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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Israel should go back to conventional warfare?

Here's an interesting argument from Michael Totten on why Israel should attack Iran and Syria rather than their Hezbullah and Hamas proxies.
Effective counterinsurgency of the type General David Petraeus waged in Iraq is impossible for Israel in Lebanon for three reasons. First, it takes a long time, years when applied correctly, and time is something Israel just doesn’t have. Second, the American counterinsurgency effort in Iraq would have failed if the insurgents hadn’t murdered and terrorized so many Iraqis while fighting Americans — something Hezbollah is most unlikely to do in the Shia regions of Lebanon where it is embedded. Third, anti-Israel sentiment is too broad and too deep in Lebanon for the IDF to recruit sufficient local assistance — especially after the abrupt collapse of its allies in the South Lebanon Army following the withdrawal in 2000.

Prior to getting bogged down in Lebanon in the early 1980s, the Israelis racked up one lightning fast military victory over their enemies after another. That was before hostile Middle Eastern governments learned they stood no chance of prevailing in conventional warfare and before they opted for asymmetric terrorist warfare instead. Hit-and-run guerrilla tactics work for them, sort of, so it’s in the interest of those who haven’t yet made peace with Israel, or at least acceded to some kind of modus vivendi, to keep at it.

It is therefore not in Jerusalem’s interests to let them. Israel has a perfect record against standing state armies in the Middle East foolish enough to pick fights they can’t win. So why agree to fight some of the very same states asymmetrically in wars with ambiguous endings?

The Israelis should consider returning to what they do best, if and when they have to fight again. If they want to beat their enemies rather than fight to bloody and destructive standstills, they’ll wage the kind of war they’re good at and shatter one or both of the governments that field third-party proxies against them.
I don't see Israel having much choice in this. The fact that we are going to have to hit Iran to stop its nuclear program is going to make the decision for us.

Read the whole thing.


At 11:26 PM, Blogger What is "Occupation" said...

Light off an EMP over Iran...

Then let the games begin

At 3:21 AM, Blogger Juniper in the Desert said...

Basically, Israel is going to have to use EVERY means at her disposal and then some dirty ones.

Not only will she save herself, she will save the Iranian people from their hellish existance.

At 6:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

um, Israel will be using air operations against iranian nuclear facilities, if and when. But the author is talking about conventional operations against state armies, not isolated nuclear facilities--or preemptive nuking-- as in overthrowing regimes with old-style land army tactics. As interesting a question as whether Israel has a rocket capable of delivering warheads to Iran's nuclear outposts (does it?) is the question raised by the author's advocacy of conventional warfare against Syria and Iran. How do you get the IDF to Iran in the first place? A tiul?


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