At some point, we’re going to have a talk about how the Lebanese army is doing more to interfere with Hezbollah than UNIFIL is. Obviously, that conversation will require substantial alcohol, since we’re going to have to come to grips with two very strange facts: (a) we’re actually talking about the Lebanese armed forces as something other than the punchline of a joke that involves the phrase “… I mean the Syrian army… I mean the Lebanese army… I mean Hezbollah” and (b) Lebanon is technically at war with Israel and still doing more to protect Israel than the UN, which Israel is a member of and gives dues to. Ted Belman comments that the “UN Force in Lebanon is defined more by what it cannot do than what it can”, while Anne has some pictures for the visual learners in the crowd.
But as Israel Matsav points out, the Lebanese army’s deployment near the southern border isn’t all that exciting given that Hezbollah is now moving their rockets to newly built bunkers further north – in Palestinian refugee camps:
But this is apparently part of a larger pattern in which Hezbullah has been building bunkers – to replace the ones Israel destroyed in southern Lebanon – in the ‘Palestinian refugee camps’ where… “the Lebanese army doesn’t have the authority to patrol.” Now there’s an interesting statement. Consider the following:
1. How does a sovereign state have areas that are off limits to its army (and presumably police) without an agreement with another sovereign that has such authority?
2. Given that the Lebanese army is infested with Hezbullah (or Shiites who support Hezbullah) anyway, would it really help if they were allowed to enter the camps?
Carl also cites Nasrallah’s boast that Hezbollah still has 20,000 rockets, and notes that Israel has not denied the claim. Obviously, this boast is a little exagerated. Hezbollah never had 20,000 rockets (wasn’t the number 13,000 give/take?). Even if do have that many left, Nasrallah’s boast is still empty – most of Hezbollah’s arsenal will have a hard time hitting Israel from that far north. But it’d be nice if more people would note that Hezbollah is now transforming some of the densest civilian areas in the world into military bases – because when they do get longer-range missiles from Iran and Syria, the historical odds are about 100 percent that they’ll use them. Israel is eventually going to have to do something about that, and the screams about human rights atrocities are going to be literally deafening no matter how careful they are.
Lebanon is so psyched to actually have an army that kind of sort of matters. They’ve gone so far as to rattle their sabers in Israel’s direction, and they’re threatening to attack the IDF. That would be mind-bogglingly stupid idea on their part – if they don’t understand why, we’re sure that Syria can explain the relevant details to them.Related Mere Rhetoric Posts: