GILLERMAN: Well, we — first of all, I fully agree that the Lebanese people have been taken hostage. Actually, it’s not me who’s saying it, but a Lebanese minister on Friday said that, while Hezbollah has captured and kidnapped two Israeli soldiers, it did take the whole country hostage.
Israel left Lebanon over six years ago. There was absolutely no reason for the Hezbollah to attack Israel the way it did. The Lebanese government has been urged by the international community and the Security Council time and time again to exert its sovereignty over the whole of Lebanon, to deploy its forces in the south. It hasn’t done it.
It’s allowed this cancerous growth of terror to fester in the cesspool. When you look at the magnitude of the arsenal of the weapons that the Hezbollah has amassed over the years, you ask yourself, how did Lebanon allow this to happen?
ZAHN: But when you talk, Mr. Ambassador, about festering wounds, there are a lot of people out there who are saying that the aggressiveness of the Israeli attack is — is disproportionate to the impact of two soldiers having been captured, eight having been killed.
GILLERMAN: The two soldiers are the heart of the issue, but they’re not the only issue.
When you look at the capability of the Hezbollah, when you look at these deadly weapons, when you look at missiles that have hit our third largest city and can reach Tel Aviv, you realize the potential for danger which exists there. And that danger has to be eliminated.
The ironic thing about this position by the Appeasement Wing of World Politics is that carrying out a “proportional” response would drag the conflict on longer than simply eliminating the threat altogether.