Two Unrelated but Important Items
It took almost 25 years: Anti-drilling forces in the Senate FAILED (51-48) to strip the ANWR leasing language from the Senate Omnibus Reconciliation Act, bringing the sale of leases for domestic oil and gas drilling in Alaska a VERY BIG STEP closer to reality.
It took almost 25 years: Anti-drilling forces in the Senate FAILED (51-48) to strip the ANWR leasing language from the Senate Omnibus Reconciliation Act, bringing the sale of leases for domestic oil and gas drilling in Alaska a VERY BIG STEP closer to reality. Opening 2,000 acres of the 1,500,000-acre coastal plain of the 19,000,000-acre reserve (0.001333 percent of the coastal plain and 0.000105263 percent of the reserve) will NOT solve America’s energy problems, but it may be the opening Americans have been waiting for to begin redressing the balance between domestically produced energy and that which we import. JINSA supports domestically generated energy – oil, gas, coal, nuclear, wind, solar and biofuels – as a matter of national security policy and as a means of starving terrorist-supporting countries of cash. We offer kudos and our heartfelt thanks to the dedicated Senators, particularly Alaska’s Sen. Ted Stevens who has been working this issue from its beginnings in 1980, for pursuing ANWR to this end.
This one took nearly 30 years: Since Syria’s entry into Lebanon in 1976, the Palestinians have maintained military forces there and, prior to Israel’s Operation Peace for Galilee, Arafat was effectively running a “state within a state.” Lebanon not only was the base of operations against Israel, but terrorists from around the world trained in PLO camps.
Israel’s UN-certified withdrawal from Lebanon in 2000 was to have been accompanied by Lebanese government control of the Israel/Lebanon border, but Hezballah and Palestinian military units prevented the Lebanese Army from moving south. (Former IDF posts visited by JINSA Flag & General Officers Trip participants were taken over by Hezballah without a word of protest from Lebanon or the UN.) Now, however, the Lebanese Army has been moving into areas along the Syrian border across which weapons have been flowing to Palestinian guerilla factions in Lebanon. With the Syrian uniformed forces and the bulk of its intelligence forces having withdrawn their protective cover from the Palestinians, Beirut is beginning to insist that the Palestinians can have arms inside the refugee camps, but not control Lebanese territory.
Lebanon’s Foreign Minister told the PA President that movement of weapons and militants to Palestinian refugee camps hurts Lebanon. According to AP, Abu Mazen replied that, “Palestinians should remember that they are guests in Lebanon and are not above the law.” We applaud the apparent decision of the Lebanese government to control ALL of its territory, and wonder whether Palestinians in Lebanon will be more responsive to Abu Mazen’s call for respect of the law than their cousins inside the PA.
On the other hand, we would point out that the 56-year Palestinian presence in Lebanon is a human nightmare owing to the combination of unremitting Lebanese hostility and an UNRWA mandate that does not permit the resettlement of refugees. It is a reminder that the fictitious “right of return” of Palestinians to areas they claim that they or their ancestors once lived in what is now Israel is a political nightmare for Lebanon as well as for Israel. Unless the international community helps the Palestinians get a handle on the reality that they will not dissolve Israel through uncontrolled immigration, Lebanon will suffer too.