And from the Counterpunch by Alexander Cockburn

"...Twenty-three years after one of America's stupidest Presidents announced Star Wars, Reagan's dream has come true. Behind ramparts guarded by a coalition of liars extending from Rupert Murdoch to the New York Times, from Bill O'Reilly to PBS, America is totally shielded from truth.Here we have a Secretary of State, Condoleezza Rice, who gazes at the rubble of Lebanon, 300,000 refugees being strafed with Israel's cluster bombs, and squeaks happily that we are "witnessing the birth pangs of a new Middle East."Here we have a president, G. Bush, who urges Vladimir Putin to commence in Russia the same "institutional change" that is making Iraq a beacon of freedom and free expression. Not long after Bush extended this ludicrous invitation the UN relayed from Iraq's Ministry of Health Iraq's real casualty rate, which was running at least 100 a day, now probably twice that number.

Iraq's morgues reported receipts of 3,149 dead bodies in June; over 14,000 since the beginning of the year. Senior Iraqis in the government confide that break-up of Iraq into Sunni, Shia and Kurdish enclaves, each protected by its own militias, is now inevitable. Iraq as a viable country has been utterly destroyed, with even vaster carnage coming up over the horizon, and here's the numbskull President touting it as an advertisement for American nation-building at its best, and inviting its prime minister to Washington to proclaim Iraq's approaching renaissance, all in sync with the U.S. 2006 election campaigns.

Here we have a Congress which reacts with outrage when America's picked man in Iraq, Prime Minister al-Maliki, states the obvious, which is that Israel's attack is "dangerous" and that the world community is not doing enough to curb Israel's destruction of Lebanon.

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi rushes out a statement "Unless Mr. Maliki disavows his critical comments of Israel and condemns terrorism, it is inappropriate to honor him with a joint meeting of Congress," Another twenty Democrats said al-Maliki shouldn't be allowed to set foot in the place.Actually, I'm not so sure Congress is impervious to reality, particularly if reality spells out as a threat of withdrawal of support from the Israel lobby in the next electoral cycle. The place is about 98 percent bought and paid for by the Lobby. How these transactions spell out on the ground was well described by Tom Hayden the other day (www.counterpunch.org/Hayden07202006.htm) as he explained why he felt it necessary for his political future in Los Angeles to stand, Jane Fonda at his side, next to Israelis gunners shelling Beirut back in 1982.What we are now witnessing is the simultaneous collapse of two countries-Iraq and Lebanon-as sponsored or encouraged by America's ruling bipartisan coalition and its ideological counselors-ranging from Christian nutballs like Falwell to secular nutballs like Hitchens.

Wesley Clarke is now saying that back in late 2001 he visited the Pentagon and was told the planned hit list included Iraq, then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Iran, Somalia and Sudan as part of a five-year campaign plan. Two down, five to go.

The attack on Lebanon was planned in detail at least a year ago. Israel picked the supposed provocation of the Hezbollah capture of two Israeli soldiers on July 25, but almost any excuse would have sufficed. In 1982 Israel lied flatly, and said it was responding to shells lobbed over the border, even though there'd been none for over a year.With Bush and Rice and the policy-makers and intellectual courtiers surrounding them, crackpot realism is the prevailing mode.

"Crackpot realism" was the concept defined by the great Texan sociologist, C. Wright Mills in 1958, when he published The Causes of World War Three, also the year that Dwight Eisenhower sent the Marines into Lebanon to bolster local US factotum, Lebanese President Camille Chamoun."In crackpot realism," Mills wrote, " a high-flying moral rhetoric is joined with an opportunist crawling among a great scatter of unfocused fears and demands. .. The expectation of war solves many problems of the crackpot realists; ... instead of the unknown fear, the anxiety without end, some men of the higher circles prefer the simplification of known catastrophe....They know of no solutions to the paradoxes of the Middle East and Europe, the Far East and Africa except the landing of Marines. ... they prefer the bright, clear problems of war-as they used to be. For they still believe that 'winning' means something, although they never tell us what..."The Israeli elites, so habituated to selling intransigeance to their ever- receptive opposite numbers in Washington, are now crackpot realists themselves to the very core.

Their generals bellow about dumping ten rockets on south Beirut for every one landing in Israel and are astounded when people start talking about the fact that exacting reprisals on a civilian population -- which is what the onslaught has been all about -- is a war crime.Israel is systematically trying to destroy Lebanon as a functioning social and economic entity, cleanse the south and reoccupy up to the Litani River The head of Lebanon's Industrial Association, Charles Arbid, told Agence France Presse on July 24 that Israel's strategy is to destroy the whole chain of manufacturing, from production to distribution. Bridges, airports, roads, trucks, ports have been methodically attacked.

