International leaders failed to agree on the terms of a cease-fire between Israel and Hizbullah and called for talks on a United Nations-mandated force to help the Lebanese army restore peace in south Lebanon.
According to Bloomberg, leaders acknowledged that winning participants for such a force would take time and be difficult:
Hezbollah, backed by and Syria, rejects a force that would eventually replace Israeli troops in a security zone. Israel has endorsed the idea of a European-led force though has said it should not be led by the UN, throwing into question the prospect of one ever being dispatched.
What is needed is a cease-fire that will ensure the Hizbullah terrorists are no longer able to reek indiscriminate death and destruction whenever they choose to throw a temper tantrum.
If ever a gang of terrorist thugs needed to be reined in, it is Hizbullah.
Hizbullah's founding document calls for the destruction of the state of Israel.
Before September 11, 2001, Hizbullah was responsible for more American deaths than any other terrorist organization. Hassan Nasrallah, the group's secretary-general, recently proclaimed, "Death to America was, is, and will stay our slogan."
Hizbullah's record of terrorist attacks on the United States and its allies is long: the 1983 bombing of the barracks of U.S. Marines deployed peacekeepers in Beirut to keep the airport open for relief supplies; the bombing of the U.S. Beirut embassy in 1983 and 1984; the hijacking of TWA flight 847 and murder of U.S. Navy diver Robert Stethem in 1985; a series of attacks on Israeli targets in Lebanon; the bombing of the Israeli embassy in Argentina in 1992 and of a Buenos Aires Jewish community center in 1994. More recently, Hizbullah operatives have plotted to blow up the Israeli embassy in Thailand, and a Lebanese member of Hizbullah was indicted for helping to design the truck bomb that flattened the Khobar Towers U.S. military base in Saudi Arabia in 1996.
The current "crises" stems from Hizbullah's unprovoked attack across Israel's northern border, killing and abducting Israeli soldiers. Let's not forget that in 2004 the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1559 calling upon Lebanon to disband the military wing of Hezbollah.
In 2005, the UN Security Council adopted Resolution 1583 calling upon Lebanon to exercise its sole and effective authority throughout the south. Again this year the UN Security Council called on Lebanon to make more progress in controlling its territory and disbanding militias. Had Lebanon complied with the UN demands, the present crisis could have been avoided.
Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is right to try "to bring about an urgent but enduring cease-fire in Lebanon, one that can deal with the causes of extremism that began this crisis and that can also lead to the establishment of the sovereignty of the Lebanese government throughout its territory." Anything short of an enduring cease-fire will simply encourage more violence in the long run.