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« on: August 11, 2006, 10:48:12 PM »

The draft resolution presented at the U.N.
Friday, August 11, 2006; Posted: 6:06 p.m. EDT (22:06 GMT)

The Security Council;

PP1. Recalling all its previous resolutions on Lebanon, in particular resolutions 425 (1978), 426 (1978), 520 (1982), 1559 (2004), 1655 (2006) 1680 (2006) and 1697 (2006), as well as the statements of its President on the situation in Lebanon, in particular the statements of 18 June 2000 (S/PRST/2000/21), of 19 October 2004 (S/PRST/2004/36), of 4 May 2005 (S/PRST/2005/17) of 23 January 2006 (S/PRST/2006/3) and of 30 July 2006 (S/PRST/2006/35),

PP2. Expressing its utmost concern at the continuing escalation of hostilities in Lebanon and in Israel since Hizbollah's attack on Israel on 12 July 2006, which has already caused hundreds of deaths and injuries on both sides, extensive damage to civilian infrastructure and hundreds of thousands of internally displaced persons,

PP3. Emphasizing the need for an end of violence, but at the same time emphasizing the need to address urgently the causes that have given rise to the current crisis, including by the unconditional release of the abducted Israeli soldiers,

PP4: Mindful of the sensitivity of the issue of prisoners and encouraging the efforts aimed at urgently settling the issue of the Lebanese prisoners detained in Israel,

PP5. Welcoming the efforts of the Lebanese Prime Minister and the commitment of the government of Lebanon, in its seven-point plan, to extend its authority over its territory, through its own legitimate armed forces, such that there will be no weapons without the consent of the government of Lebanon and no authority other than that of the government of Lebanon, welcoming also its commitment to a UN force that is supplemented and enhanced in numbers, equipment, mandate and scope of operation, and bearing in mind its request in this plan for an immediate withdrawal of the Israeli forces from Southern Lebanon,

PP6. Determined to act for this withdrawal to happen at the earliest,

PP7. Taking due note of the proposals made in the seven-point plan regarding the Shebaa farms area,

PP8. Welcoming the unanimous decision by the government of Lebanon on 7 August 2006 to deploy a Lebanese armed force of 15,000 troops in South Lebanon as the Israeli army withdraws behind the Blue Line and to request the assistance of additional forces from UNIFIL as needed, to facilitate the entry of the Lebanese armed forces into the region and to restate its intention to strengthen the Lebanese armed forces with material as needed to enable it to perform its duties,

PP9. Aware of its responsibilities to help secure a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution to the conflict,

PP10. Determining that the situation in Lebanon constitutes a threat to international peace and security,

OP1. Calls for a full cessation of hostilities based upon, in particular, the immediate cessation by Hizbollah of all attacks and the immediate cessation by Israel of all offensive military operations;

OP2. Upon full cessation of hostilities, calls upon the government of Lebanon and UNIFIL as authorized by paragraph 11 to deploy their forces together throughout the South and calls upon the government of Israel, as that deployment begins, to withdraw all of its forces from Southern Lebanon in parallel;

OP3. Emphasizes the importance of the extension of the control of the government of Lebanon over all Lebanese territory in accordance with the provisions of resolution 1559 (2004) and resolution 1680 (2006), and of the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, for it to exercise its full sovereignty, so that there will be no weapons without the consent of the government of Lebanon and no authority other than that of the government of Lebanon;

OP4. Reiterates its strong support for full respect for the Blue Line;

OP5. Also reiterates its strong support, as recalled in all its previous relevant resolutions, for the territorial integrity, sovereignty and political independence of Lebanon within its internationally recognized borders, as contemplated by the Israeli-Lebanese General Armistice Agreement of 23 March 1949;

OP6. Calls on the international community to take immediate steps to extend its financial and humanitarian assistance to the Lebanese people, including through facilitating the safe return of displaced persons and, under the authority of the Government of Lebanon, reopening airports and harbours, consistent with paragraphs 14 and 15, and calls on it also to consider further assistance in the future to contribute to the reconstruction and development of Lebanon;

OP7. Affirms that all parties are responsible for ensuring that no action is taken contrary to paragraph 1 that might adversely affect the search for a long-term solution, humanitarian access to civilian populations, including safe passage for humanitarian convoys, or the voluntary and safe return of displaced persons, and calls on all parties to comply with this responsibility and to cooperate with the Security Council;

OP8. Calls for Israel and Lebanon to support a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution based on the following principles and elements:

- full respect for the Blue Line by both parties,

- security arrangements to prevent the resumption of hostilities, including the establishment between the Blue Line and the Litani river of an area free of any armed personnel, assets and weapons other than those of the government of Lebanon and of UNIFIL as authorized in paragraph 11, deployed in this area,

- full implementation of the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, and of resolutions 1559 (2004) and 1680 (2006), that require the disarmament of all armed groups in Lebanon, so that, pursuant to the Lebanese cabinet decision of July 27, 2006, there will be no weapons or authority in Lebanon other than that of the Lebanese state,

- no foreign forces in Lebanon without the consent of its government,

- no sales or supply of arms and related materiel to Lebanon except as authorized by its government,

- provision to the United Nations of all remaining maps of land mines in Lebanon in Israel's possession;

(cont'd next post)
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« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2006, 10:48:52 PM »


OP9. Invites the Secretary-General to support efforts to secure as soon as possible agreements in principle from the Government of Lebanon and the Government of Israel to the principles and elements for a long-term solution as set forth in paragraph 8, and expresses its intention to be actively involved;

