In a statement issued yesterday, President George W. Bush has expressed his unequivocal support for Israel saying that Hizballah has lost the war.
“If I were Hizballah, I would also say I won. They have a well oiled propaganda machine. How could you announce victory if you had lived as a state within a state in southern Lebanon and now you are replaced by the Lebanese army and a strong international force? There is going to be a new force in southern Lebanon,” Bush said in his statement.
He added that the responsibility for the suffering of the Lebanese people lay in the hands of Hizballah, Iran, and Syria. “Hizballah is responsible for what happened. Hizballah struck Israel without authorization or consent from the Lebanese government and Hizballah started the crisis. The terrorists of Hizballah used the Lebanese citizens as human shields and the responsibility falls on Iran and Syria as well.”
The President also mentioned that “when Israel hurts innocent civilians, they are very sorry about it. When Hizballah kills civilians, they celebrate. People have to understand the difference.”
He added that “Syria wants to harm the Lebanese democracy.” He also blamed Iran for supplying weapons and training Hizballah. “This is a defining moment in the Middle East. The Iranian regime supports Hizballah and the organization got stronger with their support. Iran is openly saying that they want the destruction of Israel. If Iran had nuclear weapons, we could only imagine how dangerous the world would be.”
In response to a question if Israel Defense Forces soldiers need to defend themselves during the ceasefire he replied that “If someone is attacking the soldiers, they must respond. It is a defensive, not an offensive act. We do not advise Israel on its military actions, but if someone will fire on an Israeli soldier, he has the right to defend himself. That’s how I understand it.”
The President also added that the first step the new multinational force will take is to deploy on the Lebanese-Syrian border to stop the transfer of weapons to the Hizballah.