Arab Americans Strongly Condemn Israeli Attacks on Lebanon
Washington D.C., May 5 — The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) strongly condemns the Israeli bombing of civilian areas in Lebanon over the past three days which have killed at least two civilians, injured many more and once again plunged much of Beirut into darkness. Tensions increased after two Israeli attacks on Lebanese civilians on Wednesday, May 3. Israeli forces shelled the southern Lebanese village of Al Katrani killing two civilian women, 82-year-old Almaza Muzhir, and her 40-year-old daughter Ilham Tawil. In a separate attack, Israeli warplanes bombed the village of Hanoush, wounding fourteen Lebanese civilians, including five children. The injured included two elderly women, an 18-month old baby and his 40-year old mother, and a mother and her five children aged from five to 13.
After Lebanese resistance forces retaliated against targets in northern Israel, Israeli warplanes once again bombed Lebanese power stations in Beirut. In spite of its announcement that it intends to withdraw from most of occupied Lebanon in June, Israel continues to attack civilians and fuel dangerous escalations of tension. The US State Department has called for maximum restraint on all sides and has condemned attacks on civilian targets. ADC notes, however, that the State Department was silent when only Lebanese civilians were targeted on Wednesday and commented on the situation only after Israeli civilians were also drawn into the conflict.
Yet again, Israel has chosen to respond to attack and murder Lebanese civilians in support of its brutal occupation of southern Lebanon and then claim “retaliation” when bombing more civilian targets, including power stations. ADC urges the press not to simply repeat this official Israeli line, and to acknowledge in its reports that the current fighting began with Israel’s attacks on Lebanese civilians on Wednesday.
Israel’s campaign to continuously attack and destroy the Lebanese power grid, which it has attacked at least three times in the past year is a cruel attempt to prevent the Lebanese people from rebuilding their infrastructure and economy after years of devastating civil war. Israel has occupied southern Lebanon since 1978, when the UN Security Council, including the United States, unanimously demanded in Resolution 425 that Israel withdraw its troops from Lebanon “forthwith” and without condition. ADC President Hala Maksoud said “In order to have any credibility, our government must also adopt a single standard whereby it is equally outraged at attacks on Lebanese civilians as it is by attacks on Israelis.”