Israel's hack legions here recycle the usual mad nonsense about extirpating the terrorist seed, just as they did in 1982, when Henry Kissinger, the crackpot realist supremo, announced after that onslaught that he could see "a fresh beginning" emerging from under the rubble. True in a way. What sprouted from under the rubble was Hezbollah. Only crackpot realists think they can suppress that inevitable cycle."


At Tuesday, August 01, 2006 1:12:00 PM, Blogger JoseyWales said...

Its Alex Cockburn who is shielded from the truth.

He's probably waiting for communism to make a comeback any minute now, and the new USSR will lead us all into that wonderful utopia.

Yeah, Cockburn's a genius and Reagan an idiot. What's next, a piece by Chomsky. Hmmmm.. Who might he blame?

At Tuesday, August 01, 2006 2:33:00 PM, Blogger Lebanos said...

On http://jarrarsupariver.blogspot.com/, a Joe Settler from Israel says that Lebanon must be DISSOLVED if... here is a part of it:

Joe Settler: A ceasefire without the eradication of Hizbollah beforehand will just return us to the same situation in a matter of time.
I prefer neither.

As an independent sovereign entity the Lebanese government must take full control and responsibility for what goes on inside its borders. If it can't and either UN or NATO troops are required to be deployed, then Lebanon might as well be dissolved as it simply can't justify its own existence anymore.

So I say do you want to comment this on the site mentioned above.

At Tuesday, August 01, 2006 5:44:00 PM, Blogger Intensemystery said...

I'll comment on it! It is one persons opinion and it is not what the free world desires and not what America desires. What is desired is for once that there be an acceptance for each other. For once in the ME that there is more tolerance for it's neighbors and no haboring of terrorists or allowing terrorism to take portions of your country over. See what happens when there is terrorists embraced such as it is south Lebanon, it weakens the country. When the Lebanese allowed this to happen is when they took a turn for the worse. Lebanon is now in the process of being swallowed by the Iran run Hezbollah...and they cannot see it.

At Tuesday, August 01, 2006 7:10:00 PM, Blogger Enriqueta said...

Are you kidding me..it getting ridulous.

well I'll add my last comment for while.
I came across this article in my morning read. Its gives some perspective to the no's of death and destruction were dealing with as were discussing the actions going on. History is worth noting.

Please note, no decent caring human being desires in his heart the destruction of another soul of anyone. While I hate what hezzbolah is doing, I do stand along side those who truly desire a peace in Lebonon and Isreal.

I know that there are men on both sides who are fathers and sons behind the guns. I pray for them all of them and peace. It floors me to no end how vile we can be as people toward eachother. Its easy to put a label on somone it makes it easy to forget they matter to there creator, there family.

I hope you eve and bob are well i continue to pray for you and your families and my friends there caring for the lebononese people.
I hope you give some perspective to this post below.

Does world opionion matter?

If you are ever morally confused about a major world issue, here is a rule that is almost never violated: Whenever you hear that "world opinion" holds a view, assume it is morally wrong.

And here is a related rule if your religious or national or ethnic group ever suffers horrific persecution: "World opinion" will never do a thing for you. Never.

"World opinion" has little or nothing to say about the world's greatest evils and regularly condemns those who fight evil.

The history of "world opinion" regarding the greatest mass murders and cruelties on the planet is one of relentless apathy.
Ask the 1.5 million Armenians massacred by the Ottoman Turks;

or the 6 million Ukrainians slaughtered by Stalin;

or the tens of millions of other Soviet citizens killed by Stalin's Soviet Union;

or the 6 million Jews murdered by the Nazis and their helpers throughout Europe;

or the 60 million Chinese butchered by Mao;

or the 2 million Cambodians murdered by Pol Pot;

or the millions killed and enslaved in Sudan;

or the Tutsis murdered in Rwanda's genocide;

or the millions starved to death and enslaved in North Korea;

or the million Tibetans killed by the Chinese;

or the million-plus Afghans put to death by Brezhnev's Soviet Union.

Ask any of these poor souls, or the hundreds of millions of others slaughtered, tortured, raped and enslaved in the last 100 years, if "world opinion" did anything for them.

