January 17/2007

Bible Reading of the day
Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Mark 2,23-28. As he was passing through a field of grain on the sabbath, his disciples began to make a path while picking the heads of grain. At this the Pharisees said to him, "Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the sabbath?" He said to them, "Have you never read what David did when he was in need and he and his companions were hungry? How he went into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest and ate the bread of offering that only the priests could lawfully eat, and shared it with his companions?"
Then he said to them, "The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath. That is why the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath."

Latest News Reports from The Daily Star For 17/01/07
Al-Madina Bank suspect 'freed from Brazilian jail'
Israel and Syria 'held two years of secret talks'
Full text of the document reportedly drafted during secret Israeli-Syrian talks as published Tuesday in Haaretz:
US, Saudi Arabia back Moussa's Lebanon plan
March 14 blasts protests as 'touring puppet show'
Siniora wins UAE backing for Paris III
Army lifts cordon on Taamir but delays plans for deployment
Inquest finds Israel had 'no clear objective' during war
Italian peacekeepers mount campaign to increase awareness of cluster bombs
UAE sends troops to aid de-mining efforts
National Bloc leader demands answers from Aoun
Emie predicts world will be 'ready to help' at Paris III
Cabinet to endorse salary bonus for security services
Abbas plans visit at 'crucial time' for bilateral ties
Syria's envoy to US insists Lebanese 'are being used by superpowers'
Iraqi artist recalls life under Saddam from safety of secret exile in Dahiyeh
Attacks kill at least 100 in Baghdad as UN reports 34,000 Iraqis dead in 2006
Balamand students walk out in protest
Sarkis outlines impact of war, wobbly political situation on tourism sector
Lebanon, Cyprus to mark undersea gas territories
Impressive new book explains deterioration of Lebanese economy
Lebanon, Cyprus to mark undersea gas territories
NDU holds 20th Founder's Day ceremony
LAU announces upcoming academic events
Local man accuses daughter of trying to kill him
Sidon mayor promises to end dump crisis
Lebanon loses a legendary link to its golden age

Latest News Reports miscellaneous sources For 17/01/07
Latest News Reports from Miscellaneous Sources For 17/01/07
Lebanon's Cardinal Urges Lebanese to Put National Interests First-AINA
Hizbullah Threatens 'Major Escalation' While Aoun's Movement on 'Full Alert' -Naharnet
New Nets to Protect Fish in the Mediterranean-Naharnet
French Envoy to Discuss Lebanon with Tehran-Naharnet
Larijani Discussed Shiite-Sunni Understanding with Saudi Officials-Naharnet
Syrians, Israelis Reportedly Held Secret Peace Talks for Two Years-Naharnet
Rana Koleilat Released from Brazilian Jail-Naharnet
Mahmoud Abbas in Beirut Next Week -Naharnet
Interrogating Suspects In Bashir Gemayel's Assassination Set for February-Naharnet

Arab Fund Extends Two $208 Million Worth Loans to Lebanon-Naharnet
Army seeks to strip former Hezbollah captive of his rank-Ha'aretz
Speaker Berri calls Lebanon a ticking time bomb-Ya Libnan
Protests have sparked debate about democracy in Lebanon-Ya Libnan
2007 - A Time Of War Or A Time Of Peace?ThreatsWatch.Org

US says to "go after" Iran, Syria networks in Iraq-Reuters
The Sunni-Shia Rivalry-Middle East Online
Ex-IDF chief: Lebanon war was conducted without clear objective-Ha'aretz
UN urges calm in Lebanon-TV3 News

Report: Israel, Syria reach secret understandings
Ynet Published: 01.16.07, 07:20
Haaretz reports that document of understandings for peace agreement formulated in series of unofficial meetings between representatives from Israel, Syria and Europe. According to document, Israel will withdraw from Golan Heights to lines of June 4, 1967. Syrian areas east of Golan to be demilitarized, park to be set up in order to allow Israel to retain control over use of waters of Jordan River, Lake Kinneret
Representatives from Israel and Syria , who have been holding talks for about two years, reached a document of understanding for a peace agreement between the two countries, Haaretz daily reported Tuesday morning.
The unofficial talks were held with the knowledge of senior official in the government of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and later in the government of Prime Minister Ehud Olmert .
Is There a Partner?
Expose Syrian bluff / Ron Ben Yishai
Assad unable to provide Israel with anything meaningful in exchange for peace
According to the document, Israel will withdraw from the Golan Heights to the lines of June 4, 1967. The timetable for the withdrawal remains open.
Syria demanded that the withdrawal will be carried out over a five-year period, while Israel asked to spread out the withdrawal over 15 years.
The document of understandings (a "non-paper") has no legal standings, but a political standing, and it was generated in discussions held between September 2004 and July 2006. The great part of the document was formulated in August 2005.
It was also agreed that militarized areas would be set up in the Golan Heights territories evacuated by the Israeli forces. Areas of lowered military presence would be set up in Israel, west of the international border, and in Syria, east of the Golan Heights. The ratio in terms of territory would be 1:4 in favor of Israel.
Syria agrees to end its support for Hizbullah, Hamas
On the water issue, it was agreed that Israel would retain control over the use of the waters of the Jordan River and Lake Kinneret (the Sea of Galilee). A park would be set up east of the border, which both Israelis and Syrians would be free to access and which would be run by the Syrians.
The park would be set up after the Israeli withdrawal is completed and the Syrian sovereignty is implemented, and would be open to Israelis without Syrian approval. The park would be located on a significant part of the Golan Heights.
Syria also agreed to end its support for Hizbullah and Hamas and distance itself from Iran .
The Israeli team for the meetings, the last of which was held during the second Lebanon war, was headed by former Foreign Ministry Director-General Dr. Alon Liel. The talks were held through a European mediator, and the Syrian side was represented by senior government officials, including Vice President Farouk al-Shara, Foreign Minister Walid Moallem and an intelligence officer with the rank of general.
The talks were halted after the Syrians demanded to end the unofficial channel and hold a secret meeting between a deputy Syrian minister, an Israeli ministry's director-general and an official American representative. Israel rejected the request.
The Syrian representative to the talks, Ibrahim (Abe Suleiman), who has been living in the United States for many years and is an American citizen, visited Jerusalem and delivered a message regarding Damascus' wish to reach an agreement with Israel and use its connections with the US in order to lift the American embargo on Syria.
Intelligence: Syria wants peace talks
Military Intelligence Maj.-Gen. Amos Yadlin told the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee last week that.Syria was slowly but surely lowering its readiness for war after a military beef up along the border with Israel.
Knesset Member Yossi Beilin (Meretz) said as he left the meeting that "if the prime minister listened to what we heard today, he should know that it would be national lawlessness not to quickly launch a dialogue with Syria in a bid to reach peace."
According to Beilin, "I believe Syria is very serious regarding negotiations and it's not serious not to open negotiations with them."
Last month, the head of research at the Military Intelligence told the committee that Syrian President Bashar Assad 's peace overtures towards Israel were genuine. His remarks contradicted an assessment by Mossad Chief Meir Dagan who rejected Assad's declarations as attempts to gain international legitimacy.

Al-Madina Bank suspect 'freed from Brazilian jail'
Daily Star staff-Wednesday, January 17, 2007
BEIRUT: Rana Qoleilat, a key player in the Al-Madina Bank scandal, has been released from prison in Brazil, according to Lebanese legal sources quoted by An-Nahar on Tuesday. Qoleilat was arrested by Brazilian police last year at a hotel on the outskirts of Sao Paulo on charges of entering the country illegally. Reports from Brazil said at the time that she was also being charged with attempting to bribe security officers to secure her release.
The former bank executive spent a few months in a Lebanese prison in 2005 before jumping bail, allegedly with Syrian help, to flee fraud charges related to her position at Al-Madina Bank. An-Nahar said Qoleilat was now "awaiting an answer from Brazilian authorities on her request for political asylum."
UN investigators have reportedly told Brazilian police of their desire to question Qoleilat regarding her possible role in the February 2005 assassination of former Premier Rafik Hariri. Brazilian police said at the time of her arrest that UN investigators wanted to know whether money allegedly diverted from Al-Madina Bank was used to finance the killing. The Justice Ministry has sent Brazilian authorities three official requests that Qoleilat be extradited to Lebanon, but has yet to receive a reply from Brazilia.
Lebanon does not have an extradition treaty with Brazil. - The Daily Star, with Naharnet

