Israel and Lebanon seem to agree fighting should be replaced by a ceasefire. One that does not meet any of Israel’s rolling stated goals: unconditional release of kidnapped soldiers and the destruction of Hizballah and it’s remaining stores of rockets.
Here’s the next scenario: Lebanon and Israeli sign the ceasefire, the Security Council is happy, and Hizballah only has to sulk, not sign, and then use longer-range missiles from the Shouf Mountains near Syria whenever it wants. After all, it is not a signatory country, and, with the last three plus weeks, Israel is now in a mode of being pummeled daily by many dozens of rockets. What’s one or two a week? They can rebuild their presence in Beirut and anywhere the UN forces aren’t. Heck, they can launch from an orchard within the UN areas with impunity: there is no launch infrastructure for a Katyusha rocket to be spotted until after the rocket is launched.
Israel will complain to the the UN forces, which will lodge complaints with Lebanon which will, do… nothing. And Israel’s ability to go after the terrorists will be effectively eliminated, as the UN will have the mandate to secure the area. However badly.
We’re at the go/no-go point: Israeli forces are sweeping towards the Litani River, something we’ve gotten too much practice doing in the last thirty years. The best Israel can hope for? The destruction of the majority of Hizballah’s rockets and killing some of its leadership. And, as you can see from the video below, more civilians will be caught as Hizballah cynically uses its own population for cover and hopes their deaths will boost recruitment in the coming years:
- Syria and Iran will re-equip.
- Israel has germinated the next crop of suicide bombers and Hizballah fighters.
- Hamas has learned a valuable tool and will probably start using rockets within the West Bank within the year, to a greater effect than Hizballah, given their ability to damage Israel’s heartland.
Lastly, the arrests in London this week show that terrorists of every religious flavor will recruit from and hide within civilian populations, then strike from within. And let the innocent, be they Lebanese or London muslims, bear the brunt of the response.