The lemon that is the ill-conceived UN resolution aimed at ending the war has gone back to the garage for some tinkering and souping-up. A bunch of smug, self-satisfied waddling Arab Foreign Ministers decided that maybe they should get involved at this point and took a communal trip to New York to state their case - which, a month after the war started, is too little, too late.
Fundamentally, the resolution offers no strong and decisive action - it merely asks that Hezbollah stop all attacks and that Israel stop all "offensive" actions. So, taken to an extreme, Israel could theoretically rebrand all its aggressions as "defensive" actions and carry on business as usual.
The one thing that sticks in my throat about the deployment of the Lebanese Army to the south is that if Hezbollah continue their attacks after that, the IDF will have a legitimate target in the Lebanese state. As bad as things are now they could swiftly become so much worse. Hezbollah, although in supposed agreement with the decision to deploy the Army, is not reknowned for doing the honourable thing or for its restraint and Israel has proved over and over again that it doesn't even know what the word means.
So while the rest of the world is pussyfooting around with a piece of paper and making a show of decrying the terrible violence and loss of life, things here on the ground remain pretty much the same - more civilians dead, more of the country laid waste to.
Hezbollah boss Hassan Nasrallah's voicing of the "settling of accounts" to take place after this war is over will have grim repercussions. As if more proof were needed of the direction we are headed in.
In an interview with Al Jazeera at the beginning of the war he said: ‘‘If we succeed in achieving the victory . . . we will never forget all those who supported us at this stage. . . . As for those who sinned against us . . . those who made mistakes, those who let us down and those who conspired against us . . . this will be left for a day to settle accounts. We might be tolerant with them, and we might not.’’
After living 30 years under the Syrian thumb(-screws), Lebanon and most of its diverse communities won't go back to living under more oppression. After the civil war ended, every community gave up its weapons as a sign of good faith. Everyone, that is, except Hezbollah.
Syria allowed them to keep their weapons and even gave bigger and better ones, ostensibly for the "resistance" but more likely as a way to keep themselves relevant in the rapidly changing political landscape.
If Hezbollah keep up the excellent job they're doing in screwing the country, both militarily and politically, and then go on to threaten everyone who wasn't waving their flag during this unilateral extinguishing of the nation, I certainly wouldn't be surprised if other communities started to pick up guns. You know, just in case.
Then, any threats perceived or real, will be dealt with on a whole new level - one where what is happening today actually makes sense.
It reminds me of some graffiti painted on a wall on the approach to the old Beirut Airport during the early 80's which I shall paraphrase:
"Would the last person to leave please turn out the lights."
Doesn't seem so funny anymore.