One individual, a Steve Gross from the US quoted on the BBC website tells us, “Israel is acting with tremendous restraint, were they targeting civilian populations there would be thousands upon thousands dead.”
However, there is no serious suggestion that that the Israelis are deliberately targeting civilians. The remark is missing the point.
The Israeli armed forces are attacking the infrastructure of not just Hezbollah, but of the whole nation, and doing so with complete disregard for the lives of civilians. Clearly this is not the same as “deliberately targeting civilians” but neither does the strategy try to avoid them.
Israeli restraint has cost nearly 400 Lebanese lives so far, the vast majority of them civilians. The warplanes are targeting all lorries, minivans and motorbikes, just in case they are used by Hezbollah. Just in case.
This would seem to be a strategy right from the George Bush’s textbook on pre-emption.
Meanwhile, Condi’s trip to the region has been nothing more than a bit of a show for the folks back home.
She announced that of course there should be a ceasefire, but only when “the conditions are right”.
Ms. Rice, people are dying, what better conditions can there be?