Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Israel vs. Hezbollah

About a year ago, I wrote the following:

Israel's decision to leave Gaza is a victory for terrorism and makes both Israel and the United States less secure. The Palestinian leadership has shown no real commitment to stopping terrorist attacks against Israelis. Giving them their own land with more autonomy sends the dangerous message that terrorism works, and that message will encourage more terrorism.

See, I told you so.

in my mind, I picture the situation between Israel and Hezbollah as a "fight" between a patient older brother and a younger, bratty little brother. The brat pesters, taunts and even hits his older brother, until the older brother reaches the end of his patience and decks him. Then the bratty little brother runs to Mommy and tattles on the older one.

This is a simplistic analogy, but one I think has some application to the Israel/Hezbollah conflict. Hezbollah is firing rockets at Israel and sending suicide bombers to murder Israeli women and children while hiding in the midst of civillians. When Israel retaliates against these acts of war, Hezbollah goes whining and crying to the international community about how Israeli military operations are resulting in civilian deaths. Causing civilians to suffer is a key part of Hezbollah's strategy in their war to obliterate Israel.

Israel is asked to put up with more than anyone else would be. After the September 11 terrorist attacks, the United States launched a war against the Taliban regime in Afghanistan because they were harboring al Qaida. A little farther back in history, we launched a war against Spain in large part justified by the destruction of the Maine. The United States entered World War I on the basis of an alleged letter from Germany to Mexico promising American territory to our southern neighbor. We invaded Iraq, which did not even have direct ties to September 11, because of the danger represented by Saddam Hussein.

Yet when Israel retaliates against a constant barrage of terrorism and the barbaric murder of women and children, there is great wringing of hands and pontificating about "peace". If terrorists in Mexico or Canada were firing rockets across the border into American towns and had a clearly stated goal of destroying the United States, what do you think we would do about it? Would we patiently sit by and ask the Canadian or Mexican governments to control the radical factions in their territory, or would we take the terrorists out ourselves?

Do we need to spend more than three seconds pondering that question?