Talk:Battle of Maroun al-Ras

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I made the following edit. It is key to understanding the War. It was not a guerilla war. HA waged an Iwo Jima or Okinawa type defense but prevailed.

"*Journalists Alastair Crooke and Mark Perry in their three part series HOW HEZBOLLAH DEFEATED ISRAEL in the Asia Times vividly describe the essential elements of this battle. The following is from PART 2: Winning the ground war

  • "The difference between "pushing" out a force and invading and occupying a town was thereby set, another clear signal to US military experts that the IDF could enter a town but could not occupy it. One US officer schooled in US military history compared the IDF's foray into southern Lebanon to Robert E Lee's bloody attack on Union positions at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, during the American Civil War. "Oh I can get there, all right," Lee's lieutenant said during that war, "it's staying there that's the problem."
  • After-battle reports of Hezbollah commanders now confirm that IDF troops never fully secured the border area and Maroun al-Ras was never fully taken. Nor did Hezbollah ever feel the need to call up its reserves, as Israel had done. "The entire war was fought by one Hezbollah brigade of 3,000 troops, and no more," one military expert in the region said. "The Nasr Brigade fought the entire war. Hezbollah never felt the need to reinforce it." "[1]Godspeed John Glenn! Will 23:53, 28 July 2007 (UTC)

Result of the battle[edit]

This source seems to dispute the Israeli claim of victory in this battle: "On July 22, Hezbollah units of the Nasr Brigade fought the IDF street-to-street in Maroun al-Ras. While the IDF claimed at the end of the day that it had taken the town, it had not. The fighting had been bloody, but Hezbollah fighters had not been dislodged." — George [talk] 22:26, 5 August 2007 (UTC)

This source also makes the laughable and obviously untrue claim that Israeli military and Hezbollah casualties were even , and that HA won a decisive military victory. It is a partisan POV pushing source that should not be used in a respectable encyclopedia. Contemporary news reports all described the town as being in Israeli hands.
Can you provide some examples of those reports here for review? It would be highly preferable if you found something from Reuters, AP, or the AFP, as those are widely circulated, and it would better counter the report from the Asia Times, a non-Lebanese, non-Hezbollah paper. Also, can you cite where in the article you see the claim that their casualties were even? Remember, even if their claim is "laughable" in your opinion, we still use it provided that it comes from a reliable source, and the Asia Times is definitely a reliable source. — George [talk] 22:38, 5 August 2007 (UTC)
A quick note that the Jerusalem Post article doesn't even make the claim of victory, stating that "The battle for the village and the extensive Hizbullah bunkers had raged for almost four days, and it was possible to hear varying judgments of its success from officers and soldiers." Also note that that article was posted within days of the fighting ending, while the Asia Times article was written months later, avoiding recentism. If you don't provide some sources to support labelling this an Israeli victory, I'm going to revert it to disputed. — George [talk] 22:42, 5 August 2007 (UTC)
Is this some kind of game? The references are already in the article, one is an AP story dated July 22, which is headlined "Israelis Seize Control of Southern Lebanon Town", and which explictly says "The soldiers battled militants throughout the day and raided the large village of Maroun al-Ras in several waves before finally taking control" Isarig
22:46, 5 August 2007 (UTC)

This would be a great source, if not for the fact that it's from the first day of fighting, when all the other sources indicate that fighting continued for at least four days. Got anything better? — George [talk] 23:13, 5 August 2007 (UTC)
Oh, and to answer your initial question, no, this is not a game; this is Wikipedia. Our edits are governed by Wikipedia's policy and our ability to find sources, not on what we feel is the truthful or "laughable". Those sources currently in the article are insufficient for the claims you're making, so I'm asking you to support it with valid sources. I'm not saying you're wrong, only that you have yet to sufficiently support the case that you've stated. — George [talk] 23:21, 5 August 2007 (UTC)

