As you may know the members of the Watcher’s Council each nominate one of his or her own posts and one non-Council post for consideration by the whole Council. The complete list of this week’s Council nominations is here.
AJ Strata of The Strata-Sphere has decided to vacate his seat on the Council. If you have a blog, think about joining the Council—the rules are here.
The Glittering Eye, “More on Doha”
Although you might not know it from following the news, things other than the hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah happened last week. My submission for this week considered one of them: the collapse of the Doha round of WTO trade talks.
Rhymes With Right, “Qana—and Why It Doesn’t Matter”
Greg comments on the Israeli airstrike which killed a number of Lebanese civilians including children and notes how low the tolerance for civilian casualties has become.
Socratic Rhythm Method, “Hezbollah Becoming Better Armed”
Matt reviews Hezbollah’s rocket arsenal and concludes that the worst may be yet to come.
I do think that Matt has successfully noted the conundrum of Israel’s present military strategy. The minimum military objectives of Israel’s present strategy against Hezbollah would appear to be to secure Israel from missile attack by Hezbollah by destroying its rocket inventories and delivery capacity via bombardment and interdicting ongoing supply with a naval blockade and eliminating overland traffic with Syria. IMO this is not a tenable longterm plan.
A military solution would require preventing re-supply of Hezbollah from Syria or Iran. Would it also require preventing re-supply of Iran from China, North Korea, and who knows where? I see no evidence that Iran can be deterred by limited raids—quite the contrary. Where would such a strategy end?
My own view is that Israel needs to find a different formula for ensuring its security.
Right Wing Nut House, “The Civilian Paradox in Modern War”
Rick Moran’s submission for this week, too, takes as its point of departure the incident at Qana but Rick considers the larger moral, legal, and historical context. I largely agree with Rick but would add this: modern specialization has fostered a situation in which people without moral or ethical education have decided that there’s nothing to be learned.
ShrinkWrapped, “Guilt vs. Shame”
ShrinkWrapped makes the interesting observation that deliberately placing civilians in jeopardy is an excellent strategy for employment by members of a shame culture against members of a guilt culture.
AbbaGav defends the members of the IDF from charges of inhumanity. In a country as large as ours in which so few of our fellow citizens participate in the military it’s easy to forget that Israel, quite to the contrary, is a country about the size of New Jersey with universal military service. Nearly everybody knows someone who’s serving in the military.
Done With Mirrors, “Homers, But Honest”
Callimachus remembers a now-departed Philadelphia sportscaster in the context of what makes a great reporter.
The Education Wonks, “Jimmy McCain: Here’s a Positive Role Model!”
EdWonk gives credit to Arizona senator John McCain’s youngest son for following family tradition by volunteering for military service but breaking with it by becoming a Marine (and not attending Annapolis).
Joshuapundit, “The Qana Strike—the Making of a Hezbo-wood Production”
Freedom Fighter considers the evidence that the strike at Qana was staged or, possibly, enhanced. Frankly, I doubt it. But I do think that it’s pretty likely that it was fomented.
Gates of Vienna, “Shaky Pork Withdrawal”
Dymphna considers the pork-barrel politics that bids fair to overwhelm the Republic and amusingly adapts a self-test for alcoholism. Be sure and check her update for more facts and figures.
The Sundries Shack, “Iran’s Okay-Fine With Us, Says France”
Jimmie Bise is doubtful (to say the least) about the French Foreign Minister’s words of praise for Iran, paying special attention to the limits of stability as an objective in the Middle East. I certainly wish that the French would distinguish more clearly between Iran (in which, as I’ve written before, there is much to admire) and the present regime (which, IMO, is wholly reprehensible).
Here’s my question: is the shaky consensus among United Nations Security Council veto wielders on Iran breaking down already?
Well, I’ve made my decision on which posts I’ll vote for this week. Which would get your vote?