Israel and Syria 'held two years of secret talks'
Compiled by Daily Star staff -Wednesday, January 17, 2007
Two years of secret meetings between Syrians and Israelis have produced a tentative peace plan calling for an Israeli withdrawal from the Golan Heights and a halt to Syrian support for armed groups, the Israeli daily Haaretz reported Tuesday. Syrian officials and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert dismissed the report. An Israeli official acknowledged the meetings took place, but said they were not officially sanctioned.
According to Haaretz, the Israeli and Syrian representatives met secretly in Europe - with the full knowledge of their countries' leaders - several times between September 2004 and July 2006. The Israeli daily said the so-called "non-paper" that emerged from the two years of unofficial discussions proposed an Israeli pullout from the Golan to the shores of the Sea of Galilee, with Israel retaining control of its waters. A large part of the Golan would be turned into a park for joint use by Israelis and Syrians, the report said. According to the document, Israel would gradually evacuate Jewish settlements on the Golan Heights and the territory would be demilitarized, the newspaper said. The Syrian zone would be four times larger than the Israeli one.
In return, Syria would cut its ties with Hizbullah and Hamas and distance itself from Iran.  Syria requested that the withdrawal be completed in five years, while Israel asked for 15, the report said. The last meeting was held during the summer 2006 war between Israel and Lebanon, it said. The contacts ended when the Israelis refused a Syrian request that the talks be upgraded to official status and include a senior US official.
Haaretz said Alon Liel, a former director general of Israel's Foreign Ministry, took part in a series of meetings from September 2004 to August 2006 with Ibrahim Suleiman, a US-based Syrian, and an unidentified European mediator.
In remarks quoted by Israel Radio, Liel said he "did not represent anyone" in official Israeli circles when he participated in the discussions.
Geoffrey Aronson, an American from the Washington-based Foundation for Middle East Peace, was also brought into the talks, the newspaper said. Aronson told Haaretz that "an agreement under American auspices would call for Syria to ensure that Hizbullah would limit itself to being solely a political party." He also said that Khaled Meshaal, Hamas' political leader, would have to leave Damascus.
On Iraq, Syria "would also exercise its influence for a solution to the conflict" through an agreement between Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr and the Sunni leadership. Haaretz said that former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was briefed on the meetings while he was in office. Sharon's successor, Olmert, also was informed, it said. Officials on both sides denied the existence of back-channel talks.
"I knew of nothing. No one in the government was involved in this matter. It was a private initiative on the part of an individual who spoke for himself," Olmert told reporters. "From what I read, his interlocutor was an eccentric from the United States, someone not serious or dignified."
Another Israeli government official, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirmed that unsanctioned talks took place.
A Syrian Foreign Ministry official dismissed the report as "absolutely baseless," and former Syrian Information Minister Mehdi Dahkhallah branded it "an attempt by the media to improve Israel's image in the world after it refused to resume negotiations with Syria." Akiva Eldar, who wrote the Haaretz account, said the European go-between and Suleiman traveled to Damascus eight times and discussed the proposal with Farouk al-Sharaa, currently a Syrian vice president. "Walid al-Moallem, Syria's foreign minister, was present at several meetings, as well as another person - a senior general in Syrian intelligence," Eldar told Israel's Army Radio, without identifying him. Syria has been pressing for Israel to renew official peace talks, last held in 2000, on the future of the Golan. - Agencies

Full text of the document reportedly drafted during secret Israeli-Syrian talks as published Tuesday in Haaretz:
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
"Preamble: The objective of this effort is to establish normal, peaceful relations between the governments and peoples of Israel and Syria, and to sign a treaty of peace attesting to this achievement. The treaty will resolve the four "pillars" at the core of negotiations: security, water, normalization and borders. There is to be no agreement on any single one of these issues unless and until all of these issues are resolved.
I. Sovereignty:
1. Syrian sovereignty, based upon the June 4, 1967 line in the Golan Heights, is acknowledged by Israel. The mutually agreed upon border will be determined by both parties (and guaranteed by the US and the UN)
II. Framework Agreement, Implementation and the End to the State of Belligerency. A "Framework Agreement" will address the issues of security (including early warning), water, normalization and borders. Negotiations to reach such an agreement should proceed as expeditiously:
1. The state of belligerency between the parties will cease upon signature of a framework agreement between the parties, and will include the cessation of hostile actions by each party against the other.
2. Application of Syrian sovereignty in the Golan Heights, the establishment of normal, bilateral diplomatic relations and the implementation of relevant provisions related to water and security will commence as soon as possible after the conclusion of a Framework Agreement but no later than the signing of a treaty of peace.
3. Implementation of the Israeli withdrawal to the mutually agreed border will occur during a period (the exact time frame to be mutually agreed) from signature of the Framework Agreement.
III. Peace Treaty: 1. Satisfactory implementation of provisions and obligations established in the Framework Agreement will result in the signing of a peace treaty between the parties.
IV. Security: 1. Demilitarized zones will be established in the areas of the Golan Heights that Israeli forces will vacate.
2. No military forces, armaments, weapons systems, or military infrastructure will be introduced into the demilitarized zones. Only a limited civil police presence will be deployed in the areas.
3. Both parties agree not to fly over demilitarized zones without a special arrangement.
4. The establishment of an early warning system includes a ground station on Mt. Hermon/Jabal al-Sheikh operated by the United States.
5. A monitoring and inspection and verification mechanism will be established to monitor and supervise the security agreements.
6. Direct liaison between the parties will be established in order to: Create a direct, real time communication capability on security issues in order to minimize friction along the international border; Help to prevent errors and misunderstandings between the parties.
7. Zones of reduced military forces will be established in Israel west of the international border with Syria and in Syria east of the Golan Heights. The respective depth of these zones (as measured in kilometers) between Israel and Syria will be according to a ratio of 1:4.
8. The Parties will cooperate in fighting local and international terrorism of all kinds.
9. The Parties will work together for a stable and safe Middle East, including the solution of regional problems related to the Palestinians, Lebanese and Iran.
V. Water: 1. Israel will control the use and disposition of the water in the Upper Jordan River and Lake Tiberias.
2. Syria will not interrupt or obstruct natural flow of water in either quality or quantity in the Upper Jordan River, its tributaries and Lake Tiberias.
3. Syrian use of the waters of the upper Jordan River, its tributaries, and Lake Tiberias for residential and fishing purposes is recognized and guaranteed.
VI. Park: 1. In order to safeguard the water resources of the Jordan River basin, Syrian territory east of the mutually agreed border will be designated as a Park open to all and administered by Syria. The Park is to be established in the Golan Heights upon completion of the Israeli withdrawal and application of Syrian sovereignty in accordance with the treaty of peace. The park will extend from the agreed upon border eastward to a line to be determined by mutual agreement.
2. Park characteristics: Park is open for tourism; it will be policed by Syrian park service personnel; the park will be free of permanent residents except for conservation and law enforcement personnel; no visa will be required for entry into park [from Israeli territory]; Syrians will issue onsite official entry permit for a nominal fee; visitors wishing to enter other Syrian territory east of the Park must have a proper visa and transit Syrian controls on park's eastern perimeter; entry to the park is valid for one day during daylight hours."

US, Saudi Arabia back Moussa's Lebanon plan
Arab foreign ministers offer limp support for new american strategy in iraq
Compiled by Daily Star staff
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
The United States and Saudi Arabia welcomed Tuesday an Arab League initiative to resolve the political stalemate in Lebanon and the US secretary of state won tepid Arab backing for a plan to stabilize Iraq. As part her Arab tour to lobby support for the new strategy on Iraq, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice arrived in Kuwait from Saudi Arabia and began a meeting with the foreign ministers of Egypt, Jordan and Gulf Arab states dubbed as "GCC+2." In their final statement, the ministers called on Iran not to meddle in Iraq's affairs and called for Lebanon's sovereignty to be respected.
Earlier, Rice and Saudi counterpart, Prince Saud al-Faisal, reiterated their support for the government of Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora.
"We agreed on the importance of calming down the situation and defusing the existing tension and paving the way to the success of Paris III [donor] conference with support and interest for our two countries," Prince Saud said at a joint conference with Rice in Riyadh.
Rice, who met with Saudi King Abdullah on Monday, underlined the need to "support the government of Fouad Siniora and we will of course have later on this month a conference in Paris that will I think signal the very strong support of the international community for the Lebanese government."
Asked whether Saudi Arabia has agreed to take specific steps to solve the problem in Lebanon in coordination with the United States, Faisal said: "Both of us suggest and welcome the endeavor of the secretary general of the Arab League to find a solution. We are looking forward to the response of the Lebanese factions to this solution, all of us, and previously held in Lebanon and we believe in the necessity to help Lebanon for many objectives ...
"But likewise, like Iraq, we cannot help - outside interests cannot help. The final answer will be for the Lebanese factions. We hope that Lebanon will not be an arena for conflict related to issues for external countries ... We hope that all who want for Lebanon the good to do good or not to do evil."
On Iraq, Prince Saud gave cautious backing to a new US strategy for the war-torn country. "We agree fully with the goals set by the new strategy, which in our view are the goals that - if implemented - would solve the problems that face Iraq," he said.
But he said the Iraqi government needed to play its part.
The government "must stop the resistance, bring everyone into the political process and realize the hopes of the people," he said, adding Shiite militias must be disbanded and the US-backed Constitution, seen as pro-Shiite, revised.
Rice praised Saudi Arabia's role in "urging national reconciliation" in Iraq, and welcomed a greater Arab engagement in efforts to reunify the Iraqis.
Later, Kuwait signaled Arab states' support for the new strategy, saying they hoped President George W. Bush's plan would help stabilize Iraq.
"We expressed our desire to see the president's plan to reinforce American military presence in Baghdad as a vehicle ... to stabilize Baghdad and prevent Iraq from sliding into this ugly war, this civil war," Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammad al-Salem al-Sabah said at a joint news conference with Rice."With respect to US policy toward Iran ... the US and the Gulf expressed in [a] joint communique that we call to all countries to refrain from interfering in Iraqi internal affairs," Sheikh Mohammad said after the GCC+2 talks. "That is something that we are all concerned about. We would like the neighboring countries to work together for peace and stability in Iraq," the Kuwaiti minister said.
The joint communique did not mention Iran by name but said that the two sides wanted to prevent Iraq "becoming a battleground for regional and international powers." "The participants welcomed the commitment by the United States ... to defend the security of the Gulf, the territorial integrity of Iraq, and to ensure a successful, fair and inclusive political process that engages all Iraqi communities," it said. The joint statement stressed the need to dismantle militias in Iraq and expressed hope that Maliki's government will "actively engage all components of the Iraqi people in a real political process and act in a manner that ensures inclusiveness." On Lebanon, the ministers expressed their commitment to "full implementation of UN Security Council resolutions 1559, 1680 and 1701." They called for respecting Lebanon's sovereignty and "non-interference in its internal affairs." - Agencies