OP10. Requests the Secretary-General to develop, in liaison with relevant international actors and the concerned parties, proposals to implement the relevant provisions of the Taif Accords, and resolutions 1559 (2004) and 1680 (2006), including disarmament, and for delineation of the international borders of Lebanon, especially in those areas where the border is disputed or uncertain, including by dealing with the Shebaa farms area, and to present to the Security Council those proposals within thirty days;

OP11. Decides, in order to supplement and enhance the force in numbers, equipment, mandate and scope of operations, to authorize an increase in the force strength of UNIFIL to a maximum of 15,000 troops, and that the force shall, in addition to carrying out its mandate under resolutions 425 and 426 (1978):

a. Monitor the cessation of hostilities;

b. Accompany and support the Lebanese armed forces as they deploy throughout the South, including along the Blue Line, as Israel withdraws its armed forces from Lebanon as provided in paragraph 2;

c. Coordinate its activities related to paragraph 11 (b) with the Government of Lebanon and the Government of Israel;

d. Extend its assistance to help ensure humanitarian access to civilian populations and the voluntary and safe return of displaced persons;

e. Assist the Lebanese armed forces in taking steps towards the establishment of the area as referred to in paragraph 8;

f. Assist the government of Lebanon, at its request, to implement paragraph 14;

OP12. Acting in support of a request from the government of Lebanon to deploy an international force to assist it to exercise its authority throughout the territory, authorizes UNIFIL to take all necessary action in areas of deployment of its forces and as it deems within its capabilities, to ensure that its area of operations is not utilized for hostile activities of any kind, to resist attempts by forceful means to prevent it from discharging its duties under the mandate of the Security Council, and to protect United Nations personnel, facilities, installations and equipment, ensure the security and freedom of movement of United Nations personnel, humanitarian workers, and, without prejudice to the responsibility of the government of Lebanon, to protect civilians under imminent threat of physical violence;

OP13. Requests the Secretary-General urgently to put in place measures to ensure UNIFIL is able to carry out the functions envisaged in this resolution, urges Member States to consider making appropriate contributions to UNIFIL and to respond positively to requests for assistance from the Force, and expresses its strong appreciation to those who have contributed to UNIFIL in the past;

OP14. Calls upon the Government of Lebanon to secure its borders and other entry points to prevent the entry in Lebanon without its consent of arms or related materiel and requests UNIFIL as authorized in paragraph 11 to assist the Government of Lebanon at its request;

OP15. Decides further that all states shall take the necessary measures to prevent, by their nationals or from their territories or using their flag vessels or aircraft,

(a) the sale or supply to any entity or individual in Lebanon of arms and related materiel of all types, including weapons and ammunition, military vehicles and equipment, paramilitary equipment, and spare parts for the aforementioned, whether or not originating in their territories, and

(b) the provision to any entity or individual in Lebanon of any technical training or assistance related to the provision, manufacture, maintenance or use of the items listed in subparagraph (a) above, except that these prohibitions shall not apply to arms, related material, training or assistance authorized by the Government of Lebanon or by UNIFIL as authorized in paragraph 11;

OP16. Decides to extend the mandate of UNIFIL until 31 August 2007, and expresses its intention to consider in a later resolution further enhancements to the mandate and other steps to contribute to the implementation of a permanent ceasefire and a long-term solution;

OP17. Requests the Secretary-General to report to the Council within one week on the implementation of this resolution and subsequently on a regular basis;

OP18. Stresses the importance of, and the need to achieve, a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East, based on all its relevant resolutions including its resolutions 242 (1967) of 22 November 1967 and 338 (1973) of 22 October 1973;

OP19. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

The draft resolution presented at the U.N.
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« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2006, 11:40:32 AM »

Hezbollah sets conditions for agreement

13 minutes ago

BEIRUT, Lebanon - Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah said Saturday that the Islamic militant group will abide by a U.N. cease-fire resolution but will continue fighting as long as Israeli troops remained in south Lebanon.

Nasrallah grudgingly accepted the cease-fire plan in a televised address as the Lebanese Cabinet was in session to vote on whether to agree to the U.N. resolution. Hezbollah has two ministers in the government.

"We will not be an obstacle to any (government) decision ... but our ministers will express reservations about articles that we consider unjust and unfair," he said.

The U.N. Security Council adopted a resolution seeking a "full cessation" of violence between Israel and Hezbollah on Friday, offering the region its best chance yet for peace after a month of fighting that has killed nearly 900 people and inflamed Mideast tensions.

The resolution, adopted unanimously, authorizes 15,000 U.N. peacekeepers to help Lebanese troops take control of south Lebanon as Israeli forces that have occupied the area withdraw.

The Shiite cleric said Hezbollah rocket strikes on northern Israel would end when Israel stopped airstrikes and other attacks on Lebanese civilians.

Some of the heaviest fighting of the war raged Saturday as Israel sent an avalanche of military power into Lebanon, dispatching thousands of troops and columns of armor into the rocky hills just north of its border.

Nasrallah called continued resistance to the Israel offensive "our natural right" and predicted more hard fighting to come.

"We must not make a mistake, not in the resistance, the government or the people, and believe that the war has ended. The war has not ended. There have been continued strikes and continued casualties," he said.

"Today nothing has changed and it appears tomorrow nothing will change," he said.

