Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Children of a Lesser God


At the meeting in Rome, while the other nations pressed for an immediate cease-fire, the United States argued for a “sustainable cease-fire”...The lack of action prompted Prime Minister Fouad Siniora of Lebanon to lash out with a cry of despair. “Is the value of human life less in Lebanon than that of citizens elsewhere?” Mr. Siniora asked. “Are we children of a lesser God?

Accusing Israelis of “barbaric destruction,” he vowed to seek justice, announcing that Lebanon will begin legal proceedings for war reparations. European and Arab governments, as well as Kofi Annan, the United Nations secretary general, and Javier Solana, the European Union foreign policy chief, lined up behind him and pushed hard for an immediate cessation of hostilities or even a truce on humanitarian grounds, several participants said.

But in a tense, sometimes stormy debate that went on for nearly an hour, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice dug in, and prevailed. Later, she defended the United States’ refusal to call for an immediate cease-fire, saying: “It doesn’t do anyone any good to raise false hopes about something that’s not going to happen. It’s not going to happen."

NY Times | July 26, 2006

*...Israeli officials said they regarded the failure of an international conference to reach agreement on a cease-fire plan as clearing the way for further assaults.... “We received yesterday at the Rome conference permission from the world,’’ Justice Minister Haim Ramon told Israeli radio, “to continue this operation, this war..."

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