Amazing how the news distorts reality. Israel the victim? Sorry I don't buy it and neither does the UNHRC.
Let's look at the facts:
Since 2000 when Israel pulled out of Lebanon, both sides have conducted periodic raids into each other's territory. It had become routine.
Israel also routinely violated Lebanese airspace with hostile military aircraft.
On July 12, during a raid, Hezbollah killed threee Israel soldiers and captured two others. Israel claims these soldiers were captured along the border on the Israeli side.
July 13, 2006
Other sources claim they were on the Lebanese side:
Most reports agree though that Hezbollah started this minor border skirmish.
Israel responds by using its air superiority to bomb Lebanon from one end to the other. Israel's targets were Hezbollah positions, but also Beruit airport, every bridge of significance, roads, residential homes, office and apartment buildings, industry, power plants... eventually killing about 1000 Lebanese civilians, a handful of UN observers, injuring another 3600 or so and displacing about a million people.
Day-by-day: Lebanon crisis - week one
2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict
Attacks on United Nations personnel during the 2006 Israel-Lebanon conflict
Seven Canadians ó including four children ó were killed in an Israeli air raid
2006 Qana airstrike
By the way, that's not the first time Israel did this:
1996 shelling of Qana
Because these aircraft were at altitude, neither Lebanon nor Hezbollah had an effective means to defend itself from these attacks. Hezbollah's only means to retailiate against Israeli attacks on Lebanese civilians was to fire missiles back at Israel. Even though Hezbollah's missiles weren't nearly as accurate as Israeli munitions, Hezbollah did manage to kill about 43 Israeli civilians, wound about 2500 more (most lightly) and displace about half a million people.
I'm certainly not praising either side for its ability to kill innocent civilians, although as the numbers show, Israel is much better at it than Hezbollah. My point is that Israel began targeting civilians first. Hezbollah's attacks against Israeli civilians was in response to Israel deliberate attacks on Lebanese civilians. No one can deny this, unless you believe Hezbollah was launching rockets at Israel from Beruit airport.
We aren't talking about accidents or colateral damage here. We are talking about the deliberate killing of innocent people uninvolved in the military conflict. In effect Israel's message to Hezbollah is, mess with us and we'll kill your friends and families. But the media portrays this as Hezbollah using Lebanese civilians as human shields. BS. Most of the civilians Israel killed weren't near Hezbollah positions.
Israel's objective was to kill innocent civilians and destroy civilian infrastructure. Israel's actions were war crimes as defined by international law.
War crimes and Lebanon
August 3, 2006
Human Rights Watch
Some Israeli Attacks Amount to War Crimes
...Human Rights Watch researchers found numerous cases in which the IDF launched artillery and air attacks with limited or dubious military objectives but excessive civilian cost. In many cases, Israeli forces struck an area with no apparent military target. In some instances, Israeli forces appear to have deliberately targeted civilians...
Israel's crimes were intended to cause the Lebanese people to blame Hezbollah and plunge Lebanon into civil war. But that didn't happen. Instead Lebanese public opinion blames the IDF and the Israeli government for the killings, not Hezbollah. If anything, Israeli actions have unified Lebanese against Israel.
Not only did Israel fail to bomb the Lebanese people into submission, their alleged war crimes against innocent civilians are now the subject of a UNHRC investigation. Hopefully the UNHRC will file criminal charges as a result.
UN ĎIsraeli War Crimesí Vote Reveals the West is Isolated