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Old 07-24-2006, 06:47 PM   #316
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Why are they firing rockets?? Because they are crazy militants thats why! I'm not defending Hezbollah in any way, but this is overkill. Israel is crippling the Lebanese state, so how the hell does that serve their long term interests - having a stable, secular and capable government in one of their important neighbours. It doesn't. Their current operation:

-Enforces anti-Israeli sentiments in Lebanon.
-Strenghtens Hezbollah position in the country, as the only armed group who stood up to the invaders.
-Destroys the infrastructure that took Lebanon decades to build.

Also, I don't think the government of Israel should be playing tit-for-tat with a non-governing aspect of Lebanese population, Hezbollah. Don't tell me they are essentially doing the same thing, missiles against missiles. You'd be saying Israel is no different than Hezbollah.
If there was a true Lebanese state, Hezbollah would not exist, at least not as a terrorist and military organization.

How the hell does allowing your citizens to be rocketed and your military personal to be captured serve Israel's long term interest? Israel understands the region and knows how to insure its survival in a sea of enemies.

Israel has one of the highest standards of living in the world. They have the type of independent state they want. Do people in Arab world have that? No. Do their actions against Israel serve their citizens longterm interest? No. These people live in conditions worse than the poorest countries in Eastern Europe. Instead of buying rockets to hit a country like Israel, why don't they spend to money to invest in their people. Why won't they recognize Israel? Its an independent state and has ever right to exist. As long as they remain dedicated to Israel's destruction, Israel will continue to do what is necessary to remove threats to its security.

Israel has been doing this for 60 years, and can do it for another 60+ years all the while maintaining a first world standard of living for its citizens. Israel knows how to look out for its longterm interest, do those that are dedicated to the destruction of Israel know what is in the best longterm interest for the people they claim to be protecting by terrorizing Israel? The past 60 years shows that they do not. There could have been an independent Palistinian State in 1948 with the UN partition plan, but the Arabs rejected the plan and brutally attacked Israel on the first day of its independence.

Israel will continue to do what it needs to to protect its citizens way of life. The real question is when are those that oppose Israel going to realize their violence has failed to achieve any of their goals and only makes the lives of the people they claim to be trying to help worse? Where is the Palestinian non-violent movement? Perhaps they should develop one because the past 60 years of terrorism has only made things worse for them, while Israel has continued to grow and prosper.
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Old 07-24-2006, 07:12 PM   #317
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So Sting, in your opinion, has the Israeli government ever participated in a wrongful act which has only fueled the problem in the region? Or are they totally absolved of any responsibility since they are the victims in this conflict?
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Old 07-24-2006, 07:14 PM   #318
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So Sting, in your opinion, has the Israeli government ever participated in a wrongful act which has only fueled the problem in the region? Or are they totally absolved of any responsibility since they are the victims in this conflict?
Who is saying that Israel is innocent of causing problems. But don't forget that Hamas blows up buses full of people and Hizbolla added to the problem by entering Israel and kidnapping two soldiers and then putting lebenon in immediate danger. Then were supposed to feel, which I do sorry for the innocent lebenese who died because these fucking assholes hide in the crowds of citizens and then spew hate calling for the destruction of the Zionist pigs.
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Old 07-24-2006, 07:37 PM   #319
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Old 07-24-2006, 07:42 PM   #320
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Originally posted by trevster2k
So Sting, in your opinion, has the Israeli government ever participated in a wrongful act which has only fueled the problem in the region? Or are they totally absolved of any responsibility since they are the victims in this conflict?
Sting can answer for himself, but I think we all share the following beliefs:

(1) Israel is a perfect nation
(2) people dying is bad

If anyone disputes these statements, let them speak.

