OK, Scott – hour of Europe not at hand

Well, it now looks as if the window of opportunity for a ceasefire in the Levant has slammed shut on the fingers of its proponents. With the destruction of a UNTSO observation post, the mobilisation of three Israeli reserve divisions (by contrast, the total force employed so far has been one division-plus), Hezbollah’s successful defence of positions close to the Israeli border and their first launch of a long-range rocket, and the Israeli government’s claim that the world has given them permission to fight on, all parties to the conflict now seem to be giving war a chance.

If anything arose from the debate here, it was that the employment of an international intervention force might be useful in the context of a ceasefire and mutual concessions. There is no ceasefire, and even if by accident, the danger such forces would be in has been underscored. Worse, Hezbollah has tasted enough success to want to keep going, and the Israelis seem riled enough by this to escalate further. It is therefore unlikely anything would be achieved by sending NRF-7 to wander around the dry hills of the Litani valley.

Jacques Chirac’s remark that NATO, as the “armed wing of the West”, should not be involved is interesting. It admits both a Scott Martens/Sam Huntington reading-that NATO plus a few others roughly equals “the West”, so getting involved in a fight in the Middle East would be a step perilously close to religious war-and also a more limited one. Chirac may also have meant that any force should sail under the EUFOR or UN banner, or that a so-called “Virtual NATO” solution – a UN force made up of NATO member states’ forces, like KFOR or the intervention in East Timor – might be preferable.

It’s worth putting on record, however, that European forces (NRF7) were indeed available and ready when the crisis erupted.

16 thoughts on “OK, Scott – hour of Europe not at hand

  1. The fact that Israel has called up 30,000 plus Reservists demonstrates clearly that its intentions are not peaceful and of a minor scale.

    When is the penny going to drop that Israel and America have started on a remake of the map of the whole Middle East, one that better suits their Judeo/Christian religious, militaristic and imperialistic ambitions.

    They must be stopped before their foolishness ignites a world conflagration!

  2. I recommend a careful listen to the press conference conducted by Prime Minister Blair and President Bush.

    They nailed it. There should be few questions beyond the scope of their presentation.

  3. They must be stopped before their foolishness ignites a world conflagration!

    So the notion of August approaching and guns roaring reminds you of Tuchmann’s book?

    One can probably not help the thought. But if this level of provocation were enough to trigger that, what makes you think that there’s any chance to avoid it?

  4. I recommend a careful listen to the press conference conducted by Prime Minister Blair and President Bush.

    Yeah, they´re calling for an “international force to be quickly dispatched to Lebanon”.

    Of course American and British troops won´t be involved there. It´s pretty cheap telling other countries that they should risk the lives of their soldiers just to follow the “orders” of Bush and Blair.

    Just deploy your soldiers while we won´t tell Israel to accept a truce. How many countries will accept that “generous” nebulous offer not knowing what their troops might face? Not a lot of them, I´d say. 🙂

    Simply put, we won´t deploy troops just because of a press conference by Bush and Blair. Invent something else. 🙂

  5. Oliver, I don’t think there’s any chance to avoid it. It’s been planned for quite some time.

    An article in aljazeerah.info suggests it has been a zionist plan since 1919 (Ben Gurion).

  6. “It’s worth putting on record, however, that European forces (NRF7) were indeed available and ready when the crisis erupted.”

    I feel much safer know know our brave soldiers and politicians of the EU are ready to defend our borders at any time. Regarding Israel I think it amounts to the Last Crusade for Jerusaelm. Yet another holy war for the west…. Much cheaper to give the land back the send all Israelis back to New York, New Jersey and Los Angeles than to send them billions a year to defend their Holy Cat Box.

  7. My 0.02€:

    The original plan: “a) make life miserable for the lebanese so they get sick of hizbollah and disarm them;
    b) then insert europeacekeepers to shoulder the burden of occupation instead of Israel”

    I think the “let the euros take the heat of occupation” part, if there was such a plan, came from Washington not Jerusalem.

    Now that a) has gone south, I can imagine that was the reason behind the bombing of the UN post, to torpedo Washington’s capacity to impose b).
    If it is so I’d say, mixing metaphors, it’s both a torpedoing and a foot shooting…

  8. “An article in aljazeerah.info suggests it has been a zionist plan since 1919 (Ben Gurion).”

    Ha. Daniel proudly cites Al-Jazeera as evidence that this war has been in the making since 1919. It’s not like Al-Jazeera isn’t biased when it comes to reporting about Israel. Ha, a few more times over.

    If this had been in the planning since decades before Israel even was a country why did we have to wait till 2006 for the war?

  9. Alright, Daniel´s post takes the biscuit….

    Can we please have an (selfimposed) embargo on comments on all Israel/Lebanon related articles for the rest of this month so posters can come back with a more informed, adult, sober and realistic view afterwards?

    Probably not going to happen, but one can always hope.

  10. Alright, Daniel´s post takes the biscuit….

    Can we please have an (selfimposed) embargo on comments on all Israel/Lebanon related articles for the rest of this month so posters can come back with a more informed, adult, sober and realistic view afterwards?

    Probably not going to happen, but one can always hope.

  11. >And they complain when I say the maniacs have arrived!

    Uh, actually, yes, because you cried “maniacs!” initially in response to the assertions from me and
    Movie Guy that Iran may influence Hezbollah’s decisions, which I backed up with like four different reputable sources asserting Iran’s copious funding of them, and which you are far, far from disproving. Nice try stretching it, though.

  12. I didn’t got the impression that your assertion was that Iran influenced Hezbollah, which is very reasonable, but more that Iran controlled Hezbollah, which is something else.

  13. Today it is everyone’s duty to inform people who are being brainwashed by the western media about the genosides and crimes of Zionists. Lets define terrorism and see who is the real terrorist.

  14. Ben: Maybe we should define genocide as well. It seems to me that word is getting hijacked quite frequently these days. If the Israelis’ goal is a genocide they are terribly inefficient.
    Besides justifying one muder with another is not really what helps in this situation. None of the parties in this conflict seem to be mature enough to see beyond these instinctive reactions right now.

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