August 17th, 2006

Chris Keeley


Uri Avnery


From Mania to Depression

THIRTY THREE days of war. The longest of our wars since 1949.

On the Israeli side: 154 dead - 117 of them soldiers. 3970 rockets launched against us, 37 civilians dead, more than 422 civilians wounded.

On the Lebanese side: about a thousand dead civilians, thousands wounded. An unknown number of Hizbullah fighters dead and wounded.

More than a million refugees on both sides.

So what has been achieved for this terrible price?

"GLOOMY, HUMBLE, despondent," was how the journalist Yossef Werter described Ehud Olmert, a few hours after the cease-fire had come into effect.

Olmert? Humble? Is this the same Olmert we know? The same Olmert who thumped the table and shouted: "No more!" Who said: "After the war, the situation will be completely different than before!" Who promised a "New Middle East" as a result of the war?

THE RESULTS of the war are obvious:

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Chris Keeley

AHA Statement on the Lebanon war

Date:   Thu, 17 Aug 2006 00:37:51 -0400
From:   Carl Coon

The American Humanist Association has taken vigorous positions recently
on certain domestic issues but has stayed in the corner on most
international issues, including anything to do with  Israel. Partly at
my urging, that organization has just made a considered statement that
is pretty evenhanded. Here it is. It doesn't say everything you or I
might feel ought to be said, but coming from the source it is, perhaps,
another small crack that lets a little light in to some people who have
been wandering around in the dark as far as the realities of the Middle
East and our role there are concerned.

Carl Coon

*Humanist Statement on the Hezbollah-Israeli War*

August 16, 2006

The conflict between Israel and Hezbollah that exploded in July
constitutes a humanitarian disaster. Public debate is largely focused on
questions of blame and whether the Israeli response to Hezbollah
provocation was disproportionate. Many humanists believe, however, that
the underlying conflicts and controversies that led to the hostilities
must also be addressed if peace is ever to come to the Middle East.

The present conflict is the product of a toxic mix of religious and
historical differences, leading both sides to subordinate their sense of
common humanity to the crisis mentality of their in group. It seems
unlikely to us that something resembling peace will ever come to the
Middle East until and unless the antagonists rediscover their common
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Chris Keeley

The future of the Zionist state

Subject:        The future of the Zionist state
Date:   Thu, 17 Aug 2006 08:17:04 EDT
From:  Ray Close

*The first paragraph will get your attention.**

Israeli militarism and the necessity of seeking a unified state in
by Alan Hart**
New Civilisation Forum
International Institute of Strategic Studies, UK
10 August 2006

I'm going to suggest to you that what we might now be witnessing is the
long beginning of the end of the Zionist state of Israel. In the next 10
minutes or so I will talk my way to an explanation of why I think so;
and then I'll address the question of what the most likely consequences
would be. I can see two – One State of Palestine for All and real,
lasting peace, or Catastrophe for All... and by "All" I don't just mean
Israeli Jews and the Arabs of the region, I mean all of us, everywhere.

 I thought I would be the first to give voice in public to the idea that
Israel might be planting in Lebanon the final seeds of its own
destruction, but while I was working on my text for this evening, I came
across an interview given by Zbigniew Brzezinski, who was President
Carter's National Security Adviser. He said: "Eventually, if neo-con
policies continue to be pursued, the United States will be expelled from
the region and that will be the beginning of the end for Israel as well."

As Israel's bombardment of Lebanon unfolded, a great deal of nonsense
was written and spoken by pundits and policymakers throughout the mainly
Gentile Judeo-Christian world about why it was happening. The main
thrust of the nonsense was that Hizbullah started the war and that
Israel was merely defending itself. I think the truth about Hizbullah's
role in triggering the war can be summarised as follows – bearing in
mind that the border incident of 12 July was one of many since Israel's
withdrawal from Lebanon in May 2000, and which more often than not,
according to UN monitors, were provoked by Israeli actions and/or
Israeli violations of agreements. By engaging an IDF border patrol,
killing three Israeli soldiers and taking two hostages, and firing a few
rockets to create a diversion for that operation, Hizbullah gaveIsrael's
generals and those politicians who rubber-stamp their demands the
pretext they wanted and needed to go to war – a war they had planned for
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