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* Hezbollah launches Katyusha rockets across the Lebanese border with Israel, targeting the town of Shlomi and outposts in the Shebaa Farms area in the Golan Heights which has been a part of Israel since Israel was attacked by various Arab nations in the 1967 Six-Day War.
* Hezbollah's military wing staged a cross-border attack from Lebanon on two Israeli Humvees, as well as rocket and mortar attacks on northern Israel. Three Israeli soldiers were killed and two were kidnapped, with several civilians injured. "Fulfilling its pledge to liberate the Arab prisoners and detainees, the Islamic Resistance... captured two Israeli soldiers (Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev) at the border with occupied Palestine," Hezbollah said in a statement.
* In attempt to pursue the Hezbollah force and release the captured soldiers, an Israeli Merkava Mark II tank is hit by a 300 kilogram improvised explosive device. All 4 crew members are killed.
* In attempt to recover the bodies of the soldiers from the burnt tank, another Israeli soldier is hit by Hezbollah fire and killed.
Not only did Hizbollah provoke Israel, they did so at a pre-determined time. It should not be a surprise for anybody that the soldier in Gaza, and the two soldiers in the north were kidnapped within a few days apart. The assertion that Hizbollah's bombing of Israel didn't begin until later is also untrue. Not only did they fire Katyusha rockets on the 12th, they did so on the 13th bombing Nahariya and Safed killing 2 people and wounding 29.
I understand we would all love for Israel to just keep negotiating with Hizbollah every time they kidnap somebody, but why should they? Is that a right discourse to conduct diplomacy? An organization whose political wing is in the Lebanese government engages in kidnapping people across the border, and there is no outrage with that?
I am sorry, I never support excessive use of force anywhere in the world for any reason, but some of our expectations of how Israel should act are completely unreasonable. They have received zero relief since they left the northern part of Lebanon and Gaza either from Hizbollah or Hamas / Islamic Jihad. I would be pretty pissed off too.
Mikhail from SF
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