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Five die on Israel/Lebanon border clash

DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
edited August 2010 in Debate and/or Discourse
Israel-Lebanon border clash kills five people
Three Lebanese soldiers and an Israeli officer have been killed in the first serious border clash since Israel's 2006 conflict with Lebanon's Hezbollah.

A Lebanese journalist also died in the fighting. Lebanon says troops opened fire after Israeli troops entered its territory. Israel denied the charge.


PM Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel would respond "aggressively" to any attack.

Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah said militants would not "stand idle" if Israel attacked again.


The US and the EU have urged restraint on all sides.

The BBC's Wyre Davies in Jerusalem says the clash is an indication of the tensions along the Israel-Lebanon border.

The Lebanese army says Israeli soldiers crossed the border to uproot a tree which was blocking their view near the Lebanese village of Adaysseh.

This appears to have been an incident between regular Lebanese troops and the Israeli army.

It would perhaps have been more serious had this been a confrontation between Hezbollah forces and Israel, as was the case back in 2006.



Israel's traditional foe along this border is Hezbollah. Hezbollah is known to have re-armed with missiles ever since the 2006 conflict and the big fear here in northern border area is of a resumption of the battle between Israel and Hezbollah.

The fact that Israel has not put towns and communities in the area on a state of high alert yet is perhaps an indication that Israel does not expect this to escalate further.

The Lebanese army confirmed to the BBC that three of its soldiers had been killed and four wounded. The al-Akhbar newspaper confirmed that one of its journalists, Assaf Abu Rahhal, had also been killed.

In a statement, Lebanon's Prime Minister Saad Hariri said Lebanese sovereignty had been violated.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in a statement: "Israel has responded and shall respond aggressively in the future to any attempt to disrupt the calm along the northern border or to harm residents of the north or the soldiers protecting them."

An Israeli army spokeswoman told the BBC that two officers had been attacked by "snipers from the Lebanese armed forces" in a "well-planned ambush" during maintenance operations on Israel's side of the border, near the town of Kiryat Shemona.


Earlier, the head of Israel's Northern Command, Maj-Gen Gadi Eizenkot, said the officers had been standing between 300 and 400m from the border, observing Israeli soldiers removing bushes near the border fence.

"Sniper fire was directed at their position and as a result two commanders were injured as a result of the firing," he said.

Maj-Gen Eisenkot said he believed the incident was "a one-time event". "We received requests and demands from the highest ranks in the Lebanese army to cease fire," he added.

The UN peacekeeping force stationed in southern Lebanon, Unifil, has urged both sides to show "maximum restraint" following the clash.

Announcing it was in touch with both governments, Washington said it was "extremely concerned" at the violence and urged "maximum restraint" from both sides as it

"The region has enough tension as it is," US state department spokesman PJ Crowley said.

"The last thing that we want to see is that this incident expand into something more significant."

EU foreign policy chief Baroness Ashton urged both sides to take "immediate steps" to prevent "a further escalation of tension or any form of further violence".

Israel's Haaretz newspaper said the incident could have been caused by one of the sides misidentifying the correct location of the border.

The exchange comes a day after rockets were fired at the Israeli resort of Eilat.

A stray rocket killed one person in the nearby port of Aqaba in Jordan.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-10851692

Biggest surprise? Hezbollah doesn't seem to have provoked the thing. Though I want to know the background of the soldiers involved, since Hezbollah has a lot of sympathizers in the Shia's of Lebanese military. Personally, I don't think Israel or Hezbollah are dumb enough to start another confrontation after 2006. I don't think either sides on this clash got their orders from above.

(since this is apparently unrelated to the Palestinians in any tangible way, let's try to have a fruitful discussion about the conflict in Israel/Lebanon/Hezbollah areas.)

Haaretz has more on specific areas:
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/idf-believes-one-lebanese-officer-behind-border-shooting-1.305828
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/nasrallah-hezbollah-will-respond-if-israel-attacks-lebanon-s-army-1.305825
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/u-s-extremely-concerned-over-israel-lebanon-border-violence-1.305806
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/israeli-officer-killed-in-clash-on-israel-lebanon-border-1.305791

DarkCrawler on
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Posts

  • UseskaforevilUseskaforevil Registered User
    edited August 2010
    I blame the tree. His kind pulled the same crap on the Korean border back in 1976. He knew what he was doing.

