26 August 2006

Israel Win Or Lose Redux

Bloggers and their ilk are revisiting the question of whether Israel or Hezbollah won their recent little war. The conventional wisdom is shifting at least a little towards Israel in the blogosphere, although not, apparently, in Israel. I'll stand pat for now at a tactical win for Israel but a strategic win for Hezbollah. If, however, the Euros can really insert a 15,000 man international force into south Lebanon, Hezbollah's strategic victory will become a huge defeat.


Susan's Husband said...

Why would a Euro-force be an advantage for Israel? It would simply give Hizb'allah a shield and new set of hostages so that if Israel responded to future provocations it would end up killing European soldiers as well.

Peter Burnet said...

Unless, of course, the force is made up mainly of theoretical French troops who aren't really there.

Isn't the temptation of both sides to try and orchestrate shooting between the UN force and the other side going to be irresistable?

(BTW, David, is there anything you can do to make your comment boxes more user friendly? Cutting from them is hit and miss and I can't see the URL of any links within a comment when I open them. You are dealing with experienced pros here. :-))

David said...

SH: 15,000 troops is a lot of troops, basically an occupation. If Hezbollah's strategic victory is that they were able to hold off Israel for a month, I think that is lessened if a bunch of Euros show up. I'm also assuming that the Euros won't show up unless some progress has been made towards disarming Hezbollah.

Peter: I'll try.

Susan's Husband said...

Why would the Euros make any more difference to Hizb'allah than UNIFIL did? In fact, it might well boost Hizb'allah for the locals to see them lording it over the Euros, flying the Hizb'allah flag there, using their bases as launch sites, etc. It's not an occupation if the troops just sit in their barracks, except to spend money on the local prostitutes.

David said...

UNIFIL was a force of about 2000 whose job was to watch Hezbollah attack Israel. If UNIFIL II actually gets to 15,000 troops and does what it is supposed to do, it will be a much different animal.

Susan's Husband said...

"does what it is supposed to do"

I rest my case.

P.S. If you actually know what the proposed force is supposed to do, you might want to ring up PM Chirac and let him know, as apparently he doesn't.