Under the current version of the plan for peace in Lebanon, the lead is to be taken by UNIFIL, the United Nations Interim Force In Lebanon. It is under their “umbrella” that the multi-national force will operate to secure the ceasefire. They are to be the neutral third party that will keep the two sides at bay.
So why don’t we take a look at just how “neutral” they have been?
In 2000, Hezbollah terrorists bribed UNIFIL soldiers to look the other way while the terrorists, disguised as UNIFIL soldiers, invaded Israel and kidnapped three Israeli soldiers. The UNIFIL soldiers did videotape the whole thing, however. After the kidnapping, they followed the terrorists, found their abandoned vehicles, and removed or destroyed evidence they had left behind. Then they refused to admit the existence of the tape, refused to let Israel see it once they admitted it, and finally let Israeli officials see it after it had been edited to remove any way of identifying the kidnappers. The three soldiers’s bodies were eventually traded for over 400 live prisoners. (See here for full details.)
In the time leading up to the fighting, UNIFIL and Hezbollah grew more and more chummy. In fact, Hezbollah’s flag was flown proudly right next to (and often higher than) UNIFIL’s own flag, traditionally a sign of subservience. (Note that under US regulations, no flag is to be flown above the American flag within the United States.)
During the war, Hezbollah openly established fighting positions in and around UNIFIL bases. One Canadian peacekeeper said so, in carefully-chosen military speak, shortly before he was killed by an Israeli bomb.
And now we have this news, that during the actual fighting, UNIFIL was keeping very close tabs on Israeli troop positions and movements, and publicizing them for all the world (including Hezbollah) to see. They did not issue similar reports on Hezbollah’s actions, despite the fact that often they only had to look a few feet out a door or a window to see them.
Now UNIFIL is supposed to be the guardian of the peace, the neutral third party to fairly keep the two from fighting.
There’s a term for a group during wartime that doesn’t actively fight, but actively supports and assists one side over the other. And that term isn’t “peacekeeper,” but “collaborator.”