Saturday, June 26, 1982

Military Action:

Cease-fire holds, reportedly due to Haig resignation; IDF claims to have destroyed SAM batteries; 560 IDF tanks, 2400 armored personnel carriers, 120 howitzers around Beirut; IDF units skilled in urban fighting reportedly brought up from Golan; IDF and Syrians reinforcing units.


Fathi Arafat estimates 35,000 killed or wounded since June 4; in Beirut, people buried in mass graves; urgent appeals made for doctors, medical supplies; bodies rot in some buildings; refugees line up at social centers; Berbir Hospital (on Green Line) reports whole families killed, tnostly civilians; some patients victims of cluster bombs, burned by phosphorous and many amputations necessary; Bhamdoun casualties high, with 70 or more bodies along the highway; 2-day toll put at 300 killed, 2000 wounded; Lebanese newspaper shows babies burned by phosphorous, and elderly who are wounded and unable to flee fighting; most Beirut businesses, banks closed in western section; milk and eggs scarce and water low; "Begin amputations" commonplace in hospitals as a result of high-velocity projectiles which smash muscles, bones from pressure without break-ing skin; Islamic hospital hit, houses 850 elderly and mentally retarded.

Political Responses:

Israel/ Occupied Territories: Eitan, visiting highway taken by IDF, says he is "going to Damascus"; Sharon admits, in TV interview, IDF "exploited" cease-fire violations by Syrians to take highway; Rabin urges indirect talks with PLO to get them out of Beirut.

Palestinians/ Lebanese: Lebanese and PLO meet to discuss US plan; Habib meets Sarkis; PLO jubilant at Haig departure as Arafat tours Fakhani district; PLO reports strong backing by USSR, France, Saudis (says Saudis threatened oil cutoff, withdrawal of Saudi investment in US, opening of diplomatic relations with USSR); PLO rejects Habib proposals, characterizing them as demanding unconditional surrender, not providing safety guarantees for withdrawing forces; Haddad forces stopping Palestinians at checkpoints, in joint work with IDF.

Arab Governments: Arab League meets in Tunis, fails to agree; Hussein in USSR on state visit; Egypt opposes forced disarming of PLO.

UN: US vetoes Security Council resolution calling for Israeli withdrawal; US and Israel are only countries voting against General Assembly resolution calling for IDF withdrawal and possible sanctions should it refuse; UN team formed to assess relief needs; 2 UN convoys reach Beirut with supplies (first relief shipments since Beirut encircled).