Thursday, April 10, 2008

I've been quite busy recently and haven't been able to post as much as I'd like to but that does not mean I haven't been following the news closely. When I heard that Maliki's government had decided it was going to eliminate the Sadr militia in Basra I immediately thought that this was a stupid move. The Mahdi army might have been thuggish and inexperienced when they first started, but they reminded me of things I had read about Hezbullah when they had first appeared in the south of Lebanon. If we compare Hezbullah then to now, it is like trying to compare a Maserati with a Ford Model T, so why is that? It is because Hezbullah were able to demonstrate to Iran and Syria that they were capable, adaptable and reliable enough to be heavily invested in. That investment has been paid off and Hezbullah is itself a force to be reckoned with now, rather than some Iranian appendage as some like to believe. I think somebody in Iran looked at Muqtada with his bad teeth and frightening, unphotogenic visage and thought he had the potential for a makeover. The Mahdi army has the same seeds of potential as Hezbullah did and someone has been investing heavily in them.

Recently, As'ad Abu Khalil had noticed the massive difference in Muqtada's handling of interviews and the media since his long absence. Another thing to remember is that the American occupation had announced a while back of their capture of a Hezbullah operative in the south of Iraq. I'm sure Hezbullah's performance against Israel in 2006 was monitored very closely by al Sadr's militia, as it was by almost all other guerilla movements throughout the world. So all in all, al Maliki's stupid decision, if it was his at all, in sending his own army made up predominantly of Shia Muslims against the Mahdi army probably jeapardised the entire quisling Iraqi government had it not been for a hasty American and British intervention. Now this tell's me that this part of the fence is not going to be suitable for America's next attempt at reshaping the Middle East so it will have to try in another place.

This second place might be in Gaza, the weakest link in the chain. Shamefully, Egypt has reinforced it's border fence with the place with armoured vehicles and riot police (all armed to the teeth). Now there are rumours of another attempted breach by Hamas as they did earlier this year, but what is ominous is that they said they would also attempt it in "other" areas and not just with Egypt. I think the recent attack against an Israeli fuel depot is a prelude to that, though I find it amusing that now Israel also uses the Syrian response of "a place and time of our choosing". Another action like this might be the pretext the Israeli's want for demolishing Gaza with a "Fallujah option" and that's probably what I would do before trying to take on Hezbullah and Iran.

If Israel manages to set its "house" in order by taking out the thorn in its backside, then that will be an improvement of what is already a very bleak situation for her. Whether she will manage is another matter. I think both Israel and the United States now realise that the Arabs of today are not the same as the Arabs of thirty years ago - though of couse this will mean they will now devise ways of being even more deadly in their attacks.

16 comments:

Serene said...

Hi Wassim. Welcome back.

I am surprised by your reference to Gaza as the "weakest link." In fact, if we look at events ever since the democratic election of Hamas in 2006, and the overwhelming (and illegal) international pressure on the people of Gaza to bow down to the Israeli/US demand to oust Hamas, we will see that in fact the people of Gaza have shown immense resilience, dignity and above all restraint. Two years and four months on, they remain resilient.

Secondly, when it comes to both Iraq and Palestine, resistance is of the people, and of no other state. Let us not forget this lest we fall into the trap of accepting the unacceptable.

The Iraqi people have resisted genocide now for 5 years. By virtue of this and this alone, the US has long lost its war. The only option available to it and its allies is immediate withdrawal.

Wassim said...

Hi Serene,
Nice to see you at Maysaloon more often btw :) Well firstly when I refer to Gaza as the weakest link in no way do I denigrate the remarkable resilience of the Palestinian people there. When you are drowning you clutch at straws and an Israeli strategist would probably decide that between HA, Iran and Gaza, it is Gaza which would not be able to put up as much resistance to a full out onslaught. I hope I'm wrong about this of course.

I agree with the second point you made but you and I both know that the option you demand will not be accepted by people whose job it is to ensure that they win. What I was trying to do is see what other things they might try to do since, as they Americans say, "it 'aint over till the fat lady sings".

Serene said...

Thanks.

