Understanding or April Fools 1996 [Archives:2000/07/Focus]
By: Hassan Al-Haifi
April Understanding between Lebanon and Israel came in the wake of heavy civilian casualties, especially on the Lebanese side resulting from the War of Attrition between the various Lebanese resistance forces that and the Israeli forces that occupied a sizable chunk of its Southern territory. Bear in mind that Lebanon is only just over 10,000 sq. km.
Israel entered Lebanon in the 1980s on the pretext that it wanted to stop the Palestinian guerrilla attacks on its Northern border.
The Palestinians were heretofore waging a limited guerrilla campaign in an effort to give the Israelis some semblance of a hard time for having displacing them en masse out of Palestine in 1948, where they were eventually forced to reside in refugee camps in the surrounding neighboring countries, including Lebanon, with more of them coming out in trickles over the years since then.
United Nations Security Council 422 and 425 had been issued to order the Israelis out of Lebanon altogether. That was in the mid-80s.
The Israelis insisted on the evacuation of the Palestine Liberation Army and all the other Palestinian armed groups out of Lebanon.
While the menace the forces represented to Israel appeared to be harmless when compared to the more effective blows of Hizbullah, the Israelis could not accept any kind of Palestinian organized presence near them, let alone a paramilitary one. The Palestinians armed groups were forced to evacuate from the proximity of Israel and Israeli forces withdrew from most of the Lebanese territory they had taken all the way up to Beirut.
But, they insisted on holding on to a sizable strip, with a bulging intrusion, in South Lebanon, on the claim of needing a “security buffer” for its Northern settlements to avoid any repetition of vulnerability to attacks from “terrorists”, as anyone who is bound to confront Israel will always be labeled by the Israelis as such, and to a certain extent their supporters in Washington, notwithstanding the legitimacy of their gripe against the Israelis for all the terror they have caused in the area, from the start of the influx of Jewish immigrants to Palestine, which began in the 1920s (thanks to the inability of the British to foresee what kind of havoc they were creating by their “humanitarian” gesture to give the Jews a “national home” at the expense of the Palestinian Arab inhabitants). was not about to have anyone think that it either has respect for its neighbors or the international community. It must always come out with some gain, or headache for its neighbors through inputting its own interpretations to agreements or UN Resolutions and rejecting any rights to anyone else, except the “rights of the Israelis to live securely and peacefully” in territory that was never theirs anyway! The Lebanese are a proud and democratic people and certainly should not be expected to casually “understand the security fears”, like those who do in Washington and other Western capitals, of their southern neighbor.
Yet, Israel and many of her supporters see no justification for people not to like being occupied by Israeli troops and to use what ever means possible to get rid of that occupation, since the only rights that seem to exist are the rights of Israel, for it is a part of the “Free World”.
If the New World Order is to have any real meaning to most of the people of the world, this kind of single track persuasion will just have to be adjusted, if its proponents can hope to be taken with any credibility as to their sound intentions for this planet.who has gone through some effort at studying the Middle East situation, by analyzing the record over the past fifty years since Israel came into bloom-never mind the tragic consequences that lead to this implant-cannot fail to notice the chronic persistence of the Israelis to turn any form of convention or agreement that it is party to with its neighbors into a farce.
With the confidence that its neighbors are far from being able to match the mischievous tampering with legal terms to suit the whims of Israeli governments, left or right, and the almost spoiled child treatment accorded to Israel by the mighty superpower of the world, no matter how right the Arab arguments are and no matter what justification they raise-legal or otherwise-to demonstrate that a really dangerous menace is in their midst, who has proven time and again, as the records of all those involved in the efforts to keep the peace in the area have very clearly shown, that Israel will continue its gunk-ho strategy of dealing with its neighbors, without any intention or serious commitment to abide by any agreement it enters. It would seem that Israel does not even look forward to any peace in the region, because peace means a lot of bad things for Israel.
Israel can only thrive on war, as all the generous support that Israel squeezes out of the United States and other Western countries and World Jewry could dwindle to a fraction of its present level, since peace means the threat of Israel being “annihilated” or “thrown into the sea” as the Israelis project to their supporters, and as the hardworking solicitors for support and contributions to Israel loudly claim in the many dinners and parties held from New York to Hollywood claim and as the posters next to the donation collection cans declare, in one form or another.
If there is anyone throwing anyone anywhere, it has been the Israelis who have thrown millions of people out of their homes, villages, and whole cities.
If there is anyone persecuting anyone in the area, surely the Israelis have been the ones with the most horrible record for massive persecution in the area, if not the world. Anyone who knows what the Israelis did to the Palestinians and Syrians and Egyptians that were forced to live under Israeli occupation, would surely understand and even sympathize with the proud Lebanese who are resisting the Israeli occupation of their land. Yet it is Hizbullah that is projected as the bad guy in the confrontation that is ensuing in Lebanese territory!
Yet it is Hizbullah that is supported and funded by “foreign sources”.
God only knows that it is Israel which could not exist and enjoy such a lavish and care free life, if it had not been for the generous free support of the United States taxpayers and the productive American Jewish community that is mislead by the fairy tale image that Israel and Israelis are projected by in their midst, with their brave pioneering spirit, and the fallacy of turning the “desert into gardens of Eden” etc. observer is not a Hizbullah member or affiliated with any “fundamentalist” or nationalist oriented political organization.
But for sure, one cannot sit idle while Madeleine Albright had the audacity to blare out that she understands that the Israelis had to take their latest acts of reprisals against the civilians of Lebanon, because the Hizbullah fighters are “launching their attacks against Israeli troops from Lebanese villages!”
What kind of ears was she talking to when making such a corny statement. First of all there is an agreement, which the US is supposed to be supervising, that categorically makes it clear that civilians or civilian targets are barred.
Second, Hizbullah has kept to the letter and spirit of the April Understanding, even though there are several instances, when the Monitoring Committee has clearly shown the Israelis flagrantly violated the accord. Third of all, Israeli occupation would never be ended, if one can see the previous track record of the Israelis, unless the United States literally insists (Suez 1956, Camp David, 1976), or the Israelis come to realize that they are not undefeatable in war, as they use to believe (Lebanon 2000). Another point to make is Hizbullah, is fully backed by the Lebanese government and people in the war in the south of Lebanon, and it would seem very ridiculous to tell a citizen or a group of citizens, to stop fighting an occupier of your country. It would really be treason.is time that Israel starts to demonstrate, in fact and in deed, that has no desire to play the role of the neighborhood bully indefinitely, if it really wants a genuine peace. Israel must also start working for peace rather than to do anything that will prevent the realization of this hope of all serious peace loving people in the region and the world. On the other hand, Israel must understand that Hizbullah is not just 2,000 brave and respectable soldiers, who as far as most Arabs are concerned are really giving the Israelis a taste of their own medicine, but in a much more honorable way, Hizbullah is the masses that are found in every Arab country, who have be come fed up by the reliance of Israel on shear mischief to guarantee the sustainability of its good time at tragic cost of the people of the region and at the expense of the taxpayers of its sponsors and supporters, most of who have been mislead, if not embezzled, long enough anyway.