Thursday, August 10, 2006

# Posted 5:53 PM by Taylor Owen  

ANOTHER ISRAELI VIEW: Avnery questions the results thus far of the following progression of Olmert's purported strategic objectives: To destroy Hizbullah; To push Hizbullah away from the border; To kill Hassan Nasrallah; To return to the Israeli army the power of deterrence; Deploying an International Force along the border; "We shall create a new situation in the Middle East". His rhetoric aside, these are legitimate questions, and it must be considered whether the current strategy will achieve any of them.

This WaPo piece from last weekend describes similar and wider Israeli discontent and below is Andrew Stuttaford at The Corner saying basically the same thing on the strategic side.
You and I, of course, agree on how much we dislike Hezbollah. Where we disagree is how it can be defeated. I'd like to stress that I'm not debating here the rights and wrongs of Israel's incursion into the Lebanon. What we're debating is what will work. Clearly Israel had to respond to the attacks upon it, but my point is that taking the war as far as Israel has done has strengthened Hezbollah, and it was always going to do so. So long as Hezbollah has sponsoring powers behind it (as it does), so long as Hezbollah is indifferent to the deaths of the civilians in its midst (as it is), and so long as Hezbollah is able to recruit new 'martyrs' (it still is) the only military question was how bloody a nose it was going to get. It was never going to be knocked out. Given those facts, Israel would have better advised to devise a method of retaliation that (a) minimized any propaganda advantage Hezbollah might derive and (b) boosted the indigenous Lebanese opposition to Hezbollah. Clearly, it did the opposite. The result of all this is that over the longer term Hezbollah will emerge strengthened from this affair, something that was, I fear, all too predictable. As I've said before, I will be delighted if I'm eventually proved wrong, but it doesn't look like I will be.
(7) opinions -- Add your opinion

The problem is not strategy, it is techniques (which fall mostly into tactics)
for an interview with the Major General of the IAF for his position re: human shields. Using his philosophy, a single Hez member could get a single human shield to wear a suicide vest, look pitiful and unable to remove the vest, have the Hez member using a "dead man's switch" and go across the whole of Israel asnd kill all the Jews that did not run away fast enough and nobody could (would) stop the terrorist because the human shield would die. IE; any amount of jewish blood can be shed to save terror supporters and willing enablers' blood.
The ground forces are not that nuts, but if the IAf is, then the IDF is likely infected with the same (at least at the command level)
link to the JPost interview is broken, so how about this.
Hezbollah is evil. Evil mated to modern technology is almost impossible to exstirpate. We have not yet found a way to contain movements such as Hezbollah. Until we can, the bad guys win and we lose. David kenney
It isn't just Olmert, Gen. Halutz is also responsible for the poor performance the IDF has turned in so far. Halutz is an ex-fighter pilot who claimed that the Israelis could achieve most of their aims by the use of aerial bombardment, but they failed to recognize the difference between Afghanistan and southern Lebanon. Now Halutz is sending Kaplinsky, former commander of the Golani Brigade, to command the northern region, but he is only talking about increasing the troops and intensity incrementally. Israel needs to move much more aggressively, accept the fact that they will lose dozens, possibly hundreds of lives, knowing that it is better to lose a hundred good men in the cause of victory than to lose 50 or 60 in a humiliating defeat. Halutz was checked into a hospital last week exhibiting signs of stress related disorders, i.e. stomach problems. Israel may have been better served if he had been sent to the Riviera to recover.
I think the Hezbollah are going to come out of this tactically crippled and strategically triumphant, and it will be the fault of the Israeli government due to its passive/aggressive policies and the seemingly ubiquitous support of Hezbollah by the larger media sources of the west. Reuters repeated uses of propaganda photos is simply the most eggregious example of how the media has skewed the arguement in favor of Hezbollah.
until we see what UNSC res is passed, and how it is implemented, its too early to pass judgement either way.
Hezbbollah come out of this strategically triumphant?
Before the incursion Hez was the hero that drove the Jews from S.Lebanon. At this point they have caused Lebanon to be practically demolished. Are the Lebanese so strangled by notions of 'honor' that this whole adventure has been worth it to them?
Lets see - if there is another election - how Hez will fare...
Edwin, I am the Anon you quoted, and I hope you are right. But the Lebanese people seem to be rallying behind Hezbollah because they are getting bombed by the Israelis, makes no sense, but we are talking about the Middle East here. Strategically, Hezbollah will return to their former positions strengthened by the fact that they handed Israel their ass, and fully reconstituted by resupply from Syria and Iran. Their strategy of building support in Lebanon by building schools and clinics while demonizing Israel will be stronger.
Edwin, I hope you are right, but Israel has to give the UN force an unmissable target, and if the IDF doesn't get near the Litani River, the UN will drop the ball. Israel has to give the Lebanese Army a thoroughly beaten Hezbollah or they will manhandle the UN and the Lebanese Army, and Israel will be bombed by Hezbollah again as soon as they choose to do so.
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