Time for Beirut to Take Sides

Whither Lebanon? Israel is fighting Hezbollah in Lebanon again, and once again the Lebanese government is caught in the middle.

Israel's action; Lebanon's reaction? The Belmont Club expressed concern that 'If Israel strikes at the Lebanese government it will be very damaging, I think, to all the efforts made to kick Syria out.' But the Lebanese government is taking charge, at least as far as Hezbollah is concerned:
Lebanon's Ambassador to the US Farid Abboud was summoned back to Beirut on Wednesday night after expressing his support for Hizbullah in the US media.

Abboud was reported as saying that Israel was the only one who could bring about the release of the kidnapped IDF soldiers by agreeing to negotiate with the movement via mediators.

Officials in Beirut stressed that Abboud's view did not represent that of Lebanon, which is vehemently opposed to Hizbullah's actions on Israel's northern border.

Now, smacking down an ambassador for supporting Hezbollah does not equal kicking Syria out of Lebanon; but I'd like to think that this may be an indication that the Lebanese government is ready to take a stand with the good guys.

Nasrallah "ready for war with Israel". Lebanese blogger Abu Kais at From Beirut to the Beltway has this update: 'Hizbullah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah said today he was ready for a full confrontation with Israel adding that no military operation will succeed in setting the kidnapped soldiers free. "If Israel wants escalation, we are ready for full confrontation. I advise the new Israeli political and military leadership to ask the former leaders about Lebanon," Nasrallah said in a press conference in Beirut's southern suburb.' Thanks to the absent Michael Totten for bringing Abu Kais to our attention.

Commentary. There's some exciting discussion going on in the comments section of Abu Kais' previous post. Here are some excerpts:
You guys are a bunch of wimps. Do you understand this logic is dangerous? "Israel attacked us because our government failed to secure Israel's border." The same wimpish thinking that got us tied up with Israel in the first place and what did we get for it? Lebanese running falafel stands in Tel Aviv, hope you all are happy with no respect for yourselves.

Posted by: George Nehme | Wednesday, July 12, 2006 at 09:58 AM

No my dear George,

Israel DID attack us because we failed to secure our borders! I don't (and I hope a lot of lebanese too) want to be at war on behalf of the entire arab world.
Call me a whimp, but I want to be a whimp living in a peaceful and prosperous country. Sorry for all you beligerous and angry proud self-respecting patriots, but I'm really fed up with being in a useless state of war.

PS. Where is the self respect in igniting a war front to kidnapp a couple of soldiers?

And what's with the falafels ?

Posted by: Immed | Wednesday, July 12, 2006 at 10:13 AM

A Lebanese blogger taking Israel's side. Bravo. I'm sure Zionists will now hit your "tip jar", you fucking traitor

Posted by: ali | Wednesday, July 12, 2006 at 10:59 AM


Go to hell. Or yet, let Hizbullah "protect" your ass by starting a war. I don't support Israel (never have) and their overzealous and violent retaliation but no way in hell will I not blame Hizbullah for starting another war.

Posted by: Anon girl | Wednesday, July 12, 2006 at 11:36 AM

It is so unfortunate that Lebanon and many of the Arab countries are populated by so many Alis (note his post at 10:59 pm). Rational;ity and reason are alien to that kind of a mind. He will settle for nothing less than the total destruction of the state of Israel and the glory of his kind of Islam. It is af if one kind is imperial while the other is not. But what is most distressing is the logic, or rather the lack of it, with which he pursues his goal. To predict the Israeli reaction to the kiddnapping of its soldiers is a no brainer. Let us assume that ultimately Israel does release say 50 HA prisoners after having killed or maimed a 100 Lebanese destroyed $ 2 billion worth of infrasctructure, killed the livelyhood of 100's of thousands of Lebanese and in the process put an end to any hope of an economic recovery then by what calculus does one justify that these HA prisoners, if released, are so much more valuable than the rest of us? A logic based on hatred and religious zealotry does not offer any grounds for dialogue , peace or negotiations. If we do not exorcise the body politic in the Arab world of the Alis of the world then we would have failed our historical responsibility to the future generations to prosper and live in peace. Make no mistake about it, cancerous cells left ubchecked will grow , dominate and destro the vehicle within which they reside.

Posted by: Ghassan Karam | Wednesday, July 12, 2006 at 12:32 PM

And there are more posts in support of Ghassan. This is a good thing. Meanwhile, Tammy Bruce links to Herb Keinon's analysis in the Jerusalem Post explaining "the pressures on Israel and why they are safe to directly attack Lebanon but not Syria."

What's happening here is this: It is no longer the Israelis who are isolated, nor the freedom activists in the Arab world. It's the fascist regimes that are increasingly isolated and panicking. I'm guessing the nationalism and independence we've seen emerging in Lebanon will gather momentum, with the will of the freedom-loving people of the world behind it.