South Beruit is where the families of Hizbollah live. There were no fighters in south Beruit. They were all in the south of Lebanon. The families and homes were undefended. Some propeller head in the IDF figured that if the IAF flattened the homes of the Hizbollah fighters, then their morale and effectiveness would be reduced. As usual, the problem was over analyzed by Israeli officials. A direct and protracted battle against Hizbollah would have been costly, but ultimately successful. The dirty tricks campaign was less costly (to Israel) but ultimately useless. It led to the defeat of the IDF. For those that claim it was not a defeat for the IDF, I would mention the IDF goals (1) Stop Hizbollah rockets (2) Rescue the captured IDF men (3) eliminate Hizbollah as an effective fighting force. None were accomplished... Hizbollahs goals? (1) trade the captured IDF men for imprisoned Lebanese (2) Repel the IDF from Lebanese soil. Both were accomplished. In winning that war, Hizbollah killed far fewer civilians than Israel did (Hizbollah killed 143 IDF, 43 Israeli civilians....the IDF killed more than 1000 Lebanese civilians and an unknown number of Hizbollah fighters. (est 300+). Conclusion: In any war, Israel kills far more civilians than the enemy kills. Considering that Israel has precision targetting weapons the intent becomes obvious.
Israeli forces demolish illegal houses, power infrastructure in Palestinian village Aqaba (Haaretz)
from the article: IDF top brass must learn from the mistakes of the past