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War Is Terrorism With a Bigger Budget

Israeli war crimes continue unabated across Lebanon and Palestine

By Christopher Bollyn

The Israeli aggression against Lebanon is a monstrous war crime in which the Zionist state has been aided and abetted by the U.S. government. The vicious Israeli assault on Lebanon has been accompanied by a host of lies that have been dutifully parroted by the Bush administration and the Zionist-controlled mass media.

After two weeks of fighting, at least 422 people, mostly civilians, have been killed in Lebanon and thousands more have been injured, while in Israel, 18 Israeli civilians are reportedly killed. Certainly, many more Lebanese dead will be found beneath the rubble of the many flattened residential buildings of south Beirut and southern Lebanon. Up to 750,000 Lebanese have been driven from their homes and have become refugees. Israel’s ethnic cleansing of south Lebanon is now a fact.

The controlled media lies about the Israeli aggression in Lebanon are similar to its propaganda about the terror attacks of 9-11. In both cases the gross deception foisted upon the public caused widespread misunderstanding of the facts and the identity of the guilty party.

A poll conducted by USA Today and Gallup found that 53 percent of the U.S. population blamed Hezbollah for the outbreak of hostilities between Israel and the popular Shi’ite resistance group based in south Lebanon. Hezbollah, which was formed in 1982 as a local resistance movement
to challenge the Israeli occupation, is increasingly popular today throughout the Arab and Muslim world because of its ability to confront Israel.

The Gallup poll reveals how successfully the media has deceived the American public about the current crisis in Lebanon. The poll found that 39 percent of respondents blamed Iran, while 29 percent blamed Syria. Lebanon, the beleaguered and devastated victim, was blamed by 27 percent while Israel, the party most clearly responsible for the criminal destruction of Lebanon, was only blamed by 15 percent of those polled. These results reveal the degree of Zionist mind control over American perceptions of the Middle East.

The poll, which was conducted as Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice departed for the region, found that 67% of the population does not think the Bush administration has a clear and well thought out policy in the Middle East, although it is obviously supporting the Zionist agenda.


In the controlled press, Hezbollah, branded as a “terrorist” group by the United States and Israel, is blamed for having sparked the crisis by having “kidnapped” two Israeli soldiers from Israeli territory on July 12. Iran and Syria are usually blamed for being the powers behind Hezbollah.

The initial news reports, however, indicate that the two Israeli soldiers were not kidnapped at all. They were reported to have been captured—inside Lebanon—after having crossed the border and entered the Lebanese village of Aitaa al-Chaab.

The capture of the Israeli soldiers inside Lebanon was reported by a number of leading international press services, including the German news agency (DPA), AP, AFP from France, and UPI Arabia.

“The Lebanese Shiite Hezbollah movement announced Wednesday that its guerrillas have captured two Israeli soldiers in southern Lebanon,” the DPA reported from Beirut on July 12.

“Implementing our promise to release the Arab prisoners in Israeli jails, our strugglers have captured at 9:05 a.m. two Israeli soldiers in southern Lebanon,” the Hezbollah statement said.

The BBC, usually quite precise, translated the Hezbollah statement as having said “captured two Israeli soldiers at the border with occupied Palestine.”

Lebanese police said the two Israeli soldiers had been captured as they “infiltrated” into the Lebanese town of Aitaa al-Chaab, which lies near the fortified border with Israel.

Early in the day, Joseph Panossian of the Associated Press reported that Hezbollah “captured two Israeli soldiers during clashes Wednesday across the border in southern Lebanon, prompting a swift reaction from Israel, which sent ground forces into its neighbor to look for them.”

“The two Israeli soldiers were captured in Lebanese territory, in the area of Aitaa al-Chaab, near to the border with Israel, where an Israeli unit had penetrated,” the Agence France Presse reported from Aitaa al-Chaab and Beirut.

