Mideast Crisis: Israel Widens Ground Offensive


Israel Steps Up Ground Offensive

Heavy clashes have been taking place in southern Lebanon between Israeli troops and Hezbollah fighters, after Israel vowed to widen its ground offensive. (BBC)

Assad Tells Syrian Army to Get Ready

Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has told the Syrian military to raise its readiness, pledging not to abandon support for Lebanese resistance against Israel. (Reuters)

Cancelled Convoys Hamper Aid for Stranded in Southern Lebanon

WFP has warned that it has suffered another setback in its huge efforts to bring much-needed aid to the beleaguered inhabitants of southern Lebanon. (WFP)

President Warns Mideast Peace Process Could Collapse

President Hosni Mubarak warned Monday that the entire Middle East peace process could collapse because of Israel's attacks on Lebanon. (Daily Star)

Sheikh Nasrallah on Al-Manar TV- July 29, 2006

-'Throughout the Entire Arab-Israeli Conflict – When Were Two Million Israelis Forced to Become Displaced, or to Stay in Bomb Shelters for More Than 18 days?'

-'When the People of This Tyrannical State [Israel] Loses its Faith in its Mythical Army, This is the Beginning of the End of This Entity'

The following are excerpts. (MEMRI)

Saudi Shura Council Member Sheikh Al-'Obikan: According to Shari'a, Hizbullah Operations are Illegitimate; A Temporary Peaceful Settlement with the Jews is Needed

In a column in the London daily Al-Sharq Al-Awsat titled "Do Not Cast Yourselves into Perdition by Your Own Hands," prominent Saudi sheikh 'Abd Al-Muhsin Al-'Obikan criticized Hizbullah's current operations. The following are excerpts. (MEMRI)

Bush Reiterates Opposition to Immediate Cessation of Fighting

US President George W. Bush on Monday resisted calls for an immediate cease-fire between Israel and Hizbullah, saying instead that the UN Security Council would work this week for a "sustainable" peace. (Daily Star)


Modest Proposal: A Plan For a Lasting Peace

By Fawez A. Gerges

As Israel's war in Lebanon enters its third week and the Lebanese civilian casualties increase by the hour, international diplomacy has gone into full swing. A consensus appears to have finally emerged that the fighting must stop before negotiations can resolve the underlying differences between Israel and Lebanon. (ABC News)

Special Report: The Ground Offensive

By George Friedman

Israeli forces are well into their main ground offensive into Lebanon. It is difficult to hide a strategic offensive of this size, but Israel has made no attempt to hide this one at all. The three-week air offensive, followed by the pseudo cease-fire and disagreements in the Israeli Cabinet on strategy, made it necessary for Israel literally to announce its offensive. Ultimately, this gave Hezbollah little advantage. It might have wanted to halt fighting at this point, but it certainly knew that for precisely this reason Israel would have to intensify the fighting. There might be elements of tactical surprise, but strategic surprise is gone. (Stratfor)

Al Manar TV's Director General Talks to Asharq Al-Awsat

By Thair Abbas

Asharq Al-Awsat interviews Former Lebanese MP Abdullah Qasir, and director general of the Al-Manar television Channel, which is known as the mouthpiece of the Lebanese Hezbollah. In light of the recent bombings of the television station's headquarters, the interview was conducted at an undisclosed location. (Asharq Alawsat)

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