6 August 2006
Outrage, anger and disbelief seem to be the most common responses to the US/Israeli destruction of Lebanon, understandably given the sheer ferocity of the attack but let us not let it get in the way of trying to figure out why the pirates resorted to such measures that were sure to ignite a wave of resistance and horror.
On the one hand we have some arguing that the atrocities committed against Lebanon were a deliberate provocation designed to get Hezballah to respond in kind, or at least insofar as they are able to, thus justifying even more death and destruction on the part of US/Israel.
“These acts leave absolutely no doubt in my mind that Israel is interested in intensifying the bloodshed. And is inviting attacks on its own people, to continue justifying its attacks and ensure its public’s support through the resulting fear and hatred from such attacks.” — ‘Israel To Hezbollah: Please Bomb Tel Aviv’, KABOBfest
There are even some who argue that Israeli aggression will lead to a rise in anti-semitism, which may or may not be true but ultimately, it’s up to us the clearly separate the Israeli state from being Jewish (whatever that is).
“I believe what Israel is doing will destroy the Jewish people in the near or distant future as well. Even with 250 nuclear weapons and the support of the world’s only superpower.” — Ilan Pappe, ZMag
I find this reasoning odd as it assumes that the state of Israel and being Jewish are one and the same thing and until such time as the State of Israel as it is presently constituted is done away with, there will be no resolution to the current situation.
“What would happen for example if the United States sank ever deeper into the bloody swamp of Iraq, into an atmosphere of national calamity? When the search for a scapegoat is on, the Jewish neo-cons will stick out. . . .One should not exaggerate these dangers. At present they are hardly specks on the horizon. But I would advise the leaders of the Jewish institutions in the United States to exercise some self-restraint. Intoxication with power can easily lead to dangerous excesses.” — Uri Avnery
The article that these quotes appeared in by David Himmelstein on the Counterpunch Website, ‘No Peace Without Justice, No Justice Without Truth – Pulling the Plug on Israel’, (August 2, 2006) predicates its argument on US support of Israeli actions, whereas I contend that the reality is the reverse, Israeli actions stem directly from US policy.
It should surely be obvious to everybody that the real source of anti-semitism is the existence of the state of Israel itself.
Then we have the argument that the attack on Lebanon is part of a wider strategy that will lead to an attack on Syria and Iran as the bulk of Western propaganda is focused on Hezballah as nothing more than a proxy for Iran and Syria.
There is no doubt in my mind that Israel seeks to extend its borders northward to the Litani River as this has long been its ambition not the least because of the water resources that Israel so desperately needs (see ‘Water As A Conflict Issue in South Lebanon’ by Tobias Eickelpasch).
Second, as I have stated before, the US is trying to get the EU/NATO to do its dirty work for it under the guise of a peacekeeping force and as we see, this is a strategy that is being resisted by France but who appeared to have buckled under to US pressure no doubt because the US have told them that Israel will go on destroying Lebanon unless they agree to their terms.
In large measure this is a replay of the destruction/dismemberment of Yugoslavia which saw intra-capitalist rivalries being played out only then it was Germany who were the ‘wild card’ and who finally lost out to the US/UK.
But overall, we should view the Lebanese obscenity as part and parcel of US strategic objectives for the region and beyond of which Israel’s role as a forward base/frontline is now patently obvious (if it wasn’t before).
The question we need to ask however, is to what degree has the deteriorating situation in Iraq and Afghanistan forced their hand? In other words, have the US been forced to move too fast and too early with their plans to ‘reshape’ the Middle East’? All the signs are that the situation in Iraq is unravelling at a fast rate of knots. The Western media are presenting the situation to us as a ‘civil war’ but all the reports indicate and I would not be suprised if we see a replay of the US embassy in Saigon, 1975, with helicopters hovering over the ‘Green Zone’.
