In a new article in the New Yorker, Seymour Hersh, of Abu Ghraib fame, claims that the Bush administration gave Israel the green light to attack Lebanon earlier in the summer:
A Pentagon consultant said that the Bush White House “has been agitating for some time to find a reason for a preemptive blow against Hezbollah.” He added, “It was our intent to have Hezbollah diminished, and now we have someone else doing it.” (As this article went to press, the United Nations Security Council passed a ceasefire resolution, although it was unclear if it would change the situation on the ground.)
... Earlier this summer, before the Hezbolla kidnappings, the U.S. government consultant said, several Israeli officials visited Washington separately, “to get a green light for the bombing operation and to find out how much the United States would bear.” The consultant added, “Israel began with Cheney. It wanted to be sure that it had his support and the support of his office and the Middle East desk of the National Security Council.” After that, “persuading Bush was never a problem, and Condi Rice was on board,” the consultant said.