Saturday, August 12, 2006
In case you haven't noticed, we seem to be on the verge of World War Three right now.
I heard an Israeli spokesman on the radio the other day. He said: “Iran are causing war and havoc throughout the Middle East.”
I guess those must be Iranian jets flying over the Lebanon at the moment, turning buildings to apple crumble, attacking red cross ambulances and UN peace keepers and killing all those mothers and children cowering in basements. Telling people to move out of south Lebanon and then targeting them in their vehicles. Invading a sovereign nation, pounding the hills with heavy gun fire and attacking densely populated civilian areas. I must have mistaken the flag.
Of course, as we are constantly reminded, Israel has the right to defend itself. True. But not only is the current action way beyond defensive, it begins to look fairly certain that it was premeditated.
It is common to say that Hizbollah started this war when it abducted two Israeli soldiers in a cross-border raid, but, if you wind back the tape a little, you begin to see another picture emerging.
Prior to that Israel were pounding the life out of Gaza, starting with its power plant, a form of collective punishment and a recognised war crime under the Geneva Conventions.
Prior to that Hamas had abducted one Israeli soldier.
Prior to that (though this was barely noticed) the Israelis had abducted a Palestinian doctor and his brother from their home. Abduction of civilians is also a war crime.
Prior to that the Israelis had fired on a Palestinian family sunning themselves on a beach in Gaza.
And prior to that Mahmoud Abbas, the Palestinian President, had almost persuaded Hamas to accept a deal in which it effectively recognised the state of Israel‘s right to exist. Or, to put it another way, by murdering several members of a Palestinian family on a beach the Israelis had deliberately scuppered any chance of a peace agreement.
Ayman al-Zawahiri, the deputy leader of al-Qaeda, was on record at the time urging the Palestinian people to reject the proposals which were to be put to them in the form of a referendum.
In other words, Israel have done al-Qaeda’s work for them.
As to who is behind this war, it may well be true that Iran are arming and supporting Hizbollah, but we all know who is arming and supporting Israel.
Condoleezza Rice says we are watching the birth-pangs of a new Middle East. Since when did you induce a birth by smearing the mother with blood and pounding her with heavy artillery?
What sort of a monstrous baby do the Americans have in mind exactly?