Home » Cyber » Hybrid Wars » What We’re Following: Israeli-Lebanon Border Clash

What We’re Following: Israeli-Lebanon Border Clash

by Greg on August 3, 2010

Talk about border tensions: Israeli soldiers went out to trim a tree along its northern border with Lebanon and came under sniper fire from Lebanese soldiers. The IDF responded with tank and artillery fire, the Lebanese soldiers shot back with small arms including RPGs.

So far, the toll stands at one Israeli light-colonel, a battalion commander, three Lebanese soldiers and a Lebanese journalist killed; reports say an Israeli captain and five Lebanese wounded. UNIFIL peacekeepers have urged both armies to exercise “maximum restraint,” which seems unlikely at this point.

Already, Syrian President Bashar Assad said his country will stand by Lebanon in the face of Israeli “criminal aggression.” Some reports say the Lebanese casualties resulted from an Israeli helicopter firing missiles at an armored personnel carrier.

In a number of online conversations, people are wondering why an Israeli Lt. Col. and Captain were trimming trees along the Lebanese border.

– Greg Grant

photo: Haaretz

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{ 93 comments… read them below or add one }

@Earlydawn August 3, 2010 at 3:46 pm

Clearing a sector? Focusing on aesthetics? That really is too bizarre.

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JEFF August 3, 2010 at 4:06 pm

Pruning a tree, a cause for war would be pure irony for the history books.

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Thud105 August 3, 2010 at 7:23 pm

Reminds me of an incident in Korea along the DMZ in the late 70s/early 80s

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Scott August 3, 2010 at 8:57 pm

Well, if it were a cedar….

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D Ross August 4, 2010 at 10:21 am

Back in the seventies the Americans at the "Peace Village" between North and South Korea pruned a tree in the zone. The North Koreans proceeded to "prune" Americans," with axes. Score; Two American officers chopped up – dead

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ShowMeTheMonkey August 3, 2010 at 4:13 pm

It's a method of war. When they say "trim a tree" they mean to confiscate olive trees and chop them down. As olive trees mature in years they can effectively ruin a local economy in minutes, effectively forcing people away from the area. They did the same all over Palestine (Particularly in the West Bank) and the Golan Heights.

Not the only source but this contains the gist of their aggressive economy uprooting:
http://www.imemc.org/article/58210

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elgatoso August 5, 2010 at 5:31 am

your source is a Hamas blog

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Logan August 3, 2010 at 4:25 pm

They do it to clear fields of fire and maintain a line of sight for surveillance purposes. If you let the foliage grow up to much around your position, you run the risk of the enemy–particularly one that is less sophisticated and relies on getting close to make up for a lack of firepower–getting close to your positions and killing or capturing personnel of yours. The recent incidents of IDF personnel being captured/kidnapped/abducted (Gilad Shalit, Ehud Goldwasser, Eldad Regev) highlight the importance of having clear fields of fire and lines of sight between all border positions.

"The attackers took advantage of a 'dead zone' in the border fence not visible from any of the IDF lookout posts and may have used a wheeled ladder to climb the fence."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zar%27it-Shtula_inci

It has nothing to do with topiaries.

This isn't the first time that people have died in these operations, however, and tensions have soared.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_Paul_Bunya

It is also incidents like this that have started many wars. The Germans used a spurious incident like this at Gleiwitz as the precedent for invading Poland in 1939 and starting WWII.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gleiwitz_incident

This is a big deal, but hopefully everyone will keep a cool head and it will all settle down.

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ddd August 3, 2010 at 5:16 pm

"light-colonel"? You mean, Lieutenant-Colonel. But yes, why such high-ranking officers?

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blight August 3, 2010 at 6:06 pm

Trimming foliage was behind the an incident in South Korea in the '80s. Its "name" eludes me…

Perhaps there was a clandestine reconaissance thing that went awry? Then again, why would a LTC go on reconaissance? There aren't many things that might pull a LTC onto the Lebanese border, especially in light of the abduction risks.

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Benjamin August 3, 2010 at 8:22 pm

The incident involving the Koreans occurred in the 1970's

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Blight August 3, 2010 at 9:07 pm

Axe murder incident, August 18 1976.

Damn, this very month so long ago…

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STemplar August 3, 2010 at 6:11 pm

He was a reservist and is a landscaper by trade? Who knows.

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Maxtrue August 3, 2010 at 7:04 pm

Showmethemonkey….you already have. You live in quite a bubble…

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Jacob August 3, 2010 at 7:18 pm

Why not just bring in a sniper and have him fire away at the tree until it falls over? Or if it's a really big tree use a bazooka.

