TCS Daily


War Crime and Punishment

By Ariel Cohen - August 1, 2006 12:00 AM

Last night, I awoke haunted by images of children's bodies being pulled from the rubble in Lebanon. I couldn't sleep for hours, thinking about the brutality of war and responsibility for the carnage. My heart ached with grief.

In any war, mistakes happen, horrible mistakes. This may have been one. But who is the real culprit?

International law defines using civilians as human shields as a war crime. Hezbollah is violating Article 58 of Protocol 1, which requires parties to a conflict to "Avoid locating military objectives within or near densely populated areas."

Israel is within her rights to pursue Hezbollah in populated areas: Article 28 of the Fourth Geneva Convention states: "The presence of a protected person may not be used to render certain points or areas immune from military operations."

Hezbollah (and Palestinian terrorist organizations Hamas and Islamic Jihad), routinely commit war crimes by locating their command outposts, weapons and ammo storage, and rocket launchers in residential areas. Terrorists are war criminals, not those who fight them.

The current war launched by Hezbollah and Hamas -- and their Iranian sponsors -- is not just about Israel. Israel is a convenient target in the neighborhood: a "Small Satan", a proxy and a symbol of the "Great Satan" -- the U.S.

Jihadis openly and repeatedly proclaim their fidelity to a dual goal: a conversion of the whole Muslim world to their version of Islam, followed by enforced Islamization of the rest of world.

In modern jihadi warfare, the U.S. and its allies in Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as Israel are presented as aggressors whenever they are exercise self-defense -- not against a religion, but against radical, totalitarian ideology which wants to enslave the world. In that narrative, terrorists are victims. As George Orwell said in 1984, "War is peace".

Terrorists have been coldly playing the victim card for years -- sending kids to throw stones at troops, shooting at soldiers from hiding behind the backs of women and children, wildly inflating casualty counts, hoping to provoke air strikes and artillery barrages to inflame the Arab "street" and whip up their version of "jihad." They also use UN peacekeepers as human shields -- they did it in 1996 in the same Lebanese village of Qana, and they're doing it this war as well.

After rockets and bombs fall, the terrorists invite gullible reporters for a guided tour. They send out town criers ahead of the press tours who voice rehearsed lines for the people to repeat -- always against America and Israel -- and point fingers.

There is more than the cynical use of grief and blood here. Terrorists are redefining warfare in the 21st century. A picture and a sound-bite are as potent in this war as a bullet or a missile. Bloody imagery and scenes of mourning are exploited to gain the sympathy of the world, manipulate the political environment, and gain new recruits. Israel and the West may be more militarily potent, but the terrorists outsmart them, getting media and public opinion on their side. And somehow, the U.S. and Israeli military and government keep missing the point and failing to respond effectively.

Today, many in the European left and some among their North American counterparts support the causes of Hezbollah and Hamas. This despite the fact that both radical Islamist organizations spew racist Jew-hatred and advocate a Sharia state (based on the Islamic religious law) which denies the rights of women, non-Muslims and gays, to mention a few.

In the jihadi scenario, imams are not just in charge of preaching murderous hatred. While Western strategists talk about "network-centric warfare", radical Islamists practice it. They are operating interconnected networks of jihadi clergy, who act as political leaders, military commanders, ideological commissars, recruiters, fundraisers, and community leaders.

The West's apparent incapacity to understand the many-faceted nature of the radical clerics, like Sheikh Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah of Hezbollah or Sheikh Ahmad Yassin of Hamas, is a handicap. These are terror leaders and generals pure and simple who are busy radicalizing the home population and pushing Muslim youth toward violent hatred. Clerical disguise was one reason Israel was summarily condemned for targeting Yassin, the late "spiritual leader" of Hamas.

This is no longer your grandfather's war -- with clearly marked large formations of uniformed soldiers, with large tank divisions and fleets. There are no front lines, and propaganda is one of the most potent weapons.