Hezbollah sets conditions for agreement
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« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2006, 11:50:01 AM »

Peres says U.N. resolution "vindicates" Israel

Sat Aug 12, 3:52 AM ET

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel's Deputy Prime Minister Shimon Peres on Saturday welcomed a U.N. resolution calling for an end to hostilities between Israel and Hizbollah and said the deal vindicated Israel's month-long military campaign.

"Without the military pressure we would not have had the diplomatic deal," elder statesman Peres told Israel radio.

"The U.N. decision vindicates Israel all the way through and says that Hizbollah was the aggressor and that they need to return the abducted soldiers ... We achieved all we could from the U.N."

The U.N. Security Council unanimously backed a resolution on Friday calling for a "full cessation of hostilities" based on "the immediate cessation by Hizbollah of all attacks and the immediate cessation by Israel of all offensive military operations."

Israel's cabinet is expected to express its support for the resolution at a meeting on Sunday. In the meantime, Israeli forces have stepped up operations in Lebanon, driving north toward the Litani river, 20 km (13 miles) inside the country.

The conflict, which has killed at least 1,060 in Lebanon and 124 Israelis, began on July 12 when Hizbollah guerillas captured two Israeli soldiers in a raid inside Israel.

Peres says U.N. resolution "vindicates" Israel
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« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2006, 11:54:53 AM »

Both sides in Mideast war agree to plan

By ZEINA KARAM, Associated Press Writer 5 minutes ago

BEIRUT, Lebanon - Israeli helicopters flew hundreds of commandos into the Hezbollah heartland and warplanes staged wide-ranging airstrikes Saturday as both sides indicated they would accept a U.N. cease-fire plan to stop heavy fighting still raging in southern Lebanon.

Airstrikes killed at least 19 people in Lebanon, including 15 in one village, and Hezbollah rockets wounded at least five people in Israel. Long columns of Israeli tanks, soldiers and armored personnel carriers streamed over the border.

More than 50 helicopters ferried Israeli commandos into southern Lebanon in what was called the biggest such operation in Israel's history. It was part of an all-put push to drive Hezbollah fighters behind the Litani River, about 18 miles from the border, before the truce.

But Hezbollah fought back hard. Israel said dozen of its soldiers were wounded in the expanded offensive, which has tripled the Israeli troop strength in southern Lebanon.

The Islamic militant group said its fighters killed seven Israeli soldiers and destroyed 21 tanks. Israel said its troops had killed 40 Hezbollah guerrillas over the previous 24 hours.

Hezbollah's leader, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, said his militia would abide by the cease-fire blueprint, but said the guerrillas would keep battling Israeli troops while they remained in Lebanon, calling that  our natural right."

His address was televised as Lebanon's Cabinet met to vote on the U.N. plan. Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora signaled the Cabinet would accept, saying it serves the interests of his country and "shows that the whole world stood by Lebanon."

The Israeli Cabinet was expected to approve the cease-fire Sunday, but Israel appeared ready to keep up its full-scale military campaign until the U.N. plan worked its way through the region's political leadership over the weekend.

The resolution approved Friday night by the U.N. Security Council would create a peacekeeping force by combining a beefed-up version of ineffective U.N. units already in the war zone and 15,000 soldiers from the Lebanese army. The force, which could number around 30,000, would stand between Israel and Hezbollah's militia.

France, New Zealand, Italy and Ireland said Saturday they were ready to provide troops and Turkey said it was inclined to do so.

President Bush issued a statement urging the world's leaders to implement the U.N. plan and help bring real peace to the Middle East.

"The loss of innocent life in both Lebanon and Israel has been a great tragedy," Bush said. "Hezbollah and its Iranian and Syrian sponsors have brought an unwanted war to the people of Lebanon and Israel, and millions have suffered as a result. I now urge the international community to turn words into action and make every effort to bring lasting peace to the region."

Israel's army chief, Lt. Gen. Dan Halutz, said Israel expected to fight for another week despite the cease-fire deal. He said Israeli forces — apparently about 30,000 soldiers now — would stay in Lebanon until an international force arrived.

Israel has demanded an airtight buffer zone and wonders if U.N. and Lebanese forces are up for the task. A small U.N. military presence — now about 2,000 observers — has been in Hezbollah-controlled southern Lebanon since 1978 and has been overwhelmed by the Islamic militant group's rising power, aided by Iran and Syria.

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice specifically cited Hezbollah's two sponsors in a statement Friday for all parties to "respect the sovereignty of the Lebanese government and the will of the international community."

But the resolution, approved 15-0 in the U.N. Security Council, did nothing to immediately halt the fighting that erupted exactly a month ago and has claimed nearly 900 lives — including at least 761 in Lebanon and 123 Israelis.

Israeli missiles slammed into the southern Lebanon village of Rachaf, about 10 miles from the Israeli border, killing at least 15 civilians, security officials said. Israeli ground forces also fanned out across southern Lebanon hunting for Hezbollah rocket batteries that have fired unending salvos across the border.

Three people also were killed in strikes on Kharayeb, and a Lebanese soldier was killed in an air raid near an army base in the Bekaa Valley, officials said.

In Sidon, a coastal city between Beirut and the Israeli border, Israeli bombs destroyed a power plant. Farther south, another power facility was hit near Tyre, knocking out electricity to the port, police said.

On Lebanon's northern frontier, Israeli airstrikes hit the highway leading to the Arida border crossing about a mile from the Mediterranean coast. It was the last official border post open for humanitarian convoys and civilians fleeing the country. The highway was impassable, but drivers tried to maneuver through ruts and ditches.

The only other exits from Lebanon are rugged pathways and back roads through deserts or mountains.

