Friday, July 21, 2006

Situational awareness

Bush has decided on a new course for Israeli-Arab conflicts. We'll come in and play peace-maker, I guess. Condi is outlining the plan now.

The Los Angeles Times:
International pressure for a cease-fire mounted, but with little sign of progress. A senior United Nations official said privately that he expected Israel's bombardment of Hezbollah strongholds in Lebanon to continue for weeks.
The Washington Post:
The U.S. position also reflects Bush's deepening belief that Israel is central to the broader campaign against terrorists and represents a shift away from a more traditional view that the United States plays an "honest broker's" role in the Middle East.

In the administration's view, the new conflict is not just a crisis to be managed. It is also an opportunity to seriously degrade a big threat in the region, just as Bush believes he is doing in Iraq. Israel's crippling of Hezbollah, officials also hope, would complete the work of building a functioning democracy in Lebanon and send a strong message to the Syrian and Iranian backers of Hezbollah.
["believes he is doing in Iraq." Yikes]

Boston Globe:
Although US officials say they have no evidence that Iran directly ordered the Islamic extremist movement Hezbollah to carry out the kidnapping, they contend that the move was part of a coordinated effort by groups allied with Iran to frustrate US interests across the Middle East.

``We see this as a power play by Iran," said a senior US official who has been closely following the developments in the Middle East. ``It's scary because Iran is a powerful country. One of the things that they are trying to say to us is, `Look what we can do to you. Look how much pain we could cause.' "
[One planned well in advance, with all those new rockets we did not know about.]

The Times of London:
BRITAIN blames Iran for the eruption of fighting in Lebanon and wants to use crisis talks to build an alliance for its long-term “containment”.

A new United Nations Security Council resolution on Iran’s nuclear programme, expected next week, will be the cornerstone of this strategy, according to senior British officials.

The plan, which echoes the “containment” of the Soviet Union during the Cold War, will aim to tap growing Arab alarm at Iran’s regional ambitions and its ability to stir up their own restive populations.

The move reflects British frustration with the US’s failure to devise a plan for dealing with Tehran, once the Iraqi conflict stripped it of the appetite for military action.

It is “no coincidence” that last week’s raid by Hezbollah, the Lebanese guerrilla group, which triggered the conflict, immediately followed Iran’s declaration that it would not curb its nuclear work, officials believe.
Bloomberg News:
July 21 (Bloomberg) -- Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will try to reconcile demands for an immediate cease-fire between Israel and Hezbollah with the U.S. priority to disarm the Islamic militia when she meets United Nations officials today in New York.
BEIRUT, Lebanon (CNN) -- Israel is ratcheting up the pressure on people in southern Lebanon on the 10th day of conflict with Hezbollah guerrillas based there.

Airdrops of leaflets warning residents to leave their homes and move north of the Litani River 25 miles (40 kilometers) from the Israeli border came as the Israel Defense Forces said it was calling up to 6,000 troops in six battalions for reinforcements along the border.
The Guardian:
The Lebanese defence minister said Lebanon's army was ready to defend the country against any land invasion by Israel. Elias al-Murr, when asked if the Lebanese army would fight alongside Hizbullah against any land incursion by Israel, told al-Arabiya: "Our constitutional duty is to defend Lebanon as a Lebanese army. This is our role."


Blogger Dr Victorino de la Vega said...

“The Forward”, a leading Yiddish-language US newspaper has an interesting article in its latest issue praising “Saudi Arabia’s strong support in the war against Lebanese terrorism” [sic].

This “new friendship” bringing together bloodthirsty Bin-Ladenites and other Wahhabi Islamic fundamentalist thugs and rightwing Israeli fascists should come as no surprise to those who know the history of the Middle-East, and the profound influence ancient Jewish Sicarism always had on Saudi Arabian culture and civilization.

12:02 PM  
Anonymous Joyful Alternative said...

OK, I give up. What's "sicarism"? I Googled it, and the only hit is Dr. V.'s comment elsewhere on the article he cites here.

6:34 PM  

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