The United Nations adopted a resolution on an "immediate" cessation of hostilities in Lebanon on Friday night. "Since the conflict began, we have sought an immediate end to the fighting," U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice announced.
Hours after announcement of the UN resolution passage, Israeli forces advanced deeper into Lebanon against fierce Hezbollah resistance.
The UN and Condi must be taking their definition of "immediate" from Karl Rove's Brave New World Dictionary.
On July 22, only three weeks ago, Rice was rejecting the "false promise" of an immediate cease-fire.
Lebanon's cabinet is expected to accept the UN resolution later today. Israel won't vote on it until Sunday. Word on the street is that the resolution will pass in Israel as well, but that probably depends on how well the IDF's offensive progresses between now and then.
The Israel-Hezbollah situation has been handled badly and cynically by all parties involved. America, masquerading in the role of "honest broker," plainly entered the faux peace process with the goal of blocking a cease-fire until Israel had achieved its stated war aim of eliminating Hezbollah militants from southern Lebanon. After the Qana incident, somebody in the Rovewellian cadre figured "oops, we're going to look bad in this," and that's about the time Condi got the call to change her tune--publicly, at least.
At the end of the day, Israel will agree to a cease-fire when it achieves what it set out to achieve, which is perfectly understandable from their perspective. When a country launches a war with a specific purpose, it's likely to want to keep going until the job is finished. (As opposed to countries that launch wars with vague purposes in mind and never get the job finished.)
But no matter how the Israel-Hezbollah conflict turns out now, America's diplomatic credibility has been damaged even further. The U.S. false about face on the cease-fire isn't going to fool anybody--except maybe Americans who still think young Mister Bush is keeping them safe.
Commander Jeff Huber, U.S. Navy (Retired) writes from Virginia Beach, Virginia. Read his commentaries at ePluribus Media and Pen and Sword.