Sunday, August 13, 2006

Seymour Hersh: US Gave the Green Light

Seymour Hersh has a new article providing the not-too-surprising information that the Bush administration pre-authorized Israel's attack on Lebanon.

I may comment more in an update, but I've got something on the boil.

Update while simmering The key passage is the following:

Israel believed that, by targeting Lebanon’s infrastructure, including highways, fuel depots, and even the civilian runways at the main Beirut airport, it could persuade Lebanon’s large Christian and Sunni populations to turn against Hezbollah, according to the former senior intelligence official.

In other words, Israel's plan, approved by the Bushies long before the July 12 kidnappings, was to terrorise the non-Shi'ite population of Lebanon in the hope that this would reignite civil war.

As anyone paying attention could tell, this was not about striking at Hezbollah military capacity and accidentally hitting some bystanders. The bystanders were the target.

Viewed through racist assumptions about Arabs, the idea was that they would react to this punishment by their betters by being docile and doing what Israel and the US wanted. On the more reasonable assumption that Arabs react to being bombed like Israelis or Americans and other humans do, it would have the opposite effect, uniting the Lebanese population.

Well, the experiment has been done. Olmert will try to get what face saving he can before the ceasefire takes effect tomorrow. But no one really thinks Israel has advanced its strategic objectives. And America owes France big time.

Supid and immoral. Stupid and immoral. I'm ashamed at my country's complicity, a complicity only mitigated by the fact that we were never important enough to be given advance notice.


a-train said...

Do you suppose Olmert had Bosnia in mind? In Bosnia, bombing Serbia seemed to work. Obviously, that situation was very different from what's going on with Israel/Hiz/Lebanon, but I wonder if that is what they were thinking.

No matter though, the right is already attacking the messenger Hersh. I wonder if we'll ever have proof on this that the Israeli and US right will accept ... (even though it was pretty obvious what Israel was trying to do from the very beginning).

PithLord said...

Hersh says Olmert and the IDF used Bosnia as their model. I agree with you that that doesn't make a lot of sense.

Hersh is clearly a great journalist, and has excellent sources in the Administration who think the loonies have taken over the assylum. Hersh stories tend to check out.

a-train said...

Hersh says Olmert and the IDF used Bosnia as their model.

I haven't had a chance to read the Hersh article yet. Still, using Bonsia as a model. Sweet Jesus, could they have picked a less similar conflict to model? How on earth do these people get into power?

BTW, that Larson blog is great! Arlen Specter might say that the man is a "super-duper" reactionary. It's ironic that person so clearly ideologically driven (i.e. conservative orthodox on steroids) can so cogently attack idealogically driven politics.

PithLord said...

Actually, I think they used Kosovo as their model.

On Larison, it's hard to find somebody still willing to defend the divine right of kings. But Larison really believes it.

a-train said...

Right. I'm from Bosnia (Croatian). To me the conflict was of a piece (like dominoes falling).