Thursday, June 3, 2010

When Israel Trusts Others to Stop Arms Going to Terrorists

By Barry Rubin

It should be mentioned that Israel has tried the method of having others monitor the inflow of supplies to terrorists. Most obviously this has been the situation in Lebanon, where the UN promised Israel in 2006 that it was putting a large force into place to make sure Hizballah didn't fortify southern Lebanon and that arms didn't continue to flow in from Syria.

In three years, these UN forces have not interdicted a single piece of military equipment. Not one. Nor has it taken any action against Hizballah's use of southern Lebanon as a military base. Not one. Hizballah has been rearmed to levels higher than in 2006. And there has been no criticism by the UN (or U.S. policy for that matter) of Syria for sending these arms (often paid for by Iran).

That's the tragedy part, here's the farce. Before Israel's withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, the EU came up with a grand plan about how it would play a role in reducing tension. It was going to monitor the shipments into the Gaza Strip from Egypt.

So what happened? Two EU officers sitting in folding chairs watching all the material coming into Gaza. Of course, they never did anything whatsoever.

Yes, there is a good reason why Israel undertakes its own self-defense and, where possible, guards what goes on along its borders. If it depended on the West to do so it wouldn't be undertaking that task but would need the services of an undertaker instead.

Why does Israel act unilaterally? Because it cannot depend on the promises of others, that's why.

And here here and here are some good pieces on the incompetence and inconsistency of Western-led efforts to interdict shipments of arms sales generally.

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