I think our discussion can move beyond these points.
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Old 07-24-2006, 07:46 PM   #321
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So Sting, in your opinion, has the Israeli government ever participated in a wrongful act which has only fueled the problem in the region? Or are they totally absolved of any responsibility since they are the victims in this conflict?
They have made mistakes like any other nation on the planet has made mistakes at times over the past 58 years. The fact that Israel exist is the chief fuel for these terrorist groups and its time people who don't direct their criticism towards these groups or in fact support them, realize that. But Israel has every right to exist and certainly has every right to defend itself. I often find the criticism of Israel a bit strange. Imagine if terrorist bombs were going off in your supermarket or disco and you were running to the bomb shelter every few hours because a terrorist entity was dedicated to killing you and everyone in your country. Israel should and does act responsible in its actions to defend itself. If anything, I'd say Israel has been to restrained in its actions the past few weeks. Time and the media have a way of turning things politically against you. A swifter military operation although would have resulted in higher casualties initially, may have accomplished the goal of pushing the short range rocket positions 20 miles back earlier than the current operation which is still in the process of trying to do that. The quicker you accomplish that objective, the sooner many types of military operations can be scaled back or stopped.
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Old 07-24-2006, 07:55 PM   #322
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The real question is when are those that oppose Israel going to realize their violence has failed to achieve any of their goals and only makes the lives of the people they claim to be trying to help worse?
Maybe the goals of these Islamic militant groups *have* been accomplished all of these years. Maybe the leaders of Hezbollah, Hamas, and the like don't want prosperity. If the fight against Israel ever ended, their great cause would be gone, and their power marginalized. Sheik Nasrallah needs Israel to exist.

Hezbollah would like nothing more than a bloodbath on the Lebanese side of the border. That's why they launch rocket attacks from the street corners of Lebanese villages, then quickly load up and drive away. Provoke an inevitable Israeli response and then disappear, leaving only civilians behind. Casualties among the innocents are great for recruiting more soldiers to fight the Zionists.
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Old 07-24-2006, 08:16 PM   #323
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Thanks for your response Sting.

Would you agree that criticism of Israel's actions is not the same as support for Hezbelloh or Hamas?

Because I think some people here who support Israel misunderstand the two. I don't believe anyone has a problem with Israel defending itself against the terrorists. But people have a difficult time watching the lives of tens of thousands of people being displaced and hundreds being killed. I just saw a death too figure on CBC news, 400 Lebanese (17 Hezbelloh) and 17 Israeli civilians and 19 Israeli soldiers. These numbers, along with the destruction of civilian infrastructure, create questions in the minds of the public. People are wondering who are the victims right now, not in the past but during this present conflict over the past 10-14 days. That's all people are questioning and wondering how the kidnapping of 3 soldiers and the killing of another 8 soldiers warrants this level of military response by Israel.

Also, do you think any of this will solve anything? Personally, since this has been going on since the formation of Israel as a nation, I don't this will long-running conflict will ever end barring the complete destruction of the entire Arab populace around Israel since some suggest it is an Arab position. Or they resolve the Palestinian issue.

Terrorists lose their support when they no longer have the public sympathy for their causes. I don't mean overt support but an underlying thought process which kind of understands why they are doing what they are doing. When this feeling disappears, so do their recruits since they have no more sympathizers. But when that public continues to suffer losses which it may perceive to unfair and disproportionate, it may not have the effect of creating a distaste for a terrorist group like Hezbelloh. It's possible it could even strengthen their resolve and support instead of the opposite effect.
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Old 07-24-2006, 08:21 PM   #324
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is this the length you'd go to justify the tragedy we see there? 'they were human shields'. i think it is a whole lot more likely that israel is just firing away their missiles indiscriminately than hezbollah using people as 'human shields'.

human shields? who the hell knows there was hezbollah presence in the location where this woman was injured? if they KNEW where hezbollah was, why havent they destroyed it after 2 WEEKS OF BOMBING? they dont know where hezbollah is, so how can you say these people were 'human shields' instead of just civilians trying to survive.
For years whenever journalists entered Hezbollah areas they showed that they are surrounded by civilians and make a point of placing their structure in apartment blocks and areas where any strike will likely kill civilians, it is cold and calculating because any civilian death is a victory to them since it helps their cause in the eyes of the world, that isn't a call for carte blanche immunity to Israel to kill as many innocent people to get to rocket batteries but it should be a factor in weighing up the conflict.
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Old 07-24-2006, 08:55 PM   #325
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Maybe the goals of these Islamic militant groups *have* been accomplished all of these years. Maybe the leaders of Hezbollah, Hamas, and the like don't want prosperity. If the fight against Israel ever ended, their great cause would be gone, and their power marginalized. Sheik Nasrallah needs Israel to exist.

