UNIFIL - Pride of the UN

Thursday, July 27, 2006
An excellent article detailing the proficiency of the crack UN forces keeping close watch in Lebanon.
The current contingent from Ghana has been in Lebanon for three months. The soldiers at the post are charged with patrolling and monitoring, with their single jeep, the area where the heaviest fighting has been going on for the last 10 days. The fact that Hizbullah has been well entrenched in the area ever since Israel's withdrawal six years ago - with hundreds of fighters, well stocked ammunition depots and extensive fortifications - seemed to have escape the Ghanaians notice. "I have never seen one of them," says the soldier. "You cannot easily identify them in the population."
Ghana - say, doesn't Chief Thief Kofi hail from Ghana? What do you thinks his cut on this deal might be?


Knucklehead said...

UNIFIL is commanded by one Major General Alain Pellegrini of France. It consists (as of 31 May 2006) of some 1,990 troops, assisted by some 50 military observers of UNTSO; and supported by 95 international civilian personnel and 304 local civilian staff.

Troops are contributed by China, France, Ghana, India, Ireland, Italy, Poland and Ukraine.

Since their inception in March 1978 they have suffered (though May) 257 fatalities: 249 troops, 2 observers, 2 civilian staff, and 4 local staff. (That suggests an average of roughly 9 dead per year. Ever heard of them before this happened?)

They have a budget of $99.23M. Interestingly the current incarnation of the UN mandate for UNIFIL expires on 31 July 2006. Presumably it will be extended yet again to pretend to serve some valuable purpose.

Since Canada is not listed as a provisioner of troops for UNIFIL it is possible, if not likely, that the Canadian who was killed was from UNTSO (UN Truce Supervision Organization). See the link above for information about UNTSO. Formed in 1948 we can only imagine how many truces they have failed to supervise. UNTSO employs roughly 350 people and has a budget of somewhere around $30M/yr.

No doubt it isn't inexpensive to keep so many people from reporting anything happening under their noses but there's probably sufficient funds for Kofi's Klique to make a buck.

ambisinistral said...

Two weeks later, the area around the post is quiet, except for the distant thud of artillery fire. Hizbullah has been banished from this small part of Lebanon. IDF Merkava tanks roar through a nearby opening in the border fence. There isn't even a guard at the border and Israeli and foreign journalists pass in and out unhindered.

The Ghanaian soldiers weren't even aware of the breach in the fence they are supposed to monitor, by mandate of the United Nations.

Obviously, money well spent.

Barry Dauphin said...

Another tactic is to take them at their word. So if UNIFIL cannot distinguish between terrorist and civilian, why should the IDF be able to?

Skookumchuk said...

Can you imagine this level of scrutiny even five years ago?

The MSM will, belatedly and on page D37, take notice.

It will be interesting to see if Democrat politicians keep mouthing the usual platitudes about the UN come November.