I would like to remind you of the content of your disclaimer: "This blog has been written from an Arab perspective, and the articles and views expressed indicate clearly my opinion on the subjects." This is your strength. All I do is ask you to maintain it.

In addition, as for the US trying to win, the more it tries, the more it shows its weakness.
Five years on from invasion and a blatant failure to subdue the Iraqi people, it is clear that it is the US strategists whom you refer to that are clutching at straws the hardest.

Wassim said...

Actually the US strategists are exactly who I had in mind when I used that phrase ;)

Wow, I don't think I've ever been grilled by a journalist before. I'll try to stick with what my disclaimer said in future!

Amre El-Abyad said...

"Another thing to remember is that the American occupation had announced a while back of their capture of a Hezbullah operative in the south of Iraq"

I se so Nasarallh is directly involved in Iran's proxies crack down on the most heroic reistance in history off mankind. the Iraqi one who are taking on Iran, U.S and its allies all simultaniously:)

So Hezbollah is a not an Iranian puppet. why did Iran invest in it then? is for the love of humanity or what:)

It is amzing the last war hizbollah launched aginst Israel. Just to serve Iranian interets as well as American ones in divisding the Arab world along sectarian lines:)

I also wonder how would Syria have dealt with Hamas had they stromed the Syrian borders.

Hamas will be used the same way U.S-Iran used the Iranian-Iraqi shiites to create the new middle east, where Iran expends to the mediterrenean , Egypt locked out But exporting gaza to Sinai. Sooner than ou expect ou will see marginal Arab statlets revolving around Iranian and Israelian orbits:)

nadia n said...

I've disagreed with you before but with your characterization of Sadr here I'm simply confused. I fugured cleansing of Palestinians is a place where you could draw a pretty clear line.

Wassim said...

Hi Nadia,
I'm just looking at what he is doing and the position that his Mahdi army is in right now. Would you mind telling me a bit more as I'm not really sure how you arrived to that conclusion!

nadia n said...

At which conclusion, that what happened in Baghdad qualifies as ethnic cleansing, that it stopped when he called a truce? I don't know that I agree with your comparison between the Mahdi and Hizbllh in their early days. But even if they did go that route it seems like wishful thinking that they will at this stage, and it bothers me that people are so willing to accept them before they actually show they are willing to do so. Some douchebags just remain douchebags.

qunfuz said...

Amre - It wasn't Hizbullah who tried to divide the region by sect. That was the Saudis, Jordanians, Egyptians, who whinge about a supposed 'Shia cresent' whenever Hizbullah strikes a blow against Zionist/American hegemony. The pro-American Sunni regimes (although their politics has nothing really to do with their sect) are playing the sectarian card to distract from the real conflict - of pro and anti-imperialist forces.

If Hizbullah is so sectarian why is it working with Sunni Hamas?

And it isn't Iran's or Hizbullah's fault if Egypt is irrelevant. Tnat's the fault of the oppressive US-client regime in Egypt.

Wassim said...

Qunfuz has a point Amre, have you ever thought that maybe you comment on the events as you want them to be and not just on what they are?

Wassim said...

Hi Nadia,
Well I'm sure there is a lot to disagree with in my post and maybe I sounded a bit too sympathetic to al Sadr and his movement, which I'm not. Still, that doesn't mean we shouldn't try to analyse what is happening and try to explain it so that we understand. We are talking about a context in which none of the actors is particularly nice or just.

Amre El-Abyad said...

Qunfuz,

An Iranioan is saying Egypt is irrelevet:))

Man compare the two countries and you will realize that your country Iran is a big zero.

I am talking technological advancment, women rights , individual liberty, military efffciency.

And if we are really irrelevnt, then ask someof your country men who fought in 1988 about what missiles, and technlogies that slew Iranians in thoudsands in 1988 iam talking El-Fao.

The Iranian qunfuz is talking about sectariansim.

You have actually, qunfuz, reinforced my point abpout the structural defiecincies in this entity so called Iran. you a really one dimensional minded and totally incapable of serious thinking.

The head of the Egyptian regime fought Israel with his own hands 5 times and contributed in bringing on its first defeat.

Th eregime of Hosni Moubarak, provided staregic and technical suport to Iraq when it was going through an 8 years n behalf of the Arab nation against the Irania enemy.