"On Sunday, Hezbollah conceded that Israel had gained control of Maroun Al-Ras." -CNN [2]. Enough of this. Isarig 23:32, 5 August 2007 (UTC)

This is a much better source. I'm updating the article accordingly to reflect the more neutral wording used in your source. — George [talk] 06:50, 6 August 2007 (UTC)

For every pro there is a con. Note the date of the article. August 26th. Times of London. Not the unreliable and biased CNN. That's what disputed means, the existance of pros and cons. If you look to see what went on it is this. HA was dug in into the earth, IDF could get into the town BUT could not stay. The HA would retreat into the tunnels behind the hydraulic steel blast doors then come up behind them, time and time again. The following news story gives the flavor of what went on:

  • "

Even as Halutz was declaring victory, 12 Israeli soldiers from the Maglan reconnaissance unit were already running into an ambush just over the border inside Lebanon near the village of Maroun a-Ras.

“We didn’t know what hit us,” said one of the soldiers, who asked to be named only as Gad. “In seconds we had two dead.”

With several others wounded and retreating under heavy fire the Maglans, one of the finest units in the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF), were astonished by the firepower and perseverance of Hezbollah.

“Evidently they had never heard that an Arab soldier is supposed to run away after a short engagement with the Israelis,” said Gad.

“We expected a tent and three Kalashnikovs — that was the intelligence we were given. Instead, we found a hydraulic steel door leading to a well-equipped network of tunnels.”

As daylight broke the Maglans found themselves under fire from all sides by Hezbollah forces who knew every inch of the terrain and exploited their knowledge to the full.

The commander of the IDF’s northern sector, Lieutenant-General Udi Adam, could barely believe that some of his best soldiers had been so swiftly trapped; neither could the chief of staff.

“What’s wrong with the Maglans?” Halutz demanded to know. “They are surrounded,” Adam replied quietly. “I must send in more forces.”

As the reinforcements of the Egoz brigade prepared to enter Maroun a-Ras and rescue their comrades, however, several were mown down in a second ambush. Hours of battle ensued before the Maglan and Egoz platoons were able to drag their dead and wounded back to Israel.

Hezbollah also suffered heavy casualties but its fighters slipped back into their tunnels to await the next round of fighting. It was immediately obvious to everyone in Tel Aviv that this was going to be a tougher fight than Halutz had bargained for.

As the war unfolded his optimism was brought crashing down to earth — and with it the invincible reputation of the Israeli armed forces.

In five weeks, their critics charge, they displayed tactical incompetence and strategic short-sightedness. Their much-vaunted intelligence was found wanting. "Humbling of the supertroops shatters Israeli army moraleGodspeed John Glenn! Will 13:11, 6 August 2007 (UTC)

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Mikrobølgeovn's unsourced claims[edit]

Please, Mikrobølgeovn.

You cannot repeatedly make un-sourced claims, especially when they are so obviously wrong. Israel never occupied either al-Khiyam or Bint Jbeil and never ever made such a claim. Hezbollah of course never “withdrew” from either town.

The facts:

  • Al-Khiyam

Anthony Shadid from Washington Post visited al-Khiyam after the cease-fire and found Hezbollah firmly in control of the town. He even seems to doubt that there was a serious Israeli attempt to capture al-Khiyam: “The fighters believed Israeli troops were trying to enter the city, although there was no indication of that.” Anthony Shadid (August 15, 2006). "Hezbollah Fighters Emerge From the Rubble". Washington Post. Retrieved Dec 4 2011.  Check date values in: |access-date= (help)

Haaretz however claims that there was such an attempt, leading to a “two-day stand-off (August 9-10) between Amud Ha'esh, an armored division of reserve soldiers under the command of Brigadier General Erez Zuckerman, and a handful of Hezbollah fighters. The operation was clumsy and confused, and ended without any kind of accomplishment. It may well go down as one of the most humiliating operations in the history of the Israel Defense Forces.” Uri Bar-Yosef (27.04.2007). "Their most humiliating hour". Haaretz. Retrieved Dec 14 2011.  Check date values in: |access-date=, |date= (help)

