Friday, September 01, 2006

Cease-Fire Violations

The following are accounts of cease-fire violations by Israel. According to the article, the IDF has violated the cease-fire agreement over 70 times, while Hezbollah has done so only 4 times. And this comes in light that the whole of Lebanon is still under Israeli agression due to the continuation of the air and sea blockade.

Robert F. Worth
New York Times
Sept 1, 2006

AITA AL SHAAB, Lebanon, Aug. 29 — A group of local men were unloading bags of donated food from a truck here Tuesday morning when the tok-tok-tok of heavy machine-gun fire rang out.
Men shouted; children screamed and ran. Then, as it became clear the firing was just the Israeli tanks again up on the hillside above town, they went back to their routines. The shooting — and occasional mortar fire — goes on regularly around this village, a Hezbollah stronghold near the border. To local people, it is sheer provocation, and a flagrant breach of the cease-fire that ended the fighting on Aug. 14.
To the Israelis, it is legitimate self-defense. Aita al Shaab “still has many Hezbollah fighters in it,” said Miri Eisin, an Israeli government spokeswoman. “They don’t wear uniforms and are wary about showing their weapons, and we use all means to differentiate between those with weapons and those without.” More broadly, the shooting underscores two fundamentally different views of the uneasy truce that has held in southern Lebanon for the past two weeks. Secretary General Kofi Annan cited numbers from the United Nations forces on Tuesday indicating that Israel had violated the cease-fire nearly 70 times, while Hezbollah had done so only 4 times.
But the Israelis do not believe there is a cease-fire to violate. “We are at a cessation of hostilities in Lebanon, not a cease-fire,” Ms. Eisin said. She added that Israel had the explicit right to self-defense under United Nations Resolution 1701, which does not use the term cease-fire.
That difference is apparent every day across southern Lebanon. Israeli tanks crisscross the dry brown hills, shooting into the fields and smashing up houses and stone walls. Teams of Israeli soldiers have planted their nation’s flag atop bluffs here and sometimes detained Lebanese men, releasing them days later. No one seems to know where the mobile Israeli units are based, or how to avoid them.
Amid all that, the blue-helmeted United Nations soldiers sit in their vehicles like helpless tourists, many unable to speak Arabic or English. Israel has made clear that its troops will not leave Lebanon until the Lebanese Army and a strengthened United Nations peacekeeping force are capable of taking over its positions. But to many in this village — where the war began on July 12 when Hezbollah fighters crossed the border to kidnap two Israeli soldiers — Israel’s recent actions look like intimidation.
“Israel is trying to scare us and make us leave,” said Nuha Srour, a stern-faced schoolteacher in a black robe and head scarf, as machine-gun fire went on in the distance. “They were surprised we came back here after the bombing.”
Perhaps no one has witnessed the confusion of south Lebanon more vividly than Muhammad al-Hussein, a 32-year-old farmer from the village of Qantara. Last week he and his brother were driving to a neighboring village to buy parts for a truck. They knew the Israelis had been operating a checkpoint in the area, but were told they had withdrawn and that the road — an essential link to other towns — was safe. Instead, they found themselves passing a group of Israeli soldiers, who stopped them, Mr. Hussein recalled. The soldiers handcuffed and blindfolded the two brothers, and drove them to Israel. For the next four days, shackled hand and foot, Mr. Hussein was interrogated about his family and village, he said. He was released Monday after United Nations and Lebanese Army officials lodged complaints with Israel.
On Monday evening, sitting on a terrace rimmed with pomegranate trees with a group of relatives and friends back home, Mr. Hussein could smile about his ordeal. He said the Israelis had fed him, and had not struck or mistreated him. But he seemed profoundly nervous about encountering them again, and unsure how to avoid it.
“Even if you gave me a truckload of gold and diamonds, I would not go back to that place,” he said of the road, just a mile or so from his village, where the Israelis had picked him up. At the same time, Mr. Hussein also appeared to be nervous about Hezbollah. Asked whether the Israelis had asked him about the militia, he said no, and then refused to say anything about the subject.
Israel’s activities have mostly taken place at night with patrols staying clear of towns. But on occasion they have made themselves oddly conspicuous. On Sunday, an Israeli flag could be seen flying prominently from a bluff just outside the Lebanese village of Shabaa, where a group of Israeli soldiers were posted with a military bulldozer. Photographers snapped pictures throughout the day, and Israeli soldiers warned approaching reporters to stay clear.
Lebanese Army officials complained about the flag to the United Nations, who contacted Israel about the matter. Israeli soldiers took the flag down, a spokesman for the United Nations force, Alexander Ivanko, said Monday. Skip to next paragraphBut an hour after Mr. Ivanko spoke, the flag was still flying in the same spot. Another Israeli flag was raised over the weekend on a hilltop near the village of Marwaheen. On Tuesday, it appeared to have been removed.
The flags and the continuing presence of Israeli soldiers here have further angered villagers already stunned by the extent of the Israeli bombing. Even some Christians, whose villages were largely spared the destruction visited on Shiite areas, say the war has fueled their support for Hezbollah.
In Aita al Shaab, public support for Hezbollah is almost total. One street where a number of Hezbollah fighters lived — commonly known even before the war as Hezbollah Street — was almost totally destroyed. Several families have returned to the ruins anyway, defiantly insisting on staying in their charred, stinking homes. Others are living alongside the ruins in green tents donated by aid groups.
“They destroyed our school in the village, but we will teach the children under the trees,” said Ms. Srour, the schoolteacher. “And we will teach them to hate Israel and love the resistance.”
Ms. Srour said Israeli tanks had fired so close to her house on Sunday that several of her relatives — who had returned from Beirut only a week earlier — left the village again, fearing the war was on again.
As in many southern villages, the blackened and bomb-scarred ruins here are bedecked with yellow Hezbollah banners proclaiming — somewhat paradoxically — a “divine victory” for the resistance. But not far away, Muhammad Srour, a cleric and cousin of the schoolteacher, offered a slightly different view as he poked through the shattered ruins of his house, gathering a few remaining clothes and books into plastic bags.
“We’ve been beaten so badly that we still don’t want to admit we’ve been beaten,” he said.


