The Middle East never seems to get the peace most of its residents long for. Many people that don't live in the
Middle East also long for peace in the region. Unfortunately, War
has erupted between Israel and Hezbollah in Lebanon. Hezbollah and Israel have been exchanging attacks for the past several days. There are
growing casualties on both sides including the deaths of several Canadians living in Lebanon. The biggest news of late is the mass exodus of foreigners from Lebanon -- a difficult maneuver when bombs are falling. The War is being widely discussed in the blogosphere. The graphic on the right shows a recent top ten tag list from Technorati -- all ten of them are related
to the Israeli-Lebanon War.
Here are some highlights from the blog coverage:
The first war blogged by opposing sides? On the Face writes,
"It looks as though the Israel-Lebanon are-we-calling-it-a-war-yet of 2006 is the first
conflict to be blogged from day one. Bloggers from both sides of the border - some of whom
were already aware of one another before this tragedy began - have been providing live
updates, commenting on one another's blogs and sometimes linking to posts by bloggers on
the other side of the border. Will this turn out to be the first time that residents of
"enemy" countries engaged in an ongoing conversation while missiles were falling?"
The Truth Laid Bear has a great special feature on the Middle East crisis that organizes posts from Israeli, Lebanese
and Palestinian Bloggers. Each section also includes the most-linked posts.
USA Today's On Deadline blog also offers a roundup
that includes links to The Lebanese Bloggers, a
group of bloggers from Lebanon blogging as the city they love is bombed.
Munir Umrani at The Blogging Journalist points to good roundups from
Public Eye. Munir also writes, "I'm glad I can read commentary on the crisis
by writers other than those attached to traditional media. I don't care if they
are "biased." At least they tell how they see it without worrying whether some
editor will censor their commentary out of political concerns."
CNN's Anderson Cooper has been live-blogging from Haifa. In
he covers a rocket attack. Cooper's blog can be found
Juan Cole on Hezbollah: "Israeli spokesmen are saying that they want to finish
off Hizbullah. But you can't finish off a mass movement among 1.35 million people.
Besides, there wouldn't be any Hizbullah if Israel had not invaded Lebanon in
1982 and occupied the south for 18 years. Israel's grabby occupation radicalized
and helped mobilize the Lebanese Shiites. They aren't going to become less radical
and less mobilized as a result of the current hamfisted Israeli assault."
Bush swore: President Bush uttered a swear word while having a private conversation with
Tony Blair. The two world leaders didn't realize the microphone was on.
CJR Daily has a roundup on what several bloggers are saying about it.
More blog posts about Bush's gaffe here.
The Next Hurrah wonders if
Chinese President Hu Jintao secretly turned on the microphone.
James Wolcott: "That seems to be Bush's stance. That of an interested bystander
watching Israel pound away at Lebanon (not without provocation, perhaps, but still),
intervening only when the Decider has decided enough punishment has been doled out.
Then again, perhaps he intends to be even more delegatory than Sinatra, and let
Israel pummel away until it figures Lebanon's had enough."
Beirut Notes: "Iran, Syria, Hezbollah and Israel are turning Lebanon into killing fields. My beautiful country is being burned by crazy ideologies. My Lebanon of joy is being eaten by human monsters. My kind Lebanon is being butchered in the name of religion."
The Jerusalem Post has multiple blogs including one called The Center, by a group of
students at Herzliya's IDC. One post is called Here I am: "Here I am, sitting in
a bomb shelter. Three hours after the first rocket attacks hit. It was just a
matter of time. I knew it, but I certainly didnít think it would begin during
the twenty minutes that I left the safety of my home to take our dogs out for a walk."
Media Cynic: "When Hezbollah militants from Lebanon decided to fire rockets into the port city of Haifa, well, that was it. Israel really couldn't ignore that without looking weak. The rest of the moderate Arab world is quite unhappy with Hezbollah for kicking the situation up a notch. President Bush, caught flat-footed at a news conference in Germany, kept trying to talk about the roasted pig dinner they were about to enjoy even when reporters tried to get him to comment on the situation."
ABC's The Jerusalem File blog says some Arab governments
are speaking out against Hezbollah.
The mass exodus out of Lebanon is on. A letter to the Daily Dish says
Americans trying to leave better be
ready to pay.
Amr Faham in Damascus is critical of Israel: "Israel's war is with Lebanon's civilians, not Hizbollah. Nearly every person killed has been a civilian. Power stations, bridges and petrol stations have been targeted. Israel has warned residents to get out of certain villages, but bombed roads make it difficult - and refugee convoys have been picked out for deadly air raids."
The Israel Insider is overwhelmed with traffic:
"Israel Insider is being hit with unprecedented demand. We are striving to keep it up, but there may be times when it is not accessible."
TruthDig says Israel has softened its stance on cease-fire conditions