  • ForarForar #432 Already prepping for Toronto Fan Expo!Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    I blame the tree. His kind pulled the same crap on the Korean border back in 1976. He knew what he was doing.

    Beat me to it.

    Damned tree.

    sigone.png
  • dlinfinitidlinfiniti Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    oh my
    so apparantly satellite show that they did not cross the border

    AAAAA!!! PLAAAYGUUU!!!!
  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
  • BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    I read an article that said IDF had told the lebanese that they were going to cross the fence(?) thing at the boarder, but the fence doesn't actually parallel the boarder.

  • ArchonexArchonex Registered User
    edited August 2010
    If there's a clearly designated fence/wall/whatever partitioning the two nations though, I think it would be kind of stupid to cross it with armed forces, even if it doesn't match the "official" borders of the nations involved.

    Especially given the history of the region and the nebulous definition of borders that Israel has. That's just asking for trouble. Even if they gave prior warning, you never know how the soldiers on the other side might react to strangers carrying assault rifles walking toward's them.

    Until I hear more i'm putting the blame on the soldiers from Israel here. Letting someone know you're going to cross the border, in whatever form it may be, isn't the same as getting permission from the nation you're crossing into.

  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    There is no official border between Israel and Lebanon. The current one (Blue Line) is a border demarcation drawn up by the UN, which is the de facto border, but neither side recognizes it as a de jure border, which is why Hezbollah still touts about occupied Lebanese land and Lebanon's government secures gives it permission to have weapons and guarantees it's "right to liberate or recover occupied lands".

    Israel has violated Lebanon's air space like 1600 times already since 2006 so this isn't exactly new. Don't think they would intentionally cross the Blue Line with soldiers though. It's different when there is a possibility you might get shot at. Lebanon is a whole different game from Palestinians, and Hamas is bunch of kids with toy rockets compared to Hezbollah. Israel has never actually won a war against Hezbollah, which is something Israel doesn't do a lot. IDF isn't stupid. And apparently Hezbollah isn't either, if it's true they don't have anything to do with this and have actually asked the Lebanese army if they should do something.

  • ArchonexArchonex Registered User
    edited August 2010
    I'm just going to alter my previous statement, and say that it's monumentally stupid to cross into land that is occupied by a group of people who might want to shoot you for past grievances, over a tree, then. That's just asking to get shot at.


    I'm curious about this fence thing, though. Were the local troops treating it as a designated "border" for the area? Even if it wasn't.

    It seems likely from the way the original article was worded that this was a local command decision that went horribly wrong, given the whole tree thing. Someone's ass should get thrown in the fire for that if that's the case.

  • OrganichuOrganichu Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    right, this isn't nk/sk, the border situation (and its tenuous, winding nature) is very arbitrary and in dispute. more often than not northern encounters (shouting matches or worse) are determined by "how close to the imagined border is this patrol comfortable?"

    XMSODhjrer45.gif
  • ArchonexArchonex Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Organichu wrote: »
    right, this isn't nk/sk, the border situation (and its tenuous, winding nature) is very arbitrary and in dispute. more often than not northern encounters (shouting matches or worse) are determined by "how close to the imagined border is this patrol comfortable?"

    I figured that. Burtletoy's comment made me wonder, though.

  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    The fence is Israeli-built. So it makes sense that it's within few meters inside their territory.

    I think it has been long enough to be treated as the de-facto border. Doesn't say if they went inside Lebanon's borders to cut down the trees after crossing the fence, though.

    And nobody asks to get shot at. Don't think the soldiers thought they were doing anything wrong. Especially when the whole border situation between the two is really shaky.

  • deadonthestreetdeadonthestreet Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Here's what you do if you really want to cut the tree down. Call up the Lebanese army. Say "We want to take this tree down. Please assign a detail to accompany us while we do it."

  • L|amaL|ama Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    PM Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel would respond "aggressively" to any attack.

    Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah said militants would not "stand idle" if Israel attacked again.

