Friday, August 11, 2006

U.S., France agree on Mideast resolution

Yahoo! News France and the United States reached a deal Friday on a final draft resolution that would authorize the deployment of 15,000 U.N. peacekeepers in south Lebanon to support a Lebanese force as it takes control of the region and Israel withdraws. The draft, obtained by The Associated Press, would ask the U.N. force to monitor a full cessation of hostilities and help Lebanese forces gain control over an area that has previously been under de facto authority of Hezbollah militias. It emphasizes the need for the "unconditional release" of two Israeli soldiers whose July 12 capture sparked the latest war, but does not make a direct demand for their freedom.

What is the difference? Would they be released to some other jailer?
Additionally, it calls on Israel and Lebanon to agree to a long-term solution under which Hezbollah would be disarmed.
That is nice. They already have that resolution. Will Lebanon do it this time?
The Security Council was expected to vote on the draft later Friday. About 2,000 U.N. troops and observers are now stationed in Lebanon. The draft would authorize an increase to a total of 15,000 troops.
The 2,000 did so much good, now we get 15,000 more. I would have preferred a NATO force, but not one controled by France (we don't have enough surrender flags for France to lead the force)
The text of the draft does not specify which chapter of the U.N. Charter the force would be authorized under. Instead, it says the force's mandate would include several elements: monitoring the cessation of hostilities, accompanying Lebanese troops as they deploy and as Israel withdraws, and ensuring humanitarian access.
They need something to say they must stand up to bullying by Hezbollah.
The U.N. force, known by its acronym UNIFIL, would help coordinate the deployment of Lebanese forces to the south, which has been under de facto control of Hezbollah militias for years. Israeli troops that have occupied the area in more than four weeks of fighting would then withdraw.

The new text was sent to the governments of Israel and Lebanon, but a French diplomat said the vote would go ahead whatever the response.
That makes sense. NOT!!!. If Israel and Lebanon don't agree, it does not have a snowball's chance of working. Even if they do, unless Lebanon grows some major gonads, Hezbollah is going to intimidate them, but at least they now know that Israel will hold Lebanon responsible for what it allows an armed militia on its land to do to its neighbors.
.... The latest draft appears to eliminate the prospect of a new, independent multinational force that would patrol a buffer zone between Israel and Lebanon.
Yes, don't use a force that might be able to do the job.
A senior U.S. official in Washington, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the U.S. and France envision a 10-day time frame between the moment a halt to the hostilities is declared and when UNIFIL troops go into action in the south.
I hope Israel stays until that happens.

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