a ceasefire is holding, and both hezbollah and israel are citing victory. because, of course, wanton destruction by both sides and a thousand people officially dead (most of those lebanese civilians) is a call for victory. if that's a victory, what the heck is a defeat?
here's something from the globe and mail:

Both sides declare victory in Lebanon war

Associated Press

BEIRUT — The leaders of Israel and Hezbollah each declared his side the winner Monday in their month-long war. But Israel's Ehud Olmert now faces challenges from rivals at home, while Hezbollah's Sheik Hassan Nasrallah may have gained ground in Lebanon.

Mr. Olmert told the Israeli parliament that the offensive had changed the strategic balance, ending the “state within a state” run by Hezbollah in southern Lebanon. He said most of the guerrillas' arsenal of weapons was destroyed.

But he immediately faced criticism from political opponents who said the onslaught had failed to wipe out the Shiite militant guerrilla movement. The criticism could build to a point where it threatens Mr. Olmert's government.

Under the terms of the ceasefire, Lebanese troops and a beefed-up international force are to deploy in southern Lebanon, a step that will effectively end Hezbollah's years-long domination of the area and make it more difficult for the guerrillas to attack northern Israel.
It's a step that Hezbollah had long resisted, backed by its allies in the Lebanese government and its patrons Syria and Iran U.S. President George W. Bush said the guerrillas had suffered a sound defeat, citing the international force. “Hezbollah started the crisis, and Hezbollah suffered a defeat in this crisis,” he told a Washington press conference. “There's going to be a new power in the south of Lebanon.”
But the guerrilla army has not been eliminated — and the real extent of damage to its arsenal is not known. Meanwhile, its popularity has grown in Lebanon and swelled enormously across the Arab world for putting up the toughest fight Israel's war machine has ever faced.
“We came out victorious in a war in which big Arab armies were defeated,” Mr. Nasrallah said in a televised speech Monday. “We are today before a strategic, historic victory, without exaggeration.”
Moments after his speech ended, celebratory gunfire erupted across the Lebanese capital.
He quickly sought to put down domestic pressure for his movement to disarm, scolding Lebanese critics for bringing up the issue.
“This is immoral, incorrect and inappropriate,” he said, underlining that the Shiite community that forms the backbone of Hezbollah support had made “the most sacrifice” in the battle and that critics shouldn't disturb the national unity behind his movement.
He also moved to blunt any resentment over the vast devastation wreaked in an Israeli campaign sparked by Hezbollah's snatching of two Israeli soldiers on July 12. He said Hezbollah members on Tuesday would fan out across the south to help rebuild shattered homes and said the group — which is believed to receive large amounts of money from Iran — would help people to pay rent and buy furniture until their homes are rebuilt.
Mr. Nasrallah defended Hezbollah's arsenal, saying he could “proudly claim” that Israel now understood that future conflict “will not be a picnic. It will be very costly.”
Hezbollah will likely find it more difficult to replenish its weaponry in the south. The Lebanese army long turned a blind eye to shipments of weapons from Syria, but they will now have international troops watching over them.
Hezbollah's opponents in the Lebanese government have pressed behind the scenes for the guerrillas to be disarmed, and the presence of the UN force will boost their demands. But Nasrallah, whose movement has two members in the cabinet, can call on strengthened Shiite support to resist the pressure.
In Jerusalem, Mr. Olmert anticipated that another war with Hezbollah could come in the future, saying his government would review “deficiencies” in the way the war was conducted to “do better” next time.

“We will continue to pursue them everywhere and at all times,” he said. “We have no intention of asking anyone's permission.”

He advised patience for his critics who believe that the war fell short of Israel's original goal of dismantling Hezbollah.

“We don't plan to apologize,” he said.