The West needs to wake up. We have to design a new comprehensive anti-terror doctrine. It should give tactical and strategic answers to jihadi terrorism by understanding the central role of politicized pseudo-religious networks.

The West needs answers in the realms of foreign and defense policy, counter-insurgency and intelligence -- something the U.S. and its allies have had a hard time developing so far. The new doctrine should also focus on fighting the battle for the hearts and minds of those who are misled, manipulated and used by terrorists today -- here at home in the West -- and in the Middle East.

Ariel Cohen, is Senior Research Fellow at the Heritage Foundation.

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40 Comments

this is a very good point.
Why the media blurt out such clearly provocative headlines while the war crimes and violations of rules of Geneva convention go unmentioned is beyond me.

Total War
Those who are determined and at a disadvange militarily, will use any tactics to acheive their objective.

The Brits cried foul when they were not shot at by regular soldiers in formation. And even worse, officers were being targeted as well!

The only solution will be to be more brutal and ruthless than your enemy else the enemy will win.

For the west, I believe this should entail special forces tactics and assassinations. Take no prisoners.

Technology is One Answer
"The West needs answers in the realms of foreign and defense policy, counter-insurgency and intelligence -- something the U.S. and its allies have had a hard time developing so far."

If the US and Israel had developed the appropriate "counter-insurgency and intelligence" capabilities, they would be able to detect the carefully hidden munitions in Lebanon and Iraq. Once detected, teams of special forces could be dispatched to disable/dispose of the weapons. Disarmament could then proceed systemically while minimizing the collateral damage that fuels terrorist propaganda.

The terrorists now obtain some measure of success in almost every encounter. This will continue until more effective anti-terrorist technologies are developed.

Laser/GPS guided bombs
That's why so much money is being spent on laser guided bombs and GPS and IR guided artillery shells.

And that is why the enemy is hiding behind civilians.

Elaborate justifications
The rationalizing is incredible. To avoid facing the reality, Israel accuses Hezbollah of targeting civilians-- despite the fact that their rockets can't be guided! With rockets dropping randomly it's true there have still been 18 civilian deaths reported. But that down from a weeek ago, when Israelwas claiming 19. So lethality is not much of an issue.

Meanwhile the IDF has levelled not only many apartment buildings but entire towns by now. So you're telling us that the consequential civilian deaths, on a massive scale, are all inadvertent? Israel has the best in American-supplied guided missiles. So they are hitting exactly what they are aiming at, every time.

They are aiming at the Lebanese people.

"Jihadis openly and repeatedly proclaim their fidelity to a dual goal: a conversion of the whole Muslim world to their version of Islam, followed by enforced Islamization of the rest of world."

Would "their version of Islam" be Sunni, like the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood or Al Qadea? Or would that be Shiite, like Iran, Iraq and Hezbollah? Or would it be secular, like Hamas? Please specify which version is taking over the world.

Also specify the means by which these radical mullahs will take over the world. People believe what they want to believe. Mass conversions to Islam are unlikely.

I can't imagine anyone actually believes this kind of crap.

The terror tool
"For the west, I believe this should entail special forces tactics and assassinations. Take no prisoners."

In a word, you are advocating terrorism.

Leaving aside the despicability factor, let's look at effectiveness. Terrorism as a tactic was tried against the United States, on 9/11/01. Did that incident weaken our resolve to fight, or did it strengthen it?

What makes you think the Lebanese, or any other Arab country, might respond any differently than Americans have done? Terror is a counterproductive strategy. It also makes beasts of us.

TerroristsTARGET Civilians
Special forces target terrorists.

their rockets can't be guided!
Who/what are they trying to hit if they are shooting unguided rockets? Are they doing it to watch the fire and smoke? Why not point them out to sea so they won't hurt anyone?

"Mass conversions to Islam are unlikely."

Because, as in the past, if you don't convert, you DIE.

