But with a gavel -Max Baucus

      by emptywheel on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 06:46:06 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  links please (0+ / 0-)

        to these targets you say have been taken out by Israel.milk factory,christian tv station. And the targets hit by Hezbollah have been military ones  -links......thanks.

        The Beirut airport is not a civilian target. That alone leads me to conclude your post is biased. Don't you the diarist both post on some other blog? I could be wrong about that.

        •  TV Station (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          anonymousredvest18, Petronella, RAZE

          About the stupidest fucking target Israel could take out, three missiles.

          I might agree with you about the airport. If there was anyone within range who might use it. But who is going to use it? Iran's going to fly across Iraq to land in Beirut?

          I should add one more thing about targets. When Israel started this attack, there were 25,000 American citizens in Lebanon. Many of the Christians. Are they, too, legitimate targets for Israel?

          This is the way democracy ends Not with a bomb But with a gavel -Max Baucus

          by emptywheel on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 06:58:38 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  has one American been killed? (0+ / 0-)

            what's your point?

            You do know that some members in the Lebanese Parliament are blaming this whole mess on Hezbollah. I find that astounding! What it tells me is that there is a ferocious hatred of Hezbollah within a large segment of the Lebanese population.

            •  Yes, many Lebanese hate Hezbollah (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              anonymousredvest18, Petronella, RAZE

              Like some of the Christians who have had their section of Beirut hit. Are you arguing that putting those Christians at risk is fair defense for Israel?

              There have not, to my knowledge, been Americans killed. Israel did kill a Canadian family. Including the four children, aged one, four, six and eight.

              This is the way democracy ends Not with a bomb But with a gavel -Max Baucus

              by emptywheel on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 07:10:06 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  I don;t know (0+ / 0-)

                what military benefits hitting those areas engendered. Supply routes or something? You don't know that there were none.

                Hezbollah was only getting stronger and it seems inevitable that they would have had designs on Lebanon eventually and imposed an Islamofascist state - driving out the Christians. Would you be ok with that?

                •  Islamofascist state (4+ / 0-)

                  No, I don't want a(nother) Islamic fundamentalist state (that's what people with intelligence call it, btw).

                  The problem is, every one who has even the teeniest bit of knowledge about 4G warfare expects this disproportionate response to benefit Hezbollah, and make it more likely Islamic fundamentalists across the Middle East will grow stronger.

                  Like in Iraq. This does wonders for Moqtada al Sadr, frankly. And it makes it a lot more likely that PM Maliki will support the growth of Shiite extremism in Iraq. Is that what you want? Iraq turning into an Islamic fundamentalist state right around our troops?

                  I'm not, as you apprently believe, anti-Israel. I'm pro effective response. And few of the military experts believe that's what Israel is doing.

                  This is the way democracy ends Not with a bomb But with a gavel -Max Baucus

                  by emptywheel on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 07:20:46 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  now everyone can blame (0+ / 0-)

                    the Iraq fiasco on Israel, how convenient, what a surprise.

                    Great, you know the right word or whatever, do you really think that makes you more"intelligent". That's pretty funny emptywheel, I expected more from you, what a disappointment.

                    •  Keith (5+ / 0-)

                      I do. Islamofascist is one of the most Orwellian terms out there, designed to create a false equation between the monstrosity of Hitler and the evil that grows out of weakness that is terrorism. And the term "fascist" isn't even an accurate term for even the most fundamentalist governments largely because there is no business/corporate aspect to it. You may choose to use terms that obscure and lie. But it won't save any Israelis.

                      And yes, again, this is a 4G war. What Israel does in Lebanon will have dramatic repercussions on Iraq, whether we like it or not. That's why, before launching this kind of indiscrimate attack, Israel ought to have given due consideration to the most effective response. And I'll repeat--the experts on 4G believe this may have the opposite effect of its goals. Why make Hezbollah stronger, and create a power vacuum on your border at the same time?

