"worst possible outcome"

The full quotation from the Wall Street Journal’s article, “The Road to Damascus,” No, this isn’t a latter-day Bob Hope-Bing Crosby road movie — the subtitle is “The strange new respect for Syria’s Bashar Assad”.

The unavoidable conclusion is that Syria is part of the problem, and diplomatic measures alone will not work. Just as they have failed in the past. There’s the telling example of how Turkey would not stand for the usual nonsense from Syria:

There is one diplomatic approach to Damascus that might get Mr. Assad’s attention–call it the Turkish way. In the fall of 1998, the Turkish army mobilized for war with Syria. The Kurdish PKK had trained in Syria and its terrorist leader, Abdullah Ocalan, operated more or less openly in Damascus. The Turks made a simple offer: Either expel Ocalan and close the terror camps, or expect to be invaded. Within a year, Ocalan was in jail and the PKK had ceased its attacks.

There is nothing that works so well as talking softly and carrying a few armored divisions to back up the talk. But, those were the Turks, and we’re bogged down in trying to impose order in the chaos that is Iraq, so we’ve not got any armored divisions to spare. But Israel may.

Which brings me to the concluding point of how to achieve lasting peace in the fight between Israel and Hezbollah. No, it’s not a cease fire. This, even assuming that it could be enforced, simply rewards Hezbollah for their agression and terrorism, and allows them to remain a potent force for later attacks.

This is the preferred option of our Euro “friends” and for the entire Arab world. The latter don’t want to miss any chance to destroy Israel; the former, the Euros, don’t care one way or the other — just don’t interrupt our 30-hour workweeks and our subsidized naps.

The answer? From the WSJ:

In order to prevail against Hezbollah, Israel (with implicit U.S. backing) may have to make a similar offer that Syria can’t refuse. Either Syria stops arming Hezbollah, or Israel will have to consider taking the fight to Dasmascus.

No one wants to see the current conflict widen, but the worst possible outcome would be a cease-fire imposed by the world that allowed Hezbollah to survive as a potent military force. Equally bad would be a cease-fire that allows Syria to reimpose its will on Lebanon, while Hezbollah could re-arm and wait for the next time Iran or Syria needed it to create a second front against Israel–or the United States.

“Peace” is not simply the cessation of actual shots being fired. A cease-fire that does not restore the status quo ante and meet UN resolution 1559 simply invites a resumption of the current war against Israel.

It also leaves Lebanon as not fully sovereign, which Arabs might think important. But apparently do not; they’d rather make futile gestures against the Zionist Entity, a/k/a Little Satan. It’s so much more fun to claim victimhood than actually do the right thing.

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