    The US and the EU have urged restraint on all sides.

    wow that's about the laziest and most predictable set of responses possible

  • DibsDibs Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Did you guys even read any of the articles linked at the bottom of the post?

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Robert Fisk, as always, provides some interesting additions:
    http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/fisk/robert-fisk-israellebanon-tensions-flare-after-skirmish-leaves-four-dead-2042501.html
    In 2000, the UN drew a "Blue Line" along what was – in those long ago, post-Balfour days – the frontier between the French mandate of Lebanon and the British mandate of Palestine. Behind it, from the Lebanese point of view, stands the Israeli "technical fence", a mass of barbed wire, electrified wires and sandy roads (to look for footprints). So when the Lebanese army saw the Israelis manoeuvre a crane up to the fence yesterday morning, they began to shout at the Israelis to move back.

    The moment the crane's arm crossed the "technical fence" – and here one must explain that the "Blue Line" does not necessarily run along the "fence" – Lebanese soldiers opened fire into the air. The Israelis, according to the Lebanese, did not shoot in the air. They shot at the Lebanese soldiers.
    At about this time, Al-Akhbar newspaper's local correspondent Assaf Abu Rahal turned up in Addaiseh to cover the story. And a little time later, an Israeli helicopter –apparently firing from the Israeli side of the border (though that has yet to be confirmed) – fired a rocket at a Lebanese armoured vehicle, killing three soldiers and the journalist.

    Lebanese troops, on orders from Beirut, fired back and killed an Israeli lieutenant-colonel. Hizbollah, the Iranian-paid Shia militia, which was not involved in the battle, announced his death five hours before the Israelis confirmed it; their information apparently came from an Israeli soldier using a mobile phone. It was top of the headline news on Hizballah's Al-Manar television station.

    ragesig.jpg

  • HozHoz Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Here's what you do if you really want to cut the tree down. Call up the Lebanese army. Say "We want to take this tree down. Please assign a detail to accompany us while we do it."
    Except it was their own territory. So they should ask for an escort to cut down a tree in their own territory?

  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    The fence is on their territory, it's unclear where the tree is/was.

    Either way, too small a thing to shoot people over, and latest reports say that the Lebanese opened fire first.

  • HamHamJHamHamJ Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Hoz wrote: »

    Well, so far all they are backing is that the tree was on the Israeli side of the line.

    While racing light mechs, your Urbanmech comes in second place, but only because it ran out of ammo.
  • HozHoz Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Well, that's all they can comment on. But that's enough to align the credibility to the Israeli side.

    The Israeli version is also the more logical version. So the Israelis call in artillery and then after that one of their guys gets shot from 80 meters away, and he happens to be a ltc? No, makes no sense. Who the fuck would call artillery on a position 80 meters away?

    According to the article, the Lebanese are claiming that they were "shooting into the air" which is the most preposterous fucking thing I've ever read. People with guns tend not to bother discriminating between warning shots and just plain being shot at. But it's possible that the Lebanese soldiers are just that retarded to think the Israelis would.

  • QliphothQliphoth Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Why did the Israeli helicopter take out an APC if they were getting fired upon by snipers?

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • HozHoz Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    What a stupid question.

    We can logically deduce that the weapon that initiated the exchange isn't what the Lebanese were limited to using.

  • PolloDiabloPolloDiablo Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Qliphoth wrote: »
    Why did the Israeli helicopter take out an APC if they were getting fired upon by snipers?

    There's no such thing as too many explosions.

    This whole thing is stupid. They should have just bombed the tree.

    Be excellent to each other you stupid cunts.
  • BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Qliphoth wrote: »
    Why did the Israeli helicopter take out an APC if they were getting fired upon by snipers?

    There's no such thing as too many explosions.

    This whole thing is stupid. They should have just bombed the tree.

  • QliphothQliphoth Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Hoz wrote: »
    What a stupid question.

    We can logically deduce that the weapon that initiated the exchange isn't what the Lebanese were limited to using.

    If the Israelis were fired upon by multiple weapons, including a vehicle, they would've used that in justification for their actions. They are very thorough in justifying retaliation when they are provoked.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • HozHoz Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Except in justifying your retaliation it's logical to focus on what was the trigger event, which was the shooting of the Israeli Lt. Colonel. It makes no sense to bury that under the details of the skirmish that followed.