Blogger Doc said...

“And we will teach them to hate Israel and love the resistance.”

that is the saddest thing i have read in a long time.

Thank you IDF.

8:34 PM  
Blogger sarah mac said...

the account of israeli flag waving atop bluffs in lebanon is straight out of 'a bully on the schoolyard' scenario...the bully antagonizes the other, the other seeks intervention from the the schoolyard monitor and the schoolyard monitor (UN) admonishes the bully, who then desists.

when will the international community recognize israel's egregious disregard for the cease-fire and finally do something about it?

9:57 PM  
Blogger HCB said...

"when will the international community recognize israel's egregious disregard for the cease-fire and finally do something about it?"

Not until "the international community" decides it can talk to Israel as a nation state rather than a feeling. And, of course, not until we get a secretary of defense and president in the United States who don't think a reasoned approach is tantamount to nazi appeasement.

Much has been said about how Israel came to be and what is the genesis of middle east hate for Israel. But not a lot has been said about the genesis of support for Israel by others than Israelis and the Jewish diaspora. Both the hate and the support, I think, come from the same point - the creation of Israel. On the one hand, that creation displaced the Palestinians then living in what is now Israel and seeded their hate. On the other, that creation was the manifestation of a European and American need to feel better about having ignored the Holocaust for so long and then being faced with doing something about displaced European Jews - other than welcoming them to America or the "new" Europe. Israel did not spring simply from a Zionist hope - it sprang from the pragmatism of the European Conquerors. The Zionist movement provided the concept, the Conquerors enabled the necessary muscle.