March 14 blasts protests as 'touring puppet show'
By Rym Ghazal -Daily Star staff
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
BEIRUT: The March 14 Forces slammed opposition demonstrations as a "touring puppet show" on Tuesday, as Hizbullah declared a "major escalation" in its campaign to bring down the Cabinet and form a national unity government. "The touring puppet show, led by Hizbullah's coup campaign, is trying to jam the [Paris III] conference, which has been organized especially for the good of Lebanon," the March 14 Forces said in a statement after a meeting of the majority coalition in the Beirut neighborhood of Gemmayzeh. The Paris III international donor conference set for January 25 is expected to be attended by Western countries, oil-rich Arab states and international bodies that back Siniora's government. "The opposition forces need to realize that the quickest way for a solution to the current deadlock is accepting the initiative led by the head of the Arab League, Amr Moussa," the coalition statement said. An initiative launched by Moussa to mediate between Lebanon's divided political elite last December made little headway in breaking the country's political deadlock. Separately, resigned Energy and Water Minister Mohammad Fneish rejected any chance of a meeting between the two political camps, vowing that the anti-government campaign would "escalate" and continue "until our demands are met.""We have no choice but to continue to push for the toppling of a government that lost its legitimacy," Fneish said. The Hizbullah member accused the March 14 Forces of hampering the country's progress and "doing the bidding of outside forces," saying such betrayal had forced the opposition forces to "shut the door" on dialogue with the ruling parties.
Accusations of Syrian involvement in Lebanon also resurfaced Tuesday, with the March 14 Forces indirectly accusing the opposition of smuggling weapons into Lebanon. "There has been increased activity by forces affiliated with Syrian mukhabarat along the border, with [the forces] smuggling in trucks filled with arms to sensitive areas in Lebanon, notably in the Western Bekaa and Rashaya and some areas in the mountains," the statement said.
The issue of arms smuggling across the Syrian-Lebanese border has been raised repeatedly in Israeli newspapers and by some March 14 members since an UN-brokered cease-fire was implemented last August, marking the end of the summer 2006 war with Israel.
"[Syria] is trying to destabilize Lebanon ... We want to draw Arab League and UN attention to these violations by the Syrian regime," the March 14 Forces said. In the subsequent months since the summer war, Syria has repeatedly rejected any proposed deployment of international forces along its borders with Lebanon. Syrian President Bashar Assad has warned that any such deployment would be deemed a "hostile" act.
"We just want to highlight this problem and to try and fix the border issue," former MP Fares Soueid told The Daily Star after the Gemmayzeh meeting.
"The Lebanese Army is doing all it can but its capabilities are limited with the army's lack of equipment," he said.
Soueid said the alleged smuggled weapons were of a "small, light kind that can enter homes," in contrast with frequent charges leveled by Israeli officials of "heavy weaponry and rockets" being shipped in to reinforce Hizbullah's arsenal.
"At this stage we have no specific plans as to how to deal with the problem," Soueid said.
The former MP also held Syria "accountable" for the current financial crisis in Lebanon.
"Syria was controlling the country, and it has a hand in the current Lebanese debt," he said.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting of the March 14 Forces, Soueid called on Speaker Nabih Berri to follow up on his "national duty" and convene the Parliament. However, Berri refrained from comment on Tuesday after having issued near daily statements over the past week.
The speaker met with the Iranian and Saudi ambassadors in Beirut on Tuesday, in addition to MP Butros Harb. Separately, a delegation from Amal met with former President Amin Gemayel. "We need to take a break from the [Arab and local] initiatives, so we are undergoing meetings and discussions on all the possible routes to reach a solution," Harb told reporters after his meeting with Berri.

Siniora wins UAE backing for Paris III
By Hani M. Bathish -Special to The Daily Star
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
BEIRUT: Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora met Tuesday with UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed al-Nahyan in Abu Dhabi as part of his regional tour to gather support for an upcoming international donor conference for Lebanon. Siniora arrived late Tuesday in Doha, where he will discuss with Qatari officials the emirate's participation in the Paris III conference, to be held January 25.
Speaking to reporters in Doha, Siniora announced that he would meet with Arab League chief Amr Moussa at the Paris III conference.
"Moussa will be present at the Paris III conference and we will meet," he said. "Hopefully, after I finish my Arab tour, he will be the first person I will call."
Siniora also reiterated his support for an initiative launched
by Moussa in December to broker an agreement between Lebanon's divided political camps, saying: "We completely support [Moussa's] initiative and any rumor of a dispute or a postponement is untrue." Speaking earlier from Abu Dhabi, Siniora insisted that the current Lebanese government is "100 percent legal and constitutional," despite the fact that the Shiite sect is no longer represented in the Cabinet.
"Problems are not solved in the streets but through dialogue, and any solution has to be based on a foundation of balance and commitment," Siniora said, adding that all citizens should feel they are contributing to the progress of their country.
Sheikh Khalifa was reported to have voiced his support for the Lebanese government, the Lebanese people and efforts being made to end the current political deadlock. Khalifa was also said to have voiced his complete support for the Paris III conference and expressed his keenness to assist reconstruction efforts in Lebanon.
Acting Foreign Minister Tarek Mitri, Finance Minister Jihad Azour and Economy and Trade Minister Sami Haddad also attended the meeting.
Siniora later held a private meeting with Khalifa. The premier will travel to Jordan after his meetings in Qatar.
Speaking to members of the Lebanese community in Abu Dhabi, Siniora said his reform program is "a continuous and dynamic process that is not closed, static or carved in stone." Siniora said the reform plan, which "was at one time a vital political issue" was now a matter of "national urgency" that needed to be resolved quickly. He reiterated that there were no political strings attached to the reform plan.
"This reform plan did not drop from the sky one or two months ago, everyone knows, and those who do not know can find out that these reform plans are 100 percent Lebanese," he said. "These ideas have been around for the last 10 years, but have been subject to delays and a lack of initiative."
Long-term losses in Lebanon as a result of the "criminal" Israeli war on Lebanon in the summer of 2006 will reach $10 billion over the next four years, Siniora said. "We strive, with our friends and brothers, to obtain aid that [Lebanon] deserves after suffering 30 years of internal strife, invasions and Israeli occupation, which have destroyed the country," he added. "Add to that a Syrian presence that later became a source of pressure on the country's political and economic life."Acknowledging that "at one time" Syria had a positive role in Lebanon, the premier said: "We want to build a healthy and proper relationship with our Syrian brothers, based on mutual recognition and respect and working together for the betterment of both countries and the Arab world."Siniora said that expectations for growth in Lebanon in 2006 had dropped "drastically" as a result of the summer war with Israel, and cost the country 11 percent of its GDP, as well as the long-term impacts in the years to come.
"Some could well ask, with regards to Paris III, 'why the rush?'" the premier said. "Shouldn't we have waited until we arrived at a consensus? Of course, we should have consensus on all matters of great importance, but need and circumstances do not wait. This does not mean that changes and additions to the [reform] program cannot be made."Siniora said discussions had been held with all parties on the reform plan before the summer war, and that many of the suggestions made during the meetings had been incorporated into the program.

Army lifts cordon on Taamir but delays plans for deployment
By Mohammed Zaatari -Daily Star staff
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
SIDON: The army lifted its cordon around the violence-plagued neighborhood of Taamir on Tuesday, almost one week after a clash between a local Palestinian faction and army soldiers left one soldier critically wounded. Meanwhile, a well-informed source with the army told The Daily Star that the expected deployment of the army in the neighborhood, located on the outskirts of the Ain al-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp, has been delayed for a few weeks "because the army does not want its deployment in Taamir to be regarded as a reaction to the assault on the army checkpoint last week."
The army closed all roads leading to Taamir last Thursday after Jund al-Sham militants fired on an army checkpoint just outside the neighborhood. The altercation was sparked by a soldier's request of a local resident that she remove her veil for identification purposes.
The army had said in a statement Monday that it would deploy in Taamir later in the day.
Army sources said the delayed deployment would likely be prefaced by a meeting among army, state and Palestinian officials at Dar al-Fatwa in Sidon, similar to a meeting held last October that first gave the army a green light to deploy in the tumultuous neighborhood.
Separately, sources inside Ain al-Hilweh spoke of the existence of a taped telephone conversation between a high-ranking army official and the leader of a Palestinian faction in Taamir, in which the Palestinian leader stressed the need for the army's deployment in the area.
Meanwhile, the head of Army Intelligence in the South, Colonel Abbas Ibrahim, continued to hold meetings with Lebanese and Palestinian officials in Sidon on Tuesday to coordinate a "smooth and peaceful" deployment in Taamir. Ibrahim visited Jamaa Islamiya headquarters in Sidon after meeting with the city's MPs Bahia Hariri and Ossama Saad.

National Bloc leader demands answers from Aoun
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
National Bloc leader Carlos Edde issued a statement Tuesday saying the summer 2006 war was a "maneuver" aimed at improving Israel's position in peace negotiations with Syria. "This makes us wonder about the position of [the Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel] Aoun who has become a defender of Syria," Edde said. "Did Aoun and his movement know about Hizbullah's initiative to launch the war this summer?" Edde asked. "The response is not difficult; it is either yes or no. Why are they afraid to answer?"