General Zuckerman himself admitted his failure when he resigned. Yossi Yehoshua (06.01.2007). "Lebanon war commander resigns". Yedioth Ahronoth. Retrieved Dec 4 2011.  Check date values in: |access-date=, |date= (help)

  • Bint Jbeil

I am not aware of ANY official Israeli claim to have conquered Bint Jbeil (after the claims to “control” the town made early in the battle and later discredited).

Harel and Issacharoff writes: “The next day, Wednesday, August 9, the cabinet convened in Jerusalem at 10:00 a.m. for the most decisive meeting of the war. Facing the ministers, General Eisenkott outlined the military movements of the past few days. He had to admit that Change of Direction 8 had not been completed and that Hezbollah guerrillas were still in Eyta a-Sha’ab and Bint J’Bayel.”

Harel, Amos and Avi Issacharoff, 34 Days: Israel, Hezbollah, and the War in Lebanon, Palgrave Macmillan, New York, 2008, p. 195

I am not aware of any offensive Israeli operations in the area of Bint Jbeil after this date.

For those who can read Hebrew I can also refer to the Winograd report, which discusses the failure to capture the town in some detail. It mentions that the paratroopers withdrew from Bint Jbeil 8/8 (to prepare for Operation Change of Direction 11 further to the north) after the failed attempt to put an Israeli flag on the old HQ building in the outskirts of the town.

This article is about Maroun ar-Ras and I am reluctant to make a fuss about this. But if you insist I will expand the paragraph and add sources.

Jokkmokks-Goran (talk) 13:59, 22 December 2011 (UTC)

Please read the article about the battle of Bint Jbeil. In the last paragraph, it is clearly stated that Hezbollah withdrew from the town. While the IDF initially retreated, they returned to the town at the latter stages and remained until the very end of the war. For this very reason, I find it wrong to categorically declare that Israel failed at Bint Jbeil. --Mikrobølgeovn (talk) 15:29, 23 December 2011 (UTC)
I have read the article about battle of Bint Jbeil and it is not very good. But nowhere does it say that Hezbollah "withdrew" from the town. It does contain a quote from Newsweek (the link is dead but can be retrieved with the Wayback Machine) which you may refer to:
As a tentative ceasefire between Israel and Lebanon began, Journalists who visited the town reported that while "Hizbullah's fighters were as elusive last week as they were deadly", on August 14 "there was no sign of Hizbullah fighters".
Both quotes are technically correct but none of the refers to Bint Jbeil. The first quote refers to the general situation in Southern Lebanon during the war:
“Hizbullah's fighters were as elusive last week as they were deadly. Thousands of them were dug in around southern Lebanon, and yet encounters with the hundreds of journalists also in the area were rare, and furtive.”
The second quote describes a very specific olive grove FIVE miles from Bint Jbeil:
“In an olive grove about five miles away [from Bint Jbeil]… [there] was a GMC truck with a rocket-launching platform… There was no sign of Hizbullah fighters...”
So you are making a false claim that not even Israel itself is making.
Jokkmokks-Goran (talk) 17:05, 27 December 2011 (UTC)


This article seems to subtly, but significantly and consistently suffer from NPOV issues, stressing at every chance that the IDF official publication are "unconfirmed" and inexplicitly using Hezbolla's version as fact. Israel is a western democracy with a free press and a strong tradition of internal public criticism, it's ability to lie regarding events that involved lots of forces is very limited. Hezbolla is a middle eastern Shiat theocratic terror organization who targets civilians on a regular basis. The supposed equivalence that the article takes between the IDF and Hezbolla versions is in fact very far from NPOV. --MeUser42 (talk) 17:50, 6 January 2016 (UTC)

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