Wednesday, July 19, 2006

So much more in less
Samer al-Batal writes: Fewer images – only three – than those linked to in my last entry, but much more horrific, that I drop the word ‘somewhat’ from my next sentence this time. Contains graphic content. I can only remember what the priest communicated indirectly but satisfactorily enough last Sunday when he mentioned people ‘who do not have the light of Christ’.

St Elias
In accordance with their ecclesiastical calendars, Orthodox and (Eastern) Catholic churches in Lebanon celebrate tomorrow in common the memory of the great prophet of the Old Testament St Elias the Thesbite (link to an icon of the saint), known here as Maar Ilyaas, and held in honour by all the religious factions of this land, Druze included. The arrival of his feast at this time could not be more suitable. May his intercessions drive from the land the savage Baal that today demands the blood of Lebanese children and the inhabitants of this country.

Interviews with Robert Fisk in Beirut and Ray McGovern, former CIA officer and founder of VIPS (Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity)
Much of the political analysis out there, including from these interviews and past posted articles, presents ideas and views such as the following: Israeli pre-meditation and a pre-planned operation waiting for the right pretext and time, Hizbullah expecting and counting on the trademark Israeli response of sheer ferocity with set preparations to counter an attack, an original plan by neo-conservatives to eventually reach Iran and Syria by jumpstarting events on the Lebanese battleground, Syria playing power politics with the intent of securing its influence over Lebanon and place in the region’s geopolitical arena, dispute over the level of autonomy with which Hizbullah operates vis a vis its relations with its patrons (and by extension what level of involvement the latter have in the Hizbullah operation), the co-operation of Arabic, Sunni states with the Americans and their tacit approval given beforehand to the Israeli operation to combat what they see as a Shi’ite threat in the region, the notion of things eventually settling down and concluding with prisoner exchanges after enough dead have accumulated to sate everyone’s bloodlust, and the fear of a serious conflagration in the Middle East.

Enough time spent at analysing and it all seems like a game, and the more so, the more the morally repugnant acts behind this catastrophe on the ground seem at a distance and abstractly.

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