The Duck of Minerva

The Duck Quacks at Twilight

It is the gods who weep…

July 21, 2006

They see us killing each other… over and over since time began.
— Akira Kurosawa’s Ran.

Malak Khaled interviews Lebanese refugees:

Their grand daughter, Marwa, looks at us with sad eyes.
“Why are you sad,” I ask her.
“I want to go home.”
“Why aren’t you home?”
“Israel is bombing a lot.”
“What do you feel when you hear the bombing,” I ask her.
“I feel so afraid. The sound is very very very loud.”
“And what do you do when you feel afraid?
“I cry, and I go to Mama”
“Do you feel afraid here?”
“No. Here, I am not afraid, but I was afraid at home.”
“You know, there are kids being bombed in Israel now, you know who bombs at them?
“Yes, the moqawamee (the national resistance)”
“Do you want the moqawamee to stop? They might be feeling afraid too?
“I want Israel to stop bombing at us first”

In Israel:

The Hezbollah rocket crashed into a residential neighborhood in the town’s winding hills on Wednesday afternoon, killing Rabia Taluzi, 7, and his brother Mahmoud, 3, as they walked home from a cousin’s house. Two of their older brothers, Motaz, 13, and Allah, 12, were with them but escaped serious injury…. Residents say that before the rockets hit here, most of them had not altered their routines.

Though most of the town’s children continued to play outside, Nohad Taluzi, the mother of the boys who were killed, had insisted that her eight children remain in the house.

But the children begged her, and began to cry, said Amna Taluzi, their aunt. As a compromise, Nohad Taluzi allowed her sons to walk several blocks to play inside their cousin’s house. When they were walking back, the family said, they were hit.


As members of the Siboni family whiled away Monday afternoon in lawn chairs just outside their bomb shelter, knitting, smoking and reading the Torah, Hezbollah’s rockets suddenly fell with their signature thump.

Workers rescued a wounded man from a building in Haifa hit by a Hezbollah rocket on Monday.
“Go inside, go inside,” advised Talia Siboni, age 2, who was clutching her doll. “This really scares me.”

The family swiftly complied, and over the next hour the thunder of eight crashing rockets was audible in this coastal town, several miles south of the Lebanese border.

Lisa at “On the Face” via Israelity:

The moderates of the Middle East are locked in a battle with the extremists. And look what they did to the moderates. Without blinking, without thinking, we fell victim to the classic “divide and conquer” technique. We work hard for months and years to build connections, develop our societies, educate ourselves, promote democracy and free speech… And they destroy it all, in less than a week. And we let them.

In Iraq, and this is already “old” news, the death toll mounts:

An average of more than 100 civilians per day were killed in Iraq last month, the United Nations reported Tuesday, registering what appears to be the highest official monthly tally of violent deaths since the fall of Baghdad.

The death toll, drawn from Iraqi government agencies, was the most precise measurement of civilian deaths provided by any government organization since the invasion and represented a substantial increase over the figures in daily news media reports.

Contributing to the trend cited by the United Nations, a suicide car bomber killed at least 53 people and wounded at least 105 in the holy Shiite city of Kufa on Tuesday after he lured a throng of day laborers to his van with the offer of work.

Filed as: and

website | + posts

Daniel H. Nexon is a Professor at Georgetown University, with a joint appointment in the Department of Government and the School of Foreign Service. His academic work focuses on international-relations theory, power politics, empires and hegemony, and international order. He has also written on the relationship between popular culture and world politics.