Islamists took over Afghanistan forcing their version of Islam, Pakistan tolerats it, Canada has been considering allow Muslims to live under Sharia law has have the muslims in Mindanao and in Nigeria.

Their version of Islam will be the Taliban/Iranian version.

I see
I can see you favor the simple approach.

Special forces wear white hats. Terrorists wear black hats.

When special forces kill people it's for their own good. When terrorists kill people it's to fulfill their heathen religious beliefs.

Etcetera.

Muslim ambitions
I guess you haven't been following the conversation for the past two weeks. Almost everything Hezbollah has fired into Israel has been simple "point and shoot" weapons, that only go off in the general direction in which they are aimed. When fired at distant targets like Haifa they're really just random hits designed to inspire fear. Even close up, with targets on or near the border, they can't actually hit anything they're aimed at. You will note that for well over a week, the civilian death toll in Israel hasn't changed.

Nonetheless the fiction is adhered to that they are "aiming at" civilians. What they are aiming at, of course, is just the nation of Israel.

They have fired a very small number of expensive radar guided missiles, such as the Chinese made, Iranian supplied C-802 they used to hit the Israeli ship early in the war. They don't use these much, and obviously have them in very short supply.

http://www.defensetech.org/archives/002591.html

Such weapons aren't aimed at civilians but presumably are being kept in reserve for prime targets during military engagements. That is, if they still have any.

Meanwhile the US is actively supplying state of the art GPS and laser guided weaponry to Israel, for use in raining death down on the cities and towns of Lebanon. Yet supposedly we are not the terrorists. Go figure.

The image of tiny numbers of mullahs forcing 300 million Americans plus five billion non-Muslims outside the states to all kneel before Allah is ludicrous. You wouldn't by any chance be some whacko, would you?

Afghanistan, if you don't know, accepted Taliban rule merely because they were the largest army in a stalemated civil war. They acceded to the Tals, circa 1996, just to stop the endless killing. Considering the shape Afghanistan was in, this was the smartest decision they could have made.

Muslims and Christians are at loggerheads in Nigeria, as they are in Ambon. Breakaway Muslims in Mindanao and the southern islands of the Philippines have been resisting the central government since the Spanish established rule over them in the 1600's. The Muslims were there first, since about 1100 AD.

It sounds like what you really object to is their mere existence. How dare they want to rule their own lands? They should bow down to us, the infidels!

I see that to you, it doesn't matter who dies, as long as it's a jew
...

Pants in a twist
That's not my department. You'll need to speak with Mel Gibson about this.

Why shoot rockets into Israel if they won't damage something?
And why are those rockets loaded with shrapnel if they are not targeted at civilians? Also, they are pointed at Israeli cities, AZ and EL.

And why kidnap Israeli soldiers?

"The image of tiny numbers of mullahs forcing 300 million Americans plus five billion non-Muslims outside the states to all kneel before Allah is ludicrous. You wouldn't by any chance be some whacko, would you?"

They kept Jimmy Carter pretty busy for a few months. And if they get a nuclear weapon, and they say bow or die, what will you do?

"Meanwhile the US is actively supplying state of the art GPS and laser guided weaponry to Israel, for use in raining death down on the cities and towns of Lebanon. Yet supposedly we are not the terrorists. Go figure."

And if Israel wanted to rain death down on Lebanon, they would not have to waste money on smart weapons, just use dumb bombs.

"Muslims and Christians are at loggerheads in Nigeria, as they are in Ambon. Breakaway Muslims in Mindanao and the southern islands of the Philippines have been resisting the central government since the Spanish established rule over them in the 1600's. The Muslims were there first, since about 1100 AD."

Every where muslims live, they are always fighting their neighbors.
But if you are to have a nation, the rules must apply to all. No sharia law just for muslims in Canada, for example. That was/is being considered. Ever hear the expression 'camel nose under the tent'?




