A Daily Analysis
By Marc Schulman
July 2, 2007 Second Anniversary of Lebanon War
Today is the one year anniversary of the Second Lebanon War. The news from Israel concentrated on the remembrance ceremonies for the war and for the 119 soldiers and 44 civilians killed in it. A minor uproar occurred when families of fallen soldiers complained that Prime Minister Olmert did not attend. Olmert claimed that it was not usual for the PM to attend these types of events and he did not want to further inconvenience the grieving families by the increased security that his presence would cause. Current Minister of Defense Barak spoke, as did Chief-of-Staff Ashkenazi. Both former Minister of Defense Peretz and former Chief-of-Staff Halutz also attended.
Israel and Syria can be seen reinforcing defensive positions along their shared border. According to Israeli observers, Syrian President Assad is convinced that his country would be victorious if a war between the two countries were to take place. That is unfortunately the true result of the last year's war in Lebanon (beyond of course those who were killed and wounded). The fact that for the first time in a generation an Arab country thinks that it could beat Israel in a war is very dangerous.
To further complicate things, the US military is reporting that Hezbollah has become actively involved in fighting Americans in Iraq. It is hard to fully understand the implications of direct enemies of Israel now taking to the field and fighting the US in Iraq. It of course further complicates any slim chance that the US can succeed in Iraq. Clearly Iran is behind an ever greater amount of the violence there. Iran does not seem willing to just weigh out America until it leaves, and wait for Iraq to turn into a Shiite state under Iranian influence. Instead, they seem determined to push the Great Satin out with its tail between its legs. Where does that leave the Ňlittle satinÓ?