Rice`s package, conveyed to Berri for transmission to Hezbollah, included an offer of a cease-fire, the return of some 700,000 Lebanese refugees to their villages and towns, deployment of the Lebanese army to the south of the country and boosting international troops to back-up the Lebanese armed forces in the south. It also called for the removal of Hezbollah fighters from the border area, rebasing the north of the Litani River, and finding a solution to the issue of the Shebaa Farms
"Nobody wants to see when innocent civilians are harmed,' said Rice."
Yet on both sides of the border it is largely civilians who are paying the highest price in this latest Middle East war that came out of nowhere and is catching residents and tourists unaware.
By Claude Salhani Jul 25, 2006, 14:02 GMT
Analysis: Analysis: Add Rice and bring to boil
"'Every peace has to be based on enduring principles," said the American secretary of state.During her whistle-stop tour in the Lebanese capital, sources close to Berri, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that Rice offered Lebanon a 'non divisible package' -- a take it or leave it deal.
"Ultimately, a Middle East that is peaceful and democratic will be a place where peace is sustainable",said Condoleezza Rice.
But in the meantime, Lebanon, one of the rare democracies in the Middle East, is being bombed back into the past century by the other only democracy in the Middle East.
On second thoughts, the region has one more democracy ... Iraq.