Was just talking to a friend who pointed out that, rather than punishing Lebanon as often portrayed in the press, Israel could be doing it a huge favor by delivering a devastating blow to Hezbollah. If Israel succeeds in surrounding and pulverizing Hezbollah in the south it will have “disarmed” Hezbollah in a way the Lebanese government never could, and it will be another blow against Syrian influence in the country. It won’t be pretty, but could be just what the Cedar Revolution needs in the long run.
As to your last post, as Jonah’s OG Middle East Guy, I should mention that there are rumors that Egypt, Jordan, etc., have quietly given Israel the green light to obliterate Hamas and Hezbollah. Obviously, it’d be really hard to confirm, but there is a certain logic that, if the Arab establishment is really sick of these guys, Israel is an awfully convenient tool for getting rid of them. Plus, they may think that Syria and Iran are getting a little too big for their britches, given the swagger they’ve recently been showing in Iraq. It wouldn’t shock me if the Lebanese government’s protests were for public and international consumption while they privately say, “See you in hell, bastards.” As usual, the bottom line in the Middle East is, who knows?
The Israeli UN Ambassador said exactly that this afternoon in the UN and broadcast on FOXNews. He said it directly to the Lebanese UN Ambassador and swiveling around to look at the weasels assembled….