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jake August 3, 2010 at 7:21 pm

Once again the so called best military in the world sure isn't acting very professional. When will they learn….

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Ben Atlas August 3, 2010 at 8:58 pm

According to the paper reports, sniper fire was at the observation post where was the colonel and the officers, not at the soldiers below trimming the trees. That makes sense as it puts the sniper at the same elevation in that mountainous area.

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DodgeCity August 3, 2010 at 5:20 pm

Appears that the colonel and the cpt was about 300 yards behind the actual fence. And as someone mentioned earlier, they are reservists belonging to the engineering corps.

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Sev August 3, 2010 at 9:16 pm

Does it matter if the Israeli's were cutting trees? They were on their territory and were fire upon by a sniper. Israel had every right to shoot back. I'm damn tired of all the Israel bashing! They were clearing lines of fire most likely.

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jweich August 4, 2010 at 6:31 am

Actually, they weren't. They were using a crane with a guy in a cherry picker bucket over the fence into Lebanese territory. The most recent accounts I've read are that the Lebanese fired into the air to warn them off and the Israelis replied with deadly fire. The Israeli officer was shot subsequent to this.

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John-Michael August 4, 2010 at 9:23 pm

The fence isn't on the border. The Israelis built the fence well inside their territory so that they could have clear visibility of anyone attempting to enter Israel.

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Israeli August 3, 2010 at 10:39 pm

This is a routine pruning. It is done because if foliage grows into the sensitive border fence it starts to interfere with the "touch" sensors of the fence. The fence is purely located on Israeli territory and is in most places actually located BEHIND the border for political reasons.

This was a pure act of aggression by the Lebanese.

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Israeli August 3, 2010 at 11:23 pm

And what I mean by behind, I mean by several hundred meters from the actual border. This is done to give a buffer zone so that if someone is walking around the fence with an RPG, etc. They cannot claim that they were on the Lebanese side of the border for a stroll and we shot them there. The border is also buffered with the UNIFIL and Lebanese army, though we see how we can rely on them.

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Israeli August 3, 2010 at 11:24 pm

Also it is routine for high ranking officers to do tours of the fence, after all it is still their area of responsibility and seeing it in person is just as important as seeing it on a map.

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@Earlydawn August 3, 2010 at 11:37 pm

Interesting. Thanks for the information.

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 12:14 am

In addition, the fence along Gaza is nearly the same thing; however the entire fence is located at least 300 meters behind the border creating the same buffer zone.

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Grumpy August 3, 2010 at 11:46 pm

"Trimming trees" The real question is this, "How were they trimming the trees?" ;-)

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 12:06 am

This is done usually the good old fashion way, with a pair of cutters. Sometimes there are chemical trucks that spray the fence against weeds.

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Yamashita August 4, 2010 at 12:11 am

'This was a pure act of aggression by the Lebanese."

Yeah, quite aggressive. We will contract selective amnesia and forget about Israeli invasions, attacks, bombardments and overflights for the last 35 years against Lebanon.

As a member of the world's most privileged minority, perhaps you can tell me when the state of Israel is ever to blame or be held accountable for any of its numerous acts of aggression?
As far you cats tell it, never.

Must be nice having political and diplomatic cover from the world's most powerful nation; we'll see how long that lasts.

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 12:17 am

Might want to open a history book pal, look up something called the PLO. And while you are at it look up Hezbollah.

Maybe show me a clear case of our "aggression".

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Nidi August 4, 2010 at 12:54 am

So, because Germany invaded Poland back in 1939, it would be cool with you if they went and invaded Germany now? I mean, it's only a retaliation for past aggression, right? Ever heard the saying 2 wrongs don't make a right? If the Israeli soldiers were on Israeli territory (which, over the protestations and beliefs of some people, IS legitimate and sovereign), then the sniper fire is unjustified and an act of aggression. If Israel so chose, it could even be considered a legitimate casus belli.

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Yamashita August 4, 2010 at 1:53 am

Check your self. Two wrongs don't make a right? A thousand years of Jewish persecution somehow absolves Zionist zealots from responsibility for the barbaric behavior of stealing other peoples land and exterminating them? Please.

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@mika2k1 August 4, 2010 at 2:35 am

It's not their land. It's land stolen from Judeans/Jews by a long line of imperialist aggressors, the latest of which are the Jihadi imperialists.

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Frozen Jones August 4, 2010 at 3:05 am

What patch of land on this earth hasn't been stolen from someone else at some point? Are you suggesting, for example, that Native Americans have legal claim over North America, or they would at least be justified in a violent campaign to "take back what's theirs?"