                      This is the way democracy ends Not with a bomb But with a gavel -Max Baucus

                      by emptywheel on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 07:29:58 PM PDT

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  whatever (0+ / 0-)

                        you basically knew what I meant, did'nya? But thanks for the correction. I bet I know a thing or two that you don't, eh?

                        How do you know Hezbollah will wind up stronger when the conflict ends? Destroy the weapons as much as you can, kill them to some degree, then have the international community come in and set up operations in Southern Leb and along the Israeli border. Put some real Leb army troops there too. Is'nt that a possible outcome? That would be a loss for Hezbollah, no?

                        Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt have all condemned Hezbollah, too.

                        •  Loss for Hezbollah (5+ / 0-)

                          The problem is that you'd have to create a Lebanese army out of thin air. And on top of that, you'd have to replace Hezbollah's civil society. And you'd have to find a way to do it without disenfranchising the peaceful Shiites, who are already under-represented in the government. So you're talking not just $2 billion in donations, but probably closer to $10 billion, and people willing to put their troops there for the long term.

                          And if you screw up in any of those areas, then Hezbollah looks more and more like the only power able to defend Lebanon and take care of its people (and I've frankly heard non-Shiites say that, too). And even if you can create that success in Lebanon, this Israeli attack on Lebnon is likely to legitimize Hezbollah or the local version in all the other ME countries with large numbers of dispossessed people.

                          It took us decades to rebuild civil society in Japan such that it could flourish on its own. And Japan had some things, like the ability to trade freely, which, now that its ports and airport have been taken out, Lebanon doesn't have. Plus, we were willing to dump loads and loads and loads of money into Japan to make it work. We don't have the money to do so now. So who's going to lead this wonderful reconstruction of Lebanon?

                          This is the way democracy ends Not with a bomb But with a gavel -Max Baucus

                          by emptywheel on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 07:44:11 PM PDT

                          [ Parent ]

                        •  Real Leb army troops? (3+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          mitchvance, anonymousredvest18, RAZE

                          From where?  Israel is destroying the country's infrastructure, money, military, everything.

                          More powerful because more anger, more recruits, more money.  Israel can do whatever it wants, all it's going to do is sow more hatred.

                          And given that a week ago, as you stated, you didn't know what "Likud" meant, I'm not sure you know a thing or two emptywhell doesn't, at least not on this topic.

                        •  Anger, hatred, (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:

                          and hundreds of thousands of new recruits.  Check out AFP, the Guardian (UK paper) and the English version of Al-Jazeerah if you want a well-rounded version of public opinion on the ground.  One country is bombing, and Hezbollah is proving shelters, food, water and diapers for babies.  Who do you think is winning hearts and minds now?  Tragic lost opportunity.

                      •  you write (0+ / 0-)

                        """"You may choose to use terms that obscure and lie. But it won't save any Israelis."""""

                        yeah, that's just what I did and do. Damn, you've got me sussed. You are smart!

                      •  I don't see how (0+ / 0-)

                        islamofascist conflates only with Hitler, there have been plenty of other fascist states, right?

                        Also, as regards to business/corporate aspect to it, that's because there is no business allowed, or allowed to grow without strict gov't standards and repressive controls on everything that might even hint at violating some sacred religious doctrine,that's what Hezbollah wants.

                        But what is Saudi Arabia? Could'nt they be called fascist because they own the only industry that matters - oil - and use that money to control the population through various means, including propaganda. What do you call that?   serious question.

                  •  What is 4G warfare? n/t (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
            •  No (3+ / 0-)

              Only nine Canadians from the age of one and up, and I think about seven Brazilians, but who the hell cares about them?

              •  why do you assume I don't care (0+ / 1-)
                Recommended by:
                Hidden by:

                about that. We were talking about Americans. Try and follow along.......

                You know your outrage at this country, the USA, must be making your heads literally explode because the civilian deaths in Iraq and the US soldiers killed and wounded has been so much greater. You must walk around in a perpetual state of insanity. How do you function in your day to day lives?

