Tuesday, May 15, 2007

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UNIFIL in Lebanon, France, and the Coming War

by Aharon Hoffman at Mystical Paths

Le Figaro (French News) Reports - The Shi'i militia, Hezbollah, is rearming north of the River Litani. For its part, the IDF continues its flights over the Land of the Cedars: averting an incident detrimental to France's UNIFIL blue helmets will be one of Nicolas Sarkozy's (new French president's) priorities.

On three occasions in recent weeks, the Israeli Government have denied General Gadi Eisenkot, chief of the North Israel military region, authority to attack, as not far from the Syrian border with Lebanon, trucks carrying weapons for Hezbollah are arriving from Damascus. (Can you believe this? More dumb Israeli politician ideas, let them rearm and do nothing???) This time the satellite photos that the Israelis showed us seem conclusive," according to a diplomat close to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who has again voiced his "concern" about this forbidden traffic. (So the UN knows, has proof, but does nothing about the violations of UN Resolution 1701!)

Nine months after the "cessation of hostilities" between the IDF and the pro-Iranian Shi'i militia, the Jewish state does not, however, want to embark on another conflict with its neighbor. But how much longer can the fragile balance between the forces present in southern Lebanon survive? Each of the leading actors has now clearly asserted its posture. The Lebanese Army is growing bolder. On the other side, the IDF is strengthening its positions. North of the River Litani, Hezbollah is rearming. And, with its 12,500 men, the UN force (UNIFIL) is growing stronger. (Everyone I know is taking bets on when this next war starts. Is this situation the definition of UN success?)

There's plenty more in the article, but it's all the same, the Hezbollah builds up, prepares for battle, dictates to UNIFIL where it can patrol, what equipment it can use, what it can do, regardless of what the UN resolution says. And, the focus of the article...

The new (French) president will have to say whether or not a stiffer posture should be adopted vis-a-vis the Jewish state. But he will also have to authorize the procedure for opening fire, in the event of another Israeli "provocation" against French UNIFIL troops (such as flying drones to watch Hezbollah rearm). This is a highly sensitive political issue.

Note, not say whether or not to actually enforce the UN resolution, not whether or not to stop the Hezbollah from rearming and preparing for another attack on Israel. Rather, stopping Israel from preparing it's defense, gathering intelligence, and being able to respond to the next war.

Hypocrisy doesn't even begin to describe it.

Posted at Mystical Paths. Read it elsewhere? Stop by the source.

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