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Tikkun: War and Peace in the Mideast
Haaretz' Gideon Levy argues that Israel's war in Gaza and Lebanon is about the IDF's ego. Uri Avnery says its about changing the Lebanese government. And Gila Svirsky reminds us of the moral meaning of Israeli policy.
The Occupation? Fuggedaboutit!
By Gila Svirsky
What a stroke of luck - 10 days before a war breaks out in Lebanon, we buy an apartment in Nahariya.
We had been looking for a place for about a year. We went to Cyprus to check out the beautiful new communities on the northern shore - it's quite a bargain, if you don't mind settling in occupied territory. We thought about Mauritius, but the savings on real estate would be offset by the costs of flights there. So finally we settled on an apartment under construction in Israel's sweetest little town on the Mediterranean coast - just 5 miles south of the border with Lebanon.
The Real Aim
By Uri Avnery
THE REAL aim is to change the regime in Lebanon and to install a puppet government.
That was the aim of Ariel Sharon's invasion of Lebanon in 1982. It failed. But Sharon and his pupils in the military and political leadership have never really given up on it.
As in 1982, the present operation, too, was planned and is being carried out in full coordination with the US.
As then, there is no doubt that it is coordinated with a part of the Lebanese elite.
That's the main thing. Everything else is noise and propaganda.
ON THE eve of the 1982 invasion, Secretary of State Alexander Haig told Ariel Sharon that, before starting it, it was necessary to have a "clear provocation", which would be accepted by the world.
Operation Peace for the IDF
By Gideon Levy
Reprinted Courtesy of Haaretz
July 16th, 2006
Every neighborhood has one, a loudmouth bully who shouldn't be provoked into anger. He's insulted? He'll pull out a knife. Spat in the face? He'll draw a gun. Hit? He'll pull out a machine gun. Not that the bully's not right - someone did harm him. But the reaction, what a reaction! It's not that he's not feared, but nobody really appreciates him. The real appreciation is for the strong who don't immediately use their strength. Regrettably, the Israel Defense Forces once again looks like the neighborhood bully. A soldier was abducted in Gaza? All of Gaza will pay. Eight soldiers are killed and two abducted to Lebanon? All of Lebanon will pay. One and only one language is spoken by Israel, the language of force.
The war that the IDF has now declared on Lebanon and before it on Gaza, will never be considered another "war of no choice." Let's save that debate from the historians. This is unequivocally a war of choice. The IDF absorbed two painful blows, which were particularly humiliating, and in their wake went into a war that is all about restoring its lost dignity, which on our side is called "restoring deterrent capabilities." Neither in Lebanon nor certainly in Gaza, can anyone formulate the real goals of the war, so nobody knows for sure what will be considered victory or an achievement. Are we at war in Lebanon? With Hezbollah? Nobody knows for sure. If the goal is to remove Hezbollah from the border, did we try hard enough over the last two years through diplomatic channels? And what's the connection between destroying half of Lebanon and that goal? Everyone agrees that "something must be done." Everyone agrees that a sovereign state cannot remain silent when it is attacked within its own borders, though in Israel's eyes Lebanese sovereignty was always subject to trampling, but why should that non-silence be expressed solely by an immediate and all-out blow?