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@mika2k1 August 4, 2010 at 3:32 am

It's unfortunate the Native Americans don't have the guns to enforce their right. I hope that's not a mistake the Israelis will make in dealing with the Jihadi imperialists.

Sev August 4, 2010 at 3:31 am

You belive in punishment of the son for his father's sins. Maybe we should kill all Muslims for believeing in a prophet that molests young girls.

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yesjb August 5, 2010 at 7:10 pm

Try dealing with the subject instead of your anti-Israel anyi-Jewish blather!
To untermenschen like you israel is guilty regardless of anything.Israel's existence is a blight.
Your remarks are indistinguishable from human detritus!

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Yamashita August 4, 2010 at 12:59 am

That's rich. Perhaps you are part of the Hasbara crowd or just uninformed.

Hizbullah was created in 1982, in response to Israeli aggression and invasion, begun with the occupation of southern Lebanon in 1978. Hamas was also an Israeli creation to split Fatah and further discredit the Palestinians via the smear of Islamic fundamentalism.

How about the Six Day War, initiated by the IAF and forecast by the US JCS to last 5-7 days in a report to LBJ. Some existential threat there my friend. Of course the children of the Old Testament need that existential threat, it defines your lives and relieves you of responsibility for your dreadful behavior.

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Maxtrue August 4, 2010 at 1:13 am

Ah, the loonies have found even defense tech….

open sources sometimes means open sewage

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anonimous August 5, 2010 at 5:42 am

Yes Maxtrue ,You are right

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 1:18 am

Hezbollah was created by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. It was created to destroy the Jewish state (their words, not mine).

It was not Israel behind the aggression of the 1982 "PEACE for Galilee" (notice the word) operation. The PLO had been shelling the north and launching border incursions, over 240 PLO attack were recorded in the months before the war DURING a cease fire.

I love your revisionist history, so now the Israel is the aggressor in the Six Day war? Regardless of everything else from Egypt, Syria, Jordan, etc. Just the blockading of the Straights of Tiran was a internationally recognized act of war by Egypt against Israel.

You know what? I am tired of arguing with you fanatics all the time about stuff that is common knowledge. You guys somehow always find time to try to revise history to your goals, and guess what? I'm not going to convince you. nobody is. So I am not going to bother arguing with such ignorance anymore.

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Oblat August 4, 2010 at 4:37 am

Yes do spare us the excuses. Americans are getting very tired of Israeli excuses.

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@mika2k1 August 4, 2010 at 4:50 am

What excuses?

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Guest August 4, 2010 at 7:02 am

"How about the Six Day War, initiated by the IAF and forecast by the US JCS to last 5-7 days in a report to LBJ. Some existential threat there my friend."

It is unfortunate that this military blog has to sink into a platform for your Israel bashing. How can you claim that "children of the Old Testament" have "dreadful behavior"? How in 2010 can you have such hate?

Anyway, regarding the 1967 war.. here are a few facts from history which predated Israel's "initiation" of that war:

* May 15: Egyptian troops began moving into the Sinai and massing near the Israeli border.
* May 16: "Nasser kicks out the UN Emergency Force, stationed in the Sinai since 1956, to withdraw"
* May 18: Syrian troops were prepared for battle along the Golan Heights.
* May 20 Syrian Defense Minister Hafez Assad says: "Our forces are now entirely ready not only to repulse the aggression, but to initiate the act of liberation itself, and to explode the Zionist presence in the Arab homeland. The Syrian army, with its finger on the trigger, is united….I, as a military man, believe that the time has come to enter into a battle of annihilation."
* May 22: Egypt closed the Straits of Tiran to all Israeli shipping and all ships bound for Eilat. This blockade cut off Israel's only supply route with Asia and stopped the flow of oil. US President Johnson called this illegal and blocking the Straits of Tiran was well known to be an act of aggression. The US and UN assured Israel had access rights to the Straits of Tiran.
* May 23: Nasser said "The Jews threaten to make war. I reply: Welcome! We are ready for war."
* May 27th: "Our basic objective will be the destruction of Israel. The Arab people want to fight."
* May 28th: "We will not accept any…coexistence with Israel…Today the issue is not the establishment of peace between the Arab states and Israel….The war with Israel is in effect since 1948."
* May 30th: King Hussein of Jordan signed a defense pact with Egypt.
* May 30th: "The armies of Egypt, Jordan, Syria and Lebanon are poised on the borders of Israel…to face the challenge, while standing behind us are the armies of Iraq, Algeria, Kuwait, Sudan and the whole Arab nation. This act will astound the world. Today they will know that the Arabs are arranged for battle, the critical hour has arrived. We have reached the stage of serious action and not declarations."
* June 4: Iraq joined the military alliance with Egypt, Jordan and Syria. President Abdur Rahman Aref of Iraq said: "The existence of Israel is an error which must be rectified. This is our opportunity to wipe out the ignominy which has been with us since 1948. Our goal is clear — to wipe Israel off the map."
* Approximately 250,000 troops (nearly half in Sinai), more than 2,000 tanks and 700 aircraft surrounded Israel.