Syria's envoy to US insists Lebanese 'are being used by superpowers'
Diplomat accuses local leaders of instigating trouble in washington
By Vivian Salama -Special to The Daily Star
Wednesday, January 17, 2007
WASHINGTON: Syria's ambassador to the United States, Imad Moustapha, believes the Lebanese "are being used by the superpowers to play a regional war that does not serve the national interests of Lebanon."
In an interview with The Daily Star, the ambassador warned that some Lebanese leaders have been misled by the Bush administration into believing close relations with Syria were not in Lebanon's interests.
"Certain leaders can't understand that they are being used against us," he said. "After [Syria] left, those people became our most outspoken critics. Lebanon is paying the price for [the decisions of these] people."
Since Syria's withdrawal from Lebanon in 2005 - a move Moustapha called "inevitable" - escalating statements have been made in both Beirut and Damascus concerning Syria's role in Lebanon. Many suspect Syria of involvement in the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, an allegation Syria has repeatedly denied.
"Can they imagine Lebanon being totally hostile to Syria?" Moustapha asked.
"Forget politics. Geographically, historically, the two countries are almost intertwined. It is counterproductive," he said.
"Some Lebanese have come here to Washington to instigate the administration against us. They have this illusion that the US administration is not taking a tough enough stance against [Syria]," he added.
Since US President George W. Bush announced his plan last week to boost America's military presence in Iraq, US officials have ramped up their criticism of Iran and Syria. Bush said the additional troop presence was an attempt to "bolster the security of Iraq and protect American interests." Officials insist this plan does not include a future attack on Syria or Iran.
"The administration portrays Iran as a country that dictates to Syria," Moustapha said. "This is bizarre and preposterous. US politicians are trying to create a rift between Syria and Iran."
A statement released this week by the Syrian Embassy in Washington dismissed the most recent wave of American accusations as "baseless."
"The Syrian and Iraqi governments have realized that forging positive and productive relations with each other is the inevitable and necessary way forward," the statement said.
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani kicked off a landmark visit to Damascus on Sunday - the first by an Iraqi head of state in some three decades. Syrian President Bashar Assad assured him that Syria would do all it could to ease escalating tensions in Iraq.
The Bush administration has repeatedly voiced concern that Iraq is the sole passageway between Syria and Iran. The two countries were also linked to Hizbullah during Israel's 2006 summer war on Lebanon.
US officials accused Damascus and Tehran of supplying Hizbullah with rockets and other weaponry in the resistance group's fight against Israel.
"Saying [the summer conflict] was a Syrian war by proxy is dismissive," Moustapha insisted. "Lebanon was invaded by Israel four times in the past. Who would blow up his own home because someone in Syria or in Iran tells them to do so?"
The chief of staff of the Israeli Army, Dan Halutz, meanwhile, told Israel's Army Radio on Monday that Damascus is "pulling the strings in Lebanon." Rumors of a war between Israel and Syria were "premature and exaggerated," he added.
Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said this week that peace anytime soon between Israel and Syria was unrealistic. In an interview with Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Anba, he said "the American government will not allow the [Israelis] to negotiate with Syria."
However, Moustapha said Syria had repeatedly called for diplomatic talks with Israel.
"We want peaceful relations with Israel, but also not in a sell-out way," he said. "We want dignified relations with the United States, but also not in a sell-out way."
As for Lebanon, the ambassador said he was concerned by news of continued domestic turbulence in Beirut.
"The situation is very tense in Lebanon - they need a national coalition."

Hizbullah Threatens 'Major Escalation' While Aoun's Movement on 'Full Alert'
While Hizbullah threatened "major escalation" in its campaign to topple Premier Fouad Saniora's government, its allies of the Free Patriotic Movement said they remain on "full alert." "All political doors are completely closed, and there is no prospect for a settlement," Hizbullah's mouthpiece Al Manar said in its Monday night newscast."A major escalation is very possible," Al Manar threatened.
Hizbullah also lashed out at the March 14 coalition, rejecting any private meeting between its leaders and Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.
"Hizbullah rejected such meetings since the ongoing conflict is political, not personal," the daily As Safir on Tuesday quoted Al Manar as saying.
Parliamentary majority leader Saad Hariri has said he was willing to meet Nasrallah "any time, any moment."
"Our hand is stretched for dialogue to (achieve) a political settlement in Lebanon," Hariri said after meeting French President Jacques Chirac in Paris on Sunday.Meanwhile, the Free Patriotic Movement, led by General Michel Aoun, a Hizbullah ally, said following its weekly meeting at Rabiyeh that the party decided to "remain on full alert."In a statement published by Lebanese newspapers on Tuesday, the FPM said it will step up its protests "within the framework of the opposition in due time."(AP photo shows a Lebanese woman holding a portrait of Nasrallah during a protest.) Beirut, 16 Jan 07, 10:07

New Nets to Protect Fish in the Mediterranean
Countries with fishing fleets in the Mediterranean have agreed to use a new type of nets to help young fish escape capture and go on to breed, the Food and Agriculture Organization said Tuesday. The simple change to the shape of the mesh holes in the nets of bottom trawls will help protect fish stocks, the Rome-based U.N. agency said in a statement. Two fish that will benefit are red mullet and hake, identified as fully exploited or over-exploited by the FAO's General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean (GFCM), which concluded its annual meeting here last week.
The commission also agreed to a set of criteria for measuring the capacity of fishing fleets, a "milestone" for the Mediterranean, said GFCM Secretary Alain Bonzon. The body also signed on to new rules for tuna fishing adopted by the International Commission on Atlantic Tuna -- whose membership overlaps with that of the GFCM -- bringing signatories to 56 from 42. The rules include a 15-year recovery period for bluefin tuna, which are classified as "depleted" in the Mediterranean. The 24 GFCM member states are Albania, Algeria, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Egypt, Spain, France, Greece, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lebanon, Libya, Malta, Monaco, Morocco, Romania, Slovenia, Serbia, Montenegro, Syria, Tunisia and Turkey.(AFP) Beirut, 16 Jan 07, 16:36

French Envoy to Discuss Lebanon with Tehran
France plans to send a special envoy to Iran to discuss "regional issues" including Lebanon and Israel's right to exist, the foreign ministry said Tuesday.
The ministry was reacting to an article in Le Monde newspaper according to which French President Jacques Chirac wishes to "put out diplomatic feelers to Iran". According to Le Monde, Chirac "has decided to send a high-ranking envoy to Tehran to discuss the situation in Lebanon, where Hizbullah, supported by Iran, threatens the government of Prime Minister Fouad Saniora."Chirac is to host an international conference on Lebanon on January 25 in Paris."There are discussions underway concerning a possible envoy, but no definitive decision has been taken," said foreign ministry spokesman Jean-Baptiste Mattei. "The aim of any dialogue would be to restate our positions on regional issues," he said, citing Lebanon, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and Israel's right to exist. Le Monde quoted aides to Chirac as saying that the aim was not to "engage with Tehran in a parallel discussion on the nuclear issue, which is a matter for the U.N., and at the European level, for (EU foreign affairs chief) Javier Solana." "France remains in full solidarity with the international community (on the nuclear issue)," said Mattei.(AFP) Beirut, 16 Jan 07, 16:20

Larijani Discussed Shiite-Sunni Understanding with Saudi Officials
Iran's top national security official said Tuesday he discussed with Saudi officials ways of improving understanding between Shiites and Sunnis in a bid to boost security in the Middle East. Ali Larijani told Iran's state television he had discussed with his counterpart Prince Bandar bin Sultan "bringing more security to the region" and had also met with Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal and King Abdullah. His trip to Riyadh, details of which are still sketchy, came against a backdrop of bloodshed in Iraq between majority Shiites and minority Sunnis, as well as political tensions in multi-communal Lebanon.
"In any case, Iran and Saudi Arabia are influential countries in the region and their ties help very much the security and stability of the region," Larijani said.
"The cooperation between the two countries is especially important for making a better atmosphere to bring closer the communities of Shiites and Sunnis," he added. "And we also discussed the necessary efforts to be exerted by Iran and Saudi Arabia in this regard."
It was not clear exactly when he returned from his trip which started Sunday. Iran's population is overwhelmingly Shiite. Saudi Arabia is a predominantly Sunni country although it also has a minority community of Shiites concentrated in its Eastern Province. Iran has expressed concern over suggestions that Saudi Arabia might intervene on the side of Iraq's Sunnis were the United States to pull out of the war-torn country suddenly. Saudi media said Larijani, who is secretary of the supreme national Security Council, also delivered a letter from Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei to the Saudi monarch. Its contents were not disclosed. Both countries share long borders with Iraq. The U.S., Riyadh's top Western ally, has accused Iran of interfering in Iraq to increase the instability in the country, a charge vehemently denied by Tehran.(AFP) Beirut, 16 Jan 07, 14:59

Syrians, Israelis Reportedly Held Secret Peace Talks for Two Years
Israelis and Syrians reached understandings for a peace treaty in secret unofficial talks over the past two years, Haaretz reported Tuesday, but Syrian and Israeli officials denied the report. The talks were held in Europe between September 2004 and July 2006 in the presence of a European mediator and with the knowledge of Israeli and Syrian government officials, Haaretz added. The last meeting was held during Israel's summer war with Hizbullah, it said.
The contacts ended when the Israelis refused a request by the Syrians that these be upgraded to official status and include a senior U.S. official.
The Israeli paper said the office of former Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and his successor Ehud Olmert were kept informed of the contacts, but officials denied this. "Neither Prime Minister Ehud Olmert nor his office were informed of these secret contacts with the Syrians and their arrangements," spokeswoman Miri Eisin told Agence France-Presse. Dov Weisglass, a senior aide to former Premier Sharon told Israel's army radio that "there was a group of people who concluded a peace document, but Sharon had never given his green light" for the talks. Under the agreement, Israel would withdraw from the strategic Golan Heights that it captured from Syria in the 1967 Six Day War. Syrians requested the withdrawal be completed in five years, Israel asked for 15. A buffer zone in the form of a park administered by Syria would be established along the western edge of the plateau. Israelis would not need visas to access the park. Israeli and Syrian territory on either side of the park would be demilitarized. The Syrian zone would be four times larger than the Israeli one. The Jewish state would retain control over the use of the waters of the Jordan River and the Sea of Galilee.
Damascus would agree to stop supporting Hizbullah and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas and would distance itself from Iran, Haaretz said.
An early-warning system would be established, including a station on Mount Hermon in the northernmost tip of the Golan run by the United States.
The Israeli representative in all the talks was Alon Liel, a former director general of the Israeli foreign ministry. The Syrian representative was Ibrahim Suleiman, a Syrian-American businessman. Haaretz did not reveal the identity of the European mediator or several other Israelis who took part in some of the meetings. "We insisted on making the existence of meetings known to the relevant parties," the paper quoted Liel as saying. "Nonetheless, there was no official Israeli connection to the content of the talks and to the ideas that were raised during the meetings." Liel reported the results after every meeting to a senior foreign ministry official, with the office of Sharon also kept up to date, and the European mediator also met with Israeli officials, according to Haaretz. "I was convinced that the Syrians want a peace agreement with you," the paper quoted the mediator as telling Israeli officials. The mediator told Israeli officials further that the Syrian regime was concerned the nation's oil sources were running out, leading to an economic crash, and that a peace treaty would lead to a lifting of U.S. sanctions on Damascus imposed in 2004. Official peace talks collapsed in 2000, in part because of disputes over the return of the Golan Heights.(AFP)(AFP photo shows Syrian students gather on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights.) Beirut, 16 Jan 07, 13:40

