In an odd twist, Israel is now saying it will stop its aggression in Lebanon for less than its stated rational for unleashing its war machine north of the border. AP news reports:
Israel would agree to a cease-fire in its six-day-old offensive against Hezbollah if the Lebanese guerrillas withdraw from the border area with Israel and release two captured Israeli soldiers, a senior official said Monday.
The official, who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the diplomacy, said Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert had conveyed Israel's position to Italy's prime minister, who is trying to broker a cease-fire deal.
Israel had previously demanded the full dismantling of Hezbollah as a condition for ending hostilities. However, the senior official said Israel would agree to Hezbollah merely leaving the border area - with the Lebanese army taking its place.
This could make one think Israel was not serious about its initial aims; that it just wanted to kick a little Hezbollah behind. If this is what Israel desired all along, then why the killing of innocents and destruction of critical infrastructure? Lebanon needs to present Israel with an invoice for road, repair, bridge and building reconstruction as part of the deal. How will Israel pay for the killing of innocent Lebanese and international citizens? Dearly, I believe.