Ah, the wonders of a UN resolution. The peacekeeping troops are there, and they’re doing…what, exactly?

One month after a United Nations Security Council resolution ended a 34-day war between Israel and Lebanon’s Hezbollah militia, members of the international force sent to help keep the peace say their mission is defined more by what they cannot do than by what they can.

They say they cannot set up checkpoints, search cars, homes or businesses or detain suspects. If they see a truck transporting missiles, for example, they say they can not stop it. They cannot do any of this, they say, because under their interpretation of the Security Council resolution that deployed them, they must first be authorized to take such action by the Lebanese Army.

The job of the United Nations force, and commanders in the field repeat this like a mantra, is to respect Lebanese sovereignty by supporting the Lebanese Army. They will only do what the Lebanese authorities ask.

And many in the Lebanese Army support the aims of Hezbollah, so you’re not going to see much on that front.

The Security Council resolution, known as 1701, was seen at the time as the best way to halt the war, partly by giving Israel assurances that Lebanon’s southern border would be policed by a robust international force to prevent Hezbollah militants from attacking. When the resolution was approved, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, one of its principal architects, said the force’s deployment would help “protect the Lebanese people and prevent armed groups such as Hezbollah from destabilizing the area.”

But the resolution’s diplomatic language skirted a fundamental question: what kind of policing power would be given to the international force? The resolution leaves open the possibility that the Lebanese Army would grant such policing power, but the force’s commanders say that so far, at least, that has not happened.

The UN backs up its toothless resolutions with toothless “peacekeepers” that let Hezbollah rearm in broad daylight. Is this what they meant in the resolution by “disarming” them? They’ve kicked the problem down the road and pretend they’ve solved it.

In the meantime, it appears that the world body’s outrage is all spent, or at least it’s selective. When Israel fought back, the UN acted (well, for loose interpretations of the word “act”). When Palestinians lob rockets into Israel, the UN yawns.

Three Kassam rockets fired on Israel Monday morning damaged vehicles and hit an empty classroom at the Sh’ar HaNegev College in the northwestern Negev.

Arab terrorists in Gaza have stepped up rocket attacks against Israel the past two weeks despite IDF operations. However, there has been no political condemnation of the terrorist attacks.

Rockets? What rockets?

Palestinians fired two Qassam rockets from the northern Gaza Strip on Monday morning. One of the rockets landed near Kibbutz Mefalsim, causing damage to two cars.

A Magen David Adom crew dispatched to the area evacuated a woman who suffered from shock to the Barzilai Medical Center in Asheklon.

The other rocket landed near the southern town of Sderot and did not cause injuries or damage.

(Hat tip to Meryl Yourish.)

The UN did not bring peace. What it brought was a calm before the next storm, a storm that is organizing right under its nose.

Technorati Tags: , , , , ,

Filed under: IsraelMiddle EastPoliticsTerrorismUnited NationsWar

Like this post? Subscribe to my RSS feed and get loads more!