Open Thread: 5th District Candidates on Israel

There have now been three significant debates over the past 10 days among the 5th District candidates for Congress, and I'll be chiming in with my own scorecard sometime in the next few days. But listening to tonight's debate at Temple Israel, I was struck by the unwillingness of any of the four candidates to even acknowledge the possibility that the Israeli government has damaged its own long-term security by laying waste to Lebanon this month, let alone criticize an action that even within Israel is a contentious topic of debate.

Granted, the two questions related to the Israeli offensive were couched in a manner designed to elicit support; and Keith Ellison's old Nation of Islam baggage certainly played a part in his tepid and nervous response--which, with its emphasis on the need for peaceful solutions, was the closest anyone came to sheathing the sabers. But the rhetoric on the Israeli operations certainly presented a stark juxtaposition with the staunch anti-war fervor regarding U.S. troops in Iraq.

Anybody else who was there struck by this? Discuss...