Bush confided in Blair that getting Syria to intervene would end the conflict immediately. "See, the irony is that what they need to do is get Syria to get Hizbullah to stop doing this sh*t and it's over." And how's he going to do that? By threatening Syria I'm sure.
Hearing Bush tell it, one would think that the latest bloodshed in the Middle East is the result of Hizbullah's barbaric habits, not Israel's. But the entire reason Hizbullah even exists is because of Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 1982. As Lebanon based writer Bilal El-Amine writes in the forthcoming print edition of Left Turn:
"An amalgam of political party, armed resistance and social movement, Hizbullah ("Party of God") was born of a perfect storm that saw the convergence of several factors in the early 1980s: 1) the long-term changes inside the Shia community, described at length above, 2) the 1979 Islamic revolution in Iran, and 3) the 1982 Israeli invasion of southern Lebanon. Although Iranian support was certainly critical to the emergence of the party, the Israeli invasion appears to have been the decisive factor."
Bush's off-the-cuff remark to Tony Blair in St. Petersburg deliberately ignored the deep history of Hizbullah, which is deemed a terrorist organization by the state of Israel and the US State Department. And lest you forgot, it was Israel who first marched forces into Lebanon in the 1990s, not the other way around. Hizbullah came about as a result of Israeli's invasion. Since then, Hizbullah has tightened their relationship with Palestine, which likely has struck fear in the Israeli government. The latest chapter of this saga came about when two Israeli soldiers were captured by Hizbullah inside Israel last week. But of course only Israel has the right to defend themselves. Israel has imprisoned thousands of Hamas and Hizbullah members.
Unfortunately, there aren't any leading Democrats standing up to Bush's unapprised diplomacy. Senator Hillary Clinton says she'll support "whatever steps are necessary" for Israel to prevail. I wonder if she'll support another slaughter like that in Qana?
Rep. Nancy Pelosi took Clinton's remarks a bit further, clarifying the Democrats' position, "The House Democratic leadership strongly condemns the seizure of Israeli soldiers by Hezbollah terrorists operating from Lebanon ... Israel has an inherent right to defend itself, and the United States supports our ally." Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid also chimed in, "Hezbollah must be dismantled, and all nations have an obligation to cease any and all assistance to this terrorist organization. Israel has a right to live in peace and security, and the United States will stand by our ally in this difficult time."
One would expect such perverse language from the neocons, but sadly the Democrats are just as heinous when it comes to supporting Israel aggression. How are these clowns going to end the war in Iraq if they continue to support hostility that is only escalating the tension between the West and Arab countries?
If the Bush administration and their Democratic enablers were truly serious about ending the violence in the Middle East, the first honest step would be for the US to cut off all funding to Israel. But I think we are more likely to see Syria step in than for that to happen.