Hezbollah would like nothing more than a bloodbath on the Lebanese side of the border. That's why they launch rocket attacks from the street corners of Lebanese villages, then quickly load up and drive away. Provoke an inevitable Israeli response and then disappear, leaving only civilians behind. Casualties among the innocents are great for recruiting more soldiers to fight the Zionists.

Well, then what your saying is that Hezbollah's goal was accomplished three decades before it was formed. If Hezbollah wants more soldiers to fight and die in whatever its pathetic cause is, then Israel has no problem in helping them in that department. Israel knows and understands what it needs to do to protect its citizens and way of life and it will continue to do so.

The choice is with those that live under, around, and are in Hezbollah as well as those that support them. If they prefer fighting and being killed as well as risking the existence of their organization, then they can continue doing what they do on a daily basis which in the long run accomplishes nothing but to get themselves and others killed. At some point, their going to have to pick a course of action that is actually productive or become obsolete. No matter how attached the local population is, their patience and support is not infinite either and while they may hate Israel, the only force in this conflict that they can actually have an impact on is Hezbollah. The resources of Hezbollah are finite and their shortening in supply in many area's at the moment.

Israel has been more than willing to resolve all political issues in regards to the area. They offered Syria 99% of the Golan Heights and Syria rejected the offer. They offered the Palestinians a state giving them 95% of what they wanted, and the Palestinians rejected the offer. They unilaterally pulled out of southern Lebanon in 2000 because people said Israel would be more secure and the situation would be peaceful, and here we are in July 2006 with a serious rocket threat to Northern Israely towns that did not exist in this magnitude back in 2000. Israel unilaterally pulled out of Gaza and forced its citizens to do so. The response from Gaza, more violence against Israel.

Israel is always ready to negotiate as we have seen above, but at the same time, they are going to always engage in actions to protect their security and way of life as they have done so successfully for 58 years.
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Old 07-24-2006, 09:06 PM   #326
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Well, then what your saying is that Hezbollah's goal was accomplished three decades before it was formed. If Hezbollah wants more soldiers to fight and die in whatever its pathetic cause is, then Israel has no problem in helping them in that department. Israel knows and understands what it needs to do to protect its citizens and way of life and it will continue to do so.
Eh, I said Hezbollah, Hamas, and the like. These sort of extremist groups in general. I think your analysis of this conflict is spot on.
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:30 PM   #327
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Thanks for your response Sting.

Would you agree that criticism of Israel's actions is not the same as support for Hezbelloh or Hamas?

Because I think some people here who support Israel misunderstand the two. I don't believe anyone has a problem with Israel defending itself against the terrorists. But people have a difficult time watching the lives of tens of thousands of people being displaced and hundreds being killed. I just saw a death too figure on CBC news, 400 Lebanese (17 Hezbelloh) and 17 Israeli civilians and 19 Israeli soldiers. These numbers, along with the destruction of civilian infrastructure, create questions in the minds of the public. People are wondering who are the victims right now, not in the past but during this present conflict over the past 10-14 days. That's all people are questioning and wondering how the kidnapping of 3 soldiers and the killing of another 8 soldiers warrants this level of military response by Israel.

Also, do you think any of this will solve anything? Personally, since this has been going on since the formation of Israel as a nation, I don't this will long-running conflict will ever end barring the complete destruction of the entire Arab populace around Israel since some suggest it is an Arab position. Or they resolve the Palestinian issue.

