Battles rage on eve of UN truce
news.yahoo.com, Reuters, Aug 13 ’06
U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan said fighting should end immediately to spare civilians.
“The fighting should stop now to respect the spirit and intent of the Security Council decision, the object of which was to save civilian lives, to spare the pain and suffering that the civilians on both sides are living through,” Annan said.
At least 1,082 people in Lebanon and 149 Israelis, including 109 soldiers, have been killed in the war.
Analysts said that a truce might not hold, particularly with Israeli troops still in Lebanon.
Huge Israeli offensive launched
news.independent.co.uk, Aug 13 ’06
Despite UN agreement on ceasefire, 30,000 troops are now operating inside Lebanon
Senior source: IDF to withdraw in week or two
Government expected Sunday to okay Security Council Resolution 1701 to end fighting in southern Lebanon. Senior source at PM’s Office estimates in conversation with Ynet that soldiers’ withdrawal will only begin when multinational force, Lebanese soldiers arrive
The Lebanese government accepted the Security Council decision but a Lebanese minister on behalf of Hizbullah said “we mainly opposed the part in the decision which acquits Israel of responsibility for the crimes it committed, and accuses Hizbullah of the war.”
This article is interesting, because the senior military source claims that the Israeli military killed 550 “terrorists” belonging to Hizbullah’s Nasser unit. But on the other hand, the dissonance rings loud and clear when he also says, “We know that in total they have 1,000-1,500 compulsory soldiers.” So it’s interesting that Hizbullah, according to this source, conscripts soldiers – as many governments do also. And yet somehow he can also label at least one group of them as “terrorists”.
So the dehumanization of the enemy continues. How convenient that the other side are always considered “terrorists”, so that any group who resists the interventionism of Western democracies is dismissed as a criminal. Let’s condemn the rocket attacks by both sides, and the conscription. But let’s also condemn the sickening propaganda that is trying to pull us into deeper hatred of our fellow man – and a wider war.
UN Security Council resolution 1701
Actually, in principle, I would question the whole idea of the United Nations getting involved and inserting foreign troops in Lebanon alongside Lebanese forces. At least section 8) says “no foreign forces in Lebanon without the consent of its government.” The United Nations does more than broker peace unfortunately. It also is a tool of interference, and “sanctions” government decisions. It sanctions the status quo even when it is incompatible with individual rights. But any governing authority that exists should come from the bottom up, and not from the top-down. And as a libertarian, I would take the bottom-up logic as far as possible – even to the level of each individual granting or withdrawing consent to government decisions.
I also would question section 3) which says the Lebanese government should “exercise its full sovereignty, so that there will be no weapons without the consent of the government of Lebanon and no authority other than that of the government of Lebanon.” Also section 8) requires the “disarmament of all armed groups in Lebanon, so that, pursuant to the Lebanese cabinet decision of July 27, 2006, there will be no weapons or authority in Lebanon other than that of the Lebanese state…”
The problem with the points about weapons is that individuals will need their weapons to defend themselves when they are attacked. The purpose of the cease-fire isn’t for leaving people defenceless, is it? What if the U.N. and Lebanese government forces can’t defend anybody? Isn’t this just a recipe for slaughter? The whole ideology of global disarmament of individuals is being pushed on the world by the United Nations – which originated in America ironically. Its purpose is to reinforce the power and mistaken tendencies of governments – while eroding their sovereignty – and to destroy natural individual rights, including the right to defend one’s life.