How to fit Lebanon into the Rhetoric?

OK, I’m having a hard time understanding the U. S. position with regard to Lebanon.

President Bush says that any country harboring terrorists is our enemy.

Bush also says that Hezbollah has killed more Americans than any other terrorist network except for al Qaeda.

As far as I can tell, Lebanon isn’t just harboring Hezbollah, it’s part of the government. So why isn’t Lebanon our enemy?

Anyone?

What makes you think they aren’t?

  1. The fact that we have not invaded them and effected a regime change.

  2. The fact that the President has never talked about doing so.

  3. The fact that, when Bush lists state sponsors of terror, he lists Iran, Syria, North Korea, and Cuba, but not Lebanon.

We don’t need to do any of that, since Israel is willing to. Therefore, why bother ? Also, you assume that Bush and friends actually care about terrorism, save as a political tool.

Yes Der Trihs, we all know you hate Bush & Co.

Because forign policy is a bit more nuanced that that?

Also I don’t recal Cuba being listed in Bush’s “Axis of Evil”.

Please keep in mind that rhetoric is not the same as actual policy. That’s why they call it rhetoric.

The real question, of course, is why isn’t Pakistan our enemy?

Pakistan, militants sign peace deal.

Because they have nukes, of course.

Of course! That also explains why North Korea is such a close ally.

Oh, wait…

I’ve often wondered that, honestly. The only reason that makes sense to me is that the current Pakistani government is acting less in opposition to U.S. interests that would the most likely alternative, which is the (apparently) growing Islamist movement in Pakistan. Mabye the thought is that by supporting the more moderate Musharraf, it will undermine support for the more extreme faction(s).

I suspect something similar is going on with Jordan. In media accounts, reporters often depict the Lebanese government as being unable to curb the violence of Hezbollah, not that they are unwilling to do so if they had the means.

All that’s purely speculative, though. I don’t pretend to understand the nuances of foreign policy well enough to explain adequately.

Yes, that’s probably it. I was only half-kidding in my earlier post. Pakistan fitts the criteria of a “rogue” state that “shelters terrorists”, except that any other government they might have would probably be worse.

It explains why we attacked Iraq and not them, despite labelling them both as part of the mythical “Axis of Evil”; a fact not missed by the rest of the world. As well, we simply don’t want them as an ally, and I doubt they’d accept the offer. We do want Pakistan as an ally, and it’s been foolish enough to accept. We’ll betray them sooner or later, being America, but at least we won’t try to conquer them; those nukes again.

Because all such support/attack is based on Realpolitik, and all the words are just dross.

And maybe, just maybe, because Lebanon is 40% Christian…?

Well, it seems to me that Bush has been very careful to try and lay out clear guidelines for identifying our enemies. Based on his words, it would seem that the Lebanese government should fall under the “enemy” column. Yet, when Israeli forces entered Lebanon, it seemed that both Olmert and Bush went to great lengths to declare that the Lebanese government was not being faulted for the actions of Hezbollah, despite the fact that the organization is enmeshed in the governmental structure.

As for Cuba, I wasn’t talking about the so-called “axis of evil”; I included Cuba because it is one of the five countries designated as “state sponsors of terrorism” in the newly released National Strategy Document (I forgot to include Sudan, the other country so designated). These state sponsors of terrorism, as well as other countries that “harbor and assist terrorists,” go under the “enemy” column.

So, I should ignore the rhetoric, then? How about the National Strategy For Combating Terrorism? Should I ignore that as well?

Do you have an actual question, is there something you want to get off your chest, or are you having problems Googling Lebanon’s history?

75% of Lebanese detest Hezbollah, but are sh/t scared of them.

Pakistan is a US ally from way back, trouble is they don’t have much control of some of their population - especially the bit near Afghanistan.

I’m not sure what kind of answer are you looking for. Do you want us to tell you that Bush is full of shit about the War on Terrorism or something so you can pat yourself on the back?

I don’t wish to pat myself on the back. If you truly think Bush is full of shit about the War on Terrorism, just say so. Don’t just say it because you think that’s what I want to hear. I just want to know why the actions of our government with regard to Lebanon are apparently at odds with the things they say about foreign policy in general and terrorism specifically? Is there a reason, or not? If there is, I would appreciate it if someone would explain it to me. Maybe it’s all random, but I hope not.

Don’t understand the question. Where are we at odds? Israel is our ally. Israel was attacked by terrorists. We supported Israel in the ensuing war. It was a win/win for the United States because we didn’t have to send troops in this time.