Israel seeks to block supply routes for Hezbollah and disrupt their mobility and has warned it would target any vehicles on the roads in southern Lebanon and along other main highways.

On Friday, an Israeli aircraft fired on a convoy of more than 600 civilian vehicles and others carrying 350 Lebanese police and soldiers who left the Israeli-occupied town on Marjayoun in southeast Lebanon. Police said three civilians and an army recruit were killed and 28 people were injured. The mayor of Marjayoun, Fuad Hamra, put the death toll at six.

Israel said the U.N. troops asked permission to lead the convoy, but it was denied. Previous groups were given permission and traveled unharmed, the Israeli military said.

Fighting continued in Hezbollah-held areas around Marjayoun, a strategic hub overlooking valleys used as Hezbollah rocket bases.

Israeli commando units and guerrillas engaged in close combat in a valley near El-Ghandourieh, about 10 miles southwest of Marjayoun, according to Lebanese security officials.

Other Israeli ground forces, backed by aircraft and drones, met stiff resistance as they tried to reach the Litani River.

Israel said its troops destroyed several rocket batteries and killed more than 40 Hezbollah fighters in the last 24 hours. The guerrilla group announced four deaths Friday and three Saturday.

After a morning free of Hezbollah rocket strikes in northern Israel, a barrage of 20 missiles at midafternoon injured two people in Amirim and three in Kiryat Shemona. Hezbollah had been averaging nearly 200 hits each day in the monthlong conflict.

The Litani is seen by Israel as a crucial boundary in its attempt to push back Hezbollah. Israel repeatedly has insisted that the proposed peacekeeping force cannot allow Hezbollah weapons south of the river.

But it will be nearly impossible to rid south Lebanon of the Islamic guerrillas, who are now in the Lebanese Cabinet and run clinics and other charities that are considered essential in rebuilding the region. Their ability to withstand the Israeli military assault has also made Hezbollah heroes across the Arab and Islamic worlds.

Both sides in Mideast war agree to plan
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« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2006, 12:01:53 PM »

Rice: Multinational force in Lebanon to be strong mandate
 
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice said in a CNN interview that the multinational force which will operate in Lebanon will be a "strong mandate" and will be able to defend itself and the mandate it received opposite anyone who will try to interfere in its duty. (Yitzhak Benhorin, Washington)

Rice: Multinational force in Lebanon to be strong mandate
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« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2006, 12:08:45 PM »

Nations offer to send troops to Mideast

By MERAIAH FOLEY, Associated Press Writer Sat Aug 12, 8:00 AM ET

SYDNEY, Australia - France, New Zealand and Italy said Saturday they are ready to send peacekeeping troops to help Lebanon regain control of its south, as governments around the world welcomed a U.N. resolution calling for an end to hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah.

France, which already has some troops in southern Lebanon, will "play a role in putting the new resolution into place, particularly in regards to the new" expanded U.N. force, said President Jacques Chirac.

Italian Premier Romano Prodi also said his country would be willing to contribute troops and wanted to participate in talks to determine the composition and mandate of the force.

China, Russia, Germany, Japan and Australia all praised the resolution, but a majority of Australians said they would not support sending forces to the region, where a month of fighting has left more than 800 people dead, destroyed large amounts of infrastructure, and displaced hundreds of thousands of people.

Drafted by France and the U.S., the resolution calls for an immediate cessation of hostilities and authorizes 15,000 U.N. peacekeepers to help Lebanese troops take control of south Lebanon as Israel withdraws.

New Zealand Prime Minister Helen Clark said her country is "ready to consider what role we might play in an expanded U.N. presence in southern Lebanon."

"The onus now lies on the governments of Lebanon and Israel to accept the resolution as the basis for moving forward," she said.

Turkey also said it was inclined to send peacekeepers.

"If the conditions are met, we will look at the issue very favorably," Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul was quoted as saying by the government-owned Anatolia news agency.

Australian Foreign Minister Alexander Downer welcomed the resolution, but said it would not mean an end to the crisis in the Middle East. "This will not occur until the underlying causes of the conflict are resolved," Downer said.

He later said the government would look at sending a small contingent of specialized troops to bolster U.N. forces, but said Australia "certainly couldn't provide large numbers of troops."

Thousands of demonstrators gathered in Australia's largest city, Sydney, on Saturday calling for an immediate withdrawal of Israeli troops from Lebanon.

In Beijing, the Chinese government said the U.N. resolution was a good foundation for future peace.

"China hopes concerned sides will implement the Security Council resolution in a tangible manner, resume peace and stability in the Middle East region at an early date," the official Xinhua News Agency said, citing the Chinese Foreign Ministry.

Russia, another permanent council member, praised the resolution but emphasized the need to revive the Middle East peace process to prevent further conflict

"One of the urgent tasks in that context is the normalization of (the) situation on the Palestinian territories and the resumption of dialogue between the Palestinian National Authority and Israel," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.

Japan said it would continue to call on all parties involved in the conflict to realize the cease-fire and agree on a political framework, as stated in the resolution.

The Foreign Ministry said Japan will also contribute to restoring peace and stability in the region, but did not give details.

German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier welcomed the resolution and urged Israel and Lebanon to implement it "without delay," but he did not say if Germany would contribute troops.

Nations offer to send troops to Mideast
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

You notice one nation missing?  I don't see America being a part of this peacekeeping mission.
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« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2006, 01:24:35 PM »

Cease-fire expected to begin on Monday
Associated Press, THE JERUSALEM POST    Aug. 10, 2006

The United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted Resolution 1701 Friday evening, calling for a cessation of hostilities between Hizbullah and Israel.