Israel did not attack until June 5. What choice did it have? What would you do if your neighbors surrounded your country and made clear their intentions were to slaughter you??

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Blight August 3, 2010 at 9:06 pm

The easy solution would be to have a plane dispense a vat of Agent Orange along the border. Give every IDF trooper a respirator to avoid teratogenic effects and it’ll save everyone the trouble of cutting some trees.

That or use an armored vehicle with a flamethrower to incinerate the trees…?

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 1:20 am

This is just mostly natural vegetation that needs pruning once in a while, no need to destroy the entire forest for that.

And to be honest, we would be blamed anyways for dropping any type of chemical in the area for mass devastation, etc.

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blight August 4, 2010 at 9:39 pm

Agreed, but perhaps the border should be treated more like the ROK/DPRK border…landmines, denuded terrain, total free-fire zone?

But it's something up to the IDF. Perhaps a sprinkler system that sprays Roundup to kill plants would be safer. Or a robot to prune trees…

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Maxtrue August 4, 2010 at 1:15 am
Yamashita August 4, 2010 at 1:48 am

So the word "peace" was in the name giving it legitimacy? Nice. Portraying wanton aggression approved beforehand by the Reagan NSC as an act of reluctant peacekeeping? Go sell crazy somewhere else.

Once again we see the little Israeli imperial project trying to remake the ME to its liking, the zealots smiting every last last foe to create Greater Israel. Support for Israel is a mile wide and an inch deep in American popular opinion. The bought and sold political class is another story.

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 1:53 am

"Imperialist" Israel? "Greater" Israel?

Where do these clowns come from?

I would think the first part of a "Greater" Israel would be the Sinai which we have captured twice. Oh right… WE GAVE IT AWAY!

This guy is rich. Keep the comments coming buddy, we can always do with a good laugh. Though my replies to you unfortunately end here.

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Sam August 4, 2010 at 2:23 am

12 KM of Sinai was liberated by force during the 1973 War. Egyptian military success forced Israel to negotiate and withdraw from the rest of Sinai or face more of the same.

Israeli, are you not aware of the always expanding illegal settlements in the West Bank and the Jewish settler terrorists who reside there?

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 2:46 am

Yes, let's change history again:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Yom_Kippur_War_

Noticing anything interesting, here let me help you. Israel at the end of the 1973 war gained more ground in Egypt (and could've continued) than Egypt gained a foothold in Sinai. Oh and dear me, 12km of the Sinai does not force anyone to a peace table. And I love how you mention more of the same, I love how you forget that one entire Egyptian army was cut off and surrounded and the other one split. Here is a trip back to memory lane:

"P.R. Kumaraswamy writes that "On October 24, 1973 when Israel finally implemented the cease-fire agreement, nothing stood between its advancing troops and the Egyptian capital. Israel had gained complete control over the entire front. Facing an imminent threat to Cairo and hence to the regime itself, President Anwar al-Sadat was desperately seeking heightened Soviet intervention and even direct military involvement to secure an early cease-fire. But for intense American pressure, Israel would have annihilated the stranded and encircled Egyptian Third Army. The story was more or less the same in the north where the Syrian advances in the Golan Heights were stopped and reversed and the outskirts of Damascus were brought within range of Israeli artillery. After initial surprises and setbacks, Israel had bounced back, stopped the Arab offensive and reversed the course of battle. If the Arab military offensive was motivated by a desire to change the status quo in Sinai or the Golan Heights, Israel had throttled them. The October 1973 cease-fire lines significantly improved Israel’s position."

The Israelis (I love how the media calls them settlers, with the point of making less worthy) living in the West-Bank is a purely political item which is constantly being discussed and modified by both sides, but they are not illegal.

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Sam August 4, 2010 at 3:51 am

As for the illegal settlements and the Jewish settler terrorists.