            •  They could have been (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              mitchvance, anonymousredvest18

              very easily.  That no one has, so far, is a fluke.

              As to the Parliament point, what's your source and how recent is it?   And was that someone just trying, desperately, to get the US to encourage some Israeli restraint?  Regardless, sure, a week or two ago a lot of Lebanese really couldn't wait to see the back end of Hezbollah, but now?  It's "us against them", also, they're operating shelters, feeding people, giving them water.  How do thing that's playing?

              •  I've posted this 4 times (0+ / 0-)

                here it is.Very recent, 2 days old

                July 20 (Bloomberg) -- Israel's bombing is fueling a dispute among Lebanon's factions over disarming Hezbollah, whose cross-border attack sparked the conflict.

                ``""""Hezbollah took two Israeli prisoners, and the result now is that 3.5 million Lebanese are being held hostage,'' Samir Franjieh, a Christian member of parliament, said in a telephone interview. ``It's the political path chosen by the Hezbollah and its allies that led to this situation.''

                The outcome of the dispute may determine the future of Lebanon's government, currently a fragile coalition of those opposed to Syrian involvement in Lebanon and pro-Syrian groups led by Hezbollah. Hezbollah's right to bear arms has been the main bone of contention between the two groups.

                Hezbollah was the only militia to keep its weapons after the 16-year civil war ended in 1990. Supported by Syria, Iran and most Lebanese, it fought Israel's occupation of southern Lebanon until it ended in 2000. The Israeli withdrawal and last year's departure of Syrian troops led to calls by anti-Syrian groups for Hezbollah to disarm, as provided for in a 2004 United Nations Security Council resolution.

                Franjieh said the current fighting vindicates the need to implement the resolution, which also calls for the Lebanese government to expand its authority to the border area with Israel controlled by Hezbollah.

                ........``We knew all along that allowing the Hezbollah to keep its weapons will bring such results,'' said Maroun Fares, a 43 year- old Beirut taxi driver. ``Nobody asked us if we wanted the war, if we were prepared for it. We found ourselves suddenly bombed and besieged.''



              •  eek (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:

                I meant, "how do you think that's playing?"

        •  Milk Factory, Soap Factory (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          anonymousredvest18, Petronella, RAZE


          Various factories and warehouses have been destroyed or put out of action. Last night the social affairs minister, Nayla Mouawad, singled out two she said had been wrecked "on purpose". One was a milk plant in the Bekaa valley.

          "It was our biggest milk factory in the Bekaa ... an essential asset for bringing milk to newborn babies and young children," she said.

          The other was a detergent and foodstuffs warehouse for Procter & Gamble, which she described as "essential for food and hygiene".

          This is the way democracy ends Not with a bomb But with a gavel -Max Baucus

          by emptywheel on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 07:01:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

        •  All Of The Above (4+ / 0-)

          Have been reported by major news organizations, mentioned by Juan Cole on his blog, and covered daily by Robert Fisk in The Independent.

          Hariri loved this place and, taking Chirac for a beer one day, he caught sight of me sitting at a table. "Ah Robert, come over here," he roared, turning to Chirac like a cat about to eat a canary. "I want to introduce you, Jacques, to the reporter who said I couldn't rebuild Beirut!"

          And now it is being unbuilt. The Martyr Rafiq Hariri International Airport has been attacked three times by the Israelis, its shopping malls vibrating to the missiles that thunder into the runways and fuel depots. Hariri's transnational highway viaduct has been broken by Israeli bombers. Most of his motorway bridges have been destroyed. The Roman-style lighthouse has been smashed by a missile from an Apache helicopter. Only this small jewel of a restaurant in the centre of Beirut has been spared. So far.

          It is the slums of Haret Hreik and Ghobeiri and Shiyah that have been pounded to dust, sending a quarter of a million Shiite Muslims to schools and abandoned parks across the city. Here, indeed, was the headquarters of Hezbollah, another of those "centres of world terror" the West keeps discovering in Muslim lands.

