In the period since Israel withdrew its army of occupation from Lebanon, UN observers on site have recorded approx. 200 violations of the border by Hezbollah.
During that same period, the same UN observers have recorded 11,000 Israeli violations of the border.
Just days ago, representatives of the government of Israel appeared on American cable news networks declaring that Israel had no intention of sending ground troops into Lebanon at this time. They repeatedly asserted that Israel did not believe a ground war would prove necessary.
That very night, the same cable news networks reported that "small groups" of IDF troops were already in Lebanon, but explained that these were quick guerilla missions, and did not presage an invasion.
The very next day, the same cable news sources were commenting on the now obvious -- Thousands of Israeli troops were massed at the broder. Israeli government spokesmen continued to repeat to American journalists that they hoped it would not become necessary to send significant nmbers of toops across the border.
Cable news anchors speculated on the question of whether or not the IDF would enter Lebanon in force.
Of course, the next morning they were there -- in force --
And now the official word is that Israel will occupy a twenty mile swath of Lebanon, temporarily.
But, the invasion was part of the plan for dealing with Hezbollah that IDF spokesmen had revealed more than a year ago.
Why would anyone believe anything the Israeli government says? For the same reasons, perhaps, that they appear to believe what the Bush administration says.