Dore Gold, Israel's former Ambassador to the United Nations, makes a terrifyingly good point about the proposed ceasefire to the conflict between Israel and Hezbollah that has been embraced by France and the United States. As the New York Sun's Eli Lake reports,
"[T]he draft U.N. resolution sponsored by France and America calls on the establishment of a multinational force under Chapter 7 of the U.N. charter, which deals with grave threats to international peace and security.
As such, the second resolution authorizing the peacekeepers could lead to sanctions or military strikes against Israel should Jerusalem take pre-emptive military action against a Hezbollah militia that the Israel Defense Force is unlikely to be able to disarm by the time the armistice kicks in."
The draft resolution calls for the "immediate cessation by Israel of all offensive military operations." What will happen if the proposed ceasefire fails, the international force sent in is a paper tiger, and Hezbollah begins launching attacks against Israel?
Israel can - again - launch an attack against Hezbollah based on principles of self-defence, but Israel's antagonists will be able to say that Israel is explicitly violating the terms of a UN Security Council resolution. Nothing new there...
What will however be different is that, this time, the resolution will have been passed under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter, which means, in practice, an escalation of the charges against Israel.
Furthermore, since Kofi Annan will be charged with implementing the resolution, and will have an important say in determining whether it is being followed, this proposed resolution may turn out to be yet another cudgel the world uses to bash Israel. A cudgel, I might add, that offers no guarantee of increasing Israel's security.