Sunday, July 16, 2006

Hezbollah Katyushas are aimed at Beirut and USA - via Israel (Ami Isseroff)

Ami Isseroff pulls together elements from several analyses to bring out one key dimension of the present crisis (Hezbollah Katyushas are aimed at Beirut and USA - via Israel). Some highlights follow, but read the whole thing. --Jeff Weintraub
Ami Isseroff
(ZioNation - Progressive Zionism & Israel Web Log)
July 15, 2006
Hezbollah Katyushas are aimed at Beirut and USA - via Israel

The war in Israel's north is not about Palestinians, or about Israel. It's about Lebanon, Syria, Iran and the United States. [Actually, it's about Israel, too ... but not only about Israel. --JW] It will determine who is in charge of Lebanese democracy, and whether or not the US initiative for democracy in the Middle East is going to be totally derailed by Jihadist fanatics and their cynical masters in Damascus and Tehran. The Hezbollah are dumping rockets on Haifa, Nahariya and Safed, but the real targets are Beirut and Washington DC. Jeff Weintraub points us to Michael Young's perceptive New York Times Op-Ed. Michael Young is not a Zionist. He is Lebanese opinion editor of the Beirut Daily Star. Young writes:
Israel's incursion into Lebanon after the kidnapping on Wednesday of two Israeli soldiers by the militant group Hezbollah is far more than another flare-up on a tense border. It must also be seen as a spinoff of a general counterattack against American and Israeli power in the region by Iran and Syria, operating through sub-state actors like Hezbollah and the Palestinian organization Hamas. [....]
By unilaterally taking Lebanon into a conflict with Israel, Hezbollah sought to stage a coup d’état against the anti-Syrian parliamentary and government majority, which opposes the militant group’s adventurism.
[....] The last point was Hezbollah's real reason for the starting the violence. This also suited its Iranian and Syrian masters, because it foils the US plan, based perhaps on an illusion, that it is building "democracy" in Lebanon. As Israpundit points out, it is really a war between Iran, Syria and the US, a point made by David Twersky who believes the war with Iran has begun. Actually, the Israeli war with Iran began when the Hamas were elected to head the Palestinian authority.

The influence of foreigners was also noted by Michael Young in the Daily Star. He wrote:
Forever protesting its innocence, Syria is at the heart of a network of destabilizing developments in the Middle East. The Syrian regime hosts Meshaal, arms Hizbullah, ferries combatants into Iraq (even if this is more controlled today than it was), irks the Jordanians, and tries to undercut Lebanese sovereignty. For Assad, exporting instability is compulsory in order to impose domestic quietude. An illegitimate regime like his needs outside volatility to justify repression at home, to keep Syria's regional opponents, or potential opponents, off balance...
In Slate, Lee Smith writing from Beirut explains:
...Several U.N. resolutions, as well as almost every Western diplomatic initiative here, have emphasized the urgent need for the Lebanese government to disarm what the U.S. State Department calls a terrorist organization. Instead, Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and other national leaders have insisted that Hezbollah is neither a terrorist group nor a militia, but is rather "the resistance" and nothing but "the resistance." In other words, we side with the Party of God and agree that their arms benefit all of Lebanon! And then, this week, the democratically elected government disclaimed responsibility for the actions of Hezbollah, which is part of the government. The Lebanese are not innocent bystanders; they did not tempt their fate, they ignored it.
Despite nuances, almost everyone seems to understand the general outlines of what is happening and why it is happening [....] Iran and Syria are trying to frustrate US policy in the Middle East. Specifically in Lebanon, they have used the Hezbulla to hi-jack the Lebanese government and subvert the US and French attempt to restore democracy to that country.

Strangely, only the US doesn't seem to understand. [....]

[Maybe, maybe not. Read the rest. --Jeff Weintraub]