Azara Blog: Nasrallah says he did not think Israel would start a war

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Date published: 2006/08/27

The BBC says:

Hezbollah chief Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah has said he would not have ordered the capture of two Israeli soldiers if he had known it would lead to such a war.

"Had we known that the kidnapping of the soldiers would have led to this, we would definitely not have done it," he said in an interview on Lebanese TV.

He added that neither side was "heading towards a second round" of fighting.

More than 1,000 Lebanese died in the 34-day conflict which left much of southern Lebanon in ruins.

The Israeli offensive began after two Israeli soldiers were seized during a cross border raid by Hezbollah militants on 12 July.

"We did not think that there was a 1% chance that the kidnapping would lead to a war of this scale and magnitude," Sheikh Nasrallah said.

"Now you ask me if this was 11 July and there was a 1% chance that the kidnapping would lead to a war like the one that has taken place, would you go ahead with the kidnapping?

"I would say no, definitely not, for humanitarian, moral, social, security, military and political reasons.

"Neither I, Hezbollah, prisoners in Israeli jails and nor the families of the prisoners would accept it."

Wow, there are not many political leaders who would be willing to state something like this. It's a bit worrying when someone like Nasrallah is more honest than the leaders of the US, Britain and Israel. Of course the point that is not stated is that he obviously didn't expect Israel to be so stupid and so criminal in its behaviour. You have to assume your opponents are rational, and Israel was not. This was perhaps because the Israeli prime minister, Olmert, had to prove that he was "tough", so launched an unnecessary war against Lebanon.

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