Friday, July 21, 2006

Carnage in Lebanon: Would it really be okay if the response was proportionate?!

Southern suburb of Beirut bombed I still haven't quite grasped how much carnage is happening in Lebanon. Having been too occupied with other matters to watch TV, since Hezbollah started firing their rockets, I only just saw the first TV footage of Lebanon last night. Carnage! Now I see why people are all saying "well, it's a disproportionate response". Still, who is the person in charge of measuring how terrible an act is to know how much counterattacking is warranted? How does that person measure it? The idea that any military incursion is okay if it's "in proportion" is preposterous anyway. Would it really be useful if the Israeli army said: "Okay, that's four rockets and two prisoners each. Time to stop now."

First, see the best post I've read about the conflict, by Ben, who is in the Australian Army – I guess if your day to day life is preparing you for military conflict you think carefully about the nature of conflicts elsewhere. Admirably, he suggests an approach to thinking about the conflict that includes sustaining peace and not just a ceasefire. I don't care if it seems simplistic. More time needs to be spent thinking in this direction.

Regardless of the fact that this is considered a "disproportionate response" I simply cannot condemn the Israeli government for responding with an attack. Just the same way as I could hardly condemn the Australian government for attacking Papua New Guineau if an armed PNG non-governmental organsation was firing rockets at Cairns. It revolts me to think along such nationalistic lines, but while the world functions as a set of sovereign nation states, this is the way it must work.

The fact that the Israeli attack is vicious is hardly the point. We all know Israel has more firepower than Hezbollah and can do nasty things to people they perceive to be radically opposed to the existence of Israel, so no surprises that Southern Beiruit can be so swiftly reduced to rubble. The point is that Lebanon apparently made no effort to apprehend or stamp out the criminal activity of Hezbollah. I pity the people of Lebanon and northern Israel now, and I agree the rules that need to be followed as sovereign states can be tough to implement, but if Lebanon is to be treated as a sovereign state then it must play by the rules.

Image sourced from ABC News Online: Middle East conflict
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7 Comments:

Blogger Weasel said...

Not to disagree with you, but to highlight an issue .. Israel are NOT acting viciously as the 7 sunrise team would have us believe.
Israel is targeting terrorists. These terrorists are using civilians as human shields (these haven't volunteered). The terrorist use of locals is partly the reason why local authorities have failed to act in the past.
Israel cannot accept the launching of 300 out of 18000 rockets given to Hezbollah from Iran. Israel has the right to use artilley and bombs in reply, but not poison gas or nuclear weapons. These terrorists will use whatever is at hand.

July 21, 2006 12:45 pm  
Blogger Paxillusion said...

I am not a sympathizer of hizbollah or any turban fanatic but yes Israel action is out of proportion in this situation where 300 civilians killed more than 1000 injured half a million displaced a country torn to pieces for just 2 soldiers captured. And now israel has more than 15 soldiers dead, which life is more important the 2 or the 15?.
The 2 soldiers were captured in order to exchange them with others hold in Israel. The rockets launch on israel were a response for their aviation attacks.
Anyway violence will only generate more violence. The zionist have applied the power of destruction and killings for the last 50 years for no avail, when will they understand that there is no end or solution to there problems through violence and destruction.

July 21, 2006 1:36 pm  
Blogger Ben said...

The internationaly recognised Laws of Armed Conflict recognise the principle of porportionality... Israel are clearly not adhering to this! But we need to examine the catalysts to the current conflict... militas must be disarmed and disbanded - I have several workmates currently involved in this situation. My blog looks at this situation in detail, but Israel alone is not the only party to blame. How can we expect Lebanon or Palestine to be able to control a cease fire when non state militas are involved? The first movement towards peace is disarming and disbanding Hamas and Hezbollah - only then will we move past the current situation

July 21, 2006 11:23 pm  
Anonymous Corinne said...

I agree with ben - he might even be my husband or something... the militias must be disarmed and disbanded before the peace processs moves forwards...
http://the-backbench.blogspot.com

July 21, 2006 11:25 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ben is wrong because he does not account for the fact that Israel is constantly expanding its borders. It sends'homesteaders' into its neighbours lands and backs them up with razorwire, tanks and snipers. When this land was your home what do you do?
This is no sudden change of practice on Israels part. This is more of the same. Some people are just looking this time.
They still blame the victims. But what can you expect. Despite being a proven liar Bush only has to swear into a microphone and suddenly the world agrees with him.
Israel is following USA lead to get oil.
Israel is continuing to chip away at its neighbours for lebensraum.
A sad situation.

July 24, 2006 9:56 am  
Anonymous Gavin Fielke said...

A proportionate response is to work with the Lebanese government to find the people respoonsible and not continue on the Nazi style Ethnic takeover and Genocide campaigns that they have been perpetrating for the last 50 years.

Religious Zealots often over-react.

If The Jewish extremists didn't have Israeli and USA bombs on their side I assume they would have flown a plane into the World Trade Centre by now

September 03, 2006 4:05 pm  
Anonymous Gavin Fielke said...

The only way to move the peace process forward is for the Jewish Zealots to stop invading Arab peoples countries.

The British helped you invade and destroy the homes of thousands if not millions of Arabs and the Israeli Government has since been home to Jewish zealots that have continued the invasions of nearby countries and the destruction of countless homes and lives in the occupied territories in their Nazi styled campaigns of racial hatred.

No doubt everyone living in an occupied territory must be freedom fighters for their families sake.
Therefore to an extent, Hezbollah must be recognised as freedom fighters, and Israel and any people supporting Israel must be reguarded as terrorists.

September 03, 2006 4:18 pm  

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