  • enc0reenc0re Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    The Economist has a nice picture of the type of tree cutting that started this incident.
    Makes the whole thing seem even more stupid. What a waste of human lives.

    201032MAP501.jpg

  • HamHamJHamHamJ Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Let's be honest here. Regardless of what happened, it was not actually about the tree.

    While racing light mechs, your Urbanmech comes in second place, but only because it ran out of ammo.
  • GungHoGungHo Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    This is what people are talking about when they say if you don't learn history you're doomed to repeat it.

    "Adios, mofo" -- TX Gov Rick Perry (R)
  • PolloDiabloPolloDiablo Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    GungHo wrote: »
    This is what people are talking about when they say if you don't learn history you're doomed to repeat it.

    I don't even care that people died, that whole affair is fucking hilarious. Jesus christ, people are fucking retarded creatures.

    Be excellent to each other you stupid cunts.
  • The Black HunterThe Black Hunter Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    GungHo wrote: »
    This is what people are talking about when they say if you don't learn history you're doomed to repeat it.

    I don't even care that people died, that whole affair is fucking hilarious. Jesus christ, people are fucking retarded creatures.

    It was the equivalent of two kids getting into a biff over a stick, and then their brothers coming, their cousins, their dad, their uncle and their WW2 vet grandpa

    and they all had bazookas

    sig-1.jpg
  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Hoz wrote: »
    Here's what you do if you really want to cut the tree down. Call up the Lebanese army. Say "We want to take this tree down. Please assign a detail to accompany us while we do it."
    Except it was their own territory. So they should ask for an escort to cut down a tree in their own territory?

    Seeing as how Israel fought a war in Lebannon a few years ago, and tensions are running very high, and the border itself is not clearly marked- they should have at least notified the Lebanese (or better yet, notify the UN, who can then notify the Lebanese) that they were going to be doing something extremely close to the border.

    Its not a mistake that this shooting happens now, when speculation about another war is rampant. Both sides had armed forces on either side of the border, reading to shoot at the drop of a hat. Both sides are watching for the other to make a move first. Its like a game of chicken, and it looks like the Lebanese blinked first in this little clash.

    Hopefully things cool down a bit. I still don't expect a war this year, next summer though...

    ragesig.jpg

  • EvanderEvander Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    HamHamJ wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »

    Well, so far all they are backing is that the tree was on the Israeli side of the line.

    What else needs to be backed, Hammy?

    That the tree was not a secret hidey hole filled with the blood of lebanese children?

    Unless you are making baseless accusations, that kind of says a lot.

    georgersig.jpg
  • EvanderEvander Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    Here's what you do if you really want to cut the tree down. Call up the Lebanese army. Say "We want to take this tree down. Please assign a detail to accompany us while we do it."
    Except it was their own territory. So they should ask for an escort to cut down a tree in their own territory?

    Seeing as how Israel fought a war in Lebannon a few years ago, and tensions are running very high, and the border itself is not clearly marked- they should have at least notified the Lebanese (or better yet, notify the UN, who can then notify the Lebanese) that they were going to be doing something extremely close to the border.

    Its not a mistake that this shooting happens now, when speculation about another war is rampant. Both sides had armed forces on either side of the border, reading to shoot at the drop of a hat. Both sides are watching for the other to make a move first. Its like a game of chicken, and it looks like the Lebanese blinked first in this little clash.

    Hopefully things cool down a bit. I still don't expect a war this year, next summer though...

    Let's make this clear.

    Israel informing Lebanon could have prevented this.

    Israel should not be REQUIRED to inform Lebanon before doing yardwork in their own territory, though.

    Saying "Israel should have told Lebanaon, then Lebanon would never have had to open fire on them" is a pretty shining example of blaming the victim.

    georgersig.jpg
  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Here is the confirmation of the thing being limited to Israeli territory:
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-10864861

    So it looks like the Lebanese were at fault here. Zero Hezbollah involvement too. Actually, Hezbollah has been suprisingly quiet on all this when you consider the timing.

  • BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    The first article I read on this issue (the day it happened, before this thread, no I didn't read the same article that started this thread) said that Israel DID inform Lebanon before hand anyways....