          Here lived Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, the Party of God's leader, a ruthless, caustic, calculating man, and Sheikh Mohammed Fadlallah, among the wisest and most eloquent of clerics, and many of Hezbollah's top military planners — including, no doubt, the men who planned over many months the capture of the two Israeli soldiers last Wednesday.

          But did the tens of thousands of poor who live here deserve this act of mass punishment? For a country that boasts of its pinpoint accuracy — a doubtful notion in any case, but that's not the issue — what does this act of destruction tell us about Israel? Or about ourselves?

          Don't play dumb and hide behind some lame "give me links" for stories that have been widely reported in the international press. If you want to defend Israel's destruction of civilian targets, go ahead (and defend war crimes), but don't insult everyone's intelligence by pretending it's not happening.

      •  Ah yes... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        You might reconsider this statement:

        Hezbollah has little choice about what it hits, but somehow it has managed to hit primarily military targets. As the rules of war require

        Considering that all of the Israeli soldiers were either killed in the initial Hezbollah invasion or in heavy fighting along the border.  NONE have been killed by Katushas, ALL of which have hit civilian areas.  I might add that those missiles hit civilian areas intentionally; they weren't fired at military targets but at cities, which they preceeded to hit.

        Also, in international law, which many people critical of Israel are so found of citing, it is the responsibility of those who place the military installations like bunkers and command and control facilities within civilian neighborhoods for any deaths in those neighborhoods.  Of course, you can choose to believe that Israel has hit nothing but day care centers and mosques, but that would require a huge leap of faith in Hezbollah.

        As for the targets you list, the Beirut airport is one of the main transfer points for munitions from the outside world to Hezbollah and any tv transmitter can be taken over by other forces and can be used for command and control.  As someone below says, links please on the other suggestions.

        Finally, I ask how it would be possible to tell a civilian adult male from a member of Hezbollah, who don't wear uniforms or anything that would allow them to be differentiated from civilians.  Perhaps just some of these "civilian" casualties are anything but.

        The probability that we may fail in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause we believe to be just. 0.0, -1.74

        by Trinitrotoluene on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 07:00:14 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  good point (0+ / 0-)

          Also, in international law, which many people critical of Israel are so found of citing, it is the responsibility of those who place the military installations like bunkers and command and control facilities within civilian neighborhoods for any deaths in those neighborhoods.

          That's probably the single most overlooked point in the back-and-forth about civilian casualties here.

          ~~~~~~ I've always admired your tart honesty and your ability to be personally offended by broad social trends. --Principal Skinner ~~~~~~

          by cardinal on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 07:04:12 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Wait a minute... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      If civilian deaths in this conflict are murders, then the murder of each individual Lebanese civilian counts for exactly as much as the murder of each individual Israeli civilian.

      Numbers matter. Murdering two hundred and fifty human beings is worse than murdering fifteen. It is more than sixteen times worse, because more than sixteen times as many human beings are dead, and an Israeli human life is not worth more than a Lebanese human life. Every human being murdered is a universe extinguished.

      It is right to condemn more severely those who kill more innocent people.

      I shouldn't have to say this. Tribal math -- with just one of "us" counting for more than any number of "them" and where "our" dead were murdered by terrorist rockets whereas "their" dead just unfortunately got in the way of a justified military bombardment of a residential area, too bad, total accident, just an oopsie, nothing to see here, move along now -- ought to be obsolete. But it isn't.

      Folly is fractal: the closer you look at it, the more of it there is. - TNH

      by Canadian Reader on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 08:30:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  great analysis (0+ / 0-)

    Do you really see different seesdifferent, cause this is more of the same.  Also, you don't need to scream. Thanks.

    I think you need some fresh air.

  •  Real? You don't want real (0+ / 0-)

    What is happening here is that Israel is protecting itself.  Israel gave up occupation of most of this territory (along with the Golan Heights and Gaza) in the guise of peace.  They took this land because they were getting bombed from higher territory.  Lebanon has not provided internal security or police action to control a domestic terrorist group.  They have brought all of this on themselves.

