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Thursday, June 11, 2009

No way: Hezbullah would cease to exist if the Israeli-'Palestinian' conflict were resolved

General David Petraeus, the chief of CENTCOM, made an outrageous statement last week that has raised a lot of eyebrows. He said that were the Israeli-'Palestinian' conflict to be resolved, Hezbullah would cease to exist. That's absurd.
Just prior to the Lebanese elections — elections that Hezbollah lost, thank goodness — Gen. Petraeus spoke with the Arabic-language al-Hayat newspaper, published by the Lebanese Daily Star, and blamed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for the existence of Hezbollah. “Hezbollah’s justifications for existence will become void,” Petraeus said, “if the Palestinian cause is resolved.”

It is unclear what Petraeus meant by this statement. While he has earned the benefit of the doubt, if Petraeus truly meant what he apparently said, this is a highly discouraging revelation. The idea that the Palestinian “plight” is Hezbollah’s casus belli is so far from the truth, and so detached from reality, it is hard to believe Petraeus actually thinks this. Perhaps there was a mistranslation? Perhaps Petraeus was making shrewd statements for domestic Lebanese consumption — attempting to undermine Hezbollah by painting them as more concerned for Palestinians than the Lebanese people, just ahead of Lebanon’s elections? All of this is possible.
And if Petraeus actually believes what he says? He's just plain wrong.
To suggest Hezbollah’s primary motivations are minimalist and nationalist — indeed, not even their nation — is baloney. The rationale for Hezbollah’s existence is to overtake and ransack Lebanon and make it a satrapy state for Iran, to Islamize secular Lebanese polity, to kill Westerners wherever and whenever possible, and, more significantly, to strive for the end of Israel’s existence. To say Hezbollah’s “justifications” would run dry, should a non-related event occur, operates from the false premise that Hezbollah feels compelled to offer justifications for their actions in the first place. They don’t.
For proof, recall that Hezbullah used to tell us that they existed to recover Lebanese land from Israel. When Israel withdrew to the blue line, they invented the Shaba Farms canard, and when Israel started hinting at withdrawing from Shaba Farms, they invented the seven villages canard.

Before we go supporting Petraeus to be the Republican nominee in 2012 or 2016, we'd better check whether he actually believes this nonsense.


At 1:20 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

Hezbollah will never run out of justifications. In the unlikely event Israel ever disappeared, it would find a new enemy in America. Gen. Petraeus appears to have forgotten that Hezbollah in the 1980s targeted the US embassy in Beirut, the Marine barracks and was responsible for the abduction, torture and murder of CIA station chief William Buckley. The terrorist organization murdered hundreds of Americans. To suggest their raison d'etre begins and ends with the Palestinian issue is to refuse to acknowledge their violent past history and while they aim at the destruction of Israel, their goals are wider than that. Surely the general knows all this and if its not his personal view, its no doubt the view of the Administration and its flat out wrong.

What else could go wrong indeed

At 4:44 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

The key word you missed is "justification".

He didn't say Hezbollah would cease to exist. He said that Hezbollah would not be able to say that they had to solve a solved question.

This statement is of course, true. They might be able to get around it. But they wouldn't be able to justify their existence in the same way.

At 8:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Jeff said...
The key word you missed is "justification".


The keyword you missed is "resolved."

Hezbullah's idea of a resolution to the conflict is the complete destruction of Israel.

Should that Arab wet dream come true, indeed Hezbullah would cease to exist.

At 9:12 PM, Blogger J. Lichty said...

we went through this general worship in the party with Powell's entrance into politics at the end of the last millineum.

I dont credit my father with much sound thinking regardng politics (he is a reflexively liberal left wing jew), but he did say, "before you get too excited about Powell, find out what he thinks."

Wish he followed his own advice, but still good advice nonetheless.


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