How Lebanon Discriminates against Palestinians

On July 3, Lebanese police arrested a sixty-four-year-old woman named Um Wissam for violating a set of laws that make it extremely difficult for Palestinians like herself to build new homes. Um Wissam is a resident of Rashidieh, the country’s second largest Palestinian “refugee camp”—which in reality is a small city populated mainly by Lebanese-born Palestinians whose parents or grandparents fled Israel during the 1948 war. Bassam Tawil comments:

The Lebanese government hardly misses an opportunity to condemn Israel for defending itself against Palestinian terrorism. Yet, this is the same Lebanon that has for decades practiced systematic discrimination against Palestinians and keeps them in squalid, ghetto-like camps surrounded by barbed wire and walls. This is also the same Lebanon that has thrown a Palestinian woman into jail for the crime of lacking a building permit.

In 1997, the Lebanese authorities issued a decree that banned Palestinians refugees from transporting building materials into refugee camps in the southern part of the country. The Lebanese authorities claimed that the purpose of the ban was to prevent Palestinians from establishing permanent residence in Lebanon. . . . The Palestinian camps in Lebanon . . . are ghetto-like settlements, sometimes surrounded by segregation walls, barbed wire, and military surveillance.

Had Um Wissam been arrested by the Israeli authorities, her story would have made headlines on the front page of every major media outlet in the West. Her plight would have been highlighted by the United Nations, by every so-called human-rights organization, and by every anti-Israel group on university campuses across the U.S. . . . Foreign journalists would have been standing in line outside her family’s home while hoping to trash Israel further by using the details of her case. But as Um Wissam had the misfortune of being imprisoned by Lebanese authorities, her case holds no interest for the West.

Read more at Gatestone

More about: Lebanon, Palestinian refugees


Hizballah Is Learning Israel’s Weak Spots

On Tuesday, a Hizballah drone attack injured three people in northern Israel. The next day, another attack, targeting an IDF base, injured eighteen people, six of them seriously, in Arab al-Amshe, also in the north. This second attack involved the simultaneous use of drones carrying explosives and guided antitank missiles. In both cases, the defensive systems that performed so successfully last weekend failed to stop the drones and missiles. Ron Ben-Yishai has a straightforward explanation as to why: the Lebanon-backed terrorist group is getting better at evading Israel defenses. He explains the three basis systems used to pilot these unmanned aircraft, and their practical effects:

These systems allow drones to act similarly to fighter jets, using “dead zones”—areas not visible to radar or other optical detection—to approach targets. They fly low initially, then ascend just before crashing and detonating on the target. The terrain of southern Lebanon is particularly conducive to such attacks.

But this requires skills that the terror group has honed over months of fighting against Israel. The latest attacks involved a large drone capable of carrying over 50 kg (110 lbs.) of explosives. The terrorists have likely analyzed Israel’s alert and interception systems, recognizing that shooting down their drones requires early detection to allow sufficient time for launching interceptors.

The IDF tries to detect any incoming drones on its radar, as it had done prior to the war. Despite Hizballah’s learning curve, the IDF’s technological edge offers an advantage. However, the military must recognize that any measure it takes is quickly observed and analyzed, and even the most effective defenses can be incomplete. The terrain near the Lebanon-Israel border continues to pose a challenge, necessitating technological solutions and significant financial investment.

Read more at Ynet

More about: Hizballah, Iron Dome, Israeli Security