Monday, July 31, 2006

Fraud of a Nobel Prize Laureate

When, in one sweep, Israel's military murdered nearly 60 civilians, 37 of them children, it didn't just shoot children and defenseless civilians—it shot itself in the foot. The slaughter of refugees within their own country is unconscionable enough that it has prompted a 48-hour Israeli ceasefire. It is hoped that Hezbollah will assume the moral high ground and avoid resorting to violence during that hiatus.

This, plus the preceding weeks of criminal assault against Lebanese society, has finally accomplished what aggression of this sort cannot but accomplish: it has rallied a great number of Lebanese—including their Prime Minister—to the Hezbollah cause. Today, Fouad Siniora thanked the militia's leader, Hassan Nasrallah, for defending the country. Furthermore, a recent poll by the Beirut Centre for Research recorded that 87% of Lebanese from all sects supported the "resistance's fight against Israeli aggression on Lebanon." Given this, one wonders how long it will take for the Lebanese army, which so far has stood by while the country it is charged with defending was being ravaged, before it enters the game. With every day that passes, the less likely it gets that Lebanon will take on Hezbollah and disarm it (as with the groups Hamas and Islamic Jihad in the Occupied Territories, part of the Israeli strategy appears to rest on the near certainty that attempts at disarming the militias would result in civil war).

Meanwhile, in the comfort and safety of New York City, Israeli Vice Prime Minister and Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Shimon Peres, an individual who for much too long has managed to deceive the world into believing that he is a wise man of peace, had the gall to claim that the slaying of 37 children was "totally, totally [Hezbollah's] fault." Yet again, Israel is so mired in its delusion of victimhood that it cannot ever be responsible for the outcome of what it does. Once again, its actions were nothing but blameless self-defence against a group that allegedly (but, as we have seen, hardly) represents an existential threat to it (Israel, along with the media, keep rehashing the fact that Hezbollah is sworn to the destruction of the Jewish state, a proposition that even the most committed of Hezbollah operatives knows is as outlandish as it is unachievable).

(The language doesn't get more preposterous, however, as when Israeli Ambassador to the UN, Dan Gillerman, said yesterday that Hezbollah must be disarmed before any ceasefire. Otherwise, the militant group will rise again—"not just against [Israel] and not just against the people of Lebanon, but against the whole region and civilization as we know it." Against Lebanon? Against civilization as we know it? What planet does Gillerman live on?)

Mr. Perez's comments are outrageous, and if the Council on Foreign Relations, where Mr. Peres is scheduled to deliver a speech, had any sense of justice and moral rectitude, it would cancel the event. Which it won't, of course, and the Israeli fraud will be applauded and welcomed.

The world is indeed a stage, and while the grey actors strut about, the murderers fall upon their ragged victims, daggers drawn.

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