Thursday, August 10, 2006

Israel/Lebanon War Updates

Updated throughout the day.

- What's the difference between being 'detained' and being 'taken prisoner'? That's the question I have for the IDF after reading that they've 'detained' 350 Lebanese soldiers and police.

BEIRUT, Lebanon --Israeli troops detained about 350 Lebanese soldiers and police in Marjayoun after capturing the town on Thursday, Lebanon's interior minister said. The Israeli military said nobody was taken prisoner.

Lebanon's Interior Minister Ahmed Fatfat told The Associated Press that Israeli troops entered the garrison in Marjayoun Thursday afternoon "and asked to share it with Lebanese troops there."

"The troops refused and said they would leave, but the Israeli did not let them," he said.

Fatfat said the head of the joint army-police force, Brig. Adnan Daoud, was among those detained. "We consider them to be captives," he added.

Fatfat said negotiations were in progress to win the captives' release, but he did not elaborate.

What right does Israel have to detain these people who have absolutely nothing to do with this war?

- Israel's government has reportedly delayed their planned major incursion into Lebanon to give diplomacy a chance to work. Israeli officials do not seem optimistic that talks will advance quickly though: 'Israel Radio quoted a senior political source as saying Israel was pessimistic about chances the diplomatic efforts would succeed, adding "these efforts could collapse within hours.'

- An update on the growing humanitarian crisis:

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Hospitals were running out of food, fuel and other supplies in southern Lebanon on Thursday and aid groups said fighting and a ban on movement meant they could not reach thousands trapped in the area.
It said
Israel's warning that it might attack any vehicle south of the Litani that was not part of an aid convoy with Israeli clearance significantly undermined the chances of the tens of thousands of people still believed to be trapped in the region.

"The people in the south are afraid. They are terrified to move," Rowan Gillies, president of MSF International, said in Beirut. "To forbid all forms of movement, without distinction, will lead to even more civilian deaths and suffering."

MSF said it had suffered close calls with shelling and air strikes close to two of its convoys earlier this week. On Monday, warplanes attacked two cars traveling near a U.N. Nations convoy, killing three people.
United Nations World Food Program said it sent a 15-truck convoy to the eastern town of Baalbek but was still waiting for two planes carrying about 10 tonnes of supplies each which had been delayed since Tuesday.

The agency was also trying to send a 10-truck convoy to the battered town of Nabatiyeh in the south, but had not received security guarantees.

- The BBC has a roundup of recent events:

* Hezbollah fired scores more rockets into Israeli, killing a woman and a two-year-old girl in the Israeli Arab village of Deir al-Assad

* Israeli forces said they had taken control of the strategically placed town of Marjayoun - a mostly Christian town about 8km (five miles) from the border

* Hezbollah reported destroying at least 13 tanks in south Lebanon

* Israel fired around 1,000 artillery shells at the Hezbollah stronghold of Khiam, with ground battles also reported in the area

* Israeli rocketed a disused lighthouse tower carrying a television mast in west Beirut

* Israeli aircraft dropped leaflets on Beirut, warning residents in Shiyah, Burj al-Barajneh and Hay al-Sulloum districts to leave

How many more children and other innocents need to die before this all ends?

- Wiki is maintaining a casualty count for this war.

- Twisted logic:

The Israeli Defence Minister, Amir Peretz, said that if there was a ceasefire, "we'll see the military operation as having created the diplomatic climate and a new situation".

- The Russians have threatened to propose their own UN resolution soon to call for an immediate 72 hour ceasefire to allow humanitarian groups to actually help the Lebanese people.

- IDF Fumes Over Denied Victory. They seem to still believe they can win this militarily.

more to come...

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