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By Michelle Malkin  •  July 12, 2006 09:36 AM

Well, yes, that’s exactly what it is:

The Hezbollah militant group captured two Israeli soldiers during clashes along the Lebanese border on Wednesday, triggering an Israeli assault with warplanes, tanks and gunboats as Israeli troops crossed the frontier to hunt for the captives.

Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert called the guerrilla attack “an act of war” and warned that Hezbollah would pay a “heavy price” for its actions.

KnightHawk at PoliPundit notes the blame America meme.

Alcibades at KesherTalk is waiting for the “diplomacy” tut-tutters to do their thing:

I can’t see that Israel has many options to get the soldiers back, except to bomb some site in Syria; as Sharon’s government did, to much success, several years ago, “to send a message to Syria” to make Hezbollah back off. Syria is controlling these forces. And so, too, is Iran.

I think Olmert has already hinted at this tactic:

Prime Minister Ehud Olmert declared the attack as an “act of war” and not terror. During a press conference with Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi Wednesday afternoon, he called it an unprovoked assault by a sovereign nation and held Lebanon, where Hizbullah has a minister in the government, fully responsible.

“Israel’s response will be restrained but very, very, very painful,” Olmert added.

Restrained, but very, very painful sounds like something very, very targeted.

It is also, to my mind, not the least bit coincidental that this kidnapping happened only a day – or less – after Hosni Mubarak said in remarks published Tuesday that Israel had been ready to make a prisoner exchange – hoping to achieve what end, I wonder now. Obviously, “diplomacy.”

But from a more cynical point of view, it looks like this leak was a memo to the terrorists that soldier-kidnapping is the way to go if they ever want to see their men.

Europe, right now, is “pro-Israeli,” tut tutting and “expressing concern” and decrying Hezbollah’s actions. But we all know that will last only until Israel begins a campaign targeted on Syria or the Hezbollah dominated parts of Lebanon to get the men back. Because Israel is always and in all things an exception to the rules. And soon enough these same leaders, and quite likely Condi Rice’s State Department, will start indicating that the incursion is “disproportionate”.

JPost coverage * Reservists called up

‘Round-the-clock updates: All hell breaks loose.

Posted in: Condi Rice

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Categories: Condi Rice