Rana Koleilat Released from Brazilian Jail
The Al-Madina Bank scandal heroin Rana Koleilat has been released from her jail in Brazil, An Nahar quoted legal sources in Lebanon as saying Tuesday. Koleilat was arrested last year by Brazilian police at a hotel apartment on the outskirts of Sao Paulo on charges of trying to bribe security officers to release her. Koleilat spent a few months in prison in Lebanon in 2005, but then jumped bail on fraud charges in Al-Madina banking scandal and fled the country, allegedly with Syrian help. An Nahar said that Koleilat "is awaiting an answer from Brazilian authorities on her demand for political asylum" there. U.N. investigators have reportedly told Brazilian police they want to question her in the February 2005 assassination of ex-Premier Rafik Hariri. Brazilian police at the time of her arrest said the investigators wanted to know whether money allegedly diverted from Al-Madina Bank, where Koleilat worked, was used to finance the slaying. Lebanon has no extradition treaty with Brazil. Beirut, 16 Jan 07, 11:52

Mahmoud Abbas in Beirut Next Week
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will visit Lebanon next week to discuss regional issues and conditions of Palestinian refugees in the country, foreign ministry officials in Beirut said Tuesday. Abbas, who last visited Lebanon in July 2005, will hold talks on January 22 and 23 with President Emile Lahoud, Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri and Premier Fouad Saniora, the officials said. They said the talks will focus on regional issues, Abbas's weekend meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in Ramallah as well as the situation of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.
Rice has agreed to hold a three-way summit with Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in three to four weeks, a senior U.S. official announced Monday. About 400,000 Palestinian refugees live in a dozen refugee camps across Lebanon, in which Palestinian militant groups rather than Lebanese forces are responsible for security.Some pro-Syrian factions maintain armed bases outside the camps despite U.N. resolutions which call for the disarming of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias.(AFP)  Beirut, 16 Jan 07, 11:25

Interrogating Suspects In Bashir Gemayel's Assassination Set for February
The state security court on Monday set Feb. 1 a date to begin interrogation of two Lebanese citizens charged with involvement in the assassination of president-elect Bashir Gemayel 24 years ago. The date was set by judge Antoine Kheir, head of the Judicial Council, which is the court entrusted with cases related to state security. The brief statement said Habib al-Shartouni and Nabil Alam, both at-large, should report to the court for interrogation on Feb. 1.Failing to do so, they will be tried in absentia. Gemayel was assassinated by a major blast that ripped through the Phalange Party office in Beirut's Ashrafiyeh district in September 1982 before he took the oath to assume the presidency. Shartouni, a member of the Syrian Social National Party (SSNP) was jailed pending trial until Oct. 13, 1990, when Syrian forces invaded the then Christian enclave. He mysteriously vanished from the central Prison in Roumieh and his whereabouts remain unknown. Beirut, 15 Jan 07, 19:41

The End of Israeli Military Restraint
Out with the New, in with the Old
by Or Honig
Middle East Quarterly
Winter 2007

Between 1948 and 1993, Israel relied on a policy of strategic deterrence to ensure peace and security. If Israel was attacked from beyond its borders, it responded with disproportionate force. For example, on October 1, 1985, Israeli air force fighter planes bombed the headquarters of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) in Tunisia, killing fifty-six Palestinian terrorists, in response to the PLO murder of three Israeli tourists in Cyprus.[1] However, after Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin signed the Oslo accords in 1993, Israel adopted a policy of strategic restraint. But rather than bring peace, the shift to a policy of restraint furthered insecurity. On July 12, 2006, Prime Minister Ehud Olmert returned Israel to a policy of strategic deterrence when he ordered massive retaliation against Lebanon for a Hezbollah cross-border attack and kidnapping earlier that day. While many Israeli analysts and politicians criticize the Israeli military performance in Lebanon,[2] the return to a policy of deterrence was necessary for Israel's long-term peace and security.

Israel's Policy of Deterrence, 1948-93
Prime Minister David Ben Gurion and then-chief of staff Moshe Dayan formulated the policy of disproportionate response in the 1950s and 1960s. While Israel had secured its independence by driving off invading Egyptian, Iraqi, Jordanian, Lebanese, and Syrian armies, its neighbors refused to recognize Israel and hosted terrorists who raided and harassed the Jewish state. Ben Gurion and Dayan's logic was threefold. First, Israel's small size made it too sensitive to human casualties to allow the home front or the standing army to absorb too many attacks in long wars of attrition. Second, Israel's lack of territorial depth also made it necessary to take the fight to enemy territory by preemption if need be. And, third, the need to deter initiation of new waves of attacks necessitated that every round of hostilities end with a crushing blow to the Arab adversaries.[3]

Former prime minister Ariel Sharon first came to prominence as a military officer in charge of Unit 101, which conducted raids against targets in Egypt and Jordan and, subsequently, guided aerial retaliations in the 1960s in response to Syrian provocations in the north. These retaliations were designed to coerce the neighboring countries to curb terrorist actions from their territories.[4] The 1956 and 1967 wars also reflected this preemptive logic since they came in part as a response to threats of terrorism and infiltrations.[5]

Such military steps effectively induced neighboring Arab countries to assert control over Palestinian terrorist organizations operating from their territory. For instance, the October 14, 1953 Israeli operation in Qibiyah led to quiet on the Jordanian front until March 1956.[6] After the 1956 Sinai campaign, there were no terrorist attacks launched from Egypt or the Egyptian-controlled Gaza Strip until 1967.[7] However, while Arab countries limited their physical support for terrorism while they licked their battlefield wounds, Palestinians redoubled their efforts to engage in terror.[8]

After the Six-Day war, many Israel Defense Forces (IDF) generals and Labor party politicians began to question the offensive nature of Israel's deterrence doctrine. As Israel gained territorial depth, the concept of "defensible borders" temporarily replaced the emphasis on preemptive strikes. Israeli strategists believed that their new territory would enable Israel to absorb an initial assault and organize a counterattack. As a result, the IDF reduced its operational activity against terrorist-harboring states.[9] Some Israeli security officials also believed that rather than acting with force against Palestinian terror bases in Jordan and Syria, priority should be given to crushing the beginnings of any terror cells within the newly-occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip.[10]

The damage Israel sustained during the 1973 Yom Kippur war forced Israeli defense planners to reconsider this defensive posture and led to renewed emphasis on an offensive doctrine. Israel's forfeiture of the Sinai after the Camp David accords also caused Israeli strategists to reconsider their ability to rely on territorial depth.[11] The resurgence of the offensive doctrine also guided Israeli actions against terrorism. Indeed, on March 14, 1978, Israel launched "Operation Litani" against Palestinian terrorists in the area in southern Lebanon known as "Fatahland." Yet, in fact, the 1982 war was the last major manifestation of the doctrine of disproportionate response. By the mid-1980s, Israel refrained from taking strong military action against the PLO's military arm, even as it continued to launch attacks from Jordan until 1986.[12]

Israel's Policy of Restraint, 1993-2006
With the onset of the Oslo process, the Israeli leadership cast aside any remnant of the strategic deterrence doctrine. Reflecting the political atmosphere at the time, Israel's military planners unveiled a new strategic concept of havlagah that sought restraint toward the Palestinian Authority.[13] Israeli politicians posited that the need to avoid disrupting the diplomatic and internal Palestinian political process necessitated a more limited and proportionate response. This meant a reversal of traditional roles: the army had to show restraint whereas society should be prepared to absorb attacks. The Israel Defense Forces refrained from entering enemy territory with ground forces even if this meant allowing terrorist bases and bomb factories to continue to operate. Between September 1993 and September 1998, terrorists based in the West Bank or Gaza struck Israel more than ninety times, killing 279 Israelis, without engendering any serious response.[14]

The logic of the new doctrine was threefold: first, Israeli politicians argued that Jerusalem had to guard its international standing better and conform to European interpretations of international law; second, Israel should trust Arab governments to deal with terrorists sheltering in their midst so as not to intervene and stigmatize Arab moderates as collaborators; and third, Israel should wait for internal political processes in the Arab world to address the underlying social and political conditions that enabled terrorism to grow.[15] Brigadier General Eival Gilady, the officer who helped most to debunk the premises of Oslo in the Israeli policy community, said that during the Oslo process, officials hoped "the economic and political fruits of peace would defeat terrorism."[16] For example, Shimon Peres argued that elimination of poverty and an end to occupation of the West Bank and Gaza would stop terror.[17]

The Oslo process created a strong momentum and a political desire to bring peace quickly to all fronts, sit in a defensive posture, and enjoy the newly found international legitimacy. Prior to the Oslo process, not only did the Israeli government maintain a 328 square mile (850 square kilometer) security zone in southern Lebanon, but throughout the 1980s, Israel launched air strikes and sent armored units to attack terrorist bases deep in Lebanon, including in areas near the Syrian border.[18] Soon after the Oslo accords, though, and with an eye towards a comprehensive settlement to the broader Arab-Israeli conflict, Israeli politicians began to discuss a possible withdrawal from southern Lebanon.[19] As early as April 1996, Foreign Minister Ehud Barak presented to Dennis Ross, President Bill Clinton's Middle East envoy, the idea of unilateral withdrawal in order to remove Hezbollah's motivation to attack.[20] The Israeli rush to evacuate southern Lebanon became clearer when, in July 1997, Labor party dove and Knesset (parliament) deputy Yossi Beilin formed The Movement for the Withdrawal from Lebanon. There were even calls from the normally hawkish Likud party to retreat. Michael Eitan, one of the party's Knesset deputies, called on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to examine all options for withdrawal from Lebanon.[21]

Such actions would prove to be both a tactical and strategic mistake. Subsequent events would demonstrate that Israel's rejectionist opponents saw a linkage between their embrace of violence and Israeli concessions in both Palestinian areas and in Lebanon.

