Israel’s aims in its war on Lebanon are now self evident. Equally so are its preferred method for waging it.
As Israeli cabinet minister , Binyamin Ben-Eliezer, has said it will take Israel a little longer "to complete the job, and by that I mean that the area in which we want [an] international force to deploy is cleansed of Hezbollah."
Israel’s military agenda is to ethnically cleanse south Lebanon by shooting and bombing anything that moves. While this relentless scorch earth policy has been extended well to the north in the country and now takes in the southern suburbs of Beirut itself, it was the massacre at Qana on July 30 which has horrified the world. Fifty two people , including 30 children, were killed while sheltering in a basement.
Israel was not concerned about these deaths and the massive toll the war is taking of civilian lives. Worldwide outrage over Qana was treated with disdain. The bombing continued unabated despite much talk of a ceasefire.Talk Israel has simply ignored.
Protected, even egged on by the Bush administration, as well as the Howard government and the leadership of the ALP in this country, Israel has been granted a free hand to do what it pleases, kill whomsoever it chooses, in Lebanon, while the rest of the world is asked to look on.
But Qana wasn’t an aberration or a mistake in marksmanship. Such carnage is a habit. This was the second time in a decade that the village had been brutally attacked by the Israeli Defence Force. In April 1996, 106 civilians were slaughtered in similar circumstances when the UN compound there was shelled.
Today the same perpetrators return to Lebanon determined to impose a final solution on the country. Now referring to past slaughters as ‘band aid solutions’ this time around the carnage is supposed to ensure a long-standing resolution to the conflict, but one absolutely on Israel’s terms.
Any international force bought in, or any cease fire established at the behest of Israel, will not be a solution to the conflict. Israel’s desire to ethnically cleanse south Lebanon is yet another attempt to extend the boarders of this terrorist state as it has done so since its inception. In all that time there has been no solution on offer save Israel’s quest to dispossess the original inhabitants of Palestine.
While the war on Lebanon continues on its northern border, Israel is dismantling by force the nascent Palestinian state apparatus in Gaza. Just as in Lebanon the infrastructure of the country is being methodically destroyed, its democratically elected representatives kidnapped and imprisoned. In the lead up to this present war, Palestine has been strangled by a concerted campaign orchestrated by Israel and abetted by the United States to starve it of funds and imprison its people behind a massive wall.
On both war fronts relief supplies, medicines and food -- even when ferried by the Red Cross or the UN -- are being denied to the people who are constantly being shelled.
There is no room left for doubt:Israel’s war aims are very clear indeed.
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