Perhaps the most frustrating and puzzling is the response from Russia. President Putin along with other senior Russian officals have repeatedly said that Israel must show restraint. While it true that Russia does have close ties with Iran, The Russians have fought two wars with Muslim extremists in Chechnya. Except for the United States and Britian, The Russians are one of the very few who truly know what's at stake in this war against Muslim extremism. Their constant siding with Iran (who has quietly supported those who stirred up Chechnya) is at the least very confusing. I suspect that when all is said and done we'll find that Russia is more involved in this current conflict than anyone realizes at the moment.
The Vatican's response just plain pisses me off (if you'll pardon the expression). The Vatican....No wait......let's just call them what they are.......The Catholic Church! Yes the same organization that has a history of hiding & protecting child molestors and the same organization that has no respect for the sovereignty of the United States or the laws of this country. This so called religious organization has zero credibility with any normal sane thinking person. Don't get me started on the Catholic Church. Vactican officals and Mr Pope: SHUT YOUR MOUTHS!!! Nobody cares what you have to say!
And finally, The American Left.....Today Howard Dean came out and said that Israels response was an overly aggressive response to the current events. Let's see Mr Dean.....multiple rocks launched into Israel as a distraction for the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier. More rockets followed and more soldiers kidnapped and killed. Plus you have Iran publicly saying they won't rest until Israel is wiped off the map. All combined, I'd say that more than qualifies as an act of war. I dare would say that Dean's response would be drastically different if missles were launched at his beloved Vermont from north of the border. If he says differently, then he is a liar too!
Here's my viewpoint on this whole deal. What Israel is dealing with now is a part of the much larger war on terror. In the past, I have generally thought that the United States has always been a little too chummy with Israel. However, my thoughts on that are changing with every moment that passes by. Israel has been one of if not the staunchest ally of the United States when it comes to Middle East affairs. Time and time again she has shown remarkable restraint when conflict flares in the region. During the first Gulf War, Israel was targeted more than once with missles and did not respond. On more than one occasion, Israel has shown incredible restraint when asked to by the United States. Not this time though. Israel has as much right to defend herself as any other country. No other nation with the capability to defend itself would stand by and let themselves be repeatedly be attacked by terrorists and nations bent on it's total destruction.
The sad truth in this case though is that the real victims in this current conflict are the people and the government of Lebanon. This fledgling government put in place by democratic elections is still being held hostage by the Syrians and by Iran's support for Hezbollah and Hamas. Until that situation is resolved, I'm afraid these types of conflicts will continue for some time to come.