Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Fatigue

Like my fellow bloggers here at Kishkushim, I'm increasingly demoralized and worried by the toll the Israeli air strikes are taking on the lives of innocent Lebanese. Is this the inevitable cost of asymmetrical warfare? Is this what needs to be done in order to deter future attacks on Israel? Is the IDF really exercising maximum caution in choosing its targets? Tough questions. I want Israel to emerge victorious and more secure from this round of fighting, but I also want the killing of innocent civilians to end. I'm aware of how banal these sentiments sound, but I feel we owe it to ourselves to show compassion for those Lebanese caught in a war that was not of their own making. Today, I heard from two Lebanese acquaintances that I know from my days as an undergraduate at McGill University (1999-2003) in Montreal, Canada. One of these contacted me directly through this blog and told me about her parents having to flee the fighting back to their permanent home in the United Arab Emirates, through Syria. They had come to Beirut just as fighting broke out, because my acquaintance's grandfather had passed away (due to natural causes). As I was reading another Lebanese website and BBC news, I also came across a familiar name and face from my McGill Days. We first met 1999 on a party boat in the LaChine Canal near Montreal, during one of those silly events that the Student Society organizes for freshmen during "Frosh Week". That must have been my second day in Montreal. Here's what Nathalie Malhame had to say on the BBC News website:
If you can read these lines, Nathalie, I wish you and your family and all other innocent Lebanese all the best!

7 comments:

Matityahu said...

John,
thank you for your thoughts.
Yes, it is madness - by Hizbollah - to provoke Israel fully knowing of Israel's resolve to protect her citizens, and to continue fighting in view of the heavy toll this bears on Lebanon, the country Hizbollah claims to "defend".
But it is time to pause and search for a resolution and a way out.
Israel made the point. 500,000 innocent Lebanese fleeing their homes or scrambling out of the country, infrastructure in shambles, airport, bridges, roads, food supplies... "Only" some 350, mostly civilian, Lebanese dead after all this bombing - yes, Tsahal may exercise caution to spare even higher civilian casualties, but this is no excuse for the asymmetry of this warfare. In the end, the victor will be called Hizbollah... It is painful to watch how Israel got lured by Hizbollah into this deadly trap destroying Lebanon.
Ha'aretz just reported about the first conscientious objector - apparently a highly capable officer.

see this site: http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/740241.html

Lefty Mills said...

John,
Do you really want to leave the impression that all Lebanese are innocent? Of the 128 seats in the Lebanese Parliament, 35 are held by the Resistance and Development Block which includes Hezbollah. Their policy is wipe a fellow UN member, Israel, off the map. Do you believe that those who voted for Hezbollah are innocent in this war?

John said...

If I were convinced that the air strikes were succeeding in striking at Hizbullah members, I would certainly have less ambiguous feelings about them.

ExpatJane said...

I think we all know that all Lebanese citizens aren't responsible, but some are. We also know that foreign powers have meddled in this too.

John, I'm glad to see you expressing some sympathy from one side to the other. Demonizing seems to be occurring way too much on both sides.

Stay safe and keep blogging.

Nathalie Malhame said...

John! It's Nathalie! I was so touched to see your comment!
Big hug! I hope everyone you know in the world is safe.
Please contact me at cattynatty@hotmail.com
I've also set up a blog:
http://peaceforlebanon.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

Violence begets violence. It amazes me that anyone would think that this conflict will actually lead to peace and safety for for the Middle East. Revenge and retaliation seem to be the ongoing motivations. How do you bomb these out of the hearts of people?

Nathalie Malhame said...

Peaceful Vigil for peace in the middle east in england:

To support the innocent people that have been and continue to be affected by the Conflict in the Middle East join me for a Candle-lit Peace Vigil
on Thursday 10th August
at 7 - 9 p.m. in Parliament Square

PURPOSE:
To call for peace in the Middle East for all sides of the conflict

This is not a time for taking sides: innocent people are dying on all sides and it is up to us, the international community, not to stay quiet but to support and call for a cease-fire


The relevant authorities have been informed so all you have to do is come along and show your support!

Please R.S.V.P. (even just a blank email)!

Please forward this email to peace-minded people/ friends/ partners/ family members!

Please bring a candle!

Please please please come!


Claire




Claire Physsas

clairephyssas@yahoo.co.uk