Since you like Wikipedia:

International intergovernmental organizations such as the Conference of the High Contracting Parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention,[9] every major organ of the United Nations,[10] the European Union, and Canada,[11] have declared that the settlements are a violation of international law. A review of Israel's country report conducted by the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination stated "The status of the settlements was clearly inconsistent with Article 3 of the Convention, which, as noted in the Committee's General Recommendation XIX, prohibited all forms of racial segregation in all countries. There is a consensus among publicists that the prohibition of racial discrimination, irrespective of territories, is an imperative norm of international law."[12] Non-governmental organizations including Amnesty International, and Human Rights Watch have also characterized the settlements as a violation of international law. In 1978, the Legal Adviser of the Department of State to the United States Congress concluded that "the establishment of the civilian settlements in those territories is inconsistent with international law."

Israel, the Anti-Defamation League and some prominent legal scholars disagree.

Shall we add you and Max to this dubious list of Israel supporters?

Maxtrue August 4, 2010 at 2:56 am

If it wasn't for Kissinger demanding the IDF not destroy the trapped Egyptian army, there would be nothing left of it. You remember Sharon, don't you? And that was while the IDF captured the Golan Heights after the Syrians attacked Israel. If you're suggesting similar results this next time around, you might be right…..

"By the end of the war, the Israelis had advanced to positions that were some 101 kilometers from Egypt's capital, Cairo and occupied 1,600 square kilometers west of the Suez Canal.[111] The Israelis had also cut the Cairo-Suez road and encircled the bulk of Egypt's Third Army. The Egyptians held a narrow strip on the east bank of the Canal, occupying some 1,200 square kilometers of Sinai.[112] One source estimated that the Egyptians had 70,000 men and 720 tanks on the East bank of the canal,[113]. However, 30,000 of these were now encircled by the Israelis.[114]" Wiki

Say the following words, "Israel, I seek coexistence peaceful with you."

Now get a few million of your friends to say that in Gaza and then let's talk……

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Sam August 4, 2010 at 3:46 am

Max, say the following words, "I will stop supporting the terrorist state of Israel".

Oblat August 4, 2010 at 8:12 pm

“In June 1967, we had a choice. The Egyptian army concentrations in the Sinai approaches do not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with ourselves. We decided to attack him.” – Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin 1982

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Yamashita August 4, 2010 at 2:03 am

It is the Imperialist who colonizes. In this case, the West Bank, illegally.

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@mika2k1 August 4, 2010 at 3:42 am

Israel is not Jihadistan. And one day soon, when oil can no longer be used as a weapon against the US and the industrialized world, you will acquire a new perspective as to where your home really is.

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jsallison August 4, 2010 at 3:03 am

It seems to me that Israel has had the capability to rewrite the map of the ME for quite some time and yet has chosen not to use it. I seriously doubt that Persia will be quite so perspicacious. Frankly, if it was my grandchildren at risk (as certain parties in the ME and their useful idiots elsewhere gleefully boast over and over again), I'd have ghosted their muslim @$$e$ in radioactive hellfire years ago and damn them all for making me do it.

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Oblat August 4, 2010 at 4:54 am

So the rabid dog bites again. No need to point out that the Lebanese government is pro US. Hardly a week goes by these days without an Israeli act of war killing American allies.

But by far the saddest moment was watching Obama kowtow to a country where he would be considered a 3rd class citizen and who's Prime Minister openly mocks him as being an errand boy.

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@mika2k1 August 4, 2010 at 5:45 am

Since when is hezbollah an american ally or pro US? Actually, even disregarding hezbollah, I can't think of a single arab government in the ME that is an american ally or pro US. People and governments may be subdued into temporary submission to the anglo-american imperialist will, but that's a long way from being an american ally or pro US. In fact, I can't think of single american ally or pro US gov anywhere on globe. You are hated everywhere you go, and with good reason. And it wont be long before you thieving imperialist and war provocateurs get booted out from all your military bases and embassies abroad.

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 6:39 am

Oh truly, shut the hell up.

"Lebanese army confirms: We fired first:

The Lebanon army's spokesman has confirmed Israel's claims that Lebanese forces fired first during Tuesday's deadly border skirmish.

In a statement issued to AFP and quoted by Lebanese daily al-Nahar Wednesday, the spokesman said that "the Lebanese Army opened fire first at Israeli soldiers"

The IDF is still analyzing Tuesday's events and officials are hinting that the writing has been on the wall for a long time now, given the warming ties between Hezbollah and Lebanon's army. IDF officials estimate that the deadly ambush faced by Israeli troops Tuesday was orchestrated by a junior, radical officer, but that his actions apparently reflected the Lebanese army's spirit.".

======================

"Journalists were tipped off:

Journalists and photographers were briefed in advance of the intention to ambush IDF troops and were therefore present at the site of Tuesday's deadly clash between Israeli and Lebanese forces, IDF officials charge.

