Operation "Change of Location"?
A team of Israeli lawyers is now suing the Lebanese government for starting the war. The case, to be filed in US civil court, will sue for compensation and damages incurred by Israeli residents and businesses as a result of the war.
‘s justification for its ‘self-defense’ attack on
Newsweek’s Michael Hirsh of MSNBC.com, on July 12, said: "As a result, things are blowing up so quickly it’s difficult to know where to focus any longer. After the kidnapping of two Israeli soldiers by Hizbullah in on Wednesday, which the hard-line group linked to a similar kidnapping by Hamas the week before, the mideast seemed to be closer to all-out war."
By July 13, the story out of MSNBC.com’s
AP also ran changed versions. On July 12, at 5:41AM Joseph Panossian wrote: "The militant group Hezbollah captured two Israeli soldiers during clashes Wednesday across the border in southern Lebanon, prompting a swift reaction from Israel, which sent ground forces into its neighbor to look for them."
At 7:09 AM, Panossian had altered his report: "The Hezbollah militant group captured two Israeli soldiers during clashes along the Lebanese border on Wednesday."
By late afternoon, at 4:13 PM, AP’s Panossian had completely shifted location: "Hezbollah militants crossed into on Wednesday and captured two Israeli soldiers. responded in southern with warplanes, tanks and gunboats, and said eight of its soldiers had been killed in the violence."
Israeli sources went almost unnoticed. Cybercast News Service (CNSNews.com) of July 12 said: "The abduction of two Israeli soldiers by Hizbullah militants in southern was not a terrorist attack but an act of war, Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert said Wednesday."
‘s ABC News (Reuters) on July 13 quoted the IDF: "The sources say the Israeli soldiers had been seized at around 9am local time across the border from Aita al Shaab, some 15 kilometers from the Mediterranean coast. The Israeli army confirmed that two Israeli soldiers had been captured on the Lebanese frontier. Israeli ground forces crossed into to hunt for the missing soldiers, Israeli Army Radio said."
Voice of ,
In his article "Casus Belli", IDF Brigadier General Moshe Yaalon wrote: "The present crisis was initiated- in
A quote by Hamas political bureau member Mohammad Nazzal in the July 13 edition of Haaretz said: "This is a heroic operation carried out against military targets and so it is a legitimate operation, especially as it took place in occupied Lebanese territory."
A Lebanese government official told this writer that the first information about the soldiers’ capture in southern came from the Lebanese Army Police, a source also quoted in many media accounts. "At the beginning the Lebanese Army said it was on the Lebanese side," the official told me. The verbatim Army communique’ to the Lebanese government follows: " ‘At 9:03 or 9:05am in the vicinity or in front of Ayt Al Shaab village the members of the resistance have abducted two soldiers. At 9:15am the resistance shelled the position of the enemy in the occupied territories. At 10:10am the Resistance and Israeli forces clashed with each other in the area of Naqoura,’ on
‘s Ambassador to the , Farid Abboud discussed the events publicly on July 12, 2006. Because of his stance to CNN Abboud was reprimanded, and recalled to Lebanon._
MICHAEL HOLMES, CNN International: "You say that you don’t want any escalations, but … FARID ABBOUD: No, we don’t.
FARID ABBOUD: No, we don’t.
HOLMES: … but crossing over the border into , killing and–seizing soldiers, what did you think would happen?
ABBOUD: I’m not sure where the location of the attack took place. I understand that there was another battle, also, where during which the Israelis crossed Lebanese soil and that the casualties that fell then were inside territory … We do not want any escalation, and I don’t think we have ever attacked . I mean, has always occupied our territory, and we have always defended ourselves. Our position has always been very reactive, defensive.
This writer then spoke to the chief of the Lebanese Defense Cabinet General Edmond Fadel in
Hezbollah’s position had been cited in the Jerusalem Post of July 12 : "Hizbullah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah said the timing of the capture of two Israeli soldiers in southern on Wednesday would boost the position of Palestinians in
It was a view Hezbollah spokesman Ibrahim Mousawi had reiterated to me on July 16 by phone. He insisted that the crisis occurred on the Lebanese side of the border "in front of the
On August 2, I discussed the kidnapping issue again with Hezbollah’s Mousawi in
MOUSAWI: How can you possibly say ? This is an occupied land, occupied
Q: Alright. Was it in occupied
MOUSAWI: It was in , on the border.
Q: On the border- What town? Where was it in?
MOUSAWI: There is no town. It was a military post.
Q: Did Hezbollah cross over into
MOUSAWI: This has never been claimed by Hezbollah- only on the border. And don’t say its occupied
Q: The IDF soldiers in the tank who hit the mine and were killed?
MOUSAWI: It was all in the Lebanese lands when they wanted to penetrate- to go after the resistance…. No one believes anymore that this is about the two soldiers, not with the destruction of the infrastructure. Besides, Hezbollah got information that this Israeli aggression was scheduled to take place this September or October…
According to Attorney Yehudah Talmon, Israelis will also sue to collect money from Lebanese assets and property in the . "No group associated in any way, shape or form to Hizbullah is immune to these claims." Never mind if the claims are based on shifting boundaries.
*Trish Schuh wrote on the coming Hezbollah-IDF border crisis in Counterpunch’s "Faking the Case Against
Trish Schuh writes about