    Israel has every right to protect it's citizens.  Just like every war effort, collateral damage happens.  One of the reasons there are so many Lebanese deaths is that Hezbollah is preventing citizens from leaving the war grounds.  Why don't you talk about reality instead of defending terrorist organizations.

    •  israel gave up golan? (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mitchvance, anonymousredvest18

      you pretty sure about that?

      i'm an agnostic, i'd be an atheist if it weren't for mozart

      by rasbobbo on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 06:32:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Neither side is blameless (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      anonymousredvest18, RAZE

      The current crisis cannot be reduced to the trite 'Israel has the right to protect itself', as much as the Israeli apologists like to push that slogan out into the debate.  Do the Arabs not also have that right?  Both sides can easily claim that their attacks are only in retaliation, both sides can justifiably claim that their violence is pre-emptive.

      The right wing extremist elements in Israel are just as much to blame for the violence as are the Islamic extremists.  Both sides provoke the other without regard to the costs for the average civilians. Both sides are willing to kill to attain their goals.

      Pretending that Israel is some innocent in all of this is just so much bullshit.  They helped create the current situation, and now try to pretend that they have done everything in their power to achieve peace.

      If Israel's actions were so noble, they wouldn't need to rely on blackmail and intimidation in order to silence any and all criticism.

      •  Arabs can defend themselves (0+ / 0-)

        I certainly believe that the Arabs, Palestinian, Israelis, Iraqis, etc., all have the right to defend themselves.  That is exactly why Israel is doing what they are right now.  Hezbollah launched rockets from Lebanon into Israel.  Israel has the right and obligation to their citizens to defend themselves.  If Israel had done this unprovoked, I would be the first person to say they should cease and desist.  You still can't explain or justify Hezbollah's attack of Israeli citizens.

        I stand corrected on Golan Heights and Israel (kinda).  They don't claim it as Israeli territory, but they do occupy it due to the previously mentioned bombing.  It doesn't really change the causes of the conflict.  With the exception of Israel's bombing of the Iraqi nuclear facility (certainly pre-emptive), I can't think of a single war that Israel has been involved in that wasn't the result of agression by one of their neighbors.

        How has Israel caused the current situation other than not attacking Hezbollah earlier when they had less weaponry?  Lebanon and Syria have violated several UN mandates.  Why is not the liberal left supporting the UN in this endeavor?  The UN is your "greatest glory" in resolving world issues.  Oh, I'm sorry, the UN hasn't done anything useful in years.

        •  well (0+ / 0-)

          I am not excited to 'justify' Hizbollah's position, but I suspect it has alot to do with what Israel is doing in Gaza.  Anytime Israel cracks down on Arabs under their control, it makes the other radical groups upset.   Since Hizbollah sees itself as a protector of Israeli victims, it is no surprise that Israel's actions drew a response - as the likely knew and hoped it would.

          It may well also be connected to that squad of assasins that Israel sent into Lebanon - the ones that Lebanese police announced they had captured about a week before this all started.  They may well have been upset about their neighbor sending a team of people into their country to kill people.

          It is a shame that so little of the other side's perspective makes it through the media filter in this country - Israel has done a fine job of bullying their perspective to the top.

          •  Israel in Gaza (0+ / 0-)

            And the only time Israel cracks down on Arabs in Gaza or other areas is when they start killing Israelis.  Imagine what our reaction would be if American citizens were being killed in a foreign country. Oh, that happened in Iran in the 1980's!  Guess what we attempted under a feeble President Carter, a partial military response to try to rescue the hostages.  Clinton bombed a baby food factory after the 1993 World Trade Center bomb.

            It is documented in many places that Israel treats legal Arab residents in Israel better that the Arab nations treat them.  They are just not going to stand around and let terrorist kill citizens.

            •  What a crock (0+ / 0-)

              The same old tired line:  Israel only retaliates.  

