Lebanon: The New Munich


Richard Moore

Date: Mon, 07 Aug 2006 16:33:08 -0400
Subject: The New Munich
From: The Wisdom Fund <•••@••.•••>
Reply-To: •••@••.•••

MORE at <http://www.twf.org/News/Y2006/0803-Crimes.html>

August 7, 2006

The New Munich
Lebanon, 2006, and Czechoslovakia, 1938 the historical parallels
by Justin Raimondo

As the rape of Lebanon proceeds on schedule, the "civilized world" rushes to 
give its imprimatur to the slaughter.

The U.S. and France are sponsoring a United Nations resolution that neither 
calls for a cease-fire nor demands the withdrawal of invading Israeli troops. So
much for the UN as the last, best hope for peace.

Is there a chance my liberal friends, who have long looked to the organization 
founded by Alger Hiss and Franklin " He Lied Us Into War" Roosevelt as a beacon 
of hope, will wake up and smell the burned bodies?


Most of them are looking the other way as the Israelis ravage Lebanon or are 
openly cheerleading the mayhem, like San Francisco Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi 
and are on vacation, anyway, sitting on a beach somewhere with their consciences
conveniently deactivated.

As I cast my eye over the American political landscape, I espy nary a single 
major politician, party, or publication that opposes the Israeli blitz of 

Democrats, Republicans, and even ostensible " libertarians" left, right, and 
center are marching in lockstep with the aggressors.

Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel, the exception that proves the rule, is virtually 
alone in proffering even the most timorous doubts. Among the pundits of some 
stature, critics of the invasion can be counted on one hand: Pat Buchanan, 
Eleanor Clift, our own Paul Craig Roberts, Georgie Anne Geyer, Vanity Fair's 
James Wolcott, and a very few others.

Almost no one has risen to decry this morally indefensible and strategically 
disastrous invasion of a sovereign and democratic nation. The online 
lefty-liberal blogosphere has been noticeably silent. Arianna Huffington has 
managed to write at least two columns referring to events in Lebanon without 
directing a word of criticism at the Israelis. Her big concern is that the 
invasion will be bad for Israel. She doesn't mention the horrific casualties 
inflicted on the practically defenseless Lebanese.

The Israelis have a skillful overseas propaganda operation, and it is calling 
the shots by writing the dominant narrative: Israel, they say, is simply 
fighting terrorism of the sort represented by Hezbollah, which is nothing more 
than a Shi'ite version of al-Qaeda.

U.S. interests are identical with Israel's, in this case and in all others.

Israel's amen corner is also busy prettifying the ugly facts on the ground, with
the always useful Matt Drudge consumed with accusations that photographs from 
the scene are being doctored. Charles Johnson, of the hate-site Little Green 
Footballs, is crowing that a photo of smoke billowing over Beirut was made to 
look darker and more profuse, and this is now being touted as "proof" that the 
massacre at Qana and other Israeli atrocities either never took place or were 
greatly exaggerated by the "biased" media.

This is nonsense, of course.

To begin with, to see the effects of the Israeli bombing of Beirut, one merely 
has to go here.

Secondly, only the mentally challenged could possibly argue the American media 
tilts against Israel and in favor of the Lebanese but then, "mentally 
challenged" describes an awful lot of people, especially in this country. I 
mean, where else do millions believe that the prospect of a nuclear war igniting
in the Middle East is a good thing, because it augurs the Second Coming of 
Christ? God bless America!

The pro-Israel narrative is imposed on virtually all reporting that comes out of
this war, starting with newscasts that lead off with reports of Israeli 
casualties, even if the damage done to Lebanese is far greater that day.

The general attitude of the media is reflected on the front page of Sunday's New
York Times, which features a photo of two smiling Israeli soldiers in a manly 
embrace and is captioned "Brother, we made it" back into Israel, that is. If 
only the rest of their comrades would follow them, but there's no chance of that
any time soon.

How could these two smiling, robust, benevolent figures have anything to do with
war crimes?

Are these the soldiers of an invading army or just two regular Joes breathing a 
sigh of relief to get home, basically good guys, like you and me, who are just 
defending their country?

The Israelis couldn't buy better publicity but they don't have to buy it, 
because they get it for free.

Israel gets a free pass from the media in this country, contrary to the paranoid
delusions of pro-Israel fanatics, and this reflects the elite political 
consensus: anything the Israelis do is okay by us.

The story the pro-Israel propaganda machine is churning out wouldn't satisfy the
worst hack: they were just minding their own business, you see, routinely 
kidnapping and jailing Palestinians, and bulldozing their dwellings, when, out 
of the clear blue, those Hezbollah nasties took out after a couple of Israeli 
soldiers, killing some and capturing not " kidnapping" two others.

How dare those Arabs fight back!

Don't they know they should be on their knees, in a position of supplication, 
just because the Israelis let them live?

The conquest of southern Lebanon is an accomplished fact, or will be soon, with 
the full complicity of the "international community" unless either Syria or Iran
intervenes to save the rape victim from the clutches of its assailant. This is 
what the Israelis, and their neoconservative allies in the administration, are 
hoping for: in that case, they will be spared ginning up a pretext for striking 
Damascus and Tehran in fairly short order.

