July 16th, 2006

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The cost so far:

According to Reuters, "Israel's onslaught. . . has killed more than 100 people, all but four of them civilians." Numerous Lebanese civilians have been killed on the highways, apparently trying to flee the fighting. Pictures and details are available here.

Meanwhile, rockets rained down today on Haifa, hitting a train station and killing 9 people, while wounding numerous others, bringing the number of civilians killed in Northern Israel to approximately 13, with an additional 12 Israeli military personnel dead or missing thus far, several of whom were crewmembers of the Israeli warship which was hit off the Lebanese coast.

Here's a blog in Haifa that is reporting on the attacks in that region. There are also numerous LiveJournalers who are in Haifa; they are disproportionately members of the Russian Jewish population, as Russia is one of the most popular countries for the service. the haifa community has additional details on the attack, for those of you who are fluent in Russian.

There are rumors that the USS Iwo Jima and its seven-ship task force are enroute to Lebanon via the Suez, and that ships from several other countries such as France are also being dispatched, in the hope that they can safely remove their citizens. If this is the case, a ceasefire can be expected during this time period. Just as well, as one Lebanese blogger reported that his friend, an American female, faced an attempted attack by Israeli planes while trying to leave the country. There are reportedly over 25,000 American citizens in Lebanon, though it is assumed that many have already fled the country.

Here is an interesting, strongly worded attack on ignorant, blind support for this conflict It should resonate with many Americans, regardless of their personal politics.
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Israel drops US bombs on Canadians.

Israel kills eight Canadians in Lebanon. Six other Canadians are reported as critically injured.

At least 15 foriegn nationals have been killed by Israel since the bombing began, including four Brazilians, two Kuwaitis, and an Asian domestic servant of undisclosed origin. In addition, an Indian soldier taking part in the UN peacekeeping force in southern Lebanon was wounded late Sunday when two Israel Defense Forces tank shells hit his position in the border village of Houla.

More Canadians are stranded in Lebanon, trying to escape. Ten thousand of them, in fact.

One of them is Canadian singer Lorelei Loveridge, who is writing about the experience on her website, where she reports encountering a surprisingly strong level of tolerance and respect -- if not outright support -- for Hezbollah amongst ordinary Lebanese citizens.

Fortunately, Canadian PM Harper thinks that Israel's actions in Lebanon are "measured". I'm sure that the Canadian people take comfort in his balanced analysis of the situation.

Besides, Canadian citzens should be used to having American-made bombs dropped on them by now, eh?! I, for one, feel safer knowing that our terrorist friends to the north are getting their just rewards.
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Bush's roadmap for peace in the Middle East?

Dead on Arrival. (I hear that the road in question was rocketed and bombed repeatedly. Any survivors found on the road were then strafed mercilessly.)

The Arab League Secretary General Amr Musa announced today at the Arab League meeting that "The peace process in the Middle East was killed. All mechanisms, including the Middle East Quartet (Russia, US, UN and EU) have canceled the peace process."

The Arab League's meeting was, by all standards, horribly ineffectual and divisive. The only thing they could agree upon was to abandon their responsibilities by kicking the issue of Lebanon back to the UN Security Council.

(You know, the same UN Security Council that had all the votes it needed a few days ago to pass a resolution criticizing both Hezbollah and Israel for their behavior, and which called for an end to all hostilities. The statement would've passed without a single dissenting vote too, if it weren't for the US casting the only vote of opposition against it.)

Really, the next time Bush says the words "peace" and "the Middle East" together in the same sentence, I suggest we all agree on some sort of unified national spittake. Extra points if you do it while watching the president speak in public places, such as bars, restaurants, etc.

For those of you in Lebanon and Northern Israel, my condolences. The US government seems to believe that it is in our nation's best interest to see that you're all bombed and rocketed for a little while longer.



Yes, I know, it stinks. Sorry 'bout that. Don't hold any grudges against us, ok?!

As for everyone else out there, well, just don't look too closely. You might not like what you'll see.