Terrorists lose their support when they no longer have the public sympathy for their causes. I don't mean overt support but an underlying thought process which kind of understands why they are doing what they are doing. When this feeling disappears, so do their recruits since they have no more sympathizers. But when that public continues to suffer losses which it may perceive to unfair and disproportionate, it may not have the effect of creating a distaste for a terrorist group like Hezbelloh. It's possible it could even strengthen their resolve and support instead of the opposite effect.
I certainly agree that criticism of Israel's actions is not the same as support for Hezbollah and Humas. Still, I have often found there to be a lack of criticism or sometimes even a mention of the terrorism of Hezbollah and Humas by many around the world who engage in mass criticism of Israel.

Lets remember that this response by Israel is not simply about the kidnapping of two Israely soldiers. Hezbollah has been building up its strength and supplies along the border with Israel for the past 6 years and has been rocketing northern Israely towns and making incursions to capture Israely soldiers for a good period of time, prior to the events of two weeks ago. What happened two weeks ago was not an isolated incident.

With that in mind, Israel is concience of the build of 15,000 rockets along its border which threatens the safety of its citizens and which Hezbollah was starting to use more frequently. Israel had to do something about this problem. How long would the United States or any other country tolerate such violent terrorist activity along its border before it took action to resolve the problem?

Military action of this scale normally would involve casualty levels far exceeding the 400 Lebanese that have been killed so far. In terms of being careful and using restraint, Israel may have been too cautious. In any event, if the casualty figure is to high in your view, what would you consider to be an "acceptable" casualty level given the seriousness of the situation?


I think the immediate threat to Israely towns in the north will largely be solved by completely pushing Hezbollah at least 20 miles from the Israely border in which case 98% of their rockets will be out of range of Israely citizens.

Remember, Israel is not the agressor. It is defending itself and its way of life and has successfully done so for 58 years now. Israel has what it wants. Its an independent democracy, with one of the highest standards of living in the world. Its ready to continue to live, grow and prosper as it has well into the future.

Outside of Israel, in Lebanon, West Bank, Gaza, and Syria, the citizens have standards of living that don't even rank in the top 100 for the planet. They continue to support the same leaders, and the same actions, terrorism and violence against Israel in the hopes they will destroy Israel and this will somehow make their lives better. Its 58 years later, who has the independent state and is living the prosperous lifestyle and who is essentially living in the same conditions they lived in 58 years ago if not worse? Its time for the Arabs in these countries to WAKE UP and realize that if they want a decent future for their childern, they need to stop this insane and unachievable pursuit of the destruction of Israel. All their actions do is make living conditions for them worse, while Israel continues to advance far into the future. If you want to have a prosperous society, stop sending your childern to join Humas and Hezbollah and educate them in a way that will actually contribute to your countries standard of living instead of detract from it. At a minimum, stop the violence, because it has done nothing to stop Israel and has been the #1 reason why these communities are still stuck in the past while Israel and the rest of the world continues to move forward.

Israel has already demonstrated its willingness to negotiate on any issue as well as withdraw from this or that territory without any conditions as we saw with Lebanon in 2000 and Gaza more recently. But it will never allow terrorist to simply slaughter its civilians without responding and removing that particular threat.

Israel has what it wants and will continue to protect it with any means necessary. If people in Lebanon, West Bank, and Gaza want to be able to improve their standard of living, and actually move into the future, then they are going to have to deal with these terrorist groups and end their support for them. The choice is theirs, 60 more years of terrorism and moving backwards, or 60 years of a future with progress, peace and prosperity. Hezbollah and Humas are strong, but their not dictatorships and don't run police states. They get their power from the people, and the people are going to have to pick which road they want to go down.
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Old 07-24-2006, 10:49 PM   #328
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Posting of an article does not necessarily imply endorsement of the writer's point of view.

However it should be noted that the author of the article Paul Craig Roberts is not only an American but served as a senior official in the Reagan administration.
I wasn't implying that you endorsed the point of view in the article. I was just questioning it's reliability. It sounded like demagoguery to me.
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Old 07-24-2006, 11:47 PM   #329
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In any event, if the casualty figure is to high in your view, what would you consider to be an "acceptable" casualty level given the seriousness of the situation?