Now let's look at the BABOON- AYATOLLAH KHOMEINI which you worship and his mistress- Ayatollaj Ali Khameini.

First Khomeni was installed by the CIA which encouraged him to call for bringing down the regime in Bagdad, it cracked down onArab nationalism and started al over the old habit of the sticky Iranians imposeing themslves on Arabs, that resulted in an 8 years war that destabilised the region.

LOOK AT THIS AYATILLAH KHOMWEINI WAS BUYING ARMS FOR HIS FORCES LEAD BY THE RAT NAJAD AND ALI KHAMEINI TO KILL ARAB S IN IRAQ.

However Egyptian regime took the homourabnle stand againsty the Irania enemy.

Despite of all my reservations against Egyptian regime, comartively speaking I have to say that an old shoe of Moubarak i equal to the entire Iranian nation.

Qunfuz- get out of the land of your masters:)) or you will be gassed gain. some times chemical insecticides is best way to handle LOCUST no matter how harmful it is to the environment.

For thousands of years Iran is nothing but trouble enforcing itself on Arabs , we have civilised you all the time bring you alphabet and letters, but it doesnt work, you never scram!!!!!!!

qunfuz said...

Amre - you have just posted a similar bout of hysteria on my blog. I've taken it with a smile so far, but when I read your rants about 'locusts' (on my blog you say that Iranians are really Indians) then I stop smiling. Racism isn't funny. And if you think such hatred of Iranians is going to help solve our region's problems you are even stupider than you seem. Also, your pride in Saddam Hussain's criminal Western-backed genocidal use of poison gas against Iranian cities, as well as against Iraqi civilians is simply disgusting.

And I wonder where you get the idea that I'm Iranian? I'm not.

Amre El-Abyad said...

It was Iran that used gas first- proven.

And President Saddam did his best to defend his country and the entire Arab nation against the saidistic retrograde retarded gangesters of Qum whose leader installed by the CIA, in order to plunge the whole region into chaeos destabilsing it which would prevent Arab people from fully actualising their potentials.

Secondly, I didn't say Iranians are Indians- I simply said that Persian culture belong to the Indian civilisation sphere ( it is not an Arab culture and it has never been a part of the near east, unlike Babylon, Arabia, Egypt, Syria, Yemen).

It seems that it is you who is a recist since you got hyterical at the slightest implication of an Iranian connection with India ( which is not totally wrong by the way, as Dravidians had been the main inhabitants of the Iranian plateau until the arrival of the Aryan wave in second millenium B.C)

Why do you use the term our region?

It is all made up of Arabs. Israel is a colonsing anomaly. Turkey is oriented towards Europe, why impose yourself?

If you were not Iranian, then it is worse because it means that you are traitor brain washed Arab with no dignity, one with no qualms about throwing himself into the arms of the criminal natin of Iran ( along with the wahabi Queda terrorists) which killing Arab women and childern and ethnically cleansing a great city like Baghdad.

AlLubnan said...

Why Hezbollah LOST the War in Lebanon!
And the Current 'Present' Situation in Southern Lebanon

By Gabriel al-Amin
Beirut, Lebanon

http://www.lebanonwire.com/0709MLN/07092429MN.asp


On July 12, 2006 Hezbollah kidnapped two Israeli soldiers that led to Israel's war with them and, by extension, Lebanon itself. Hezbollah has been on Israel's fence since the latter's withdrawal from Lebanon in 2000. Israel always requested from the international community and from the Lebanese government to deploy its Lebanese Army there instead of Hezbollah militants. Hezbollah, quite naturally, refused! Hezbollah vowed to NEVER allow any other force other than itself to occupy southern Lebanon. Even during the conflict, Hezbollah said it would never agree to allow either the Lebanese army nor international monitors to patrol southern Lebanon.


Then finally, when two IDF (Israeli Defense Force) soldiers were kidnapped, Israel found the perfect excuse it was looking for to go into Lebanon and push Hezbollah well away from the Lebanese-Israel border. Israel pursued a limited invasion and killed over 500-600 Hezbollah members during the one month war. Additionally, Israel took over every single village in southern Lebanon. During the conflict even though Hezbollah received such a blow and all its members were freaked out and on the run. Yet when the hostilities ended, Hezbollah claimed victory! But did it really win?

