Lebanese/isreali Soldier Video
08-18-2006, 06:21 AM
Lebanese/isreali Soldier Video
http://www.cnn.com/2006/WORLD/meast/08/17/...main/index.html Video provokes questions of Lebanese army
Lebanese forces move southward; Beirut airport reopens
Thursday, August 17, 2006; Posted: 9:51 p.m. EDT (01:51 GMT)
BEIRUT, Lebanon (CNN) -- A video showing Lebanese soldiers cordially offering Israeli troops glasses of tea during the military offensive earlier this month has hit Israeli and Hezbollah airwaves.
The video, shot by Israelis on August 10, when Israeli troops "took control" of the southern Lebanese town of Marjeyoun, aired on Israel's Channel 2 on Wednesday.
Hezbollah's al-Manar TV network and pro-Hezbollah NEW TV then picked up the video and condemned the Lebanese soldiers as deserters. (Watch the video to see if it suggests treason or courtesy -- 2:29)
There have been conflicting accounts of what happened at Marjeyoun.
In the video, two Israeli tanks roll up to the gate of the Marjeyoun garrison, where a white surrender flag flutters outside the barracks.
Inside, Lebanese soldiers hold trays with glasses of tea, which they offer to the Israelis. The encounter appears merely social.
However, it is possible that unpleasant parts of the video were deleted during editing.
After the video aired, the Lebanese interior ministry ordered the arrest of the base commander, Gen. Adnan Daoud, according to The Associated press. Lebanon does not recognize Israel and forbids its citizens any contact with Israelis.
At one point in the video, Daoud and an Israeli soldier have the following exchange, as translated by CNN's Octavia Nasr:
Daoud: "Don't we need to tell our bosses?"
Israeli soldier: "Tell whoever you want."
Daoud: "We need to brief them on what happened."
Israeli soldier: "We briefed (U.S. President) Bush. You brief whoever you want."
Daoud: "We need to brief Bush too."
According to Nasr, the tape reflects the Lebanese army's hands-off policy in the fighting between Israel and the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah.
Lebanon didn't want to turn the conflict into a war between it and Israel, she said.
The actions, as depicted in a video where parts may have been deleted and edited, could suggest the Lebanese army is weak and unable to take southern Lebanon back from Hezbollah without help.
There are conflicting reports of what happened at Marjeyoun, a largely Christian town.
Lebanese intelligence said the Israeli troops met no resistance when they entered the town. Arab-language network Al-Jazeera has quoted Hezbollah as saying "violent battles" took place with their militants, and Arab news networks Al-Manar and Al-Arabiya reported at least two Israeli tanks were destroyed in the fighting.
Lebanese acting Interior Minister Ahmed Fatfat defended the Lebanese forces at the barracks, which he said included 350 Lebanese internal security officers and soldiers from the army's intelligence unit.
"This force is not on a combat mission. This force has simple individual weapons to act as a police force. They don't have tanks or missile launchers. This is a force that was assigned to support the residents and protect them, provide them with humanitarian assistance," he said.
Other critics view the Lebanese army's general as having committed an act of treason.
Lebanese forces move south
The surfacing of the video coincided with the arrival of Lebanese troops in the southern region, the first time it has taken control there in decades. (Watch locals welcome the arrival of the Lebanese army in southern Lebanon -- 2:41)
The Lebanese Army hopes to have all of its planned 15,000 troops deployed by Friday morning, an army official said.
The Israeli army has been handing over the territory south of the Litani River to the U.N. Interim Force in Lebanon and the Lebanese army, Israel Defense Forces said. (Full story)
A top U.N. official warned Thursday that U.N. members need to step up and contribute troops to the peacekeeping mission in southern Lebanon if the cease-fire is to hold.
"Every moment we delay is a moment of risk that the fighting could re-erupt," Deputy Secretary-General Mark Malloch Brown told representatives of nations considering deployments. He said UNIFIL would not be involved in a large-scale disarmament of Hezbollah.
So far, Bangladesh has offered a potential contribution of two mechanized infantry battalions comprising about 1,500-2,000 troops. Indonesia has offered a mechanized battalion and a company of engineers, with Malaysia and Nepal each volunteering a mechanized battalion. Denmark has offered to send two ships to patrol the Lebanese coast.
Also considering sending troops are Italy, Spain, Egypt, Belgium and Morocco.
Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Shimon Peres has said Israel would be out of Lebanon within "weeks" if Lebanese forces arrive in the southern part of the country.
Hezbollah has pledged that its fighters south of the Litani will disarm.
Meanwhile, Beirut's airport reopened Thursday.
A flight from Amman, Jordan, was the first to arrive since Israeli warplanes and gunboats destroyed the airport's three runways early in the 34-day conflict.
Two more flights, from Amman and London, were scheduled to arrive later Thursday with members of the press and humanitarian aid, an airport official said.
British Airways said it expects to resume flights to Beirut by next week.
The conflict began July 12, when Hezbollah abducted two Israeli soldiers and killed three others in a cross-border raid into northern Israel. Israel responded with a massive bombardment of Lebanon and a push into the country's south to root out Hezbollah, which retaliated by firing about 4,000 rockets into northern Israel. (Watch Israelis return to rocket-battered city -- 2:05)
When the cease-fire took effect Monday, more than 1,000 Lebanese and 159 Israelis had been reported killed in the fighting.
During the conflict, Peres said, Israel believes it destroyed about a third of Hezbollah's missiles, including all of its long-range missiles. (Watch how Hezbollah's resistance to Israeli air power may prove a lesson to the U.S. -- 1:47)
What are they briefing Bush for and why would they say that and then air it on Isreali TV? Just a candid joke? Weird :huh::unsure:
The belief in 'coincidence' is the prevalent superstition of the Age of Science.
&I don't understand why you're taking such a belligerant tone when you're obviously the ignorant one here. &
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