Strategic Restraint in the Palestinian Arena
The Oslo accords called for Arafat to "renounce the use of terrorism and other acts of violence" and to "assume responsibility over all PLO elements and personnel in order to assure their compliance, prevent violations and discipline violators."[22] Israeli officials hoped Arafat would crush his Islamist opposition much as had Syrian president Hafez al-Assad at Hama in February 1982 and as Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak had done in a country-wide crackdown in the mid-1990s.[23] Instead, Arafat transformed the Palestinian Authority into a launching pad for suicide terrorism, believing that far from retaliating with disproportionate force, Israel would actually make concessions in response to violence. Yet, even as Israeli officials saw Gaza and the West Bank transformed into terrorist safe havens, until April 2002, Jerusalem remained steadfast in its adherence to a policy of restraint.[24]

During these years, Israeli officials conducted only "hot pursuit" against terrorists fleeing to the West Bank and Gaza but refrained from launching preemptive strikes against the terrorist infrastructure.[25] This meant that the Israel Defense Forces could only act against leading terrorists while explosives laboratories, training centers, and safe houses remained intact.

Even during repeated cycles of terrorism and Palestinian Authority inaction, Israeli forces held back. Following a series of attacks in February and March 1995, which killed fifty-eight Israelis in nine days, Prime Minister Shimon Peres sent chief of military intelligence Moshe Ya'alon to ask Arafat to arrest Muhammad Deif, the head of the Hamas military arm. Arafat said that he had never heard of Deif even though he had hosted him in his office for a meeting only a week before.[26]

Despite his strong, no-nonsense rhetoric and essays on the need to respond forcefully to terror, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu maintained the policy of restraint.[27] When Arafat himself gave the green light for the March 21, 1997 Hamas attack on the Apropo Café in Tel Aviv,[28] Netanyahu responded only by ordering the assassination—later botched—of Hamas leader Khalid Mashaal and by issuing a list of demands for Arafat to crackdown on terror. Netanyahu refrained from taking direct action against Hamas cells in the West Bank and Gaza or, later, from ensuring that Arafat fulfilled the demands.[29]

Even in the initial stages of the second intifada, the Israeli government sought restraint in order to contain the armed conflict. Many Israeli policymakers hoped that the intifada would be short-lived and Palestinians would reconsider Barak's Camp David II offer for a comprehensive settlement. Statements by senior Fatah leaders, such as Marwan Barghouti and Othman Abu Gharbiya, showed that Arafat and his henchmen had cast aside their Oslo and subsequent commitments and had rededicated themselves to violence. For instance, just two months after the outbreak of the intifada, Sakhr Habash, a senior member of Fatah's Central Committee, described the Palestinian goal to be "the establishment of an independent state with Jerusalem as its capital in the borders of June 4, 1967, and ensuring the right of return and compensation for Palestinian refugees."[30] Still, Israel Defense Forces incursions into areas under full Palestinian jurisdiction were limited in both frequency and scope.

Only after terrorists killed 133 Israelis in a series of attacks in March 2002 did Prime Minister Ariel Sharon decide to send ground forces into towns such as Jenin and Nablus and quarantine Arafat in Ramallah. All told, 695 Israelis died in terrorist attacks between the inauguration of the Palestinian Authority on May 4, 1994, and the launching of Operation Defensive Shield on March 28, 2002.[31]

Strategic Restraint in the Lebanese Arena
On May 31, 1999, in the heat of an election campaign, Ehud Barak promised that if elected, he would withdraw Israeli forces from Lebanon within a year of taking office. Many Israeli analysts dismissed concerns that Hezbollah would fill the vacuum left by departing Israeli forces. They argued that while Hezbollah might amass weapons, the radical militia would have no reason to escalate the conflict.

Once elected, Barak kept his promise. On May 24, 2000, the Israeli army completed its withdrawal and, less than a month later, U.N. secretary general Kofi Annan certified Israel to be in full compliance with U.N. Security Council resolution (UNSCR) 425, which had required the Jewish state "to cease its military action against Lebanese territorial integrity and withdraw forthwith its forces from all Lebanese territory."[32]

Israel's unilateral withdrawal from Lebanon convinced both hawks and doves in the Arab world that terrorism worked. On May 25, 2000, the day after Israel withdrew from southern Lebanon, Sheikh Hasan Nasrallah, the secretary-general of Hezbollah declared, "The road to Palestine and freedom is the road of the resistance and the intifada!"[33]

The perception that terrorism had won what diplomacy had not undermined the doves. For instance, Nabil Amr, a Palestinian moderate, and the minister of information in Mahmoud Abbas's government, said the Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon was the main reason that the Palestinian Authority reverted to using violence to achieve political goals.[34] Among Palestinian extremists, the Israeli withdrawal strengthened the belief that Israel was weak. In his victory speech, Nasrallah said Israel was as fragile as "a spider's web."[35] It is no surprise, then, that both Fatah and Hamas sought to emulate Hezbollah. Hamas leader Khalid Mashaal sought to become a second Nasrallah. Prestige matters to Palestinian terror groups. While it is difficult to prove the extent to which the withdrawal from Lebanon influenced Arafat's decision to open overt armed struggle against Israel, it provided evidence that Israeli leaders granted generous concessions under fire and contributed to the erosion of Israeli deterrence.

Upon withdrawal, Barak said that if Hezbollah continued its attacks, the Israeli military would respond with disproportionate force.[36] But when, on October 7, 2000, Hezbollah crossed the border and abducted three Israeli soldiers, Barak declined to retaliate and, instead, sought to negotiate for the return of their bodies. In the face of Israeli restraint, Hezbollah grew bolder. The group launched a series of artillery attacks against Israeli military positions in the Shabaa Farms; again Israeli response was muted.

After Sharon assumed office in February 2001, he made a show of ordering more robust action. Three days after an April 14, 2001 attack in which Hezbollah killed an Israeli soldier in the Shabaa Farms, the Israeli air force killed four Syrian soldiers during a retaliatory attack on a Syrian radar station in Dahr al-Baydar, a Lebanese site 45 kilometers east of Beirut. Then, in response to Hezbollah shelling and infiltration attempts during the spring of 2001, the Israeli air force on July 1, 2001, hit a Syrian radar station in Riyaq in the Bekaa Valley close to the border of Syria and Lebanon.[37] The purpose of the attacks was twofold: first, to retaliate for Hezbollah attacks and, second, to transmit to young and inexperienced Syrian president Bashar al-Assad that Israel would hold Damascus responsible for its support for Hezbollah.

At the time, many Israeli analysts believed that Sharon's attacks stopped Hezbollah provocations. But, while the border was quiet, Assad simply shifted tactics. He sought to maintain plausible deniability while helping the group build its rocket arsenal.[38] Hezbollah declined to assume responsibility for the March 12, 2002 attack on the Israeli village of Shlomi, which killed seven civilians. On other occasions, it blamed Ahmad Jibril's Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command for artillery attacks into northern Israel.[39] Sharon's government reverted to his predecessor's policy of restraint and declined to take action.

Indeed, Israeli officials interpreted Hezbollah's funneling of funds to Fatah elements during the second intifada as evidence that new Lebanese domestic and international constraints had prevented Hezbollah from escalating the fight along Israel's northern border.[40] But, by linking itself to the Palestinian struggle, Hezbollah sought to broaden its own legitimacy.

While Israeli advocates of restraint argued that it would play into Hezbollah's hands to link events in the north to the conflict with the Palestinians,[41] Hezbollah leaders interpreted Israeli inaction as weakness. Israeli restraint backfired.

In 2002, Hezbollah again began to ratchet up its attacks on northern Israel. Initially, it attacked only military forces in the Shabaa Farms sector. The IDF continued its restraint, responding only with limited artillery and aerial attacks in the same sector. Subsequently, Hezbollah sought to penetrate Israel through the village of Ghajar, divided between Lebanon and Israel in the May 2000 Lebanese demarcation. Finally, it increased its support for the Palestinian intifada, clearly signaling that it was no longer engaged solely with Lebanese issues. The Israeli military again limited its response to the local area so as to deny Hezbollah a pretext for escalation.[42]

Making matters worse was Sharon's willingness to negotiate with Hezbollah for the release of the bodies of kidnapped Israeli soldiers and Elhanan Tannenbaum, a reserve colonel kidnapped in Dubai in May 2000 where, court documents allege, he had gone to conclude a drug deal.[43] The exchange, which took four years to negotiate, included the release of 400 Palestinian and 30 Lebanese prisoners. Even prior to the exchange, though, the protracted negotiation process both reinforced Nasrallah's stature in the Arab world as the focal point of resistance and also enabled Hezbollah to portray the kidnapping of Israeli soldiers as legitimate rules of the game.[44]

Through this period, Israel's restraint policy toward Lebanon had several dimensions. First, Israel avoided killing top Hezbollah leaders. At one point, according to Ronen Bergman, a well-respected Israeli journalist, Israel even passed up the opportunity to kill Imad Mughniyah, the head of Hezbollah's military arm.[45] Israeli officials sought quiet on the northern front. They feared opening a second front and sought to concentrate only on the Palestinian front. For instance, Major General Giora Eiland, who served as head of both the IDF operations and planning branches, argued that opening a second front would aggravate Israel's strategic situation.[46] Among the strongest advocates of this argument was Avi Dichter, the man in charge of the fight against terrorism as head of SHABAK, the Israeli internal security agency. He was concerned that action against Hezbollah would stretch Israeli forces too thin and thought that the mission to protect Israel from Palestinian suicide bombers infiltrating from the West Bank should take priority.[47] Indeed, he seldom mentioned the Lebanese group in his public speeches. During this period, the Israeli secret services targeted only two Hezbollah operatives—Ali Hussein Saleh and Ghaleb Awali—both of whom assisted the Palestinians in the second intifada.[48]