For Europe and the United States to say much more than has been said already about Israel is to say something other than what has been done should have been done or must now be done. Think of it - suppose France, Germany, England and the United States say, "you've gone too far, Israel." What's the response? "What are we to do, then?" What's the answer? One of the answers has been, "don't talk to Syria, don't talk to Iran, Ignore Russia and China." Another answer has been, "this too shall pass." Now, pose a similar question to Lebanon: "when will you rid yourselves of this terror organization, Hezbollah?" Answer: "we do not have the power to do that - we would like to but we can't. What would you have us do?" Answer: Get it done by Monday or we will bomb you and destroy your economy so that we can come in and take over and show you how - just as we are doing in Iraq.

All of that stems directly from the sense of guilt that led to the decision to enable the zionists. We MUST defend Israel because to do otherwise is to say the creation of the state was mistaken. The creation of the state depended then, depends now and will always depend on military superiority. And that superiority has always and will always be enabled by the United States and some of its European allies.

So it has been and so it shall ever be. There is no diplomatic solution because there is no alternative. Unless, of course, the United States can get over the guilt and get to the meat of the problem. If Israel can be seen as something other than a penance - if it can be seen as a country in the midst of other countries where there exist regional conflicts that require the participation of EVERY other country in the region for their solution, then things like violations of the cease fire will be noticed and acted on.

But not until Israel is treated as a country rather than a penance.

10:34 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

Anything you post Doc is sad. So is the thinking that is happening here by the Americans.

10:35 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

I'd say my fellow but most of you don't know the first thing about being an American.

10:35 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

Oh Howard is it lonely in your own blog site that you have to still come here to play. Don't worry Doc seems to like your spew..... She's into horse crap so you two are made for each other.

Have a fun weekend, I'm going fishing in N Cali. Time to forget about all this none scence for a few days. Well really as soon as I go home I forget about it. My life is great, to bad for you clowns.

Still waitng for that call Howard. You super private Dick, I'm mean eye.

10:40 PM  
Blogger HCB said...

Sammie - while you're gone in your crack induced haze - put the pipe down and think about the boss you say you have. Think how he or she would act here. Would they hang out just to spew filth? Or would they simply go about their business of making money? You are a lying, sniveling, useless crackhead, sammie. Get a life.

That's all I've got to say for now sammie. Enjoy your weekend and I'll let you know when I feel like playing again.

10:50 PM  
Blogger HCB said...

Of course - if you fill in the contact form, I'll call you. But - I understand.

10:52 PM  
Blogger Peach said...

Ohh yes yes, peach is back Sammy boy. No need to be sad anymore. Hey shit face you seem to always forget that i am an American too. You have a short term memory i guess, ohh well. So everyone please disregard what Sammy Poop is saying because he doesn’t know what he is talking about.
I guess ill just wait here and see what smart ass thing poop face has to say to me. ha ha

11:09 PM  
Blogger Doc said...

poor sam. let's pray that he eats fish on his trip to garner some needed vitamins for his brain. As you look at the open ocean and throw your stick into the water, just remember that decendents of the lebanese--the phoneciens-- invented fishing. poor sam.

11:33 PM  
Blogger HCB said...

Peach, he wants to talk but he can't. So he raves. That's what crack does - reduces a man to a sniveling misogynist (look it up, Sammie) Basically, he's afraid of women and he hates men who know it. Add to those problems that he is not very smart and has practically no education. He's a social misfit who know he's pretty much alone in the world with no one to talk to but himself. Instead of asking for help, he makes himself an outcast and blames it on everyone except himself. It's the same with some of our foreign policy - denial and excuse making. Sammie says he has become a hater because everyone here is a hater and won't listen to him. Fortunately he doesn't have an F-16 or a Katyusha rocket.

11:35 PM  
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11:41 PM  
Blogger M2Timechange said...

Lebanon could not afford get rid of Hez until Bush neo con disarm Israel.

12:08 AM  
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12:17 AM  
Blogger Doc said...

who's this askinstoo fellow? junk mail even here...what a shame. its better than sam's stupid comments though

12:23 AM  
Blogger Peach said...

I agree with doc & hcb.
Sammy boy dissapointed me. I was looking forward to having a few laughs today. I guess it will have to wiat for some other time. I will be back pooop face, dont be too sad.

3:02 AM  

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