Israeli Attacks Escalate - Lebanon Calls For Cease-Fire
Israel intensified its attacks against Lebanon, imposing a naval blockade, twice hitting Beirut's airport and blasting two Lebanese army air bases near Syria. Hezbollah fired more than one hundred rockets into Israel, which said several struck the port city of Haifa.
Earlier, Israeli warplanes punched holes in the runways of Beirut International Airport, forcing officials to close the facility and two military air bases. Israeli helicopter gunships also unleashed missiles on Beirut International Airport, setting fuel tanks ablaze, in the second attack.
Israeli warplanes dropped thousands of leaflets in Beirut's southern suburb urging residents to stay away from Hezbollah's offices and buildings.
The leaflets state: "For your own safety and because of our desire not to harm any civilians who are not involved, you should refrain from staying in areas where Hezbollah is present and operating," signed "The State of Israel".
In response to the violence, Lebanon asked the U.N. Security Council to demand a cease-fire. The Council set an urgent meeting for Friday.
Against the backdrop of violence, the U.S. cast the first U.N. Security Council veto in nearly two years blocking an Arab-backed resolution that would have demanded Israel halt its current military offensive in the Gaza Strip.
I don't understand why Hezbollah decided to emulate Hamas recently. Hamas invaded Israel, killed several soldiers, and kidnapped one. In response, Israel is incrementally destroying every shred of Hamas, ignoring offers of trading that single Israeli soldier for a thousand or so Palestinian prisoners and instead hitting them harder with their military might.
I don't see just what Hamas was gaining out of this, but somehow Hezbollah must have seen some sort of upside, because they emulated Hamas. They have done their own invasion of Israel and in a "anything dumb you can do, I can do dumber" move, have kidnapped two Israeli soldiers. Predictably, Israel's response is the same. No negotiations, just more and more military action.
So now Hezbollah has brought down the wrath of the Israeli military on southern Lebanon.
Israel's military might is being focused on the north and the southwest. All their attention is on Gaza and Lebanon. In fact, much of the world's attention is on Israel and those two regions now.
Well, I note a decided decline in coverage of Iran and its nuclear ambitions and threats. And Syria, having come under Israel's attention over the Gaza kidnapping has rather extensive ties with Hezbollah certainly would be interested in having Israel bogged down in Gaza and southern Lebanon. Oh, and let us also not forget that Iran and Syria have a defense pact.
Could this all be a part of an Iranian/Syrian plot against Israel? Get them bogged down in Gaza and Lebanon, leaving them vulnerable to a direct strike?
I certainly think that there is an element of opportunism there, but seems like too dangerous a game for such a plot.
Where will all this lead?
Will this conflict end up involving our forces in the region?
I've often thought that the rounds and rounds of futile "peace talks" were just postponing the inevitable, an all-out war between Israel and the terrorists and nations that seek her destruction. That delaying this decisive defeat of the anti-Israeli forces would settle the question of Israel's existence would only make it bloodier, more expensive.
Could this be the beginning of that final conflict?