Second, Israeli officials prioritized covert action. The two Israeli secret security services, the Mossad and the SHABAK, ran this campaign against Hezbollah operatives and their financial sources and sidelined the Israel Defense Forces.[49]

And third, Jerusalem sought heavier reliance on international diplomacy to curb the Hezbollah threat. Many officials argued that reversing restraint toward Palestinians or, by extension Hezbollah, could antagonize the Arab street and undercut security in moderate Arab countries.[50]

Israeli officials saw the September 2, 2004 passage of U.N. Security Council resolution 1559, which called for the dismantlement of Lebanese militias, as a landmark victory for Israel's policy of restraint. According to Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom, the decision reflected the international community's realization "that Syria's occupation of Lebanon and its support for Palestinian terror must end."[51]

Why did such logic fall flat? Proponents misjudged the willingness and ability of ordinary Lebanese to constrain Hezbollah. Many Israeli analysts believed economic growth and political centralization, as well as the potential loss to Lebanese tourism revenue, would make large-scale Hezbollah action impossible.[52] The advocates of restraint also asserted that Israeli action might disrupt or even reverse the Lebanese political processes and international concerns that forced Syria's withdrawal from Lebanon.[53]

Proponents of restraint also underestimated the willingness of officials and diplomats to hold Israel's adversaries to their commitments. Neither the Israeli government nor the United Nations reacted when Hezbollah constructed military bunkers along the Israeli border in violation of U.N. Security Council resolution 1559, which specifically called "for the disbanding and disarmament of all Lebanese and non-Lebanese militias."[54]

Ironically, even as Hezbollah violated UNSCR 1559, the Israeli government held to its concessions. Israel's then-foreign minister Shlomo Ben Ami explained that the Israeli military could no more attack Hezbollah's bunkers as attack weapons depots in Syria. What militias did within Lebanese sovereign territory was no longer Israel's business, he argued.[55]

Israeli analysis of Lebanon was also colored by wishful thinking. Many Israeli policymakers believed that domestic Lebanese and international constraints would eventually undercut the group.[56] They pointed to calls by various Lebanese politicians for Hezbollah's disarmament in the wake of UNSCR 1559.[57]

These analysts reiterated this argument when on July 19, 2005, Hezbollah joined the Lebanese government.[58] Dan Meridor, chairman of the special Ministry of Defense committee charged with drafting Israel's national security concept, bragged just a few weeks before the outbreak of the war against Hezbollah of the "political foiling" (sikul medini) of Hezbollah, citing it as a successful example of how terrorism could be fought by political rather than military means.[59] Subsequent events show just how wrong was Meridor's analysis. Hezbollah's participation in the Lebanese national dialogue was for appearance only; Hezbollah had no intention of disarming.[60]

After the outbreak of war, many Israeli officials acknowledged their misreading of Hezbollah. Deputy Prime Minister Shimon Peres said he had not imagined that such a war would erupt. He expressed disbelief that Hezbollah could launch a war resulting in a thousand Lebanese deaths "all to make a few demagogic speeches."[61]

What enabled the illusion of successful restraint? Several years of relative quiet and normalcy in northern Israel convinced Israeli policymakers that their gamble for peace and security paid off. But even as the fruits of restraint faltered, the fear factor restrained Israeli consideration of alternative approaches. Many Israeli decision-makers worried that military action against Hezbollah might trigger retaliation against Jewish targets abroad.[62] Israeli intelligence officials remember well the devastation and recriminations that followed the 1992 and 1994 Hezbollah bombings of the Israeli embassy and Jewish community center in Buenos Aires.[63] Indeed, after the July 2006 outbreak of hostilities, former SHABAK research division head Barak Ben Tzur warned that the danger of attacks on Jewish targets abroad was imminent.[64]

The Critics of Restraint
Not everyone accepted the primacy of restraint. Critics warned of Hezbollah's missile buildup, especially after Hezbollah leader Hasan Nasrallah bragged of having 12,000 rockets.[65] Major General Aharon Farkash, head of military intelligence, even warned that Hezbollah's rockets could reach the Sharon area of central Israel, an assessment borne out during the August 2006 missile barrage.[66] Older, seasoned officials in the Defense Ministry pointed out that Hezbollah had little incentive to integrate into Lebanon. The creation of a Hezbollah state within a state demonstrated that Nasrallah had not abandoned his goal of establishing a Shi‘ite Islamic republic in Lebanon. And his patrons in Iran hardly wanted Hezbollah to disband, seeing Hezbollah as an important lever in any confrontation with Israel or the United States.[67] Israeli critics of restraint also argued that the developing linkage between the Palestinian and Lebanese arenas mandated a far more forceful response.[68]

Perhaps the greatest argument against restraint, though, was its corrosive impact on Israel's deterrence.[69] The image of Israeli invincibility—or, at least, the certainty of painful response—took decades to cement. The core of deterrence was the belief by Israel's adversaries that they could not act with impunity. Once Israeli officials demonstrated their willingness to absorb attacks rather than fight back and even began to make political and territorial concessions in the face of violence, the cost-benefit analysis of striking Israel shifted in favor of the terrorists and their sponsors. A deterrence policy that took decades to build collapsed in the course of a decade.

In retrospect, letting Hezbollah amass its arsenal was misguided. Indeed, many pundits have recently judged Israel's restraint policy during the last six years to be fundamentally flawed. They assert that Israel unwisely let Hezbollah pile up rockets which thus led to the collapse of Israel's deterrence. They also assert that this policy led to an increased Iranian military presence on Israel's doorstep.[70] IDF chief of staff Dan Halutz even admitted publicly that it was a mistake not to prevent the Hezbollah buildup.[71]

Still, restraint did have some benefit. Hezbollah underestimated the support of the international community for Israel's initial actions. On July 16, the Group of Eight (G-8) summit blamed Hezbollah for instigating the violence.[72] And while some critics may blame developments in Palestinian rocket strategy on Hezbollah,[73] there is no clear relationship. Hamas increased its rocket attacks in June and July 2006 not because of Hezbollah but rather because Hamas engineer Adnan al-Ghul's many experiments improved the group's technical capability.[74] Still, the fact that Ghul enjoyed safe haven in Gaza to conduct his experiments is indicative of the failure of restraint, and there is little question that both Hamas and Hezbollah seek to emulate and incorporate successful elements of each others' strategies.

Nasrallah's Deadly Miscalculation
So why did Prime Minister Ehud Olmert decide to cast aside a pattern of restraint and launch a disproportionate strike on Hezbollah and Lebanon? In part, Nasrallah miscalculated. Hezbollah's operation was a flagrant provocation since it took place in the western sector of the border, an area not in dispute, unlike the Shabaa Farms in the eastern sector, and since it included the shelling of Israeli civilian residences and farms. He forced Israeli policymakers to rethink their policy concepts.

Nasrallah underestimated the resilience of Israel's civilian leadership to fight a just war. He forced both Olmert and Defense Minister Amir Peretz to respond. As civilian leaders rather than former military heroes like Rabin, Sharon, and Barak, both were more sensitive to any insinuation of weakness. Nasrallah also misjudged the timing. As a democracy, the Israeli government must be accountable to the populace. Because fighting occurred during the summer months when children were out of school and many families on vacation, Israeli political leaders could conduct war with fewer disruptions to civilian life than in the autumn or spring.

It is possible that Nasrallah timed the operation to take advantage of developments in the Gaza Strip. He may have calculated that Israeli operations in Gaza had distracted the political leaders who would hesitate before opening a second front. Also, when Al-Jazeera and other Arab media networks are full of incitement and coverage of Israeli actions against the Palestinians, it becomes easier to justify Hezbollah's own actions.[75] Its first kidnapping operation in 2000, similarly, came a month after the outbreak of the second Palestinian intifada.

Third, Nasrallah may have underestimated Israeli society. Years of terror and more than 2000 deaths from terrorist attacks since 1967 had immunized Israel to casualties.[76] Knesset member Tsachi Hanegbi, chairman of the prestigious security and foreign affairs committee, observed that even the worst of Hezbollah's Katyusha rocket attacks had less devastating consequence than prominent Jerusalem terrorist attacks such as the bombings at Café Moment or the Sbarro pizza restaurant.[77] Here, too, Israeli officials may have also misjudged their society by failing to understand the resolve of Israelis to absorb causalities. When the Israeli public is certain that the Jewish state is fighting for a just cause, their support resembles that of generations past.

Choosing between the two schools, restraint versus preemption remains a dilemma that plagues not only Israel but also the United States. Both governments should derive lessons from the failure of Western restraint on Hezbollah. It is better to act before metastasis of a problem.

Israel's initial restraint toward Lebanon after the May 2000 withdrawal reflected Israeli officialdom's inability to admit mistakes and learn the lessons of the Oslo period. Many Israeli political and military officials who had embraced Oslo remained reluctant to acknowledge its failure, even in light of insurmountable intelligence[78] and a mounting terrorist campaign. Wishful thinking trumped dispassionate analysis. Even critics of the Lebanese withdrawal, men such as IDF chief of staff Shaul Mofaz or Netanyahu, mesmerized by relative quiet along the northern border, backed away from preempting Hezbollah.[79]

The devastating consequences of the policy of restraint show that strategic concepts can misguide policy for long periods and even in different arenas. Only an accumulation of Hezbollah and Palestinian attacks was sufficient to awaken Israel from its peace process slumber, at least temporarily.

So where should Israel go? It would be a mistake to equate a choice of deterrence versus restraint with a decision of war versus peace. The goal of any serious Israeli politician, whether from the right or the left, is to maintain Israel's security. But after almost six decades of experience and after trying both strategies, Israeli policymakers would be remiss not to recognize the effectiveness of deterrence and the folly of restraint. Diplomacy and deterrence need not be mutually exclusive. Rather, deterrence may actually enhance the effectiveness of Israel's diplomacy. If deterrence is to work, though, Israeli politicians must make a sustained rather than episodic commitment to the doctrine. A disproportionate response to terror should be the rule, not the exception.

