Saturday, July 15th
When Israel withdrew from Lebanon entirely 6 years ago, prime minister Ehud Barak warned the Hezbollah not to test what Israel would do if it were attacked on its own territory. Israel warned the Palestinians in similar words after the unilateral withdrawal from the Gaza Strip last year. Israel believed that after the total withdrawal from these areas, there would be absolutely no justification left for attacks from those areas on Israel, and Israel therefore would have the right to strike hard against any such attacks. It was expected that the international community would understand (and agree to this) more or less, since every country has the right to defend itself against attacks on its own territory, and the attacks could no longer be considered 'legitimate resistance' against the occupation. There was also some hope that the Palestinians would understand this, and would use their resources and energy in building up the Gaza strip instead of building rockets.
Ratna Pelle on 07.15.06 @ 06:25 AM CST [link]
The war in Israel's north is not about Palestinians, or about Israel. It's about Lebanon, Syria, Iran and the United States. It will determine who is in charge of Lebanese democracy, and whether or not the US initiative for democracy in the Middle East is going to be totally derailed by Jihadist fanatics and their cynical masters in Damascus and Tehran. The Hezbollah are dumping rockets on Haifa, Nahariya and Safed, but the real targets are Beirut and Washington DC.
Ami Isseroff on 07.15.06 @ 12:59 AM CST [link]
Thursday, July 13th
Hizbullah "Raad" (Katyousha) rockets hit Nahariya, Safed, Haifa and Carmiel today (see map below). Raad is a modified Katyousha rocket with a 33 CM diameter and 100 KG warhead. Hizbulla denied firing rockets at Haifa, but two rockets fell there nonetheless. Various explanations were sought for the Hizbullah denial. It never seemed to occur to anyone that they might just be lying.
Ami Isseroff on 07.13.06 @ 09:39 PM CST [link]
The Lebanese, and with them the French government, are engaged in the delicate art of blame shifting. The Israelis, they are claiming, should not be punishing the poor Lebanese, who are really helpless to do anything about the Hizbullah and its leader, Hassan Nasrallah. Meanwhile, Katyousha rockets rain down on Israeli cities and the European and Arab press report about Israeli "excesses." The Lebanese are quite indignant that Israel bombed Beirut Airport and other targets.
Ami Isseroff on 07.13.06 @ 02:52 PM CST [link]
Wednesday, July 12th
It was bound to happen sooner or later. This morning the Hizbullah killed 3 Israeli soldiers, kidnapped two and fired mortars and Katyousha rockets near Sheba farms as well as near the Israeli community of Moshav Zarit along the Israeli-Lebanese border. IDF responded with a bombardment of targets in Lebanon and invasion of Lebanon, apparently in pursuit of the kidnappers, and that is just the beginning. Four more Israeli soldiers were apparently killed in action today. The Israeli cabinet is meeting this evening to decide on further steps, following the expected bellicose rhetoric. An ominous red banner across the bottom of my TV screen proclaims "Back to Lebanon." Israelis who remember the Lebanese war cannot be pleased at this prospect.
The IDF was also busy in Gaza today. It bombed a building where the top brass of the Hamas were meeting. The meeting was held in a concrete reinforced basement, so most of the Hamas leaders escaped unharmed. Seven civilians were killed. Mohamed Deif and another Hamas leader were apparently injured. The extent of their injuries is not known.
Ami Isseroff on 07.12.06 @ 11:32 PM CST [link]
Tuesday, July 11th
For those of us who despair of ordinary help, here's heartening news at the Marvel Web site: an Israeli mutant superwoman hero. No doubt, Sabra (real name Ruth Bat-Seraph, true identity not known) will leap tall buildings, ride unmanned attack aircraft with a gracious wiggle of her derriere, escape the clutches of the all-powerful evil forces, rescue kids from terrorists and stop suicide bombers with force fields. For those of you who do not like comix and action movies and don't even know who Jessica Alba ("Max" from "Dark Angel" - OK, you don't know that either) is, and don't even care, hang in there - there's a serious point here too.
Ami Isseroff on 07.11.06 @ 06:01 PM CST [link]
First it was the occupation, and that in the eyes of world media explained it all. The Palestinians have the right to oppose such occupation. The debate degenerated into the justification of suicide bombing, with the holier than thou crowds feigning a moral struggle of conscience when civilian death repeatedly occurred.
And we kept reminding them … It’s about the terrorism stupid!!
Then, lacking any listening or consenting partner, Israel decided to vacate Gaza, and in the process acknowledge that it had no desire to occupy anyone’s land, or subjugate any people. In one fell swoop Israel implemented a unilateral withdrawal from Gaza, with only one hope; that the Palestinians having for the first time the opportunity for self rule will choose Peace and coexistence and not a futile course of destruction.
Yet what happened next was, to say the least, anti-climactic; the Palestinians chose a Hamas leadership hell bent on not recognizing Israel’s right to exist; and in the process chose to continue to carry out their terrorist activities by incessantly shelling Israeli towns with Qassam rockets. At best an undeclared war, of what though, and for what purpose? Reclaiming all of Israel territories and pushing her Jews into the sea!
Finally, they dug their tunnel, and continued their hostilities and open warring on Israel by killing more civilians yet, as well as IDF soldiers and abducting another.
Israel, a recognized sovereign state, being shelled, and raided by her neighbor, and what do one call that now?
It’s still about the terrorism stupid!!
Israel has the right to defend herself, and to restore security within her borders. So what, the international media frenzy is now about, collective punishment, the inordinate response by the IDF and the continued suffering of the population that chose Hamas and Jihad as their response to Israel gestures, in lieu of statesmanship and nationhood.
Some questions you may have (or may be asked) and some responses, from The Israel Highway:
Israel Bonan on 07.11.06 @ 03:38 PM CST [link]
Monday, July 10th
By now the media and the Web are full of the reports of the influence "nefarious" Israel Lobby, which have appeared in every major journal, together with insistent whining that this "secret" story cannot be published anywhere because of the nefarious workings of the Israel Lobby. So everyone knows that the "Zionists" are all powerful, and that the "Zionists try to shut up anyone who "dares to tell the truth" about our "secret cabal."
Ami Isseroff on 07.10.06 @ 03:06 PM CST [link]
Every other day I have a different opinion about the "realignment" (consolidation, disengagement) program of PM Ehud Olmert. I suppose that represents the Israeli consensus. On the one hand, we do not want to rule over another people, or to waste money on settlements the international community will not let us keep. The defense burden of Gaza and the West Bank, not generally discussed, was/is onerous.
Ami Isseroff on 07.10.06 @ 02:01 PM CST [link]
The Hamas is undoubtedly one of the most odious organizations that ever came into being. The Hamas charter insists that Muslims must murder all the Jews in order to bring about judgement day, cites the forged "Protocols of the Elders of Zion" as the supposed program of the Zionists, and blames the French Revolution on "Zionists." Hamas leaders have also repeatedly insisted that they will never make peace with Israel. Therefore they can hardly be offered up as a "peace partner." Nonetheless there are those who insist that the Hamas is the "legitimate" "democratically elected" government of the Palestinian people and that it represents them.
Ami Isseroff on 07.10.06 @ 12:30 PM CST [link]
While many European commentators, along with Arab and Muslim colleagues in Iran and other bastions of progressive thought rushed to defend the "innocent" Hamas leadership and Palestinian people, a distinctively different note was heard in some surprising quarters.
Arab commentary: So why do the Palestinians continue to fire, now that Israel has left Gaza?...Continued shooting at Israel proves that there is no reason.
Ami Isseroff on 07.10.06 @ 11:21 AM CST [link]
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