Steven A. Hass: An American War In Israeli Uniform
Steven A. Hass: An American War In Israeli Uniforms
An American War In Israeli Uniforms
By Steven A. Hass
Newzmaniac - Notes From The Fringe
In this third week of the Israeli "mini Iraq" campaign of destruction in Lebanon, the international community has increased calls for an immediate ceasefire in the conflict. However, George W. Bush has refused to demand the same, preferring to allow Israel whatever time Israel wants for continuing the onslaught. If this were not bad enough, Bush's explanation for it is baffling: "Israel needs more time to disarm Hezbollah". Ignoring the fact that it's Bush saying this, why would he say something so senseless? Because that's what Israel told him to say.
The Israeli military can't even find Hezbollah - how are they supposed to disarm them? Israel's battle plan apparently is to massacre enough of Lebanon to be able to assume they've massacred enough of Hezbollah. The massacre is working, but Israeli air strikes with precision-guided missiles have not only killed hundreds of Lebanese civilians (disproportionately women and children), but they've also killed U.N. observers who were clearly from the U.N. These are deliberate attacks with guided missiles, and clearly justify the international outrage now being expressed against Israel and the United States. To make matters worse, the U.S. is openly arming Israel with even more missiles, with blessings from Tony Blair to use his country as a refueling stop. Two loaded planes have already done so, and two more are doing so right now, all headed for Tel Aviv. Both were granted immunity from Britain's cargo prohibitions. The international community demands a ceasefire while Bush and Blair arm and encourage Israel's continued destruction of Lebanon.
Lurking in the shadows, the Israeli massacre of innocent Lebanese women and children does have it benefits for a Republican-led United States, particularly in an election year such as this. George W. Bush and his followers have no credibility left anywhere in the world, and the price for this would presumably be paid by his Republican party in the November elections. Without a major international event for distraction, the pre-election campaign focus would be on Bush, his fellow Republicans, and their collective record of waste, fraud, abuse, and corruption. The Israeli attacks against Lebanon are a perfect fit for Bush, Inc.
This crisis also has a more lucrative benefit for Bush. His lack of credibility has prevented him from achieving his goal of war with Iran and Syria, both supporters of Hezbollah. In a perfect world for Bush, Hezbollah would provoke Israel into a war, which by association would involve both Syria and Iran, and lack of credibility would no longer be a hindrance for Bush. Right on cue, that's exactly what happened.
Watching this crisis is like reading a bad script being followed to precision. The Israelis left the Gaza strip last year not for any humanitarian reasons, but because they knew Hezbollah would then assume control from Gaza and use it to attack Israel. This would lead to "retaliatory" strikes from Israel, which would lead to "retaliatory" actions by Hezbollah, and an international crisis would be born. Israel has its excuse to invade Lebanon once again, and Bush has his excuse to point a finger at Syria and Iran. Israel and the U.S. get what they each want, and they both come out smelling like roses - for the time being.
Before there was an Israel, the U.S. didn't have an enemy in the Middle East. Now it has an entire region of enemies. Israel (as a political state) is a 60-year failed experiment and should be seen as such. That's not anti-Jewish sentiment, it's a reality-based conclusion. Jewish followers can live anywhere they're welcome to practice their religion, just as all other world religions can. There isn't a specific Christian state, or a specific Buddhist state - somehow the Jewish religion scored a coup, and it's been a disaster from the start. Before you call that an anti-Semitic opinion, learn who true Semites really are; you might be surprised.
Israel is transparently dictating U.S. policy for this crisis, and the rest of the world is reacting accordingly. How far that reaction goes is still to be seen.