What Israel can say to its unfenced neighbors
"Meanwhile the US is actively supplying state of the art GPS and laser guided weaponry to Israel, for use in raining death down on the cities and towns of Lebanon. Yet supposedly we are not the terrorists. Go figure."

Israel: "Well, our friends are better than your friends. Too bad, so sad."

Roy, Einstein once said that God should not have wasted his time giving brains to most human beings; their spinal cords would have been enough. That would be true for you, except you don't possess even a spinal cord.

The West and the Rest
"This war is one of many battles to be fought between those who wish to join the modern world, warts and all, and those who think they have an alternative. This is a war between the West and what one might describe as “The Rest”, this time represented by radical Islamism. All the talk of a ceasefire, all the diplomatic gesticulations may ultimately mean little in what is an existential conflict"

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,6-2295231,00.html

Which side are you on again?

Roy clearly must be a Nazi sympathizer
After all, they used V1 and V2 rockets to "buzz bomb" the cities of England--rockets which, like those being launched by the Lebanese into Israel, had no guidance systems.

We have the technology
It's called a practically invincible air force, cruise missiles, nuclear subs, atomics, and MOABs.

Why are you wanting to risk soldier's lives "disarming" someone who, left alive, will arm again, growing progressively more deadly with every re-armament?

The terrorists and the nations that harbour them must be crushed. The military objective, which must be an extension of the political objective, must be ANNIHILATION. "Annihilation", here, is not defined as genocide, but it is defined as the complete and utter incapacitation of an enemy's military capacity and, thus, its political capacity.

The West doesn't need more technology. It needs BALLS.

roy is either a liar of monumental proportions, or he is seriously delusional
...

to roy, all killing is wrong, unless it's a jew dying
...

Well, Whaddya Know...
Lebanese Blame Hezbollah For Civilian Deaths

August 2, 2006 12:17 p.m. EST


Ryan R. Jones - All Headline News Correspondent
Qana, Lebanon (AHN) - The deaths of nearly 60 civilians in the southern Lebanon village of Qana Sunday was the work of Hezbollah masterminds, rather than purported Israeli aggression, say anti-Syrian Lebanese elements.

The French-language website Libanoscopie, which is associated with Lebanon's large Christian population, claims to have evidence that Hezbollah desired and facilitated the massacre that has resulted in broad international condemnation of Israel and a perpetuation of the current fighting.

In remarks translated by Israel's Ynet, Libanoscopie's editors stated, "Knowing full well that Israel will not hesitate to bombard civilian targets, Hezbollah gunmen placed a rocket launcher on the roof in Qana and brought disabled children inside, in a bid to provoke a response by the Israeli Air Force."

They said despicable plot was aimed at thwarting ceasefire negotiations backed by Beirut that would see the Lebanese army deployed in the south of the country and Hezbollah disarmed.

In the aftermath of the Qana incident, Israeli surveillance showed that the building where the civilians were located only collapsed some eight hours after being targeted by the air force, raising serious questions about the culpability of Hezbollah arms in its eventual collapse.

Israeli officials have also questioned why so many civilians were still inside the building eight hours after it had become clear the location was a military target.

A few quick questions ...
1. In your mind, who are the good guys and who are the bad guys?

2. If folks like Hamas and AQ mean what they say and seek the destruction of the Israel and / or ultimately West, and at the end of the day only one is standing, who are you rooting for?

3. What is your "tipping point?" How bad do does the destruction, mayhem, etc have to get before you are prepared to use "dispicable" means to achieve favorable resolution for the West (I'm assuming that you are rooting for the West)?

Let me posit what I think your answers are going to be: 1. You see no white hats, but misguided (at best)elements within the US are creating this entire conflict or at least making it worse;
2. The 'enemy' is grossly overrated and not a serious threat to the West; besides, they are just people with grievances that the West must address; Once addresed, the conflict will abate and vanish;
3. the "tipping point" question is irrelevant because it will never get that far unless those misguided elements succeed in propogating the problems that they are causing.