“When Iraqi Prime Minister (Jawad) al-Maliki recently harshly criticized Israel in the Lebanon conflict, it was an indication of things to come. The notion that the U.S. was going to get a pliant, democratic, stable, pro-American, Israel-loving Iraq is a myth which is rapidly eroding. That is why the U.S. needs to start talking with the Iraqis about the day of our disengagement. We shouldn’t leave precipitously. U.S. Ambassador to Iraq (Zalmay) Khalilzad told me that four months would be precipitous. I agree. But we should agree that the U.S. will disengage at some period beyond that.” – Zbigniew Brzezniski, ‘Beginning of the end for Israel?’
Attempting to second guess the strategies of the imperialists is much more difficult than their barely disguised motives and objectives, these have after all, been laid out in various key documents over the last ten years and indeed, since the end of WWII.
It seems pointless to highlight the role of oil yet again, but it’s not merely oil, the lifeblood of the leading capitalist powers, it is I contend the final act that is being played out here, for if the US and its puppets, Israel and the UK, fail in the Middle East, then I contend that it’s curtains for the idea of world domination and surely the end of Israel as a fundamentalist, racist settler state.
That they chose to use Lebanon is not surprising, as aside from Hezballah it has no defences to speak of once Syria was forced out through the Israeli/US assassination of Hariri; it has a weak and divided central state and is handily situated to unleash the dogs of Tel Aviv on.
There is no doubt that the onslaught has been long in the planning but held in reserve so-to-speak to be used should the situation warrant it. The other Western powers, most notably the EU are also divided, just as they were over the dismemberment of Yugoslavia. It’s not that they object to the events in Lebanon, but simply whether, once the dust has settled, they stand to gain or lose from the outcome.
The danger right now lies is the fact that the so-called neo-con policies of the US are failing. More realistic voices are being heard out of the Beltway, who see the dangers to the long term interests of US capital being undermined by the shortsighted and adventurist policies of the Bush Gang, but will their voices be heeded?
Most ominous are the reports I’m receiving that a first strike against Syria and Iran is being lined up:
“Multiple military sources have told the Global Network that Pentagon personnel responsible for selecting targets for cruise missile first strike attacks have been sent to Israel.
“This indicates that U.S. and Israeli military strategists are now likely meeting to plan a join attack on Syria and/or Iran.
“The Persian Gulf war and the 2003 U.S. invasion of Iraq both began with cruise missile attacks by the U.S. from Naval ships.
“It would be wise to recognize that Bush has decided to expand the current war and chaos into the entire Middle East region. The implications for the U.S. will be enormous.
“Israel’s recent bombing of Lebanon near the Syrian border indicate to me that they are trying to draw a response from Syria. So far Syria has not responded. Look for more such efforts by Israel and the U.S. to provoke Syria.” — Email from Bruce K. Gagnon, Coordinator, Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space
The rationale for the destruction of Lebanon therefore, seems clear as it is predicated on the idea of provoking a reaction from either Syria or Iran that would give the imperium the excuse of triggering a wider war.
If this is indeed the case, then we have very little time. It hardly seems necessary to mention the fact therefore that the pressure needs to increased on our respective governments to firstly disassociate ourselves from the madmen in DC and Tel Aviv but much more importantly, to get them to bring as much pressure to bear on the US and Israel to stop their mad rush to destruction. We are poised on the brink folks and if they do initiate a first strike of the kind mooted by Bruce Gagnon (and others), then it will take only one event to trigger it.
1. See ‘Hizbullah’s attacks stem from Israeli incursions into Lebanon’, By Anders Strindberg, 1 August, 2006, Christian Science Monitor
2. We need always to remember that the key players in the Bush regime are all closely tied to, a part of Big Oil and as the excellent interview conducted by my buddy Doug Henwood on WBAI-FM, New York with Jonathan Nitzan, economics professor at York University in Toronto shows, every Middle East war since the 1960s shows a direct correlation between a rise in oil profits and the outbreak of conflict (listen to the interview).