Firstly, Israel agreed to a cessation of hostilities NOT because it surrendered and defeated militarily, but because of international pressure from the European Union and the United States. During this conflict Israel endured more international pressure, than it ever did in the past 10 years. Israel was put forth conditions and international agreements, such as the deployment of 15,000 Lebanese soldiers and 15,000 United Nations peace keepers into southern Lebanon, and arms embargo on Hizbollah. "This" proposal which was presented to Israel which EVEN Hzbollah agreed to accept, was something Israel was yearning for for many decades and was a once in a life time opportunity, it was a REAL "golden opportunity," even the far right in Israel said "this is an excellent proposal, so give it a shot." This cessation of hostilities, known as "The August Ceasefire", was initiated by the United Nations and International Community, and was put forward before both parties, Israel and Hzbollah, Hzbollah JUMPED right on the wagon to accept, because they saw it as the only way out of the mess they got themselves into. While at the same time, Israel was more stubborn on accept this ceasefire-agreement, since they were on a winning streak. Ever since then Hizbollah has not been seen or heard from in Southern Lebanon! At long last the frail Lebanese Government has finally had a degree of sovereignty over all of its state and is finally monitoring and guarding its own borders.

Not too long ago, nearly all television and print media images coming out of southern Lebanon were that of armed Hizbullah fighters with their guns, outposts, and banners. Not anymore! Hizbullah is now hiding under rocks in Southern Lebanon, its military might having received a substantial blow. In addition, Hizbullah is no longer enjoying the freedom and luxury of easily transferring Syrian/Iranian weaponry across the Lebanese-Syrian border or via the Beirut seaport. Much of this due to the combined efforts of a stronger Lebanese army and U.N. forces keeping a lid on such transferals.

But even though the International Troops and the Lebanese Army keep Hizbullah in check, isn't there still Hizullah presence in Southern Lebanon, EVEN THOUGH they are hiding "under rocks?" The same could be said for Al Qaeda presence in the United States, who are also hiding under rocks.

Hizbullah may portray themselves as fearsome "militants" but they are in fact cowards cowering behind Lebanese civilians. Yet, through mostly pin-point targeting, the IDF dealt a heavy blow to Hizbullah. Five to six hundred Hizbullah terrorists were killed and nearly all of their bases, headquarters and tactical infrastructure destroyed.

Some might say, "But didn’t Hezbullah manage to shoot over one hundred rockets into Israel every single day? AND why, during the war, didn't the Israel army/air-force ever manage to stop the Katyusha fire?" Well the answer to that would be "What's so impressive about groups of one or two rag heads pointing and setting off an unguided Katyusha southward into Israel?" In addition to the fact that Hezbullah only needed 1% of their military might in order to shoot Katyushas from their scattered fields and caves, into Israel every day. Plus, the only way to have completely stopped the Katyusha fire would have been to occupy every square inch of South Lebanon, including 20 miles north of the Litani, and to stay there for a few months. In the past 7 years, Israel wasn’t even able to curb the Palestinian Qassam rocket fire from Gaza.

Israel 'BADLY' miscalculated Hezbullah, those past 6 years since it withdrew from Lebanon. Why? Because in 2004, it was estimated that if Israel was to engage in war with Hezbullah, their Katyusha arsenal would result in 100 deaths per day on the Israeli side, but instead only 2 people per day were killed by those rockets. But during the war, Israel came to the realization that 99.9% of all those rocket attacks, mostly result in a lot of noise and broken windows. Prior to the war it was also estimated that if Israel launched a ground invasion, it would result in the deaths of over 70 Israeli soldiers per day, which would have left over 2000 dead on the IDF side at the end of the 34 day conflict. But only 120 soldiers were killed in total, which makes it 3-4 soldiers per day. Also, prior to the war AND during the war, both the ‘poor’ Israeli intelligence and Hezbullah itself even claimed, that the “Mighty Hezbullah Rocket Arsenal” would hit Tel-Aviv, but ‘no rocket ever made it to Tel-Aviv!’ Instead, Hezbullah, tried to send little remote controlled ‘toy’ planes there.

