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Monday, July 24, 2006


Quote of the Day

"Israel is defending the whole world. She's doing all the dirty work."

- 12-year-old Jonathan Sapir, an Israeli living in the U.S., at a pro-Israel rally in San Jose yesterday.
"Dirty work" indeed. Out of the mouths of babes.

Some of the other quotes from the article are equally interesting. Jonathan's mother Sima says this: "9/11 happened once here. But 9/11s happen almost every week, everywhere in Israel. We are not free." Well, let's see. Israel's population is 7 million people; even considering a "proportionality" of deaths compared to the US' 300 million, a "9/11 every week" would amount to 70 Israelis being killed every week. In the last six years, 1100 Israelis have been killed in conflicts with Palestinians and now Lebanese. That's 3.5 people a week, or 5% of a 9/11 every week.

Let's contrast that to Lebanon. With a population of 3.8 million (two weeks ago, anyway), a "9/11 every week" would amount to 38 people killed a week. Israel has been bombing Lebanon for 12 days now, and killed at least 380 people, or 221 people a week. That's nearly six "9/11's every week."

Or let's contrast the Israeli deaths with Palestinians, of whom 4100 have been killed by Israel in the last six years, or 13 per week. There are 2.5 million Palestinians in the West Bank and 1.3 million in Gaza, or 3.8 million total. That works out to one-third of a 9/11 per week in Palestinian deaths for the last six years (and longer, that's just the statistic I have).

There's still one more quote from the article I need to pass on:

Calling herself a peace activist for more than 20 years, the Rev. Rebecca Kuiken of Willow Glen's Stone Church said she lamented the deaths of Lebanese civilians during this war, but reminded the crowd that innocent civilians have been held hostage by "these terrorists in concert with Syria and Iran."
Readers may remember past posts entitled "Why I'm not for 'Peace'." "Peace activist" Reverend Kuiken gives me just one more reason to hold to that position, with her "lamentation" for the deaths of Lebanese civilians, without any actual objection to those murders. And I'm sure I don't need to point out that Hamas and Hizballah are holding captured soldiers as hostage, not "innocent civilians."

Update: I revised the numbers from the original posting. That's because I thought the quote was a "9/11 per day", then when I realized it was "per week" I multiplied by 7. That wasn't correct.

Second update: An excellent analysis of the situation by Richard Becker opened my eyes to another statistic. We hear about 900,000 (numbers vary, of course, and increase daily) Lebanese refugees. Becker does the math and notes that that is 23% of the Lebanese population!. Remember Katrina? George Bush doesn't, but I'm sure you do. Several hundred thousand people evacuated from the area, which was a crisis of the first order. Those several hundred thousand people comprise one tenth of one percent of the American population (and less than seven percent of the population of Louisiana). Now consider the implications of 23% of a population being displaced from their homes.

Third update: More statistics. MSNBC reports that Israel has now bombed 80% of Lebanon's highways and 95% of Lebanon's bridges. They also report Israeli claims that 1/3 of Hizballah's weaponry is used up or destroyed, which is pretty remarkable since it's been several days since Israel was claiming a figure of 50%.

Fourth update: I just heard a Deputy Israeli Ambassador on BBC say that Hizbollah had used up 20% of its weapons. The figure keeps dropping!

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