Hizbullah: Halutz's resignation is proof we won

Hamas says IDF's inability to stifle resistance a factor in Halutz's decision.

Hizbullah fireworks 298. (photo credit: AP)
Hizbullah fireworks 298.
(photo credit: AP)
"The war in Lebanon led to the resignation of Chief of Staff Dan Halutz." This was the main theme in the Arabic media after the news of Halutz's resignation spread. The report was featured among the top stories in news broadcasts on the Arabic satellite channels, which always carefully observe developments inside Israel. As expected, news sources emphasized the accusations against Halutz as the man responsible for the failure of the second Lebanon war. Al-Jazeera portrayed Halutz's history and career, and described his resignation as if he had admitted personal responsibility for the failure in the war. On the other hand, in Beirut, Hizbullah's official broadcasting station, Almanar, did not bother to conceal its satisfaction at the developments and considered it further proof that the organization defeated the IDF in the summer's 33-day war. Hassan Fadallah, a spokesman for Hizbullah, appealed for support in the internal power struggle in Lebanon by warning that "forces that support the US in the region" should "learn the lesson of the last Lebanon war." In Damascus, Syrian state television called Halutz's resignation the latest "blow to the government of Ehud Olmert, which is currently subject to a string of political scandals." The discussion in the Arabic media quickly looked forward to the identity of the new IDF chief, and the question of the possible impact the resignation will have on Olmert's government. Al-Arabia commented that Israelis were asking themselves how long Olmert's government would last, and concluded that Halutz's resignation was "another nail in Olmert's coffin." Discussions of the resignation moved from the context of the Lebanon war to possible repercussions of the resignation in the internal political arena in Israel. News sources have been following the internal probes against Olmert and the gradual decrease in the prime minister's public approval. Furthermore, Halutz's resignation is considered to be just another link in a chain of scandals that have hit Israel. The Arabic media did not fail to mention the fact that in August 2006, it was revealed that Halutz sold off his investment portfolio three hours after two soldiers were captured by Hizbullah, the event that lead to the war.