In a cliff-hanger of a political drama that puts the credibility of the Bush White House in the center of the Israeli-Hezbollah war, the American-French resolution to end the war is going to be voted on tonight. U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice late this afternoon said that she expects both Israel and Lebanon to accept the resolution.
The resolution calls for and cessation of hostilities and up to 15,000 U.N. and 15,000 Lebanese troops to enforce the cease fire.
Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert endorsed the deal late Friday afternoon and said he would take it to his cabinet on Sunday even though "it falls short of some of Israel's demands, including a strong mandate for the U.N. forces to take on Hezbollah guerrillas." Olmert also said Israel would continue to wage war until the resolution was passed by the Israeli cabinet, although it was clear whether they would launch their major initiative or just hold the current ground.
According to Reuters, the vote in the U.N. would be unanimous, and Lebanon would approve the deal. Hezbollah as yet has been silent about the resolution.
The game of brinksmanship grew even more tense this afternoon when Israel announced it would launch the expanded ground effort in Lebanon.
At this point, anything could derail the deal. Nothing will be fully resolved until the U.N. vote, the Israeli and Lebanon votes, and the reaction from Hezbollah.