The fluid situation could change, and there are no doubt some facts we don't know about the Lebanon cease fire. Okay, now I'm hedged like a politician or academic.
But it's hard to see the cease fire as anything but an utter disaster for Israel, an outcome that is all Hezbollah and the Muslim jihadists could have wished for. Bill Roggio at Counterterrorism Blog has a good summary of the results of Israel's misbegotten invasion. Even on an military efficiency scale, a better-trained, better-armed IDF did not exactly cover itself with glory. Yes, it took some Lebanese territory from Hezbollah, albeit with more difficulty than might have been expected; it killed a fair number of the Hez militia, but they can be replaced, as can the Hezbollah rockets and munitions.
On a political level, Israel's stop-and-go, go-and-stop campaign was senseless and self-defeating. This is not your father's Israel; the spirit that saved the little country from near-extinction against Arab invasions in '67 and '73 is no more than a historical memory. Today's Israelis are a different breed, not much different, it would appear, from many Europeans and some Americans: indecisive, given to wishful thinking about the Muslim world, in denial about the threat. If they do go to war, they believe they can achieve a clean, almost casualty-free "mission accomplished" using air power and high-tech weapons. Well, they have just learned how wrong that belief turned out to be.
This hatchet job that Israel has done on itself showed the Muslim world — in fact the whole world, including its only real ally, the United States — that its legendary IDF can't even kick the props out from a second-rate guerilla force, and that its military is undercut by flip-flopping politicians and a country divided between hard-liners and peaceniks.
Worse, if possible, it lost the public relations war and gave every Israel- and Jew-hater a priceless propaganda victory, allowing them to portray Israel as an aggressor and killer of innocent civilians. That might not have mattered so much if Israel had accomplished anything significant, such as destroying most of Hezbollah and running the rest out of Lebanon; after all, it's going to be bashed by the Arabosphere and Western leftists no matter what it does. But it could and should have made a better, more aggressive case that it was acting in self-defense, and that Hez fighters deliberately put civilians at risk. Had it thoroughly clocked Hezbollah and made Hezbollah's enablers in Syria and Iran appear weak, more people would probably have bought the self-defense argument. Everybody looks more favorably on a winner.
Maybe events you'll read about in tomorrow's or next week's headlines will change the picture, but for now Israel has taken "a hell of a beating" (as General "Vinegar Joe" Stillwell told the American public after a defeat in Burma early in World War II, believing the country needed to hear the truth). Its reputation, both military and moral, has been severely downgraded. The possibility that it won't survive as a nation, and that there will be yet another worldwide Jewish diaspora, can't be written off as paranoia or doomsaying.
If the Arabic world sweeps the Jewish Israelis out of their homeland and raises the Crescent over it, that will be a political disaster for the West comparable to the Sultan's armies taking Constantinople, the last descendant of the Eastern Roman Empire, in 1453. Such are these times.