Am I close?

Have a good one,

Jake

The answers to all your questions
You summed it up correctly. Those rockets are "pointed at" Israeli targets. They can't be guided.

Why? Obviously the point is to cause maximum confusion and distress while causing minimal injuries. Otherwise there would be little point in firing weapons that mostly just did psychological harm.

I'll ask for a citation on "shrapnel". Obviously any explosion will break off fragments of stuff that can fly off and hit someone. But I've seen no allegation that Katyusha heads are milled to create shrapnel. They're not like flechettes, designed to mangle flesh.

Nor do they contain white phosphorus, which Israel is suspected of using in light of the nature of the many odd burns found on victims. Note my use of the word "suspected". Don't later say I "believe" Israel is doing this. I'm less sloppy in my use of words than many posting here, and will only say there is evidence and that pending test results it is less than conclusive.

http://www.smh.com.au/news/World/Israel-using-chemical-weapons-doctors/2006/07/27/1153816285823.html

Two. Why kidnap Israeli soldiers?

You really have no idea what context this thing takes place in, do you? It is very well known that a prime irritant for Hezbollah since 2000 is that although Israel withdrew from most parts of Lebanon, they have given no indication as to when or whether they will return numerous Hezbollah soldiers they continue to hold in Israeli prisons. Anyone reading a newspaper would understand Hezbollah intends a swap.

Three. "Every where muslims live, they are always fighting their neighbors."

Not so. Muslims live in my home town, and get along just fine with the neighbors. Your comment reveals religious prejudice. Bad.

Four. "And if Israel wanted to rain death down on Lebanon, they would not have to waste money on smart weapons, just use dumb bombs."

Not so. They need to preserve the narrative that they are only bombing humanely, trying to isolate Hezbollah targets. But the fact is that thousands of people belong to Hezbollah. It is the ruling political party in south Lebanon. And there's no doubt that Israel knows the addresses of every one of them. So their homes are getting bombed, along with every address they've been known to frequent. Naturally they live in residential areas all over Lebanon. But if Israel just used dumb bombs they would have no excuses to hide behind.

Finally. I agree with you that all citizens must live under the same body of law. So, no sharia law for Canadian Muslims. They can live with ordinary Canadian law or move some place more to their liking.

Ignorance of historic fact
The V-1 and V-2 developed by the Germans were the most accurate ordnance of their time, and rained down on the cities of Britain with pinpoint accuracy. They were quite impressive for 1940, and in no way comparable to Katyushas.

Which side am I on?
That is the key question. And as all politics are local, I am for self determination on the part of every locality. I am against foreign interference on the part of anyone against anyone else.

Most specifically, I think the imposition of Western values on a protesting World of Islam is going to come back and bite us in the ass. Big time.

Ball Bearings
"Sami Raz, 39, a railway electrician, said a ball bearing pierced his lung and lodged near his heart. “I had terrible difficulty breathing after I was hit,” he said.

Twelve people were wounded in the attack, four of them seriously.

Under international humanitarian law, parties to an armed conflict may not use weapons in civilian areas that are so inaccurate that they cannot be directed at military targets without imposing a substantial risk of civilian harm. Such attacks can constitute war crimes. Deliberately attacking civilians is in all circumstances prohibited and a war crime. "

http://www.hrw.org/english/docs/2006/07/18/lebano13760.htm

Not willing to help those who can't self determinate?
?

You are a LIAR and a HYPROCRITE!
There is no other possible reason for you to turn such a blind eye to the war crimes being committed by Israel. You talk about Hezbollah using civilians as human shields but where is the proof of that? First of all Hezbollah is not a state and by their very nature are prone to be located in civilian areas. The fact that Israel never bothers to account for this fact but instead murders hundreds of innocent people with no military strategy is the real war crime.

