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Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Great lines of the day 

Juan Cole quotes Patrick McGreevy:
VL Day?
It’s 11 pm in Beirut, and honking cars and motorbikes are cruising the Corniche while their occupants discharge Kalashnikovs into the black air shouting “Allahu Akbar.” If only we had electricity and lights, the triumph might be more believable.
. . . The Battle of Lebanon was a rude little war that played like a blockbuster summer film. This, perhaps, was the fundamental mistake that Israel and its US backers made: they underestimated the articulateness of Lebanon—a multilingual country, connected to a global diaspora, with a history so compelling that novice and seasoned journalists are drawn to its stories by instinct.
Hezbollah’s tactics countered Israel’s brilliantly before the world’s gaze. As the vastly more powerful force, the IDF could have crushed Hezbollah, but only by conducting a genocide on the Shiite people of southern Lebanon who support its resistance. And genocide, on global TV, is the one sin Israel cannot survive. Hezbollah is a designer resistance force, shaped by repeated Israeli blows against Arabs—designed not simply to counter its powerful adversary’s field techniques, but to infiltrate its soul and seek its deepest pain. It finds this pain like a heat-seeking missile finds its warm target because Hezbollah’s resistance, too, is born of pain. This is the madness we confront.

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