Waiting for Shebaa
Posted by aogMonday, 21 August 2006 at 23:06 TrackBack Ping URL

The UN Security Council is scheduled to revisit the thorny question of whom Shebaa Farms belongs to. A diplomatic solution, analysts say, could eventually bolster stability along the Israel-Lebanese border by weakening Hizbullah’s justification for holding onto its weapons.

Another triumph of obliviousness over experience. Why revisiting the issue would solve anything is not addressed, despite the complete failure of the previous time the UN did exactly this kind of review. Both Lebanon and Israel agreed with the UN. Hizb’allah simply ignored it and invented the Shebaa farms issue.

Moreover, this complete ignores the elephant in the living room which is Hizb’allah’s clearly and frequently stated goal of the complete destruction of the state of Israel and the ethnic cleansing (if not outright genocide) of all the Jews there. What do the Shebaa Farms have to do with that?

What I don’t understand is why anyone except UN diplomats on expense accounts think this is worth bothering with. I can only guess that it’s just another way of dithering and hoping some one else performs a miracle.

P.S. Judd has his standard facile comment of

Palestine has demonstrated how deathly it is for the radicalism of these groups to get what they claim to want.

Therefore we should go after Hizb’allah by giving them what they claim they want is the implication. Since Hizb’allah has clearly stated, over and over, that what it wants is the erasure of Israel and the Jews, it would follow that we, the USA, should help Hizb’allah do that in order to undermine them. Maybe it’s just me, but that seems a trifle over-indulgent.

Comments — Formatting by Textile
David G. Cohen Tuesday, 22 August 2006 at 07:57

Yeah, OJ has just gone off the rails on this one. The point about Shebaa Farms, so clear that even the UN gets it, is that Israel left Hezbollah high and dry by pulling out of Lebanon so Hezbollah had to make up an excuse to keep attacking Israel.

Shebaa Farms belongs to Syria and Lebanon doesn’t claim it, so Israel can’t give it “back” to Lebanon.

Annoying Old Guy Tuesday, 22 August 2006 at 08:38

It certainly shows what Hizb’allah is about, and it’s not about opposing the occupation of Lebanon by Israel.

As usual, though, there is a kernel of insight buried in OJ’s intellectual train wreck. Civic responsibility and democratic accountability would, in fact, do a lot to reign in organizations like Hamas and Hizb’allah. Where OJ goes wrong is in thinking that these organzations don’t know that and will do whatever it takes to avoid such a situation. Just like OJ, they noticed what happened to the PLO once it started negotiating with Israel. Both of Hamas and Hizb’allah invent pretexts or undertake actions to keep the war with Israel hot precisely to avoid this eventuality. Interestingly, they seem to realize yet another OJ insight, which is once you go to the negotiating table, you’ve lost, so why should Hamas or Hizb’allah surrender by treating Israel as a legitimate state?

OJ has taken to simple denial of facts on the ground to get around this, which is kind of sad. For everyone else, the sad part is how this technique continues to work despite the fifty (sixty?) years of insulated leaders using it to abuse the Arab populace. We’ll see if the Lebanese are smarter than that.

David Cohen Tuesday, 22 August 2006 at 14:02

Interestingly, they seem to realize yet another OJ insight, which is once you go to the negotiating table, you’ve lost

I was thinking about that this morning and wondering how OJ would handle the West going to the negotiating table over Iran’s nuclear program. Pretty clear who loses just be sitting down at that table.

Annoying Old Guy Tuesday, 22 August 2006 at 14:40

I doubt it would concern OJ, as his view on Iran and the mullahocracy is

they’re ten years from a weapon and this regime will be long gone

In a related vein, I think that I’m not just being sarcastically hyperbolic, I think OJ really is willing to sacrifice Israel to bollix Hizb’allah, as he has already written off Israel’s future

Demographics doom Israel in the long term. This is all just buying time

It’s not a matter of whether to let Israel be destroyed by its Arab neighbors, merely a question of when.

Michael Herdegen Wednesday, 23 August 2006 at 00:29

Demographics doom Israel in the long term. This is all just buying time

Uh, yeah, sure. The thing is, when one reads that line, it’s helpful to know that the person who wrote it has enormous problems with complex systems in general, and with math and statistics in particular.

A static, straight-line projection of Israeli Jewish and Arab birth rates might lead one to conclude that eventually it’ll be a thousand to one against Israel, and then, maybe, the Arabs would have a ghost of a chance against Israel. However, that’s exactly the kind of analysis that caused people in the 70s to worry about global overpopulation. Just as that turned out to be an illusion, so to will any notion that the Arabs will overrun the Earth, simply by reproducing faster than any other group. The fertility rates in Arab nations, although still high, are dropping rapidly, just as has happened in the West and in Asia.

Further, it assumes that higher populations are a net good, which is only true in societies that can find productive uses for more people. Few Arab nations can make that claim, and Iran can’t either. They’re having a hard enough time meeting the needs of their present populations, and that’s with oil money, in many cases. Double the populations and decimate the oil revenues, which is one likely scenario for thirty years’ hence, and you’ve got welfare cases, not Jew-beaters.

Finally, there are right now at least 60 Middle Eastern/Northern Africa Arabs for every 1 Israeli Jew, and yet, since ‘48, “victory” for Arabs has been redefined to mean “avoided annihilation”. I seriously doubt that doubling, tripling, or even quadrupling the Arab populations will change that - it just means that Israel will have to use more ammo.

Annoying Old Guy Wednesday, 23 August 2006 at 01:01

You need to account for Arabs living in Israel, who get to vote. That’s what people really mean by the demographic destruction of Israel. Still that presumes

  • Straight line project (which you note)
  • That Israeli Arabs would vote to destroy the prosperous, civil society in which they live in order to import a typical Arab oppressive regime. This seems dubious, but the support that Hamas and Hizb’allah are getting makes it seem much more plausible.
Post a comment