Or Honig is a Ph.D. candidate in political science at the University of California-Los Angeles. Between 1999 and 2004, he served in the IDF Strategic Planning Division.

[1] Ben Kaspit and Ilan Kfir, Ehud Barak: Hayal Mispar Ehad (Tel Aviv: Galei Alpha, 1998), p.188.
[2] Ha'aretz (Tel Aviv), July 24, 2006, Aug. 17, 2006.
[3] David Ben Gurion, Yichud Ve Yi'ud (Tel Aviv: Ministry of Defense, 1971), p. 13; Yisrael Tal, Bitachon Leumi: Meatim Neged Rabim (Tel Aviv: Dvir, 1996), p. 24; Dan Horowitz, "Ha Kavua' ve Ha Mishtane Be Tfisat Habitachon Ha Yisraelit," in Aharon Yariv, ed., Milhemet Breira (Tel Aviv: Hakibutz Hameuchad, 1985), pp. 62-9.
[4] Mordechai Bar On, "Small Wars, Big Wars: Security Debates during Israel's First Decade," Israel Studies, no. 2 (2000), p. 116.
[5] Motti Golani, Tihyeh Milhamah Ba Kayitz: Ha Derekh Le Milhemet Sinai, 1955-1956 (Tel Aviv: Ma'arachot, 1997), pp. 28-61.
[6] Uri Bar Yosef, "Hamishim Shnot Hartaa'ah Yisraelit," Ma'arachot, Oct. 1999, p. 18.
[7] Efraim Karsh, Arafat's War: The Man and the Battle for Israel's Conquest (New York: Grove Press, 2003), p. 127.
[8] Yezid Sayigh, Armed Struggle and the Search for a State: The Palestinian National Movement, 1949-1993 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1997), p. 155.
[9] Horowitz, "Ha Kavua' Ve Ha Mishtane," pp. 69-72.
[10] Shlomo Gazit, Petai'm Be Malkodet (Tel Aviv: Zmorah Bitan, 1999), pp. 63, 71.
[11] Horowitz, "Ha Kavua' Ve Ha Mishtane," pp. 74, 82.
[12] Sayigh, Armed Struggle and the Search for a State, pp. 481-5; Ha'aretz, Apr. 17, 1986.
[13] Avi Nudelman, "Ha Shinui Be Gishat Tzhahal Klapei Kochot Habitachon Ha Falestiniyim," Ma'arachot, Sept. 2002, pp. 84-5.
[14] Israeli Government Press Office, Office of the Prime Minister of Israel, Sept. 11, 1998.
[15] Zaki Shalom, "Dispelling Beliefs: The War in Lebanon as a Test Case," Strategic Assessment, Aug. 2006, p. 26.
[16] Eival Gilady, "Strategy and Security in Israel," speech before the Los Angeles World Affairs Council, July 27, 2004; interview with the author, Tel Aviv, Aug. 2, 2006.
[17] Shimon Peres with Arye Naor, The New Middle East (New York: Henry Holt, 1993), p. 46.
[18] Moshe Ma'oz, Yisrael—Suriah: Sof Hasichsuch! (Or Yehuda: Sifriayat Ma'ariv, 1996), p. 174.
[19] Ran Edelist, Ehud Barak Ve Milchamto Ba Shedim (Or Yehudah: Kinneret Zmorah Bitan, 2003), p. 281.
[20] Dennis Ross, The Missing Peace (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2004), p. 251.
[21] Ha'aretz, Sept. 8, 1997.
[22] "Letter from Yasser Arafat to Prime Minister Rabin, Sept. 9, 1993," Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
[23] Nachman Tal, "Islamic Terrorism in Egypt: Challenge and Response," Strategic Assessment, Apr. 1998, p. 10.
[24] Yaakov Amidror, "Israel's Security: The Hard-Learned Lessons," Middle East Quarterly, Winter 2004, p. 35; Ronen Bergman, Ve Harashut Netunah (Tel Aviv: Yedi'ot Aharonot, 2002), pp. 93-110.
[25] "Israeli Palestinian Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, Annex I, Protocol Concerning Redeployment and Security Arrangements," art. XI, sec. 3b, Sept. 28, 1995.
[26] Karsh, Arafat's War, p. 119.
[27] Benjamin Netanyahu, "Defining Terrorism," in Benjamin Netanyahu, ed., Terrorism: How the West Can Win (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1986), p. 9.
[28] Karsh, Arafat's War, p. 153.
[29] Dani Naveh, Sodot Memshalah (Tel Aviv: Yedi'ot Aharonot, 1999), pp. 72-3.
[30] Al-Hayat al-Jadida (Palestinian Authority), Dec. 7, 2000.
[31] Data from the IDF and the Israeli foreign ministry websites. It deducts those attacks perpetrated before the Palestinian Authority was given de facto authority on the ground.
[32] U.N. Security Council Resolution 425, clause 2; "Report of the Secretary General on the Implementation of Security Council Resolutions 425 and 426," United Nations, New York, p. 6.
[33] As quoted in Michael Rubin, "The Lessons of Lebanon," The Weekly Standard, July 1, 2002.
[34] Amos Harel and Avi Isacharoff, Ha Milchamah Ha Shvii't (Tel Aviv: Yedi'ot Aharonot, 2004), p. 65.
[35] Ha'aretz, Feb. 23, 2001.
[36] Ha'aretz, Oct. 13, 2000.
[37] Ha'aretz, Apr. 18, 2001.
[38] Ha'aretz, July 17, 2006.
[39] Ha'aretz, Mar. 15, 2002.
[40] Ha'aretz, Oct. 17, 2000.
[41] Ha'aretz, Jan. 24, 2002.
[42] Ha'aretz, June, 28, 2002.
[43] The Jerusalem Post, Oct. 24, 2003.
[44] Ha'aretz, Jan. 27, Mar. 4, 2004.
[45] Yedi'ot Aharonot (Tel Aviv), July 21, 2006.
[46] Major General Giora Eiland, press briefing, Oct. 25, 2000.
[47] Ha'aretz, Sept. 19, 2002.
[48] Ynet report, July 19, 2004.
[49] Ha'aretz, Oct. 24, 2002.
[50] See, for instance, Michael Milstein, AMAN Israeli military intelligence, "Hai'm Arafat Hozer Le Estrategyat Ha Maavak Ha Mezuyan?" Ma'arachot, Dec. 2001, pp. 3-5.
[51] Silvan Shalom, address to the U.N. 59th General Assembly, New York, Sept. 23, 2004.
[52] Ha'aretz, Oct. 27, 2002.
[53] Ha'aretz, Apr. 13, 2001.
[54] U.N. Security Council resolution 1559.
[55] Interview by Keren Neubach, Hayom Ba Hadashot, Channel 1 (Israel), Aug. 14, 2006.
[56] Yoram Schweitzer, "Breaking the Link between Hizbullah and Hamas," Tel Aviv University Notes, no. 180, July 26, 2006; Ha'aretz, July 30, 2000, July 27, 2003; Efriam Halevy, Adam Ba Tzel (Tel Aviv: Matar, 2006), p. 214.
[57] Hanna Avraham, "Disarming Hizbullah: The Public Debate in Lebanon," Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Inquiry and Analysis Series, no. 230, July 1, 2005.
[58] Ha'aretz, July 20, 2005.
[59] Dan Meridor, interview with Dan Margalit, Musaf HaMusafim, Channel 1 (Israel), June 9, 2006.
[60] Avraham, "Disarming Hizbullah."
[61] Shimon Peres, interview to Hadshot Arutz Shtayim, Channel 2 (Israel), Aug. 9, 2006.
[62] Ha'aretz, Nov. 11, 2002.
[63] Halevy, Adam Ba Tzel, pp. 128, 213.
[64] Barak Ben Tzur and Christopher Hamilton, "Hizballah's Global Terror Option," Policywatch, no. 1129, Washington Institute for Near East Policy, July 21, 2006.
[65] Ha'aretz, May 26, 2005.
[66] Ha'aretz, July 27, 2004, Aug. 6, 2006.
[67] Ali Khamene'i, Iranian supreme leader, "America Can Expect a Resounding Slap and a Devastating Fist-Blow from the Muslim Nation," MEMRI, Special Dispatch Series, no. 1230; Ha'aretz, Mar. 31, 2006.
[68] Ha'aretz, Feb. 2, 2005.
[69] Ha'aretz, Dec. 29, 2002.
[70] The Jerusalem Post, July 28, 2006.
[71] IDF daily briefing, July 28, 2006.
[72] The Washington Post, July 28, 2006; statement by Group of Eight leaders, White House press release, July 16, 2006.
[73] Ha'aretz, Apr. 7, 2006; Adam Dolnik and Anjali Bhattacharjee, "Hamas: Suicide Bombings, Rockets, or WMD?" Terrorism and Political Violence, Fall 2002, pp. 109-10, 125.
[74] Shlomi Eldar, Aza Ke Mavet (Tel Aviv: Yedi'ot Aharonot, 2005), pp. 202-3.
[75] Shlomo Brom, "The Confrontation with Hizbullah," Tel Aviv University Notes, no. 177, July 13, 2006.
[76] "Fatalities in Palestinian Terror Attacks, 1967-2005," Jewish Virtual Library, accessed Sept. 12, 2006.
[77] Kol Israel, Channel 2 (Israel), July 27, 2006.
[78] See, for example, Israel Defense Forces/Military Intelligence, "Captured Documents Reveal PA Corruption, Waste, and the Employment of PA Funds for Encouraging and Financing Terrorism," Apr. 2003, TR5-117-03.
[79] Edelist, Ehud Barak Ve Milchamto Ba Shedim, pp. 270, 281, 318.