              Any attack by either Israel, Palestinians or Hezbollah can easily be traced directly back to the attack by the other side for which it was only a 'retaliation', but somehow in your mind it is only Israel that comes out with rose scented sh*t.

              I am sure that swallowing this bullsh*t helps you sleep at night, but I doubt it will do you much good when it is time to face God and be judged for what you did, or did not do, in this life.

              Wake up and stop allowing your bias make you as stupid as the republican ditto heads.

              •  Actually, I sleep very well (0+ / 0-)

                at night.

                Well, let's trace this back to the beginning, or at least to 1948.  Israel was established by UN decree.  Whether you agree with this or not, this places a fixed point in time.

                Since then, it is my position that Israel has only responded to agression against them (as I stated in an earlier post, the bombing of the Iraqi nuclear plant is an exception, but that was not for taking of territory) when "invading" or responding to threats.  You are welcome to educate me with examples of when Israel has unilaterally invaded a bordering country just to make a land grab or to initiate conflict.

                I can point to many occasions where Israel has responded to military attacks with a military response.  The country has been the subject to many attacks from the various Islamic countries around them.  They are the direct subject to several groups that want to wipe them off the face of the earth.  I am amazed that they have shown the restraint they have over the years.

                So, yes, I sleep very well at night knowing that Israel is helping the the war on terrorist.  Yes, I sleep very well know that terrorist are basically cowards and fight by hiding amongst the innocent citizens of a country.  Yes, I sleep very well at night knowing that Lebanon, if they wanted to, could take a public position concerning the terrorist and I believe that we would be right there helping them with the difficulty of eradicating a blight on the earth.

                And yes, I believe that I am in good stead with God in these positions.  No where am I commanded to tolerate terrorists.  God expects me to help the helpless, defend the defenseless, and to help those that need help. He also expects me to be his light on the earth, to spread the word about his Son being the salvation of man on the day of judgement.  I would much rather be in my shoes than those of a Muslim terrorist.

                Finally, I would ask you to stop allowing your bias of republicans being stupid dittoheads from letting you see reality.  Yes, Israel is taking some criticisms today for the bombings on Saturday night, but for the most part they are actually getting the support of the Arab nations that recognize that Hezbollah is the tool of Iran and Syria.  The Arab nations do not want Hezbollah to be dominate anymore than Israel does.  Hence, the common position of, "Let Israel take care of the problem."

                Your response is typical of the Democrat and liberal groups.  Attack the individual, not evaluate the situation.  Attack the individual long and hard enough, they will go away.  It does not, however, help in discussions or to fix problems.  Not once in my posts will you see me attacking the previous poster and not addresses the discussion.

  •  Keep going with the numbers (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I read the Lebanese Govt. (can't remember the cite) estimated just the infrastructural damage to be 2 Billion USD$ dollars on the 7th(?) day.

    So 2 captured (not killed, not tortured, not rendered) soldiers = 2 Billion in Damages.

    Remember that next time you are stranded somewhere you don't want to be with people who don't like you for a week. You are entitled to 1 Billion Dollars in Damages-

    if John Bolton has your back at the UN.

    I suppose this is the Israeli Govt. trying to butch it up for all those Israeli parents who understand that military service is mandatory for all of their children.

    Remember those in prison as though you were there with them. -7.88,-9.49

    by Kujo AAR on Sat Jul 22, 2006 at 06:53:54 PM PDT

    •  2 soldiers just an excuse (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Petronella, RAZE

      The capture of those 2 soldiers were just an excuse.  By their own admission, Israel finished planning this attack about a year ago.  By their own admission, this attack was inevitable.  They just needed a good excuse.

      The soldiers capture could easily have been replaced by some other equally rare but not unheard of occurance.  It was all about the propaganda campaign that propelled it from the same old tit-for-tat crap to it's current mythical status of unheard of atrocity.

      Israel excels at spinning the web of bullshit to suit their needs.  

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