The reason 120 soldiers were killed in the first place, is because what would someone expect if an army deployed 30,000 soldiers squashed together in a small, tight, open space (South Lebanon)! It was amazing that after the war, those soldier didn't all suffer from cluster phobia. But even though Israel deployed so many soldiers in the open, Hezbullah didn't manage to deliver that harsh blow as was estimated before the ground invasion. But after all, Hezbullah didn't fight as courageous as the Egyptians during the Suez Canal invasion, nor as the Syrians during the war in the Golan heights.

It shouldn’t shock the world that Hizbollah bombed a couple Israeli Merkava Tanks, because even the Palestinians have done it in the past too. Blowing up a Merkava Tank is NOT an ‘uncommon’ operation. But at the same time Israel was still advancing and still taking over every village in South Lebanon, bombing every headquarter and outpost, all Hezbollah members were on the run. Even though Israel lost a couple of tanks and didn’t destroy Hezbollah, it still doesn’t mean they (Israel) were defeated militarily. The definition of military defeat, mean: to crush the other side, force it to flee and or be on the run, or force it into surrender. Israel was not defeated militarily!

The same can be said about the Israeli naval ship that was bombed by Hisbollah of the coast of Lebanon, during the first week of the conflict, which caused a tiny bit of damage to the ship and which resulted in the deaths of 4 Israeli naval soldiers. Once again this wasn’t a military defeat, but it was an internal flaw, which meant that; Israel needed a better anti missile naval detector radar, a better anti missile interceptor, and better armor for its ship. But did Hisbollah succeed in sinking the ship and destroying it completely, did they destroy all the Israeli naval ships of the Lebanon Coast, did Israel scurry away with all its ships with its tail in between its legs, or did Israel ask for a cease-fire? NO! Instead, Israel simultaneously the same day, brought the damaged ship back into Israel for repair and sent another ship to the Lebanon Coast to replace it.

During and after the war, Hisbollah regretted starting the war in the first place, by kidnapped the two Israeli soldiers. But Israel on the other hand, didn’t regret going to war with Hisbollah, not even 1%. In fact Israel was ready to go for round two, but Hisbollah, will not dare even consider thinking about it.

During the fighting, many people (both inside and outside Lebanon) finally saw Hezbollah as they really are... a terrorist group. It's strategy had little or no military value. The rockets they launched were intended to cause terror among Israel's citizenry. They were not aimed at Israel military targets.

Israel never managed to destroy Hisbollah. As much as the IDF might have wanted to, the wiping out of Hisbollah was not Israel's goal. Nor could it ever be its goal. It is against the laws of physics to destroy a guerilla/terrorist group (America is learning it the hard way with Al Qaeda) since their operatives and members are always blending in and out of the civilian populations from which they so cowardly operate. In fact NEVER in history has a guerilla group ever been destroyed.

Additionally, rescuing the kidnapped IDF soldiers without a strong intelligence as to exactly where they were hidden, would have been a nearly impossible mission, assuming they had not already been secreted out of Lebanon into Syria or Iran!

We constantly hear phrases such "Hezb’allah emerged stronger," "Hezb’ollah is now stronger than ever," or "Hezb’allah is now seen stronger than before!" There is some truth to that. Since before the Israeli withdrawal of 2000, Hezb’allah was seen as more of a small arms, home made explosive, cut and run group, but during this conflict they were able to show off their Iranian made weapons. But they were no match for the Israeli army, whom they bowed down to at the end, by feeling too threatened to attack and provoke ever again.

When the United Nations wanted to impose a 48-hour ceasefire, it was Hezb’allah which rushed to accept while Israel had to be pressured. Obviously this was because Israel had the military momentum in her favor. And when the month-long conflict ended, Hezb’allah leader, Nasrallah, remained in an underground bunker, no longer enjoying frequent visits to central Beirut, giving daily "Hate Israel" speeches, driving down to his home town of southern Lebanon or enjoying first class flights to Damascus and Tehran. Nasrallah even admitted that had he known that even one percent of this war would have gone as it had, he would have NEVER kidnapped the soldiers and thus started the war!