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert will recommend to the cabinet that it accept the UNSC resolution at its weekly meeting Sunday.

The agreement was expected to go into effect by Monday morning.

However, Israel's Ambassador to the United Nations Dan Gillerman told the UNSC that unless the means to enforce the resolution were to be defined, "We will be back [in the UNSC], if not in a week, then in a month or a year."

He warned that Hizbullah would be embolded by the United Nations' lack of decisiveness and would undoubtedly be resupplied with even more deadly weapons.

The resolution authorizes the deployment of 15,000 UN peacekeepers in south Lebanon in support of Lebanese army forces, which are to move into the region and replace Hizbullah in parallel with a withdrawal of Israeli forces.

Israel is not required to withdraw until the deployment of UN and Lebanese forces begins.

The new UN peacekeeping force, still under the auspices of UNIFIL, will, according to the resolution, be enhanced "in numbers, equipment, mandate and scope of operations." The 15,000-strong force will be charged with helping the Lebanese government to implement its sovereignty "over all Lebanese territory," including that previously been under the de facto authority of Hizbullah.

It explicitly requires Hizbullah to be disarmed south of the Litani River, and imposes an arms embargo on the organization, to be enforced by the strengthened UNIFIL force.

It also calls for the "unconditional release" of the two IDF soldiers captured July 12, but does not make a direct demand for their freedom.

UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan expressed disappointment that the council had not taken action on the month-long fighting sooner.

More than 800 people have died in the month-long conflict, hundreds of Lebanese civilians and dozens of Israelis.

Cease-fire expected to begin on Monday
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« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2006, 02:23:02 PM »

Former Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom Objections to Ceasefire Proposal
13:00 Aug 11, '06 / 17 Av 5766
by Hillel Fendel and Hana Levi Julian

Former Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom of the Likud has stinging criticism of the ceasefire plan being formulated in the United Nations. He calls it a "disgrace" and a "historic tragedy."


Shalom, who served as Foreign Minister under former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon for nearly three years until early this year, said that the proposal under consideration by the Security Council "mortgages the country's future" and would be a "weeping for generations."

Lebanon, too, has objections, which may cause another delay in the Council vote. Lebanon feels that the Shab'a Farms area, which it still demands from Israel, is not significantly mentioned, nor does it like the fact that the international peacekeeping force would be empowered to open fire. Lebanon also insists that Israel withdraw entirely from south Lebanese territory before any ceasefire is carried out.

Israel initially objected to the ceasefire proposal for its lack of a clause requiring Hizbullah to disarm prior to a ceasefire. Nonetheless, Jerusalem appears willing to accept the proposal.

Israel has rejected a Russian proposal to hold a 72-hour humanitarian ceasefire. Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations, Dan Gillerman, says it would only give Hizbullah ”time to regroup and recover. We think this is a bad idea."

Speaking with Voice of Israel Radio on Friday morning, Minister Shalom said if the UN proposal is accepted, "Israel's position would be worse than it was at the beginning of the war: It does not call for a large multi-national force in southern Lebanon, Hizbullah would not be disarmed, and a parallel is made between our abducted soldiers and murderous Lebanese terrorists held by Israel such as Samir Kuntar."

"It could even be," Shalom said, "that Syria might conclude that it can get the Golan Heights back by sending over some missiles to Israel."

Shalom's party colleague, former Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee Chairman MK Yuval Shteinitz, took an even stronger stance. If Israel accepts this "shameful" ceasefire, Shteinitz said Friday morning, "the government must resign and new elections must be held."

Shteinitz took issue with the fact that the new proposal would replace Resolution 1559 of two years ago, which calls for the Lebanese Army to take over southern Lebanon from Hizbullah:
"The fact that Israel is willing to significantly erode 1559, and even give Hizbullah a territorial achievement in the form of half of Israel's Mt. Hermon (Shab'a) will be understood as a clear victory for Hizbullah. This will invite a difficult war of rockets and commandos from Syria in the near future."

"If this is an existential war, as [Prime Minister Ehud] Olmert said, then the results of it are dangerous to Israel's existence," Shteinitz concluded.

On the other hand, the left-wing peace forces are pleading with the government to accept the ceasefire proposal. Meretz MK Zahava Gal'on said, "It is in Israel's interest to accept this plan and to thus end the warfare. Israel must take advantage of the agreement being formed to call for the inclusion of Syria in the negotiations, and to thus turn it into an entity with which we can reach a diplomatic agreement."

A diplomatic agreement with Syria, almost by definition, would entail ceding the Golan Heights to that country.

Former Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom Objections to Ceasefire Proposal
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« Reply #9 on: August 12, 2006, 02:26:29 PM »

Iran: UN resolution serves Zionist regime

Foreign Minister Mottaki says resolution aimed at ending warfare between Israel, Hizbullah group is biased, serves only interests of Jewish state
AFP

Iran said Saturday that the UN resolution aimed at ending the warfare between Israel and Lebanon’s Shiite Muslim Hizbullah group was biased and served only the interests of the Jewish state.

“UN resolution 1701 is completely one-sided and it serves the Zionist regime’s interests,” Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki was quoted as saying by state television.

“Some amendments need to be incorporated into the resolution. The Lebanese people and government views needs to be taken into consideration for the resolution to be accepted by them,” he added during a visit to Yemen.

The UN Security Council on Friday unanimously called for an end to the bloodshed between Israel and Hizbullah and for the deployment of a 15,000-strong international peacekeeping force.

