July 16, 2006
has proportion got to do with it though … it’s not about proportion is
it. I mean human life is not cheap to the Israelis and human life on
the other side is quite cheap actually because they strap bombs to
people and send them to blow themselves up." – Maureen Lippman,
23/7/06, BBC TV 'The Week in Politics’
it’s denial on everybody’s part but many of my lefty pals seem to be at
a loss to explain the actions of Israel as it methodically dismembers
Lebanon-aside that is, from the obvious 'warmonger’ tag, a tag that
the arguments range from the dog wagging tail, tail wagging dog
hypothesis through to the attempt at realising the 'Eretz Israel’
objective; 'punishing’ those nasty Arabs for daring to strike back and
no doubt many more beside including Pappe’s far-fetched notion of too
many guns and not enough 'real’ wars to use them in.
one thing we can be sure, Israel’s role is and always has been as a
vehicle to stop the Arab independence movements from succeeding, as an
examination of history clearly shows.
the days of the Balfour Declaration (1914) through to the establishment
of Israel in 1948 and then the Suez War in 1956, the Six Day War in
1967 and finally the war of 1973, Israel has proved itself to be a
loyal vehicle of Western imperial objectives. That it also has
objectives that to some degree are independent of US & UK interests
is open to debate.
example, when Israel tried to sell advanced weapons to China, the US
slapped the Israelis down without a thought, thus dispelling any
notions about Israeli’s 'independence’ of action.
can be sure that the decision to attack Lebanon didn’t come out of the
blue, nor was it simply some kind of 'gut’ reaction to the alleged
Hizbollah attacks on the IDF.
There would seem to be two possible explanations:
1. The attack on Lebanon is a prelude to a wider war, possibly with Syria being the next target
2. The attack on Lebanon is a horrendous diversion from the failure of
the Gaza bloodbath to achieve its stated objective, the complete
destruction of what was left of the Palestinian administration,
enabling it to complete its total annexation of the West Bank.
there is a great deal of overlap between the two and there is no doubt
that the 'Greater Israel’ objective, the total incorporation of the
Occupied Territories, that includes parts of Jordan, Syria and Lebanon
into Israel, is still the major concern of the Zionist state.
seems to have escaped peoples’ attention is the fact that Israel still
occupies a chunk of Lebanon precisely where the fight between Hizbollah
and Israel took place.)
it still comes down to the issue of whether these aims fit into the
larger strategic objectives of the US which includes installing
governments friendly to the US in Syria, Lebanon and Iran.
should not forget that the US already has Egypt, Jordan, Morocco and
Tunisia as allies and perhaps also Libya. Standing in the way of
attaining these objectives are the Palestinians, whether in the
Occupied Territories or in the Diaspora, the biggest of which is in
doubt the US gives a toss about 'Greater Israel’, only whether it
assists in gaining its own objectives. Certainly the US has given its
public blessing to the barbarous assault on Lebanon, I suspect firstly
in order to ascertain what the reactions (and actions) of countries
like Syria and Iran would be (and let’s not forget the Russians). So
far, the gamble appears to be paying off.
invasion has many of the same hallmarks of the US response to Iraq’s
invasion of Kuwait in 1990, where it was imperative to find out what
the Russians would do about US actions in the post-Soviet period.
secondly, the absolute demonisation of the Palestinians through the
onslaught on both Hamas and Hizbollah over the previous months has
created the right psychological conditions for Israel’s invasion, the
Western media response to the invasion and the slaughter in the
Occupied Territories illustrates this perfectly.
I think it’s true to say that Israel can tread where the US fears to
go, so in this sense, Israel is acting as a 'classical’ proxy for the
US. The question still remains concerning what will be Israel’s/the
US’s next step?
'Arab’ world since 1973, has never been much of an obstacle to
US/Israeli aims in spite of all the talk, so it’s doubtful that Syria
will do much unless it is attacked directly and even then it’s up
against the 4th biggest army in the world.
it’s difficult to see where the Israelis can go from here. There’s no
possible strategic advantage to be gained from destroying Lebanon. It
has no military force to speak of aside from Hizbollah’s largely
guerrilla army which again brings me back to the idea that the invasion
is designed as a distraction from events in the Occupied Territories.
statement about "convergence", a code word for consolidating its grip
of the West Bank continues apace whilst the world is distracted. The
Zionists know that aside from the odd bleat from Western governments
about showing some "restraint", the Palestinians can expect no help
from these quarters.
rocket attacks can do no more than continuing to justify Israeli
destruction of life and infrastructure. Once again, it reveals the
bankrupt nature of the political struggle being waged by both Hizbollah
and Hamas (let alone the toothless Fatah). As ever it’s the civilian
populations who pay the cost.
can we expect anything from the UN. The US vetoed the Security Council
resolution calling on Israel to halt its barbarous assault.
the European perspective, without a coherent left, and I contend, a
unified European left, the Palestinians can expect nothing aside from a
nothing else, the events of the past few days reveals the true nature
of 'social democracy’ as nothing more than brute force disguised as
'civilisation’. Where are the 'left’ Labour MPs I ask? Once again, I
contend that the real role of racism as a corrosive and divisive weapon
of imperialism is central to the lack of any real opposition emerging.
For as long as we regard Arabs as non-people, the bulk of the Israelis,
Americans and Europeans will continue to ignore the slaughter.