The War Party temporarily knocked from the saddle by the disastrous outcome of 
the Iraq war is back holding the reins. And we are all at their mercy. This 
time, there will be not a peep from most of the "antiwar" Democrats if anything,
they are more obsequious in kowtowing to the Israel lobby than the Republicans. 
The Democrats, at any rate, don't have a Chuck Hagel among their presidential 
wannabes. For any really substantive critique of the Israel lobby and its 
deleterious effect on the pursuit of American interests, you have to look to the
" realist" Republican Right, which fears a wider conflict and the prospect of 
America's entry into Israel's war.

There are two possible avenues of American intervention in this battle aside 
from the rush of U.S. armaments to Israel and whatever covert cooperation is 

The first is via the "international force" called for in the UN resolution: of 
course, an American presence is not stipulated, but, as I have said before, it 
is difficult to imagine what other country is either prepared or willing to 
undertake such an operation. Policing southern Lebanon will require anywhere 
from 30,000 to 50,000 troops. Where will they come from? You guessed it

Secondly, Israel's actions have put U.S. troops in Iraq in mortal danger.

The other day, tens of thousands of Iraqi Shi'ites demonstrated against the 
attack on Lebanon, crying "Death to Israel!" and "Death to America!" in nearly 
the same breath.

We have yet to defeat the Sunni-led insurgency, which is plunging the nation 
into civil war what will we do when the Shi'ite majority turns its guns against 
us? Now there's a familiar "narrative" replete with flashes of dÈjý vu: it's 
that helicopter taking off from the rooftop of the U.S. embassy all over again. 
Only this time, it will be broadcast in full color my cheap family didn't get a 
color television until the late '70s and over the worldwide Web.

The most perceptive comments I have come across on this subject have been by 
former Oslo negotiator Daniel Levy, who also took part in the Taba talks and was
the lead Israeli drafter of the Geneva Initiative.

Writing in Ha'aretz, Levy avers, "Disentangling Israeli interests from the 
rubble of neocon 'creative destruction' in the Middle East" is a strategic 
priority for Israel, else they will drag Tel Aviv down into the same abyss that 
awaits Washington. He delves into the history of the 1996 " Clean Break" 
initiative proffered by key neoconservative defense intellectuals, who, once in 
power, implemented their strategy of "regime change" via wars of "liberation."

The decisive influence of this single-mindedly pro-Israel faction in the 
councils of state had an unfortunate effect, however, on the "special 
relationship" that has always existed between Israel and the U.S.:

"Witnessing the near-perfect symmetry of Israeli and American policy has been 
one of the more noteworthy aspects of the latest Lebanon war. A true friend in 
the White House. No deescalate and stabilize, honest-broker, diplomatic jaw-jaw 
from this president. Great. Except that Israel was actually in need of an early 
exit strategy, had its diplomatic options narrowed by American weakness and 
marginalization in the region, and found itself ratcheting up aerial and ground 
operations in ways that largely worked to Hezbollah's advantage, the Qana 
tragedy included. The American ladder had gone AWOL.

"Israelis have grown used to a different kind of American embrace less 
instrumental, more emotional, but also responsible. A dependable friend, ready 
to lend a guiding hand back to the path of stabilization when necessary."

American appeasement of Israel, against all moral and practical considerations, 
has resulted in the weakening of Israel, Levy argues, and ratcheted up hostility
to the Jewish state in the region to a fever pitch. I agree with Levy's 
analysis, and would add that American interests aren't too well served by this 
"symmetry," either.

As opposed to the heroic narrative marketed by the Lobby and its friends, which 
portrays this as a defensive war, a mere reaction to Lebanese attacks, the 
reality is that this is the most cynical exercise in brazen aggression since the
Germans invaded Czechoslovakia in the run-up to World War II. Prior to offering 
the thinnest of pretexts to justify the invasion of Poland the Germans claimed 
Polish soldiers had launched a raid into their territory Hitler's wolves tore 
off a large chunk of Czech flesh in the form of the Sudetenland. Today, Israeli 
predators are biting off a similar-sized chunk of Lebanon on their way to a much
larger meal.

Like the Germans, who utilized the German minority for their own purposes, the 
Israelis have the Christian Maronites of the Phalangist groups to act as their 
sock-puppets although perhaps even these guys have abandoned them. After all, 
the Israeli air force has been bombing Christian villages, too.

One hopes the historical parallels will end there, but I fear not: just as the 
German push for Lebensraum ended in a world war, so an apparent campaign to give
Israel a bit of elbow room may result in yet another global conflagration.

The UN resolution, then, amounts to a new Munich agreement, which if history 
teaches us anything will serve to embolden the Israelis to go on the offensive 
against Syria, and, perhaps, Iran.

If the appeasement of Israel continues while the U.S. sacrifices its own clear 
interest in lessening support for extremists in the Arab-Muslim world, 
Condoleezza Rice will go down in history as the Neville Chamberlain of her time.


In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed 
without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the 
included information for research and educational purposes.

"THE WAR ON ISLAM" -- Recipient Human Rights Foundation Gold Award

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