Resolution 1701, drawn up by the United States and France after protracted haggling, also calls for Israeli troops to be withdrawn from southern Lebanon after an end to the fighting.

Iran does not recognize the existence of the Jewish state.

Egypt calls for immediate Israeli ceasefire

Iran helped to create and arm Hizbullah in 1982 in response to Israel’s invasion of Lebanon, and Teheran stands accused by the United States and Israel of fomenting chaos in the region by channeling weapons to the guerrillas.

Iran denies the allegation, saying it provides only moral support to the movement.

Egypt on Saturday said Israel should immediately observe a ceasefire following the adoption of UN Security Council resolution calling for a halt to hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah.

“Israel must observe an immediate and complete ceasefire in order to allow the political agreement—achieved after significant efforts—to be applied,” Foreign Minister Ahmed Abul Gheit said in a statement.

“The first condition of this political accord is the Israeli army’s total withdrawal from all Lebanese areas it entered since the start of the crisis, in order to allow the Lebanese army to take control of the situation in the south of the country," he added.

Iran: UN resolution serves Zionist regime
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« Reply #10 on: August 12, 2006, 07:39:21 PM »

Nasrallah: Rocket attacks will end when Israel halts air strikes
By The Associated Press

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said on Saturday that the militant organization would abide by the UN cease-fire resolution but continue fighting as long as Israeli troops remained in south Lebanon.

"We will not be an obstacle to any (government) decision that it finds appropriate, but our ministers will express reservations about articles that we consider unjust and unfair."

Nasrallah grudgingly accepted the cease-fire plan in a televised address as the Lebanese Cabinet was in session to vote on whether to agree to the UN resolution, which was passed Friday. Hezbollah has two ministers in the government.

The Shiite cleric said Hezbollah rocket strikes on northern Israel would end when Israel stopped airstrikes and other attacks on Lebanese civilians.

Some of the heaviest fighting of the war raged Saturday as Israel sent an avalanche of military power into Lebanon, dispatching thousands of troops and columns of armor into the rocky hills just north of its border.

Nasrallah called continued resistance to the Israel offensive "our natural right" and predicted more hard fighting to come. "We must not make a mistake, not in the resistance, the government or the people, and believe that the war has ended. The war has not ended. There have been continued strikes and continued casualties," he said.

"Today nothing has changed and it appears tomorrow nothing will change," he said.

Nasrallah: Rocket attacks will end when Israel halts air strikes
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« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2006, 07:48:48 PM »

This sounds exactly like the Hezbollah terrorists.

Psalm 64
2 Hide me from the conspiracy of the wicked,
from that noisy crowd of evildoers.
3 They sharpen their tongues like swords
and aim their words like deadly arrows.
4 They shoot from ambush at the innocent man;
they shoot at him suddenly, without fear.
5 They encourage each other in evil plans,
they talk about hiding their snares;
they say, "Who will see them [a] ?"
6 They plot injustice and say,
"We have devised a perfect plan!"
Surely the mind and heart of man are cunning.
7 But God will shoot them with arrows;
suddenly they will be struck down.
8 He will turn their own tongues against them
and bring them to ruin;
all who see them will shake their heads in scorn.
9 All mankind will fear;
they will proclaim the works of God
and ponder what he has done.
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« Reply #12 on: August 13, 2006, 03:19:01 AM »

Palestinians Divided Over Dismantling National Authority
Opponents: Israel Could Tell the World It Has No Palestinian Partner
12/08/2006

The Israeli war on Gaza Strip since June 25, the international economic,
financial and diplomatic siege imposed on the Occupied Palestinian Territory
(OPT) since January 25, the kidnapping of Palestinian cabinet ministers and
lawmakers and the ongoing Israeli destruction of Palestinian infrastructure,
all overshadowed by Israel's war on Lebanon, have raised the prospect of
dissolving the Palestinian National Authority (PNA).

Dismantling the PNA, which was established in 1994, would effectively mean
returning to the pre-Oslo Accords era, when the Israeli Occupying Power was
assuming the civil administration according to international law.

The donors froze aid to the PNA since Hamas won January 25 elections, which
left the PNA virtually penniless.

Following Israel's kidnapping of the Speaker of the Palestinian Legislative
Council (PLC), Dr. Abdel Aziz al-Dweik, last week Palestinian Prime Minister
Ismail Haniyeh said:

"We need to debate the future of the Palestinian Authority following the
kidnapping of its second highest-ranking figure and an attempt to
assassinate its prime minister," Haniyya told the PLC on Wednesday.

"The question we have to ask ourselves is the following: Can the Palestinian
Authority continue to operate and function in these circumstances," Haniyeh
asked.

Haniyeh was referring to Dweik's kidnapping. The PLC Speaker assumes the
post of PNA presidency in case the post becomes vacant by death, resignation
or for other reasons, according to the Palestinian basic Law.

He also was referring to the hospitalization of seven employees of the
Palestinian Cabinet after opening an envelope postmarked in Tel Aviv,
destined for Haniyeh and contained a suspicious powder.

"We do not rule out the involvement of Israeli intelligence in the dangerous
and criminal act," Haniyeh said.

Haniyeh blamed "the Israeli and US policy of continuing to reject the
results of the elections," which saw his Hamas movement come to power in
March.

The premier added that this policy "was aimed at undermining the structure
of the Palestinian Authority."