On the other hand, we learn that "world opinion" is quite exercised over Israel's unintentional killing of a few hundred Lebanese civilians behind whom hides Hezbollah — a terror group that intentionally sends missiles at Israeli cities and whose announced goals are the annihilation of Israel and the Islamicization of Lebanon. And, of course, "world opinion" was just livid at American abuses of some Iraqi prisoners at the Abu Ghraib prison in Baghdad. In fact, "world opinion" is constantly upset with America and Israel, two of the most decent countries on earth, yet silent about the world's cruelest countries.

Why is this?

Here are four reasons:

First, television news.

It is difficult to overstate the damage done to the world by television news. Even when not driven by political bias — an exceedingly rare occurrence globally — television news presents a thoroughly distorted picture of the world. Because it is almost entirely dependent upon pictures, TV news is only capable of showing human suffering in, or caused by, free countries. So even if the BBC or CNN were interested in showing the suffering of millions of Sudanese blacks or North Koreans — and they are not interested in so doing — they cannot do it because reporters cannot visit Sudan or North Korea and video freely. Likewise, China's decimation and annexation of Tibet, one of the world's oldest ongoing civilizations, never made it to television.

Second, "world opinion" is shaped by the same lack of courage that shapes most individual human beings' behavior. This is another aspect of the problem of the distorted way news is presented. It takes courage to report the evil of evil regimes; it takes no courage to report on the flaws of decent societies. Reporters who went into Afghanistan without the Soviet Union's permission were killed. Reporters would risk their lives to get critical stories out of Tibet, North Korea and other areas where vicious regimes rule. But to report on America's bad deeds in Iraq (not to mention at home) or Israel's is relatively effortless, and you surely won't get killed. Indeed, you may well win a Pulitzer Prize.

Third, "world opinion" bends toward power. To cite the Israel example, "world opinion" far more fears alienating the largest producers of oil and 1 billion Muslims than it fears alienating tiny Israel and the world's 13 million Jews. And not only because of oil and numbers. When you offend Muslims, you risk getting a fatwa, having your editorial offices burned down or receiving death threats. Jews don't burn down their critics' offices, issue fatwas or send death threats, let alone act on such threats.

Fourth, those who don't fight evil condemn those who do. "World opinion" doesn't confront real evils, but it has a particular animus toward those who do — most notably today America and Israel.

The moment one recognizes "world opinion" for what it is — a statement of moral cowardice, one is longer enthralled by the term. That "world opinion" at this moment allegedly loathes America and Israel is a badge of honor to be worn proudly by those countries. It is when "world opinion" and its news media start liking you that you should wonder if you've lost your way.

At Thursday, August 03, 2006 4:05:00 PM, Blogger Fakty said...

Obviously its many ways to explain why US and Israel is right in what they are doing, and that all the others are wrong. US foreign policy under the sitting administration has been a disaster for America, but also for the rest of the world. In one moment claiming that the International community (UN) are unable to commit to the intentions of forming it, and therefore could be sidelined whenever US wanted. Iraq is a sample, where US presented persuasive "evidence" for something that didn't excist, starting a full scale war. When things became out of control, UN seams to have regained legitimacy, US trying desperately to convince the world that whatever reasons each and one nation had when voteing against the war, everybody should now understand the importance of allowing the blood of their soldiers to flow on Iraqi soil.

May be US was of the opinion that the world community could be screwed in connetion with the Israeli actions in Lebanon, but find themselves in the same shoes as in connection with Iraq. UN again stood up and said that what's going on is not accepable, while US solely put the blame on Hezbollah. Nobody actually likes Hezbollah, but the slaughter of civillians are unacceptable, so are the dismantling of all infrastructure.

The Arab nations warned before the war in Iraq, that the Israeli-Palestine issue should be solved first of all, something that was totally neglected by US. The Arab nations has recently said that in order to make durable peace in the middle east, all occupied land must be returned, and that the Palestinians are given a respectful and fair solution they can agree to. US holds the key, but has up to now been unwilling to use it.

If there is anything the ongoing slaughter in Labanon has proven, it's that Israel's supremacy in the region no longer exist in spite of their might. Lebanon are today creating the same kind of resistance as US are experiencing in Iraq, and its growing by the hour.

If one is to use UN resolution 1559 as the root cause of the problem, saying that it now must be enforced, why not at the same time enforce the 68 resolutions UN has issued against Israel? Not a single one of these resolutions has been heeded by Israel, and may be its upon time it's being done.

Am I totally misunderstanding the situation?


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