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GUEST COMMENTARY: The Legitimate Hezbollah Party?

Posted by kinchendavid on July 20, 2006

By Joseph J. Honick

Bainbridge Island, WA In a span of more than an hour on July 20, 2006, CNN Anchor Kyra Phillips managed to assert over and over again that Hezbollah against whom Israel is conducting retaliatory assaults, is a legitimate part of the Lebanese government. Then Phillips paraded one-time prisoner of Hezbollah Terry Waite to emphasize that the terrorist organization had been morphing, or maturing, into a more participative organization.

Neither Phillips nor Waite managed to make clear that both this newly “legitimized” party or its followers and Hamas have declared intentions to destroy not only Israel but all Jews and have emphasized their goals with bloody suicide bombings and frequent shellings of Israeli civilian targets, buttressed by recent kidnappings of soldiers and other assaults.

For responding as any nation would when patience runs thin, Israel has now been condemned by no less than the Vatican and other nations who themselves have records of so called “disproportionate” responses over the centuries.

It should also be noted that the fact of a so called democratic election does not necessarily “legitimize” those put into office. Adolph Hitler, for example, indeed was elected to the position of German Vice Chancellor in such a manner. That the Palestinians virtually spat in the face of their great hope for peace Abbas in electing a majority of Hamas candidates did not provide that terrorist party legitimacy, only more power which, in a matter of weeks, began to chip away at the Palestinian Authority Security Forces.

So elections are merely the beginning of democracy but hardly the final word. Hezbollah’s election to offices in Lebanon did not make its sow’s ear into a gold purse. Such alchemy is farcical.

Much has been made of both Hezbollah and Hamas as social forces that built schools and hospitals and provided financial assistance. What one does not hear is what has been taught in those schools to maintain generations of hatred not only for Israel in general but Jews everywhere. Continued promotion of the ideal heavenly future for suicide bombers and the earthly financial rewards to their families have done nothing to dampen the fires of hatred. Even worse, none of the leaders of these two organizations have been willing to lead their minions into confrontation with their avowed and targeted enemies, instead dispatching generally very young men and women to do their work. And that work has been sustained for the entire life of the Jewish state since it was established, or re-established, in 1948 and immediately attacked from all sides.

Only when Israel successfully fought back and succeeded did the international community spring to life and demand retreat only to address continuing declared and sneaky wars of attrition financed by sponsors in Iran, Syria and elsewhere.

Golda Meir declared many years ago that “Israel is not required to commit national suicide” by standing by and permitting its destruction while the shameful international community only finds its voice when the Jewish state proceeds to stand up for itself. What you never hear from this so called community of nations is that Israel has never asked anyone else to fights its battle for her, only the equipment to do its own work.

So we return to CNN and its army of commentators, almost all of whom are slotted in Lebanon and covering evacuations. Nowhere to be found are interviews with the parents of Israeli soldiers killed or kidnapped or in the villages where hundreds and hundreds of rockets have been raining down in Israel, with threats for even more publicly proclaimed.

Kyra Phillips, the anchor referred to earlier, is a professional with ample credentials, so her lack of balanced coverage, continued positive references to Hezbollah’s “legitimacy” over more than an hour of reporting, with this imbalance continuing for most of the day can only have proceeded with approval of the network’s producers.

Finally, much has been made legitimately about the tragedy of rockets and bombs hitting what can be considered civilian places in Lebanon. Nowhere have these reports indicated the pattern for many years of Hezbollah, Hamas, the PLO and others using hospitals, homes and churches as launching points for conducting combat. Hardly anywhere was it mentioned that Israeli Air Force planes often have to return with their rockets and bombs because they could not clearly define the Hezbollah military targets and worked to avoid crowds of civilians.

To be sure, Israel has made its errors and needs to do some hard work. But she also has an obligation to defend her people and stop others from their attacks.

It is instructive that Americans in Israel do not seem to find it necessary to evacuate.

Joseph J. Honick is a contributing columnist and President of GMA International Ltd.




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