The lethal skirmish ensued after IDF forces performing routine operations in a border-area enclave came under Lebanese fire. The Israeli troops fired back, killing three Lebanese soldiers and a local journalist.

The killed correspondent, Assaf Abu Rahal, worked for HEZBOLLAH-affiliated Beirut daily al-Akhbar.

Another journalist, Ali Shuaib from HEZBOLLAH's al-Manar station, was wounded in the incident and was taken to hospital for treatment.

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randall August 4, 2010 at 7:50 am

Please ignore it, this thin inmate is a forum troll, don't reply it just feed it.

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Christopher Alemany August 4, 2010 at 5:45 am

Trimming a tree? Seriously? Way to spread the Propaganda!

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Oblat August 4, 2010 at 7:43 am

>I can't think of a single arab government in the ME that is an american ally or pro US

Well there is your problem isn't it. Though why you would want to flout your ignorance beats me.

Israel runs covert operations into Lebanon all the time and this time they just got caught. The excuses about tree pruning is just the normal half-witted spin. But it is demonstrative of the Israeli minds-set and the contempt they hold for Americans.

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Locarno August 4, 2010 at 9:04 am

Jordan?

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Maxtrue August 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm

Another idiot who failed to read the morning paper. The UN was quite clear. Your comments demonstrated something altogether different Locarno. Sorry you lost an opportunity to display your mindset which feebly tried to turn Lebanese terror into some bizarre claim that Israelis have contempt for Americans. How many Americans have Israelis killed….lol?

I hear a Michigan Mosque is trying hard to fund a statue of Helen Thomas. Perhaps you might contribute some money.

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STemplar August 4, 2010 at 8:09 am

Sure woulda been alot easier if the arabs and palestinians just abided by UN res 181 to start with.

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aaron August 4, 2010 at 6:49 am

Dude why do yall support Lebanon doesn’t make sense? What do they do for you? If Israel is destroyed or taken over the world would be a different place for the worse. Probably breed more terrorists then end up in another world war

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aaron August 4, 2010 at 6:52 am

The world would be a better place with out Allah and the Arab nations. They’re garbage!

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Riceball August 4, 2010 at 2:37 pm

You do realize that Allah is simply the Arab word for God, don't you?

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Jonathan August 4, 2010 at 1:28 pm

I was privileged to know and serve under Lt Col Harari since '96 in one of the 920th's infantry companies as First Sgt.

The officers were at an observation post approx. 500 meters away from the border fence observing the clearance of foliage obstructing video cameras on the Israeli side used for remote viewing. The clearance of these branches on the Israeli side of the border had been cleared with UNIFIL in advance. Lt Col Harari and the Company CO came under sniper fire aimed directly at their position, the Lt Col was killed and the Company CO (Captain) was seriously wounded.

It is clear that information supplied to UNIFIL under agreement by the IDF was passed to LAF who then used it to position snipers to specifically ambush and kill officers on the observation point.

The intent of this was twofold: to further increase border tensions in the hope of provoking a more serious Israeli response and secondly to distract attention away from the impending report on the assassination of Rafik Al Hariri; where guilt is going to be clearly laid at Hizbollah's feet. Thus Lebanese journalists were onsite for the ambush – this being how one was wounded by IDF fire.

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Jonathan August 4, 2010 at 1:29 pm

.. Conclusion: LAF has been infiltrated by Hizbollah sympathizers or actual agents at non-com and officer level and LAF has become their latest weapon in maintaining Hizbollah / Iranian sponsored stranglehold of the Lebanese political-military infrastructure.

The real question is (generally) what changes will be instituted in IDF rules of engagement / protocols for patrol or maintenance of the border fence and surrounding areas and (specifically) if the LAF officer who ordered this ambush is living on borrowed time.

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blight August 4, 2010 at 3:35 pm

If the Lebanese Army doesn't deny sniping Israeli soldiers, isn't this technically an act of war?

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Sam August 5, 2010 at 5:54 am

The Lebanese did the right thing by keeping a close eye on Israel and engaging the enemy before he had a chance to fire on Lebanese army and civilians. Notice that Israel immediately fired on a civilian village. Had the Lebanese fielded a few anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles this event would have ended even worse for Israel. Too bad.

The Lebanese have not forgotten the war of 2006.

"the LAF officer who ordered this ambush is living on borrowed time."

All of the Lebanese soldiers there on that day are heroes. I doubt any of them fear any Israeli soldiers.

