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Leaders Respond to the Ceasefire August 14, 2006

Posted by earthlingconcerned in News and politics, United Nations.

So it was said, so it was done. At 8:00 a.m. Lebanese time, the ceasefire agreed upon by Israeli, Lebanese and Hezbollah leadership began after 34 days of bitter conflict. UN Security Council Resolution 1701 demands a complete end to hostilities, an eventual withdrawal of Israeli forces in Lebanon, full control of Lebanese forces in by the Government of Lebanon, and the strengthening of UNIFIL to a possible 15,000 soldiers. The longevity of the ceasefire, however, has been called into question since it was agreed upon over the weekend. It would be a mistake to claim that a turbulent cease-fire is better than the attacks that had been going on but to proclaim it as an overall victory would be very short sighted indeed.

On Sunday alone, after the ceasefire had been agreed upon, Hezbollah fired more than 250 rockets into Israel and Israeli war planes continued their bombardment of Lebanon (suspected Hezbollah strongholds). It’s apparent that tensions remain high, but aside from a few skirmishes between Hezbollah guerillas and Israeli troops early Monday, the cease-fire seems to be holding throughout its first day. So what do the respective leaders have to say about all of this? George W. Bush spoke during a press conference on Monday about of the dangers still present in Hezbollah due to their ongoing support from Syria and Iran (and how worse it could have been had they had nuclear weapons). But suggested an Israeli victory nonetheless. He spoke of the “universal desire” to promote democracy and the dangers new democracies will continue to face and later that “America’s actions have never been guided by territorial ambition.” His comments were poignant and seemed sincere (you’ll rarely hear me say this). On whether the ceasefire will be effective, he simply said that he hoped so because it was the first step in ensuring Lebanon’s democracy remains strong but that Israel does have the right to defend itself further if further attacks occur (as allowed by the UN Security Council Resolution). Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah made a televised announcement stating that Hezbollah guerillas had achieved a strategic, historic victory against Israel. In the same broadcast, he claimed that “the most powerful army in the world cannot defeat Hezbollah” (CBC Newsworld translation). This measure of confident rhetoric doesn’t sound like something that will lead to long term peace. But, Hassan Nasrallah doesn’t exactly have the best reputation internationally. George W. Bush, during his news conference, responded to this by saying that, “if I were Hezbollah, I would claim victory as well.” The rationale behind saying this is simply that they are relying on propaganda, and nothing else. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was more moderate in his approach by stating that the conflict had its fair share of “deficiencies” and that he took sole responsibility of how the attacks occurred. He did order the end of further attacks as the ceasefire ended but did add, through his spokesman Asaf Shariv, “if someone fires at us we will fire back.” Fair enough. His moderate approach seemed more in tune with someone who is actually an elected figurehead and subsequently in charge of a country. Supposedly support for his recent campaign has dwindled amongst the Israeli people as popularity for a politician further right on the scale of ideals was gaining popularity. Rumours of this whole ordeal as a reason for Ulmuts government to collapse were broadcast shortly after Hassan Nasrallah made his proclamations of victory on CBC Newsworld. Lastly, Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora said, after agreeing to the ceasefire, that “This resolution shows that the whole world stood by Lebanon.” However, I did quote these individuals in reverse chronological order.

It seems that with every passing hour of the ceasefire, more and more words of hostility are being spread. The world can only hope for the best. But there is much to do. The kidnapped Israeli soldiers that have yet to be returned. It is yet unclear exactly which UN members will contribute to the additional UNIFIL forces (the majority will most likely come from the developing world as has been the case in recent missions), and Prime Minister Ehud Olmert will surely respond to the recent Hezbullah claim to victory. Regardless of what happens, the middle east will surely remain a turbulent region. The news of the kidnappings by Palestinian gunmen of two Fox News journalists proves this. It is yet to be seen how Rupert Murdoch and his armies will respond. Israel also, in an unrelated matter, fired rockets into Gaza against what it says to be a Islamic Jihad terrorist group. I fear that the subject matter of this article will forever remain in progress.



1. firozali A.Mulla - August 15, 2006

Three steps climbing and two falling dowsn is not the war won

2. invest expert - October 20, 2006

I’m not sure is it so… Do you really know about it? Are you sure? What source of this post? Is it your own?

3. earthlingconcerned - October 20, 2006

Not sure about what exactly? Please be reminded that this article was written a few months ago.

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