Israel has done all but declare war in Lebanon (p.s. which is really Syria). This is exactly what Hamas and Hezbollah were looking for and now they have gotten it. The question will be to see just how “restrained” the Israeli’s will be. For some any firepower beyond a Red Rider (see Christmas Story) would be considered excessive.
The Lebanese government has denied responsibility for the capture of two Israeli soldiers by Hezbollah and called for a meeting of the United Nations over Israel’s “aggressive” reaction.
Fouad Siniora, the Lebanese prime minister, said: “The government was not aware of and does not take responsibility for, nor endorses what happened on the international border.”
The government said it was ready to negotiate through the United Nations to end the crisis.
Earlier, Ehud Olmert, the Israeli prime minister, said that he held the Lebanese government responsible for the two soldiers’ safety. He called their abduction an act of war against Israel and said that the response would be “restrained, but very, very, very painful”.