Israel Extends War to Lebanon

July 16, 2006

The state of Israel, with the support of the U.S. government, has launched war against Lebanon.

Since Thursday, July 13, Israeli planes, ships and tanks have continuously bombed Lebanon, including Beirut. In three days, at least 80 Lebanese have been killed, more than 200 wounded, and thousands forced to leave their homes. A full scale blockade has been imposed on the country and Israel is engaged in saturation bombing, trying to soften the country up for a largescale ground invasion. Israel is systematically bombing bridges and roads, electrical power generation, water and sanitation facilities, houses, etc. Reflecting the widespread outrage at the Israeli aggression, even the French government was forced to denounce Israel for the "disproportionate use of force;" French President Jacques Chirac said that it seems like Israel "wish[es] to destroy" Lebanon.

Israeli officials said that they planned a "long campaign;" many observers expect that Israel will try to occupy part of the country. Israel's military chief of staff, Dan Halutz said that "nothing is safe" in Lebanon.

George Bush immediately supported Israel's aggression saying "Israel has the right to defend herself."

Israel is facing stiff resistance across Lebanon as the whole population, uniting behind the resistance organizations, is fighting back against the attacks and making preparations for the Israeli invasion.

At the same time, Israel is continuing its aggression against Gaza. On Wednesday, Israeli tanks and troops pushed into central Gaza killing at least 23 Palestinians, including 7 children in one family. Since June 28, Israel has killed at least 95 Palestinians, mostly civilians, and inflicted tremendous damage on the infrastructure of Gaza, bombing electrical power plants, water and sanitation systems, government ministries, residential areas, etc. Again, the Israeli government insists that its war in Gaza will last a long time; its aims include forcing a change in the Palestinian government, re-occupying part of Gaza and terrorizing the Palestinian people.

On Thursday, the U.S. vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution calling for an end to Israel's military offensive in Gaza. The U.S. was the only country to vote against the resolution.

The U.S. and Israel have threatened to extend the war to Syria and Iran.

Israel's new aggression against Gaza and Lebanon is part of U.S. imperialism's so-called "war on terrorism" which has turned the entire region into a war zone. In the late fall of 2001, the Israeli government, with the support of George Bush, declared that the Palestinian West Bank and Gaza were the "second front" in the "war on terrorism." The U.S.-Israeli goals are to wipe out the Palestinian resistance movement, permanently annex large sections of Jerusalem and the West Bank to Israel and deprive the Palestinian people of any possibility of building a viable, independent state. This is part of U. S. imperialism's plan to re-colonize the Middle East, suppress any resistance to its domination and strengthen Israel as its forward base in the region.

But the Palestinian nation has not been vanquished. On the contrary, it is re-energizing its resistance and striking back against the aggressors.

Today, as the Palestinian resistance is strengthening itself and the Iraqi people continue to deal heavy blows to the U.S. occupation, U.S. imperialism is using Israel to broaden the war and threaten every country in the region.

The aggressors must be defeated. U.S. imperialism and its attack dog, Israeli zionism, have set the whole region on fire, from Afghanistan to Iraq to Palestine and Lebanon. The threats to Syria and Iran are very real.

Peace can only be won by throwing U.S. imperialism out of the region, lock, stock and barrel and by forcing the aggressive state of Israel to stay in its lair. Israeli forces must immediately and permanently withdraw from Lebanon, the Gaza and the entire West Bank. All illegal Israeli settlements must be dismantled and a genuinely independent Palestinian state must be established.