Monday, July 31, 2006

Lieberman: a blow-up doll at a frat party

* digby:
"At some point in the last five years it should have occurred to Joe(nertia), who had no wingnut constituents to whom he needed to pander, that he was being used like a blow-up doll at a frat party."

* billmon:
"This, of course, essentially amounts to a 48-hour pass for Hizbullah to resupply its units, repair lines of communication and re-establish is command and control structure. The IDF's ground forces will pay for this reprieve if and when they resume the attack. (There appears to be some fighting going on in the east, around the Lebanese town of Taibe, but it's hard to tell how serious it is from the wire reports.)

This is no way to run a war. Israel will now have to suffer widespread international condemnation for the scenes of carnage at Qana, plus the military consequences of giving Hizbullah two days of, in effect, total air supremacy in which to improve its defenses. Given what we now know about Hizbullah, I think we can expect them to make good use of those two days.

All in all, looking at how the war has progressed so far, I would say the Olmert government has come down with a stunning case of the reverse Midas touch: everything it touches turns to shit.
Bottom line: Sheikh Nasrallah has a choice. He can ignore the offer, or he can stop the rocket attacks. If he stops the rocket attacks, then the air war ends. And if the air war ends, it's a de facto ceasefire in place, since the necessary conditions for an Israeli ground offensive -- air cover, a weakened Hezbollah running short on supplies, ammunition and rockets -- wouldn't exist."

* reuters:
"Iran's hardline forces should get ready to take revenge on Israel and the United States for the offensive on Lebanon, the head of the Revolutionary Guards was quoted as saying on Sunday"

* laura:
"Dafna Linzer reports on the continued delay of the Senate Select Intelligence committee phase II investigation -- until after the 2006 elections, this time. Credit Linzer for reporting on this tricky series of interrelated subjects: it's not easy to report on something that doesn't happen, on oversight that doesn't exist, on something that isn't, etc."

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