Posted by Curt on 26 July, 2006 at 12:08 pm. Be the first to comment!

The buzz on the street today is the killing of four UN observers in Lebanon by Israeli artillery. 

The UN general secretary, Kofi Annan, today accused the Israeli military of carrying out a sustained bombing of the UN base on the Lebanon-Israel border that culminated in the killing of four unarmed monitors.

Mr Annan said he had suggested to the Israeli prime minister, Ehud Olmert, that they carry out a joint investigation into the events that led to the shelling of the "well-established and well marked" Unifil (UN interim force in Lebanon) post in the town of Khiyam.

"I spoke to Mr Olmert and he definitely believes it was a mistake and has expressed his deep sorrow, " Mr Annan told a press conference in Rome.

"But the shelling started in the morning and went on until after 7pm. You cannot imagine the anguish of the unarmed men and women peacekeepers who were there."

According to a detailed timeline of the incident provided by an unidentified UN officer and reported by CNN, the first bomb exploded around 200 metres from the post at 1.20pm (11.20am BST) yesterday.

Unifil observers then telephoned their designated contact with the Israeli military, who assured them the attacks would stop. In the following hours, nine more bombs fell close to the post, each one followed by a call to the Israeli military, the UN officer said.

But as Wretchard at The Belmont Club notices, the UNIFIL has been running an ambulance service through and beside Hezbollah units.  

In order to have some sense of how plausible this accusation is, it would be useful to examine the statements of the UNIFIL itself prior to this incident. Ever since hostilities started UNIFIL has been documenting its activity through a series of press releases. These provide a snapshot into what the UN troops were doing and how they have been faring during the period of combat.

[…]All the incidents of IDF fire reported in the press releases are clearly related to some kind of nearby combat with the Hezbollah. In one case the IDF fired on a village into which the UNIFIL had gone, but rockets had originated from the vicinity of the village prior. In another case, an Israeli aerial bombardment detonated mines all around a UNIFIL position. Those mines were presumably not planted by UNIFIL, but they were so close to it that the UN position caught fire. The UN observation post in Maroun al-Ras was hit by artillery, but we know from press reports that Maroun al-Ras was the epicenter of heavy fighting and the location of a Hezbollah bunker complex. The UN even ran a convoy from the Hezbollah "capital" of  Bint Jubayl to another area. Bint Jubayl is well known to be the target of an IDF attack. Yet the UN felt that it was possible to move convoys through such areas, albeit at considerable danger.

If you read through these press releases you will see that for over one week artillery fire has come close to the UNIFIL positions because they are so close to enemy combatants.  Now all of sudden we are supposed to believe that Israel deliberately targeted the UN personnel when they could have killed them many times over during the past week?  Sure thing.

The IDF has for its part avoided hitting UNIFIL or their civilian convoys despite its widely publicized use of artillery and air. Far from being random, the IDF is apparently able to create safe corridors in active battle zones through which UNIFIL can pass until the recent incident in Kiyam.  There are probably very few military organizations in the world which can accomplish this. Nevertheless, the danger of friendly fire naturally remains. The two IDF personnel probably killed and five wounded from friendly fire is proof of that. 

The question that should be asked is that if these UNIFIL workers had come close to friendly fire for over a week why had they not been moved back when they were obviously too close to Hezbollah?  Did they believe Israel would back off in this fight for survival all because the UN is doing a poor job of positioning their people?


UPDATE

Little Green Footballs has the audio of an interview with a Canadian General who states that Hezbollah was using this UNIFIL base as cover….surprised? 

Plus the Canadian PM Stephen Harper has stated that Kofi's claim of deliberate targeting of the UN base is baloney:

Canada's Prime Minister Stephen Harper said an Israeli attack on a UN outpost that killed four, including a Canadian, was a "terrible tragedy" but not likely deliberate.

At the same time, he questioned why the UN had manned the outpost in Lebanon near the Israeli border as bombs exploded all around.

"We want to find out why this United Nations post was attacked and also why it remained manned during what is now, more or less, a war during obvious danger to these individuals," he told reporters.

Asked about UN head Kofi Annan's statement suggesting Israel had targeted the outpost, Harper said: "I certainly doubt that to be the case."

This incident just further cements the fact that the left will cling to anything that proves their anti-Semitic belief's 

Other's Blogging:


The question that should be asked is that if these UNIFIL workers had come close to friendly fire for over a week why had they not been moved back when they were obviously too close to Hezbollah? Did they believe Israel would back off in this fight for survival all because the UN is doing a poor job of positioning their people?

0 0 votes
Article Rating
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x