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 2:22 pm

Here is a picture showing the fence and the actual border:

(Yellow is fence and blue dots are the border) http://idfspokesperson.files.wordpress.com/2010/0

As you can see the IDF troops were clearly inside the border no matter how you put it. And in addition the initial firing on the IDF was not directed at the troops themselves, rather at an observation point where there were IDF officers in attendance much further away.

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Israeli August 4, 2010 at 2:24 pm

And the actual border is actually marked with a barbed wire tangle that clearly denotes it and separates it from the fence, there are very few places where the barbed wire is missing.

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Maxtrue August 4, 2010 at 2:29 pm

The question is whether the US will now send weapons to an army unsecured from terrorist links. And the US must explain how X-band radar for missile defense in Turkey to protect against Iran is a good idea. Just wait to see the reaction when the murder of Hariri is pinned on Hizb'Allah. This is what it is all about and why Sammy Boy can't utter words of peaceful co-existence.

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Cannon Fodder August 4, 2010 at 6:07 pm

Many in the US do not understand Israel's predicament. They are surrounded by enemies on every side that have the religious belief that they must destroy Israel. Israel is about the size of New Jersey. To get a feel for what they are dealing with, imagine if it was the cold war again, but this time, the US only owns New Jersey and the Russians owned the US and Canada.

Until Musslim aggression ends, Israel will always be fighting these border wars.

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Oblat August 4, 2010 at 8:08 pm

Israel would have made peace with it's neighbors long ago if we weren't sponsoring it's overwhelming sense of impunity. Just look at it's friends – are there any which aren't pissed off with Israeli behavior ? are there any it hasn't killed the citizens of ?

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STemplar August 5, 2010 at 8:10 am

They have made peace with the Egyptians and Jordanians, and a big part of that was because of our military grants to all sides. Israel accepted UN res 181, the Arab governments and Palestinians attacked them and continued to do so until Sadat bravely stepped forward and said enough. Anyone with a basic understanding of the entire history of the situation knows exactly how incredibly hypocritical the Palestinians and Lebanese government are whining about Israel violating UN resolutions.

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Maxtrue August 6, 2010 at 11:34 am

ST, you can see even Defense Tech is not safe from idiocy and propaganda. That these people come here to post is interesting. As for what Israel faces: http://www.aviationweek.com/aw/blogs/defense/inde

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Sam August 8, 2010 at 11:34 pm

http://www.haaretz.com/print-edition/opinion/only

* Published 02:37 05.08.10
* Latest update 02:37 05.08.10

Only we're allowed
After Tuesday's border clash, Israel will continue to ignore UNIFIL and the Lebanese army.
By Gideon Levy Tags: Israel news IDF Lebanon Hezbollah

Those bastards, the Lebanese, changed the rules. Scandalous. Word is, they have a brigade commander who's determined to protect his country's sovereignty. Scandalous.

The explanation here was that he's "indoctrinating his troops" – only we're allowed to do that, of course – and that this was "the spirit of the commander" and that he's "close to Hezbollah." The nerve.

And now that we've recited ad nauseum the explanations of Israel Defense Forces propaganda for what happened Tuesday at the northern border, the facts should also be looked at.

On Tuesday morning, Israel requested "coordination" with UNIFIL to carry out another "exposing" operation on the border fence. UNIFIL asked the IDF to postpone the operation, because its commander is abroad. The IDF didn't care. UNIFIL won't stop us.

At noon the tree-cutters set out. The Lebanese and UNIFIL soldiers shouted at them to stop. In Lebanon they say their soldiers also fired warning shots in the air. If they did, it didn't stop the IDF.

The tree branches were cut and blood was shed on both sides of the border. Shed in vain.

True, Israel maintains that the area across the fence is its territory, and UNIFIL officially confirmed that yesterday. But a fence is a fence: In Gaza it's enough to get near the fence for us to shoot to kill. In the West Bank the fence's route bears no resemblance to the Green Line, and still Palestinians are forbidden from crossing it.

In Lebanon we made different rules: the fence is just a fence, we're allowed to cross it and do whatever we like on the other side, sometimes in sovereign Lebanese territory. We can routinely fly in Lebanese airspace and sometimes invade as well.

This area was under Israeli occupation for 18 years, without us ever acknowledging it. It was an occupation no less brutal than the one in the territories, but whitewashed well. "The security zone," we called it. So now, as well, we can do what we like.

But suddenly there was a change. How did our analysts put it? Recently there's been "abnormal firing" at Israeli aircraft. After all, order must be maintained: We're allowed to fly in Lebanese airspace, they are not permitted to shoot.