The Foreign Minister of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and
leader of the former ruling Fatah movement, Farouk Kaddoumi, a staunch
opponent of the Oslo Accords who is based in Tunis, had reportedly also
urged President Mahmoud Abbas this week to seriously contemplate the
possibility of dismantling the PNA.

Ghassan al-Masri, a spokesman for Kaddoumi, said the PNA should consider the
move unless Israel accepted three conditions: The withdrawal of the Israeli
Occupation Forces (IOF) to the positions it held before September 2000
positions, the release of frozen PNA tax and tariff revenues and the release
of all Hamas cabinet ministers and legislators who have been kidnapped since
the capture of Israeli Cpl. Gilad Shalit on June 25.

"It's inconceivable that the Palestinians should pay the cost of their
occupation by Israel," Masri said, adding: "Why shouldn't Israel, in its
capacity as an occupation force, bear the expenses of our education, health
and social welfare systems? Why should it be an inexpensive occupation for
Israel?"

Former PNA finance minister Salaam Fayad has also joined calls for
dismantling the PNA. "I think we have the right to question the
effectiveness of the continued existence of the Palestinian Authority as we
lose hope and as our cause is being marginalized by the international
community," he said.

"The Palestinian Authority has almost no role in the political process. The
existence of the Palestinian Authority frees Israel from its
responsibilities as an occupation force," Fayad added.

However opponents of the move argue that dismantling the PNA would only
serve Israel's interest in destroying the Palestinian regime and foiling
efforts to create an independent Palestinian state.

"Instead of talking about dissolving the Palestinian Authority, we should be
discussing ways of reactivating our institutions," said Palestinian chief
negotiator Saeb Erakat.

"The Palestinian public is fully aware of the fact that Israel's main goal
is to destroy the Palestinian Authority. We must act in line with the
interests of our people, not Israel," he said.

Similarly Qais Abdel Karim, a legislator and representative of the
Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine (DFLP), said he was
surprised to hear that some Palestinians were calling to dismantle the PNA:
"Israel is trying to destroy the Palestinian Authority so that it could tell
the world afterward that there is no partner for peace on the Palestinian
side," he said.

"This is the first step toward imposing unilateral solutions on the
Palestinians. The question, therefore, is not whether we should dissolve the
authority or not, but how to strengthen it so that it could continue to
assume its responsibilities," he said.

If the PNA disappears, Israel has the responsibility under international law
as the occupying power to administer and support the Palestinian people
under occupation in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

"What logically follows from this is the concept of a single binational
state" which is, according to a Wall Street Journal report on Friday,
"gaining traction among Palestinians of many shades" -- including Hamas. As
the Journal notes, "the idea of dismantling the PA was once a marginal idea,
championed in the 1990s by left-wing intellectuals such as Edward Said, who
advocated civil disobedience against Israeli occupation and a campaign for
'one person, one vote'." The model was the antiapartheid protests in South
Africa that paved the way for black-majority rule there.

Palestinians Divided Over Dismantling National Authority
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« Reply #13 on: August 13, 2006, 03:23:07 AM »

UN Security Council Resolution 1701 An unmitigated disaster

Caroline Glick, THE JERUSALEM POST
Aug. 13, 2006

There is a good reason that Hizbullah chief Hassan Nasrallah has accepted UN Security Council Resolution 1701, which sets the terms for a cease-fire between his jihad army and the State of Israel.

The resolution represents a near-total victory for Hizbullah and its state sponsors Iran and Syria, and an unprecedented defeat for Israel and its ally the United States. This fact is evident both in the text of the resolution and in the very fact that the US decided to sponsor a cease-fire resolution before Israel had dismantled or seriously degraded Hizbullah's military capabilities.

While the resolution was not passed under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter and so does not have the authority of law, in practice it makes it all but impossible for Israel to defend itself against Hizbullah aggression without being exposed to international condemnation on an unprecedented scale.

This is the case first of all because the resolution places responsibility for determining compliance in the hands of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. Annan has distinguished himself as a man capable only of condemning Israel for its acts of self-defense while ignoring the fact that in attacking Israel, its enemies are guilty of war crimes. By empowering Annan to evaluate compliance, the resolution all but ensures that Hizbullah will not be forced to disarm and that Israel will be forced to give up the right to defend itself.

The resolution makes absolutely no mention of either Syria or Iran, without whose support Hizbullah could neither exist nor wage an illegal war against Israel. In so ignoring Hizbullah's sponsors, it ignores the regional aspect of the current war and sends the message to these two states that they may continue to equip terrorist armies in Lebanon, the Palestinian Authority and Iraq with the latest weaponry without paying a price for their aggression.

The resolution presents Hizbullah with a clear diplomatic victory by placing their erroneous claim of Lebanese sovereignty over the Shaba Farms, or Mount Dov - a vast area on the Golan Heights that separates the Syrian Golan from the Upper Galilee and is disputed between Israel and Syria - on the negotiating table. In doing so, the resolution rewards Hizbullah's aggression by giving international legitimacy to its demand for territorial aggrandizement via acts of aggression, in contravention of the laws of nations.

Moreover, by allowing Lebanon to make territorial claims on Israel despite the fact that in 2000 the UN determined that Israel had withdrawn to the international border, the resolution sets a catastrophic precedent for the future. Because Lebanon is receiving international support for legally unsupportable territorial demands on Israel, in the future, the Palestinians, Syrians and indeed the Jordanians and Egyptians will feel empowered to employ aggression to gain territorial concessions from the Jewish state even if they previously signed treaties of peace with Israel. The message of the resolution's stand on Shaba Farms is that Israel can never expect for the world to recognize any of its borders as final.

