Sunday, August 27, 2006

Interesting perspectives on Israel

This batch of articles is worth posting to contrast with my prior condemnations of Israel's and Hezbollah's behavior in the recent conflict.

"Israelis are far quicker to criticize their government during and immediately after a war than Americans are.... An even starker contrast is noticeable between Israel-supporters in Israel and Israel-supporters in America. Israel’s partisans in the U.S. often talk as though Israel rarely makes any mistakes, that because Israel is a democracy with a right to defend itself it can do no or little wrong. Israelis themselves rarely do this." - Michael J. Totten

"A poll in Israel showed a 63 percent of respondents want [Israel's] Prime Minister Ehud Olmert to resign for what they see as failure to handle the conflict in Lebanon." - United Press International

"Israel's military chief acknowledges failings in war" - China Daily
On the Hezbollah side, an equally bizarre about-face:
"We did not think, even 1 percent, that the capture would lead to a war at this time and of this magnitude. You ask me, if I had known on July 11 ... that the operation would lead to such a war, would I do it? I say no, absolutely not." - Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, from the Associated Press.
I honestly never expected either side to be so forthcoming, which shows my ignorance of the region. But I still have very low expectations for future civility. Something about a region that's dominated with religious extremists makes me think that there's little hope for peace.

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