Lest anyone wonder why Arabs think the US has a lopsided policy heavily favoring Israel in any and all disputes, look no further than our Ambassador to the UN, John Bolton. In a CNN interview with Wolf Blitzer, Bolton made it clear where we stood on the recent conflict and why we haven't pressured Israel to let up on their offensive in Lebannon; an offensive that threatens to destroy their fragile government leaving it entirely in the hands of Hezbollah.
Echoing a favorite Neo-Conservative slogan, Bolton said, "I think it's important that we not fall into the trap of moral equivalency here." He seems to think that international calls for Israel to exercise a measured response is so much horseshit.
"What Hezbollah has done is kidnap Israeli soldiers and rain rockets and mortar shells on innocent Israeli civilians. What Israel has done in response is act in self-defense. And I don't quite know what the argument about proportionate force means here. Is Israel entitled only to kidnap two Hezbollah operatives and fire a couple of rockets aimlessly into Lebanon?"
Certainly not, but a look at the casualties—on both sides—shows a bit more than a proportional response from Israel. The CNN report states that Israeli forces have killed at least 271 people and wounded another 711, according to officials with the Lebanese security forces. In response, Hezbollah attacks have killed seven Israeli civilians and 20 soldiers and wounded more than 300 civilians and more than 60 soldiers, according to the Israel Defense Forces.
That's 271 Lebanese and 20 Israeli soldiers in response to the kidnapping of two.
There's no question that Israel has a right to defend itself, but the idea of proportional response that eludes John Bolton is a matter of simple math.