But Tuesday's incident, which was blown out of proportion here as if it were cause for a war that only the famed Israeli "restraint" prevented, should be seen in its wider context. For months now the drums of war have been beating here again. Rat-a-tat, danger, Scuds from Syria, war in the north.

No one asks why and wherefore, it's just that summer's here, and with it our usual threats of war. But a UN report published this week held Israel fully responsible for creating this dangerous tension.

In this overheated atmosphere the IDF should have been careful when lighting its matches. UNIFIL requests a delay of an operation? The area is explosive? The work should have been postponed. Maybe the Lebanese Army is more determined now to protect its country's sovereignty – that is not only its right, but its duty – and a Lebanese commander who sees the IDF operating across the fence might give an order to shoot, even unjustifiably.

Who better than the IDF knows the pattern of shooting at any real or imagined violation? Just ask the soldiers at the separation fence or guarding Gaza. But Israel arrogantly dismissed UNIFIL's request for a delay.

It's the same arrogance behind the demand that the U.S. and France stop arming the Lebanese military. Only our military is allowed to build up arms. After years in which Israel demanded that the Lebanese Army take responsibility for what is happening in southern Lebanon, it is now doing so and we've changed our tune. Why? Because it stopped behaving like Israel's subcontractor and is starting to act like the army of a sovereign state.

And that's forbidden, of course. After the guns fall silent, the cry goes up again here to strike another "heavy blow" against Lebanon to "deter" it – maybe some more of the destruction that was inflicted on Beirut's Dahiya neighborhood.

Three Lebanese killed, including a journalist, are not enough of a response to the killing of our battalion commander. We want more. Lebanon must learn a lesson, and we will teach it.

And what about us? We don't have any lessons to learn. We'll continue to ignore UNIFIL, ignore the Lebanese Army and its new brigade commander, who has the nerve to think that his job is to protect his country's sovereignty.

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Ben August 11, 2010 at 6:25 pm

haha so what? is there a point in this wall of text?

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crackedlenses August 11, 2010 at 8:07 pm

Sure the Israelis are terrorists. How dare they settle in their former homeland, then defend themselves from peaceful, hateful, attacking Muslims who ditched the area to the Israelis when they put up a fight and established a flower in the desert that put the Muslim nations around them to shame. Surely their attempts to defend themselves are really acts of aggression against innocent suicide bombers who were only trying to kill women and children. Oh well, our Dear Leader, I mean our President doesn't seem to like them.

[ sarc off ]

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Sipp Investment April 21, 2013 at 8:24 pm
Israeli August 4, 2010 at 4:18 am

Nothing more needs to be said, you are a fanatic and regardless of what anyone says you will still hate Israel and wish for its destruction. End of replies.

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Sam August 4, 2010 at 5:04 am

You keep promising to stop replying, then you reply.

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Maxtrue August 4, 2010 at 1:23 pm

Sam, continue to live in your bitter bubble of nonsense. You picked an interesting site to relieve yourself on. As we have already said, the UN declared Israel was on their side when murderers fired at Israelis. Boy, that was such a manly act of terror. Now the Lebanese Army uniforms are no longer protection. Yes, that was a really smart move. As smart as you Sam the sham.

"I seek peaceful coexistence with the State of Israel"

Keep saying it Sammy . Over and over and over. The alternative to that of course, is a lot of dead Muslims…..

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yesjb August 5, 2010 at 7:23 pm

Sami,
Your are a sad little fart.
You have all the pali propaganda at your fingertips but are totally ignorant of history, modern and not so modern.
Your animus is evident when you call Israel a terorrist state and give Syria Iran ahezb'allah and Hamas a free pass
To you and Hamas fighting for "freedom" as you call it is killing Jews and obliterating Israel.
There is no sense of compromise, no 2 states, no living in peace with the likes of you.
You clearly are a muslim or one of their western running dogs whose animus towards Israel and Jews rises from your incompetence, jealousy and/or religious hatres. And your definitely not alone on this site.
To offer legitimate criticism against anyone based on truth and facts is welcomed, but you just are a Jew basher/baiter.
And your replies in the past show you never read replies but just create straw men and regurgitate your venom freely!
A pox on you!

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Maxtrue August 4, 2010 at 1:36 pm

No just add us to the ranks of those who feel mental health is a sad thing to lose. Seriously dude, seek some help. I'm not sure Defense Tech will be of much use in that regard. Too many intelligent people here….

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John-Michael August 10, 2010 at 2:08 pm

It has a butt stock which is obscured by the ammo box.

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Spizmar November 25, 2010 at 2:34 am

"It's like tell the U.S. to not patrol their border against incursions"
You mean like our border with Mexico?

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