By calling in the same paragraph for the "immediate cessation by Hizbullah of all attacks and the immediate cessation by Israel of all offensive military operations," the resolution treats as equivalent Hizbullah's illegal aggression against Israel and Israel's legitimate military actions taken in defense of its sovereign territory.

Operational Paragraph 7, which "affirms that all parties are responsible for ensuring that no action is taken contrary to paragraph 1 [which calls for a cessation of hostilities] that might adversely affect the search for a long-term solution, humanitarian access to civilian populations, including safe passage for humanitarian convoys, or the voluntary and safe return of displaced persons," all but bars Israel from taking military action to defend itself in the future. Any steps Israel takes will open it to accusations - by Annan - of breaching this paragraph.

Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni had let it be known that Israel's conditions for a cease-fire included the institution of an arms embargo against Hizbullah. The government also insisted that the international force it wished to have deployed along the border would work to dismantle Hizbullah.

However, paragraph 8 puts both the question of an arms embargo and Hizbullah's dismantlement off to some future date when Israel and Lebanon agree to the terms of a "permanent cease-fire." In addition, it places the power to oversee an arms embargo against Hizbullah in the hands of the Lebanese government, of which Hizbullah is a member.

While the resolution bars Israel from taking measures necessary to defend its territory and citizens, by keeping UNIFIL in Lebanon it ensures that no other force will be empowered to take these necessary actions. Furthermore, paragraph 2 "calls upon the government of Israel, as that deployment [of the Lebanese military and UNIFIL] begins, to withdraw all of its forces from southern Lebanon in parallel. This means that Israel is expected to withdraw before a full deployment of Lebanese and UNIFIL forces is carried out. As a result, a vacuum will be created that will allow Hizbullah to reinforce its positions in south Lebanon.

Finally, the resolution makes no operative call for the release of IDF soldiers Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev now being held hostage by Hizbullah. By relegating their fate to a paragraph in the preamble, which then immediately turns to Hizbullah's demand for the release of Lebanese terrorists held in Israeli jails, the resolution all but eliminates any possibility of their returning home.

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« Reply #14 on: August 13, 2006, 03:24:05 AM »

Aside from the resolution's egregious language, the very fact that the US has sponsored a resolution that leaves Hizbullah intact as a fighting force constitutes a devastating blow to the national security of both Israel and the US, for the following reasons:

# It grants the Lebanese government and military unwarranted legitimacy. The resolution treats the Lebanese government and military as credible bodies. However, the Lebanese government is currently under the de facto control of Hizbullah and Syria.
Moreover, the Lebanese army is paying pensions to the families of Hizbullah fighters killed in battle, and its forces have actively assisted Hizbullah in attacking Israel and Israeli military targets.

Indeed, the seven-point declaration issued by the Lebanese government, which the UN resolution applauds, was dictated by Hizbullah, as admitted by Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Saniora and Nasrallah last week.

# It incites Shi'ite violence in Iraq. From a US perspective, the resolution drastically increases the threat of a radical Shi'ite revolt in Iraq. Hizbullah is intimately tied to Iraqi Shi'ite terrorist Muqtada al-Sadr.

In April 2003, Hizbullah opened offices in southern Iraq and was instrumental in training the Mahdi Army, which Sadr leads. During a demonstration in Baghdad last week, Sadr's followers demanded that he consider them an extension of Hizbullah, and expressed a genuine desire to participate in Hizbullah's war against the US and Israel.

It should be assumed that Hizbullah's presumptive victory in its war against Israel will act as a catalyst for violence by Sadr and his followers against the Iraqi government and coalition forces in the weeks to come. Indeed, the Hizbullah victory will severely weaken moderate Shi'ites in the Maliki government and among the followers of Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani.

# It empowers Iran. Iran emerges as the main victor in the current war. Not only was it not condemned for its sponsorship of Hizbullah, it is being rewarded for that sponsorship because it is clear to all parties that Iran was the engine behind this war, and that its side has won.

The UN resolution does not strengthen the US hand in future Security Council deliberations regarding Iran's illicit nuclear weapons program because the states that object to any action against Iran - Russia and China - will continue with their refusal to sign on to any substantive action.

Indeed, Russia's behavior regarding the situation in Lebanon, including the fact that a large percentage of Hizbullah's arsenal of advanced anti-tank missiles was sold by Russia to Syria and Iran, exposes that Moscow's role in the current conflict has been similar to the position taken by the Soviet Union in earlier Middle East wars.

Furthermore, because the resolution strengthens the UN as the arbiter of peace and security in the region, the diplomatic price the US will be forced to pay if it decides to go outside the UN to contend with the Iranian threat has been vastly increased.

Many sources in Washington told this writer over the weekend that the US decision to seek a cease-fire was the result of Israel's amateurish bungling of the first three weeks of the war. The Bush administration, they argued, was being blamed for the Olmert government's incompetence and so preferred to cut its losses and sue for a cease-fire.

There is no doubt much truth to this assertion. The government's prosecution of this war has been unforgivably inept. At the same time it should be noted that the short-term political gain accrued by the US by forging the cease-fire agreement will come back to haunt the US, Israel and all forces fighting the forces of global jihad in the coming weeks and months.

By handing a victory to Hizbullah, the resolution strengthens the belief of millions of supporters of jihad throughout the world that their side is winning and that they should redouble efforts to achieve their objectives of destroying Israel and running the US out of the Middle East.

UN Security Council Resolution 1701 An unmitigated disaster
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