And don't try to rattle off text of the "International Law" when it suits you. I'm a lawyer but you, sir, are most assuredly an imbecile. How can Israel hide behind the international law now when they flagrantly disregarded more than 50 UN declarations regarding the settlements in the occupied territories? Not to mention the fact that the IDF KILLED 4 UN OBSERVERS, without so much as a proper apology?!!

As far as media coverage, Israel is the most cowardly, backpedaling, miserable excuse for a sovereign nation in blaming dead civilians for their own demise. Distributing pamphlets before dropping bombs on innocent civilians simply will not suffice in any international tribunal. With every lie that comes forth from their mouths, Israel tries to discredit and malign their Arab neighbors. What interest do they really have in peace? Before the world had even considered accusing them of war crimes, they were two steps ahead, already accusing Hezbollah of using human shields. Meanwhile 700 Lebanese lie dead in mass graves.

Sorry for the long message. It's just that you're an idiot and you infuriate me.

V-2 a terror weapon and not accurate
"However, as demonstrated by its low accuracy rate, the V-2 was ineffective as a military weapon. Of the 1,359 aimed at London, only 1,054 (78%) actually landed somewhere in England. Of these, only 517 landed within the 1,890 km (1174 mile) area of Greater London. Although 2,480 people were killed, the V-2 was essentially worthless against military targets and the damage done did not justify the cost per unit. Moreover, the V-2 missiles did not succeed in undermining British war morale, as intended."

http://www.missilethreat.com/missiles/v-2_germany.html

Check your international law books
"Two fundamental tenets of international humanitarian law are those of “civilian immunity” and the principle of “distinction.” They impose a duty to distinguish at all times in the conduct of hostilities between combatants and civilians, and to target only the former. It is forbidden in any circumstance to direct attacks against civilians; indeed, as noted, to do so intentionally amounts to a war crime.

It is also generally forbidden to direct attacks against what are called “civilian objects,” such as homes and apartments, places of worship, hospitals, schools or cultural monuments, unless they are being used for military purposes. Military objects that are legitimately subject to attack are those that make an “effective” contribution to military action and whose destruction, capture or neutralization offers a “definite military advantage.” Where there is doubt about the nature of an object, it must be presumed to be civilian.

The mere fact that an object has civilian uses does not necessarily render it immune from attack. It, too, can be targeted if it makes an “effective” contribution to the enemy’s military activities and its destruction, capture or neutralization offers a “definite military advantage” to the attacking side in the circumstances ruling at the time. However, such “dual use” objects might also be protected by the principle of proportionality, described below.

Even when a target is serving a military purpose, precautions must always be taken to protect civilians. "

http://hrw.org/english/docs/2006/07/17/lebano13748.htm#1

Are you a Muslim?
If so, that answers my question. What does being a lawyer have to do with it? I completely agree with the author.

Q&A time
I can play that game.

1. In your mind, who are the good guys and who are the bad guys?

No good guys. They're all bad guys, and deserve one another. The distinction is one are the strong bad guys, the other are the weak bad guys. I'll vote for the underdog in the fight.

2. If folks like Hamas and AQ mean what they say and seek the destruction of the Israel and / or ultimately West, and at the end of the day only one is standing, who are you rooting for?

Hamas seeks the destruction of Israel, not of Israelis. I think the Israeli state is immoral and should be replaced with a unitary Jewish and Palestinian state. That is likely to be a long time in coming. But we should not expect the problems to go away until it gets here, either.

Al Qaeda is not a player in this game.

3. What is your "tipping point?" How bad do does the destruction, mayhem, etc have to get before you are prepared to use "dispicable" means to achieve favorable resolution for the West (I'm assuming that you are rooting for the West)?

I think we have different definitions of the term despicable. Israeli treatment of Palestinians has always been despicable. Palestinian outbursts of violence have been poorly designed to achieve their ends, but are fundamentally crimes of the weak against the strong.

BTW it's not being reported much, but the killings continue in Gaza.