"We did not think, even 1 percent, that the capture would lead to a war at this time and of this magnitude. You ask me, if I had known on July 11 ... that the operation would lead to such a war, would I do it? I say no, absolutely not.” - Hezbollah Leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, August 27, 2006

In February 2007, there was a skirmish between Israeli troops and the Lebanese army on the Israel/Lebanon border, even though this skirmish that resulted in a shoot out and was unfortunate, the ray of light from all this, was that Israel was confronted and attacked by the Lebanese army and not by Hizb’ollah. This was one of the first signs that showed that the Lebanese army was doing its job. This was mostly due to the fact that Hizb’allah lost its kingdom in Southern Lebanon, and is NOW in constant check by UNIFL, Lebanese Army, and International Troops. At least the Lebanese army was able to stand its ground and take control, unlike BEFORE the August 11 ceasefire! At least Israel finally got its wish, after 40 years, to FINALLY have the Lebanese army in control of the border. Since August 11, 2006 when the Lebanese army began its deployment in Southern Lebanon, not a single Katuysha, let alone a singe bullet was fired toward the Israeli side of the fence by Hizb’allah. Unlike after the Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon in May 2000, when Hizb’allah would look for any excuse to shoot Katyushas into Israel at least once every three months, but not anymore. No longer will the Israeli citizens of Northern Israel will ever live in fear once again!

People in the Lebanese Government now hate Hizb’allah, for bringing destruction to Lebanon. All of Hizballah's southern Beirut strong posts were destroyed by Israel. Even after the cease fire, Israel stayed in Lebanon for two more months in order to destroy all remaining Hizb’allah outposts and bunkers while Hezballah stood by and did nothing. During the conflict some of the Israel/Lebanon border fence was destroyed and torn down, and Israel was in no rush to fix it, since what's the point? Hezballah will not want to mess with the IDF again! Even until today some of that fence has not been fixed yet, since the only threat of infiltration, now, is from drug dealers smuggling Hashish across that border.

But what about the Winograd Commission, "which is an independent Israeli government-appointed commission of inquiry, chaired by retired Israeli chief judge Eliyahu Winograd, which is set out to investigate and draw lessons from the failures experienced by Israel during the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict. Which resulted in a war panel, and even the resignation of high figures such as the Israeli chief of staff Dan Halutz." The reason THIS is currently taking place in Israel, is it goes to show that Israel is a democratic country! If a "Lebanese-Winograd Commission" would be done to Hezballah; for launching an illogical irresponsible attack on Israel, by kidnapping the two soldiers which led to the war and the destruction of Lebanon. And if a Lebanese Winnograd Commission would be done to the Lebanese government; for not controlling its southern border by allowing thuggish armed militias (Hezballah) to roam free there, allowing illegal weapon shipments via the Lebanese seaport, air port, and Syrian Lebanese border to those armed "non-governmental" militias, and allowing Syria and Iran to meddle in its politics, then Lebanon would crumble to dust! But after all, Lebanon is not a Democracy.

Worst case scenario, the Winograd Commission and some of the failures of this war, prove, that Israel might have been defeated from within, but not militarily.

Furthermore there hasn't been one complaint filed against Hezballah on behalf of UNIFL and the International Troops since last year's August cease-fire, the only complaint filed, was against the Israeli army for their over flights over Lebanese territory. Speaking about Israeli over flights, even the Israeli army itself, hasn't complained even once, about hostile enemy fire against its planes by Hezballah. Since Israel withdrew from Lebanon in May 2000, up until the war last summer, they continued their daily over flight and breaches over Lebanese territory, only to find themselves being confronted by Hizballah anti-aircraft artillery. But after the August cease-fire Israel 'STILL' continued its breaches over Lebanese airspace, but this time, Hizballah hasn't even shot one pellet at them! Maybe because they are deterred and maybe because UNIFL and the Lebanese army are now in control.

After the war, Hizb’allah saw that it could no longer push around and bully Israel, and are therefore now trying to bully the "weak" Lebanese government by; their mass demonstration, camping out in front of the Lebanese Parliament, and political assassinations.

