PoliBlog: A Rough Draft of my Thoughts

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  1. In a similar vein, I think citing deserves attention. According to the Foreign Ministry, in the last 6 years since the pullout from Lebanon and before Israel launched its offensive after the capture of the two soldiers, Hezbollah had killed 13 soldiers and 7 civilians, and wounded 27 soldiers and 7 civilians, for a grand total of 54 casualties, most of whom where “legitmate” military targets.

    Comment by Joe Mucia — Sunday, July 30, 2006 @ 12:52 pm

  2. I suck at HTML. I’ll try the links again:

    Matt Yglesias

    Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs

    Comment by Joe Mucia — Sunday, July 30, 2006 @ 12:58 pm

  3. Yglesias does not claim that most of those 54 Israeli casualties were “legitimate” military targets. And how could they be? We are talking about the period after Israel withdrew from Lebanon.

    Yglesias’s basic point, however, is that the threat from Hezbollah was not an existential one. Correct.

    Now to the main post: Negotiate a cease-fire how? If you are right, Steven, that Israel has not significantly destroyed Hezbollah’s military capacity, then what does the latter stand to gain from a cease-fire? Fewer of its own civilians killed? Sure, but as you’ve noted elsewhere (and correctly), this is not exactly one of their main concerns.

    Comment by Matthew Shugart — Sunday, July 30, 2006 @ 1:13 pm

  4. Matthew,

    From Hezbollah’s point of view, I don’t see what they have to gain in continuing to engage in a conventional confrontation with Israel.

    Why not husband their resources and take advantage of the recruitment possibility that Israel has given them, not to mention to exploit the further erosion of the Lebanese state that Israel has created?

    Of course, those may be reasons for Israel not to want to negotiate.

    One of Israel’s biggest liabilities in this fight, and the reason I have questioned this particular approach this time, is that they have to score a massive blow against Hezbollah to achieve “victory” while all Hezbollah has to do is live to fight another day.

    Comment by Dr. Steven Taylor — Sunday, July 30, 2006 @ 1:54 pm

  5. I think that taking out the longer range missiles and command structures of Hezbollah would be quite useful for the Israeli and US governments prior to whatever might be coming with regard to Iran.

    Whether they can be successful at even that is another question. But it looks like “preemption” (an incorrect use of the term, but the now-standard one), to me.

    Comment by MSS — Sunday, July 30, 2006 @ 3:37 pm

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