Apr 20 2010

Israel to Syria: Don’t tread on me, and don’t let your clients do it either

Category: Hizbullah,Israel,middle east,Obama,Syriaharmonicminer @ 8:38 pm

‘Hizbullah a division of Syrian army’

Israel has warned Syrian President Bashar Assad that any missile attack against Israel by Hizbullah would result in retaliation against Syria, the Sunday Times reported on Sunday.

According to the UK paper, Israel’s missive, sent earlier in April, defined Hizbullah as a “division of the Syrian army,” a military branch of Damascus in Lebanon.

The warning was reportedly delivered to Damascus by a third party.

Meanwhile on Sunday, Al-Hayat reported that Hizbullah minister Nawaf al-Moussawi had said Israel’s accusations against Syria were only a ploy meant to divert attention from its failure to relaunch peace talks with the Palestinians.

Last week, the Kuwait-based Al-Rai reported that Syria had transferred Scud missiles to Hizbullah. According to the report, the missiles were recently transferred to Lebanon, prompting a stern Israeli warning that it would consider attacking both Syrian and Lebanese targets in response.

Scud ballistic missiles have a longer range than the rockets previously used by Hizbullah against Israel, and can carry chemical warheads.

On Thursday, the Kuwaiti paper reported that Hizbullah had confirmed receiving a shipment of Scud missiles from Syria. “It’s only natural for Lebanon to have the means to defend itself against an Israeli attack,” Hizbullah official Hussein Haj Hassan told Al-Manar TV on Friday.

The Syrian leadership has consistently denied the charge.

On Saturday, Reuters quoted US officials as saying that while the “intent” to transfer ballistic missiles to Hizbullah existed, it was doubtful such a transfer had actually taken place.

Obama may be about to find out what happens when Israel senses, correctly, that Obama is abandoning it. When Israel no longer feels a significant pressure from the USA to restrain Israel’s enemies, we should expect Israel to take matters into its own hands.

If Obama is smart, he will make it clear to Syria that the USA will also consider a Hizbullah attack on Israel as a Syrian attack, and take steps accordingly.  He doesn’t have to do it publicly.  But he should do it diplomatically, even via “back-channels.”  And if he’s smart, he’ll find a way to let Israel know that he has done so.

But he may be blinded by his presuppositions.

Apr 20 2010

Divine retribution

Category: humorsardonicwhiner @ 10:38 am

Flights resume in Europe but travel chaos not over

Many European flights took to the skies Tuesday for the first time in days but the travel chaos was far from over: London’s airports were still closed, a massive flight backlog was growing and scientists feared that history could repeat itself with yet another volcanic eruption in Iceland.

Airports in London, including Heathrow, the busiest in Europe, won’t reopen until Wednesday at the earliest and forecasters said more delays were possible if the volcanic ash cloud stayed over much of the country.

In the spirit of those who think God directly sent an earthquake to kill tens of thousands of people in Haiti, I have a list of reasons that God is punishing Europe with an Icelandic volcano that is filling the sky with ash. Or maybe blessing Europe with it.

10)  God really hates techno-trash Euro-dance music.

9)  God is getting really tired of all this nonsense about global warming…  as if puny humans have any serious impact on the weather, let alone the climate.  Who IS God around here, after all?  Hint:  not the fossil fuel industry.

8)  God hates French food.

7)  God hates English food.

6)  God hates movies with subtitles.

5)  God is hoping Europeans will take refuge in empty cathedrals, and possibly rediscover Him.

4)  God has secretly always wanted to fly an airplane, and is now practicing, zipping around in the ash clouds where no one can see Him.  He has always liked hiding Himself in clouds.  (This one was for the Process Theologians.)  After all, God gets bored sometimes, too.

3)  God was really just trying to keep Al Gore out of the air (in his private jet).

2)  God, not being a global-warming denier, was just trying to help, by putting some ash in the sky to reflect some of the Sun’s energy back out into space, and cool things down a little.  But humans, being human, merely complain at His Divine Providence.

1)  God REALLY hates French food.