FREEMAN CENTER STATEMENT ON LOSSS OF LIFE IN LEBANON

[April 19, 1996]

THE FREEMAN CENTER CONDEMNS HIZBULLAH, UNITED NATIONS, SYRIA, IRAN AND LEBANON FOR LOSS OF LIFE TODAY

The Freeman Center regrets the terrible loss of lives in Lebanon ON April 18. The news media, however, with their anti-Israel spin doctors are already blaming Israel for this heavy loss of civilian life. The United Nations Security Council is debating condemnation of Israel as usual. Leaders of virtually every European nation as well as all of Israel's so-called Arab "peace" partners have also condemned Israel. Once again the anti-Semites of the world are having a field day. Once again, truth has also become a casualty of war.

The Freeman Center would like to set the record straight for all of those who have an interest in the undistorted truth. The targeted area fired on by the Israel Defense Forces had been a source of hostile KATYUSHA attacks on Israel. In any war situation, this makes it a legitimate target for return fire. Therefore the Israeli forces acted appropriately and should make no apologies.

There were, however, several GUILTY parties that should be condemned:
1. Hizbullah -- who started and have carried out this war against Israel, and especially for using Lebanese civilians as human shields 2. United Nations -- who allowed Hizbullah to attack Israel near its civilian camps
3. Lebanon -- for allowing a terrorist organization like Hizbullah to operate within its territory, especially from civilian areas using those civilians as human shields
4. Syria -- for protecting the Hizbullah, supplying them with arms, facilitating the transport of arms from Iran and giving them permission to attack Israel
5. Iran -- for arming, financing and training the terrorists in Hizbullah

The Freeman Center urges the Israeli Government to have the courage to reject Any guilt for this incident. We also urge the Israeli Foreign Ministry to condemn the parties responsible for this incident and urge international condemnation of the five parties listed above.

The Freeman Center also urges the Israeli Government to refuse to discuss or agree to any cease fire agreement based on an assumption of guilt by Israel. We also urge the Israeli Government to refuse any cease fire that does not meet its long term strategic requirements. In short, there should NOT be a return to the status quo ante.

This is a difficult time for Israelis and pro-Israel Americans. Be strong. You are not guilty. Refuse to accept double standards and bias. Stand your ground despite an expected torrent of abuse.

Bernard J. Shapiro, Executive Director
Freeman Center For Strategic Studies

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