"Patriotism is the willingness to kill and be killed for trivial reasons." Bertrand Russell

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Better than 'the beeb' anyway

Charles Krauthammer seems to have it arse ways with his 'genocidal Islamism'.

According to Reuters Israeli rockets have "killed 176 people and wounded more than 500 ... All but 13 of them were civilians."

While the 'genocidal Islamists' have killed "Twenty-four Israelis ... including 12 civilians."

Which must scare the bejasus out of Blair and Bush, because it suggests Iranian weapons technology (they attest is being supplied to Hezbollah) is more accurate than that they have the Israelis testing.

Robert Fisk reported:

"Tony Blair, who is now also, it seems, the Minister of Root Causes, believes Syria and Iran are behind the original Hizbollah attack."

And from the World Policy Institute, some public knowledge:

"Since 1976, Israel had been the largest annual recipient of U.S. foreign assistance. According to a November 2001 Congressional Research Service report, Israel: U.S. Foreign Assistance, U.S. aid to Israel in the last half century has totaled a whopping $81.3 billion."

While on RTE an Irish soldier who served in Lebanon said in an interview on RTE's PrimeTime that it is strange to see Israel use the methods being employed to 'rescue' the captured soldier given that any successful release of captured soldiers in the past has been primarily down to negotiation and not violence.

(Backing up the assertion that this is not the primary reason for the escalation)

He also mentioned that the bombing of the main highway amounted to blocking the flow of refugees from the conflict area. Surely against international law.

"Israeli aircraft targeted the main Beirut-Damascus highway overnight, tightening an air, sea and land blockade of Lebanon."

Michael Jansen's work over the last number of weeks has been exceptional and she deserves some mention for her candid reporting of the facts, Israel's true intentions and the reality of Israeli defense.

Yet I have seen little mention of the fact that Israel's actions in Lebanon and Gaza are completely illegal in the Irish Times, RTE being marginally better.

In the weeks since the Israel escalation, instigated under the pretence that Hamas and Hezbollah are the greater terrorists, I have heard the words Geneva Conventions only twice (once by Dr Raji Sourani, a lawyer who heads the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights and once by Hikmat Ajjuri the Palestinian ambassador to Irelandand) and only a handful calls for Israel to abide by International Law (once by the Arab League, once by The Palestinian Delegate-General to Ireland, Dr Hikmat Ajjuri)

Though the EU presidency said in a statement, "Actions which are contrary to international humanitarian law can only aggravate the vicious circle of violence and retribution." 'Aggravate' being a surprisingly friendly term to use in this situation.

The International Crisis Group 'requested' "that Israel [should] fulfil its humanitarian obligations to the Palestinians under international law."

While the present reporting of the most recent conflict in Israel, Lebanon and Palestine has not been as biased as that offered by those across the Irish Sea, it has failed by starting from these fundamental points:

a) Israel always responds to Palestinian/Lebanon aggression
b) Israel uses precision targeting, therefore minimises civilian casualties
c) The ball is in Hamas' and Hezbollah's court