UN chief appeals to Israel and Hexbollah to focus their targets narrowly, to spare civilian lives.
Does anyone else see what’s wrong with this picture? Isn’t Hezbollah known for shooting off records heading into Israeli civilian area?
Now the UN is trying to get into the act over at the Israeli – Lebanon border. From this report (H/T: Lucienne.com) at the Middle East Online, Secretary General Annan is trying to get a peace keeping force in there:
UN chief Kofi Annan called Monday for an end to hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah in order to buy time to put a well-armed "stabilisation force" along the Lebanon-Israel border.
Problem is, they are already there. So what have they done to help "calm the waters" so far?
The United Nations has a monitoring force on the Lebanese-Israeli border known as UNIFIL, which was set up in March 1978 to oversee an Israeli withdrawal from southern Lebanon that finally only took place 22 years later.
It is made up of 2,000 soldiers and 500 civilians mandated to supervise a ceasefire on the border but is largely powerless. Its mandate, renewed every six months by the Security Council, next expires on July 31
Nothing. But wait, there’s more!
Just in a lot of the other places in the world where the blue helmets of the UN are stationed. Frankly, it seems that the only beneficiaries of these forces are the countries (mostly 3rd world) that get a per diem for their services. Heaven forbid they actually have enough weaponry or skills to actually make a difference.
"We need to get the parties to agree as soon as practicable to a cessation of hostilities to give us time and space to work" on the multinational force, the UN secretary general said at the G8 summit of world leaders.
In other words, please play nice while the rest of us talk about doing something. Yup, we’ve got one side whose whole reason for existence is to completely obliterate the other. Talk? Hasn’t worked so far, has it Kofi?
Here’s a cute one:
Referring at least twice to "a stabilisation force", Annan said the United Nations needed enough room "to make sure we have the troops – well-trained, well-equipped troops — to go in quite quickly."
Well, where are we going to find those well-trained, well-equipped troops that can move in quickly. Not many countries have even the first two conditions. And the only one among those that have the heavy lift capability to do so is – wait for it – yup, you’re getting warm – us.
Sorry, we’re a little preoccupied right now. Especially since you, Mr. Annan, have already gone after Israel for defending itself.
Annan said he expects a UN team in the region, led by his special political advisor, Vijay Nambiar, to report to the UN Security Council "towards the end of this week".
"The sooner decisions are taken by the Council, the better it is, but the parties need not wait for their full implementation to start the cessation of hostilities and to spare civilians," he said
At the same speed as you have demonstrated for handling the nuclear – Iran situation? That has gone on for 3 years with the only practical result is more time for Iran to process its soon-to-be-fissible material?
He recalled that four of the G8 nations – Britain, France, Russia and the United States — are permanent Security Council members, and implied that they must not use their vetos to delay the force’s deployment.
Oh, but it is OK for the others to veto other stuff that these four want?
When the UN starts cleaning up its act and stops acting like a forum for dictators and anti-democracy bullies.