I think the immediate threat to Israely towns in the north will largely be solved by completely pushing Hezbollah at least 20 miles from the Israely border in which case 98% of their rockets will be out of range of Israely citizens.

Remember, Israel is not the agressor. It is defending itself and its way of life and has successfully done so for 58 years now.

Outside of Israel, in Lebanon, West Bank, Gaza, and Syria, the citizens have standards of living that don't even rank in the top 100 for the planet. They continue to support the same leaders, and the same actions, terrorism and violence against Israel in the hopes they will destroy Israel and this will somehow make their lives better.
I think for myself and other critics is the nature of the casualties along with the numbers. Many of them have been children, and a few have been targeted by gunships meaning human decisions were involved in attacking the target, i.e the bus, and minivan I do think that there is a small number of Israeli military who are not acting in self-defense but out of vengeance. They are human beings and of course, most are trying to do the best job they can.But a tiny percentage, just as in the any military, are perhaps overstepping their bounds in targeting different objects. That's my take. And I think this is something that the IDF has to reel in and control.

Regarding the buffer zone, yes, it could be effective but this is how Syria gained a foothold in Lebanon in the first place. Who is willing to step into the line of fire to maintain the buffer? Israel has stated it would accept NATO but would the Lebanese, would Hezbelloh? It would provide a temporary solution at best in my mind. And it could open a whole new can of worms and the region could be destablized again.

I agree that this is an ongoing dilemma which stretches back many many years. But for the average person watching the news, all they know is the recent events of the past month. Israel has overlooked Hezbelloh over the past few years and Hezbelloh took advantage by arming itself to the teeth. So I think that is conflict is something bigger than what they are claiming it to be. Initially, the position of Israel was return the soldiers but that is off the table. Now it is the disarming of Hezbelloh. With that as a goal, I don't see how this present turn of events can end without the total destruction of many parts of Lebanon including Beirut. And the scariest thing is that Hezbelloh will just move its' operations somewhere else.

I think in Lebanon's case specifically, the people did recently support a different leadership in the hope of a better future of peace and prosperity. Except they couldn't control the southern regions of Lebanon where Hezbelloh had a strong foothold. Unfortunately, that little bit of hope growing in Lebanon is now extinguished and I don't see it leading to more peace. Like many people who live in regions constantly besieged by war, the Lebanese are very resilent. But their frustration, sadness and disappointment will be directed somewhere in the coming years. Will be towards Hezbelloh or Israel? Time will tell, I guess.

I don't think comparisons between Israel and the Arab nations in the surrounding region based on GDP and prosperity is entirely fair. There is no doubt that Israel is in the good graces of the US and this helps their economy greatly. Not that it is a bad thing,it's just that it is a huge advantage to have favoured status with the US. Canada benefits greatly also along with many other nations. Syria and Lebanon, not so favoured.Which makes it increasing difficult to accelerate the growth of an economy when the biggest trading partner in the world frowns upon your nation. Many people in Gaza and the West Bank are still considered refugees depending on international support which again affects economic production.

Sting, thanks for this exchange. I just hope this whole turn of events ends quickly and people can return to their lives albeit not under the best circumstances for either peoples but to some level of normality.
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Old 07-25-2006, 12:43 AM   #330
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Israel has been more than willing to resolve all political issues in regards to the area.
That is simply untrue - they continue to expand illegal settlements even today, as we speak. These are a clear provocation of the local Palestinian population.

Regarding Israel's will to resolve all issues as you claim:

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As Israel's first prime minister, David Ben Gurion, once candidly admitted to a colleague: "If I were an Arab leader I would never make terms with Israel. That is natural: We have taken their country. Sure, God promised it to us, but what does that matter to them? Our God is not theirs. We come from Israel, it's true, but 2,000 years ago, and what is that to them? There has been anti-Semitism, the Nazis, Hitler, Auschwitz, but was that their fault? They only see one thing: We have come here and stolen their country."
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