I don't see the US as putting Israel up to anything. They have no control over Israeli policy. The tail does wag the dog, however, in that both US parties have strong reasons for their uncritical support of whatever Israel wants to do.

I really, really can't inagine how any sane person can think this "enemy" is a threat to anyone. They're not even a threat to Israel. They're small numbers of angry people with guns, in a large sea of angry people without guns. World opinion-- the only possible pressure that could be applied to Israel-- is lackadaisical.

As for your tipping point, I confess I don't see how that concept applies. The situation has been quite stable for the past 58 years, and the prognosis is for much more of the same.

Message to a stupid lawyer (is that redundant?)
Hmmmm... you must be a very poor lawyer since you seem to lack the very basic ability to research.

>"You talk about Hezbollah using civilians as human shields but where is the proof of that?"

Here you go:

http://www.news.com.au/heraldsun/story/0,,19955774-5007220,00.html

http://www.canada.com/nationalpost/story.html?id=b4923801-9def-4606-af6a-bc5eea30b89b

You can also Google "Hezbollah Human Shields" and get about 750,000+ other sources if you like. There is a whole lot of video and photographic evidence to satisfy your lawyer's need for the truth.

>"First of all Hezbollah is not a state and by their very nature are prone to be located in civilian areas. The fact that Israel never bothers to account for this fact but instead murders hundreds of innocent people with no military strategy is the real war crime."

Hezbollah is a part of the Lebanese government. In your search above you can find numerous evidence to show that Hezbollah is preventing civilians from leaving in order to make them shields.

>"And don't try to rattle off text of the "International Law" when it suits you."

Ummmm... but Hezbollah is in violation of international law as well as having a long history of terrorism. Is terrorism now legal Mr. Lawyer-Man?

>"How can Israel hide behind the international law now when they flagrantly disregarded more than 50 UN declarations regarding the settlements in the occupied territories?"

Israel isn't hiding behind international law as far as I have seen. They are doing what they need to survive and if that involves breaking a UN resolution then so be it. The UN is blatantly and rabidly anti-Israel, as you can relate to.

>"Not to mention the fact that the IDF KILLED 4 UN OBSERVERS, without so much as a proper apology?!!"

I would say that the UN owes Israel an apology for making themselves shields for Hezbollah and allowing themselves to be used as sites to fire upon Israeli soldiers.

>"As far as media coverage, Israel is the most cowardly, backpedaling, miserable excuse for a sovereign nation in blaming dead civilians for their own demise. Distributing pamphlets before dropping bombs on innocent civilians simply will not suffice in any international tribunal."

I don't get the link between media coverage and the worth of Israel. Israel does not blame the dead civilians for their demise, they lay the blame firmly on the shoulders of those who brought about that demise: Hezbollah.

The distribution of pamphlets was not done to comply with international law. It was done to prevent the deaths of innocent civilians. The IDF goes to get lengths, with much risk to their own, to do this.

>"With every lie that comes forth from their mouths, Israel tries to discredit and malign their Arab neighbors."

You mean those wonderful neighbors who state that their will be no peace until all the Jews are wiped out? Those neighbors need no help in discrediting and maligning. I am sure that you hold a people who find it an honor to strap bombs on their children to blow up other children in high esteem. Yep. Good neighbors those Israelis have.

>"What interest do they really have in peace?"

Just enough to uproot their own citizens and return land in exchange for it. Enough to release hundreds of prisoners in exchange for the BODIES of its citizens. Enough to hold back for months while Hezbollah launches Qassams over the border.

The Israelis are the only ones who want peace. Not those excellent neighbors they have.

>"Before the world had even considered accusing them of war crimes, they were two steps ahead, already accusing Hezbollah of using human shields. Meanwhile 700 Lebanese lie dead in mass graves."

Where the hell have you been? Israel has been accused of war crimes for decades. Hell, Roy never stops accusing them.

Oh, and tell me the location of that mass grave site.