  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Evander wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    Here's what you do if you really want to cut the tree down. Call up the Lebanese army. Say "We want to take this tree down. Please assign a detail to accompany us while we do it."
    Except it was their own territory. So they should ask for an escort to cut down a tree in their own territory?

    Seeing as how Israel fought a war in Lebannon a few years ago, and tensions are running very high, and the border itself is not clearly marked- they should have at least notified the Lebanese (or better yet, notify the UN, who can then notify the Lebanese) that they were going to be doing something extremely close to the border.

    Its not a mistake that this shooting happens now, when speculation about another war is rampant. Both sides had armed forces on either side of the border, reading to shoot at the drop of a hat. Both sides are watching for the other to make a move first. Its like a game of chicken, and it looks like the Lebanese blinked first in this little clash.

    Hopefully things cool down a bit. I still don't expect a war this year, next summer though...

    Let's make this clear.

    Israel informing Lebanon could have prevented this.

    Israel should not be REQUIRED to inform Lebanon before doing yardwork in their own territory, though.

    Saying "Israel should have told Lebanaon, then Lebanon would never have had to open fire on them" is a pretty shining example of blaming the victim.

    This is become a semantic argument. REQUIRED? Required by whom? Its not like Israel abides by what other nations think it should do, and its not like anyone entity has authority over Israel anyway.

    So yeah, they SHOULD have told the UN that they had their soldiers doing stuff on one of the most dangerous borders in the world. I don't think this was Israel's fault, its the fault of stupid people who are trigger happy or nervous. Israel wouldn't mind another go at Hezbollah, and Hezbollah wouldn't mind another go at Israel. I don't think the time is quite ripe for it yet, but if either side doesn't want a war to start they have to be extra careful with tensions are as they are.

    I think its pretty funny that the Lebanese army of all people were the ones who fired the first shot. They're pretty much just bystanders anyway, the real war, when it happens, will have almost nothing to do with them. All we need is some UN guys starting shit and we'll be set.

    ragesig.jpg

  • shrykeshryke Member of the Beast Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Evander wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Hoz wrote: »
    Here's what you do if you really want to cut the tree down. Call up the Lebanese army. Say "We want to take this tree down. Please assign a detail to accompany us while we do it."
    Except it was their own territory. So they should ask for an escort to cut down a tree in their own territory?

    Seeing as how Israel fought a war in Lebannon a few years ago, and tensions are running very high, and the border itself is not clearly marked- they should have at least notified the Lebanese (or better yet, notify the UN, who can then notify the Lebanese) that they were going to be doing something extremely close to the border.

    Its not a mistake that this shooting happens now, when speculation about another war is rampant. Both sides had armed forces on either side of the border, reading to shoot at the drop of a hat. Both sides are watching for the other to make a move first. Its like a game of chicken, and it looks like the Lebanese blinked first in this little clash.

    Hopefully things cool down a bit. I still don't expect a war this year, next summer though...

    Let's make this clear.

    Israel informing Lebanon could have prevented this.

    Israel should not be REQUIRED to inform Lebanon before doing yardwork in their own territory, though.

    Saying "Israel should have told Lebanaon, then Lebanon would never have had to open fire on them" is a pretty shining example of blaming the victim.

    No, it's an example of "blaming a lack of common sense".

    It's a stupid incident but generally when one is doing anything near a very sensitive border, it's best to be careful.

    Burtletoy wrote: »
    The first article I read on this issue (the day it happened, before this thread, no I didn't read the same article that started this thread) said that Israel DID inform Lebanon before hand anyways....

    Well, if true, then this is just essentially 100% Lebanon's fault.

    Stupid, stupid fucking move on their soldier's parts.

  • EvanderEvander Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    The absurdity is that WHEN the roles are reversed, and Israel wrongfully shoots some one else who could have, in theory, made their intentions clearer, ALL ire is directed at Israel.

    I'm sorry, but why is it suddenly not blaming the victim when Israel is the victim?

    georgersig.jpg
  • deadonthestreetdeadonthestreet Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Well I guess it depends on how you define "victim." Some reports have the Lebanese firing warning shots into the air, to which the Israeli troops responded by killing people. It depends on how it really went down.

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