On July 13, the DPA reported that Israel vehemently denied reports by Lebanese police that the two soldiers had been captured inside the Lebanese border. Israel said the soldiers had been on patrol on the Israeli side of the border fence.

Hezbollah Chief Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah said he would only return the captured soldiers through “indirect negotiations and an exchange of prisoners.”

“This is the only available way to release” Lebanese prisoners held in Israel,
he said. “The Israelis always first say they do not wish to negotiate but eventually they accept.”

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert denounced what he called “kidnappings” as an “act of war” by one sovereign country against another. Olmert said, “Lebanon will bear the consequences of its actions,” and warned of a “very, very, very painful” response.

The Israeli response has been both disproportionate and illegal in its use of U.S. supplied precision-guided weapons, cluster bombs and phosphorus weapons to target civilians and civilian infrastructure.

The obvious falseness of the Israeli military claim that it does not target civilians was plain to see from the front page of The New York Times on July 22.

The lead story reported that the Bush administration was rushing a delivery of precision-guided bombs to Israel while the large color photograph next to the article showed some of the coffins of 86 civilians who had been killed in Tyre.

Reports on National Public Radio described how Israeli planes and helicopters had targeted civilian vehicles fleeing from their homes and villages in south Lebanon. One family’s car was struck just feet from the hospital in Tyre. In another case 23 of the 27 civilians in one truck were killed by an Israeli missile. An Israeli helicopter machine gunned a civilian vehicle killing all 9 civilians.

As Israel is wont to do, a number of Red Cross ambulances were targeted. “Israeli missiles had clearly pierced the very center of the red cross on the roof of each ambulance,” Robert Fisk of The Independent (UK) wrote on July 26.

Meanwhile, U.S. war planes arrived at Israeli airbases carrying weaponry and military equipment. The American planes came from Gulf States including Qatar and Saudi Arabia, according to the Al Manar newspaper. The newspaper reported that five U.S. planes had landed in three Israeli airbases, bringing more weapons and “vacuum bombs of many sizes.”

“We are aiding and abetting war crimes,” Francis A. Boyle, professor of international law at the University of Illinois, said about the U.S. weapon shipments to Israel. “This has been planned for quite some time,” Boyle added.

On the same day that U.S. war planes delivered weapons to Israel, Israeli bombs struck a reportedly well-known and clearly marked United Nations observer post in Lebanon, killing 4 UN monitors from China, Austria, Finland and Canada.

Despite six hours of urgent calls from top UN officials in New York and its officers on the ground to the Israeli mission the base continued to come under fire and received a total of 21 strikes from the air, 12 of them artillery rounds.

UN General Secretary Kofi Annan called the Israeli attack on the Khiam
base “deliberate.”

China strongly condemned the Israeli air strike and summoned Israel’s ambassador in Beijing to demand an apology.

Asked about the attack on the UN base, Boyle said, “They do it all the time; it’s a power thing.”

Israeli officials are demanding an apology from Annan for his comments.

Tzipi Livni, the Israeli foreign minister, rejected claims that the Israeli military had intentionally targeted the UN peacekeepers. “We want it to be clear it was not a deliberate attack because Israel would never target a UN force. It is not part of our policies; it is not part of our values,” Livni said.

Livni’s statement is a bald-faced lie. Israel does target UN bases. On April 18, 1996, during the Israeli “Grapes of Wrath” aggression against Lebanon, then Prime Minister Shimon Peres, now the vice premier, ordered the precisionguided artillery shelling of the UN base at Qana (Cana) in which hundreds of Lebanese had sought shelter. Some 102 Lebanese civilians were killed in this previous deliberate attack on a UN base.

Christopher Bollyn is a the American Free Press Midwest Bureau Chief. He has written extensively on a wide variety of subjects including the controversy surrounding computerized voting systems, the Arab-Israeli conflict and the many unanswered questions surrounding 9-11.

(Issue #32, August 7, 2006)

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Updated July 29, 2006