Thursday, September 23, 2010

Lessons of resistance from southern Lebanon

Hasan Abu Nimah, The Electronic Intifada, 23 September 2010

"......Much of the equipment left behind by Israel and its collaborators is now exhibited at a museum housed in a former Hizballah command center in the village of Mlita, in the heart of southern Lebanon.

I was in Mlita last week. From that hilltop, one can see occupied Palestine very close across the border fence. While there were thousands of Lebanese families and foreign tourists inspecting Israeli military debris, which included tanks, artillery, ammunition, helmets, boots, small arms, jeeps and lots more, and joyfully posing for photos on top of the displayed equipment, there was no sign of movement on the Israeli side....

For the first time in the history of Arab-Israeli wars, an Israeli military victory was not matched by any political gain.

The 1982 invasion was the war which marked the end of Israeli military power as an effective tool for imposing political realities. Since then, Israel has used brute military force without limits, as it did against Lebanon in 1996 and 2006, and against Gaza in 2008-2009. But Israel's atrocities and massacres offer at best a reprieve from whatever problem it is trying to "solve" while its standing, legitimacy and deterrent power continue a long and steady decline.

When the Israeli invaders withdrew from most of Lebanon in 1983, Israel decided to keep a so-called "security zone" of roughly ten kilometers inside Lebanese territory. This was policed by the SLA, created and financed by Israel with Lebanese collaborators. Israel later envisaged the Palestinian Authority's security apparatus along the same lines -- a local native militia meant to serve and protect the occupier and relieve the Israeli army as much as possible of the burden of occupation. But it was the local Lebanese resistance that foiled Israeli plans, and this is what the museum at Mlita commemorates and celebrates....."

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