>"Sorry for the long message. It's just that you're an idiot and you infuriate me."

I know how you feel. I deal with your kind every day.

That's ignorance all right!
Good slap down on Roy. He is so wrong on so many things you would think he would change is login name or something...

Lethal underdogs
"I'll vote for the underdog in the fight."

Even if the underdog would kill you if given the opportunity?

Rods From God
"HOW DO THE RODS WORK? The system would likely be comprised of tandem satellites, one serving as a communications platform, the other carrying an indeterminate number of tungsten rods, each up to 20 feet in length and 1 foot in diameter. These rods, which could be dropped on a
target with as little as 15 minutes notice, would enter the Earth's atmosphere at a speed of 36,000 feet per second--about as fast as a meteor. Upon impact, the rod would be capable of producing all the effects of an earth-penetrating nuclear weapon, without any of the radioactive fallout. This type of weapon relies on kinetic energy, rather than high-explosives, to generate destructive force (as do smart spears, another weapon system which would rely on tungsten rods, though not space-based)."

http://www.weeklystandard.com/Content/Public/Articles/000/000/005/700oklkt.asp

These are neat!

blind eyes
Does it take a blind eye to not see something that isn't there?

Who cares whether Hezbolla is a state or not. As you yourself have acknowledged Hezbollah keeps the majority of it's assets in civilian areas. Hezbollah has options. They could build warehouses in rural areas. They could keep their operations centers out of the centers of cities. As you have acknowledged, they choose not to do these things. So it's Hezbollahs fault that the civilians are dying.

No military strategy. You just got through admitting that Israel is attacking Hezbollah targets. Is that not a military strategy? As to the civilians being killed, you just admitted that Hezbollah keeps it's military equipment in civilian areas.

As to the UN observers, the observers themselves stated that Hezbollah had taken up positions in and around the UN position and were firing on the Israeli's.

What is Israel to do, not fire on Hezbollah if there is slightest chance that somebody not of Hezbollah would be hit? Further, since Hezbollah also violates Geneva conventions by not wearing identifiable uniforms, how is anyone to know if those killed are Hezbollah or not?

Finally, nobody is blaming the civilians for their own death. If you had been paying attention, you would have noticed that we have consistently been blaming Hezbollah for their deaths.

The accuracy issue
"Of the 1,359 aimed at London, only 1,054 (78%) actually landed somewhere in England. Of these, only 517 landed within the 1,890 km (1174 mile) area of Greater London."

Well how about that? All I know is that a lot of urban landscape ended up being destroyed by them. I never would have realized so many ended up in the North Sea, or possibly Greenland. So let's say that it was effective as a terror weapon, and more accurate as a long range weapon than anything that had been developed before. And that in fact those 500-odd that landed in London still managed to kill 2724 people, including those at Ipswich. But it was not accurate by modern standards.

You are correct, but those are some big 'if's.
Devloping intelligence sources for some of these groups is extremely difficult. Israel has been trying to infiltrate Hezbollah and Hamas for decades, and has been unable to infilr\trate many operatives in to either group. The insular natures of these groups make infiltration extremely difficult. Technical intelligence is helpful, but quite frequently not enough. We have to assume that groups like this will be a regular feature of our fight, and that we will never have perfect intelligence.

Furthermore, special forces units could do part of the job, but it does take time to plan and execute raids on bunkers in hostile territory. Israeili artillery can respond to rockets in minutes, a special forces raid could take hours. The necessity of responding quickly means that special forces raids are simply not a retaliatory option for certain types of attack.

While both Israel and the US could shift their focus to special forces raids and intelligence gathering, we still have to come up with a plan to deal with bad PR from collatteral damage. If we really want to solve the problem of civillians being put in between the good guys and the terrorists, we need to start shooting regardless of the presence of civillians.

to roy
power is inherently evil.
Unless it's a powerfull govt.

No doubt you get your info from the same source.
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