Israel did loose the war last summer, but not in Lebanon, but instead in Gaza. After Gilad Shalit was kidnapped, Israel began a massive military campaign in Gaza, destroying infrastructure, entering towns and cities, going after terrorists, and also trying to stop the Qassam rocket fire. But instead, all it achieved was nothing, and the results of it were, that now, the Palestinians saw even more of a weakness in Israel. After the Israeli military campaign in Lebanon, deterrence was at least achieved, BUT unlike in Gaza, after the massive military campaign took place there (Gaza), the Israeli deterrence was lost for good, and now, the Palestinians are, even, more UNDETERRED from Israel that ever! And therefore have increased their rocket fire into Israel. In addition to the fact that as soon as Israel stopped its military campaign, Hamas and other groups said, "They are now even more determined than ever to kidnap another Israeli Soldier." In April of 2007, they acted on their promise, under the cover of intense rocket fire on the Israel town of Sderot, Hamas terrorists again attempted to infiltrate Israel in order to abduct another soldier, but failed. A month later the militant group Islamic Jihad successfully infiltrated Israel, to also try to kidnap an Israeli soldier, but also failed. At least they weren't afraid to try!

After the war some Arab Governments, including the Palestinians, claimed Hizb’ullah achieved a divine victory! But hey, lets not forget, that some of those Arab governments and Palestinians which claimed Hizb’ullah won that "divine victory," are some of those "same" Arab governments who "STILL" until today claim that Syria, Egypt, and the rest of the Arab World won the 1967 War and the 1973 War! That is why after this war Israel lost its deterrence against the Palestinians, Iran, and Syria. BUT gained heavily, its deterrence, against Hezbolah.


Conclusion:

People from around the world, before the August cease-fire, would have never believed nor imagined that the Lebanese army would EVER be in control of its southern border. Nor, people would have never believed Lebanon would EVER be able to establish control over "illegal" arms shipments across its Lebanese/Syrian border, sea ports, and airports, and, well, it finally is!

Hezbolah will most likely never dare kidnap IDF soldiers because they saw the might and strength of the Israeli army, and they now feel threatened. Sure, some Hezbulah sympathizers may throw rocks, wave Hezbulah flags or scream "Allah Akbar" at the Lebanese-Israeli border fence but Hezbulah rank and file are laying low. Very low! And Hezbellah is no longer the imminent threat at that very same border.

Since the 'moment' the two soldiers were kidnapped and even during the war, Israel knew, they would not succeed in getting them back, in addition to the fact that destroying a guerilla group is against the laws of physics! Once people will get those two facts into their heads, then THEY will realize that, the outcomes that were achieved as a result of this conflict, were the best possible "REALISTIC" outcomes that Israel could have achieved.

Obviously this past year, the Northern Israeli border has been the quietest it has ever been over the past 40 years.

By, Gabriel AlAmin
Beirut, Lebanon



Articles and Refernces:

UNIFL: Not 'ONE' complaint filed against Hezbollah since last years cease-fire
(Jerusalem Post 6/14/2007)
http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1181813036239&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

Again, Israeli gloom is misplaced (First Post - 4/17/2007)
http://www.thefirstpost.co.uk/index.php?menuID=1&subID=688&WT.srch=1

Lebanese army, UNIFIL are keeping Hezbollah in check (Haaretz - 2/21/2007)
http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/828765.html

Hezbollah's 'Victory'? (Washington Post 9/1/2006)
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/31/AR2006083101444_pf.html

The Lebanese Winnograd Commission (Thomas Friedman, New York Times 5/10/2007)
http://www.theolympian.com/109/story/104847.html

The Egyptian, 1973 October Victory (Egyptian State Information Service)
http://www.sis.gov.eg/VR/october/english/7.htm

Lebanon’s Army Chief “the Lebanese Army is properly controlling its borders with Syria” (Moqwama.net [Hizbollah’s Official Website])
http://www.moqawama.org/english/_nos.php?filename=20070330111424153

Bin Laden criticizes Nasrallah for allowing expansion of UNIFL troops (GulfNews December 30, 2007)
http://archive.gulfnews.com/articles/07/12/30/10178354.html

Lirun said...

interesting discourse