Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Proportional Responses

It's sometimes apparent that the blogosphere follows certain trends, or more precisely divides into homogeneous camps. On the right, the Blogging Tories. In the red corner on the left, the Progressive Bloggers. Depending on the issue, there can be a lot of nuances, but sometimes the divide is stark and the positions narrow.

I've been silent on the Mideast situation, because, to be honest, I don't know an awful lot about it and, from what I do know, I think it's very complicated.

That said, I am finding the wholehearted and one-sided support of the Israeli destruction of southern Lebanon just a little difficult to take.

Two soldiers have been kidnapped, and this has unleashed an air, land and sea bombardment from Israel, using state of the art US weaponry. Hezbollah is responding in kind with the slightly blunter instruments at its disposal. Tit for tat, eye for eye, and so it goes on. Civilians are the victims on both sides of the border, although in far greater numbers on the Lebanon side.

No doubt it's true that Iran and Syria are being opportunistic and using Hezbollah to achieve wider aims. But it must also be seen that Israel is not averse to seizing this opportunity to destroy its own enemies and to use extreme force with impunity.

The quality of writing and debate in the blogosphere is what brought me here and I'm saddened to see a less than reasoned, almost zealously one-sided position being adopted by most conservative bloggers. Let's try to keep more of an open mind and recognize that both sides are capable of ulterior motives, that both sides are probably more worried about their political goals than civilian deaths and that we should be applying the same moral standards when judging the actions of both sides.