Monday, August 14, 2006

So Who Won?

A quick post in order to pose the question for readers' comments, "Who won?" A ceasefire is reached in Lebanon after a full month of fighting. Will it last? If not, how long before fighting breaks out once again? And beyond the destruction south Lebanon, what was accomplished?

I've traditionally been an advocate of Israel's right to take pro-active steps in its self-defense. But I felt differently from the very beginning of this latest conflict. With the U.S. already so vulnerable in the Middle East after the debacle of Iraq, I feared Israel's actions would only serve to put us in a weaker position in fighting terror.

And I think it has done just that. Hezbollah can claim to have looked Israel in the eyes and not blinked, a feat which no other Muslim fighting force had accomplished in the past. Hezbollah brought the fight to Israel and defended its homeland while under invasion. I certainly don't support the Islamists' cause here, but I do note that it is now Israel who is left to retreat. Iran and Syria can only grow more confident in the ability of groups like Hezbollah to effectively fight Israel and America on their behalf.

Finally, if you're not as sure as I who won here, I ask this final question. Will Islamic radicals get MORE support or LESS support following the result of this latest conflict? Israel's goal was to cripple Hezbollah. Instead, I'm afraid they just become its greatest recruiting tool ever.


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