Israel and Lebanon are engaged in war, all but in name – editorial

The world doesn’t want to admit it, and the United States thinks it can be contained, but the stark facts confirm that since the October 7 Hamas massacre in the South, its Iranian-backed ally, Hezbollah, has opened a second front with massive, damaging attacks on Israel that have forced some 100,000 residents of the North to abandon their homes.

Take a look at the aggression directed at Israel from Lebanon just last week:

• Hezbollah fired 96 barrages of rockets, anti-tank missiles, and explosive drones toward northern Israeli cities, including Haifa, Tiberias, and Safed.

• In one barrage alone, on June 12th, over 160 projectiles were launched within 90 minutes.

• Dozens of fires broke out in the North because of the rockets, injuring firefighters and civilians.

IDF brigades training in northern Israel, June 13, 2024. (credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON UNIT)

And that’s just one week. Since October 7, Hezbollah has fired thousands of rockets at Israel. But for some reason, the world is silent.

Of course, we know the reason for that silence: Israel isn’t the one attacking.

What there has been, as we well know, is outrage in the hallowed bodies of the UN, ICC, and EU about Israel’s alleged violation of international law in Gaza.

No international outcry at Hezbollah and Lebanon

However, the UN Security Council has not passed any resolutions condemning Lebanon, the International Criminal Court has not initiated any investigations against Lebanon, and American universities have not established tent cities in protest of Lebanon’s unprovoked aggression against Israel.

One never hears a word about how Hezbollah, an official member of the government of Lebanon, which has internationally recognized borders with Israel, is violating international law daily with its onslaught on a sovereign nation.

Israel’s allies, especially the United States, should be doing everything possible to put pressure on the Lebanese government to curb Hezbollah and stop the lethal fire, but instead, there are meek efforts to mediate and pathetic calls for Israel to avoid an escalation to keep the big players – Iran and the US – out of the conflict.

The Biden administration has become increasingly concerned that the situation in the North between Israel and Hezbollah could spread throughout the region, US media reported over the weekend.

US diplomatic adviser Amos Hochstein is heading to Israel on Monday with the reported purpose of trying to de-escalate tensions.

Unfortunately, instead of encouraging the IDF to take care of business and make the North safe again so that its residents can return, the plan seems to be to press Israel to mute its response to the Hezbollah onslaught.

In its attempt to restore quiet in the North, the fig leaf that the US presents of a hostage and ceasefire deal in the South is, of course, far from realistic, since Hamas has rejected the US and Israeli-backed proposal that is on the table.

“There has to be an agreement that allows Israelis to return to their homes in the North with security guarantees that it is not October 6 of Hezbollah…sitting right on the blue line,” a US official told CBS News.

Although the official likely didn’t intend it, his statement means that Israel must go into Lebanon and push Hezbollah back so that it is no longer a border threat.

 With Israel’s North burning up and its residents adamant about not returning to live there until Hezbollah is no longer breathing down their necks, it’s apparent to all that a major conflict is pending.

Once that happens, we’ll hear the international bodies calling for an immediate end to the Israeli aggression on a sovereign country. There will be protests in major American cities, and news agencies will write harrowing reports about the suffering civilian population of Lebanon.

Nobody will remember that for eight months, Israel was being attacked daily by Hezbollah while being told by the US and the EU to hold tight and not make things worse.

Well, they’re about the worst they could be, and the waiting is over. Israel must do what any country would do when its borders are being breached and its citizens targeted: fight back.