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Monday, August 21, 2006

Uncle Sam to Olmert: Drop Dead

I've mentioned several times the consequences of Ehud Olmert's misadventure in Lebanon on Israel's relations with the United States. If even part of this article proves correct, it's really not good for Israel. For the record, the writer was a college classmate of mine and is an occasional client to this day:

From an American perspective, the costs of Olmert's adventure into Lebanon are staggering both financially and politically, dwarfing the costs of the Gaza handover. America will be asked to pay over $ 7 billion in replacement costs to the Israelis, plus at least an additional $3 billion to rebuild Lebanon from the very bombs Congress paid for in the first place. This is prior to all calls for additional Israeli aid for its economic growth --all within 24 months of the original final date for US guarantee of Israeli national debt. All within a year of more than $5 billion in additional costs for the Gaza relocations.

Senate responses fall into two categories. First: revulsion for Israel's carpet bombing of civilians in retaliation for terrorist actions, as expressed on the Senate record by Senator John Warner of Virginia, one of the two leading Republican candidates for the 2008 presidential nomination. Far more important and pervasive, however, is the taboo none dared even express until August 2006: the Israel is the new Taiwan --a poor military ally, incapable of fulfilling its regional role irrespective of a bottomless credit, no longer worth the significant investment. Like Taiwan experienced, a sudden sea change has occurred on Capitol Hill that those funds may be better invested in other manners within the Middle East puzzle, capable of achieving greater long-term alliance and stability for America. Like Taiwan, the Israeli government may well find itself suffering whiplash from the sudden embrace of its arch-enemy by the United States as a more viable solution to pouring billions into the black hole of military adventurism

What was not even a remote possibility in American Israeli relations 35 days ago is now openly discussed on a bipartisan basis as a more intelligent solution to American interests in the region. While the Olmert Administration must now work double time in repairing its image on Capitol Hill, there certainly is no prospect of discussion of even further aid to repair the damage to the Israeli economy suffered in the past month.

All previous growth and prosperity projections for the Israeli economy are now worthless, and perhaps for the first time in the history of the State of Israel, discussion will focus on minimizing cutbacks of American aid rather than relying upon a bottomless line of credit with Uncle Sam.
Read the whole thing.


At 3:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did I miss the point? The article seams to imply a lot of things but does not really give much specifics to back up its points.

At 4:15 PM, Blogger M. Simon said...

Carpet bombing civilians?

The article is a bunch of hooey.

In any case it is past time that Israel gave up socialism.

At 4:16 PM, Blogger M. Simon said...

Israel whipped Hizbollah with its B team. This is under performance?

At 4:45 PM, Blogger Carl in Jerusalem said...


It's no secret that the US was not pleased with Israel's performance in this war. I posted several articles to that effect and speculated that it will eventually come out that it was Olmert who insisted that the US accept 1701. I still believe that.

What I don't buy is the first half of the article - that Bush is already acting as a lame duck and that the two leading candidates (one of whom he claims is John Warner - I'm not really current on what's going on in the States, but I find that hard to believe) are running the GOP.

I've known the writer for 30 years. He tends to shoot from the hip....

M. Simon,

Yes, carpet bombing civilians is quite an exaggeration if you're not talking to the Saudis. Yes, it's way past time to give up socialism. But Israel definitely did not whip Hezbullah with its B team. It fought to a draw with its A team with one hand tied behind its back. It was a draw where we inflicted more damage than they did, but we did not attain our goals and it was still a draw.

As to the comparison with Taiwan, I find it difficult to believe.

At 7:41 PM, Blogger M. Simon said...

Taiwan? You must be cross threaded.

As to unhappy Americans? I doubt it.

It was an intel bonanza re: the coming war with Iran. That alone was worth the price. Bunkers with intact comand and control eqpt - radios, sensors, etc. Organizational systems.

War tested.

Besides you leave out the fact that the defence always has an advantage.

When are you guys going to get rid of Putz and Oatbox?

At 7:43 PM, Blogger Dave said...

Can you cite where Warner accused Israel of carpet-bombing civilians? I just spent 1/2 hour on google and in senate.gov trying to find such a reference, to no avail. It doesn't sound like something Warner would say. I found a statement of his that said the US' support for Israel should be strong, but not unconditional, but it is framed mostly in concerns about the overal Middle East political picture and how the US interests would be affected by Israel taking on Hezbollah in Lebanon. Also, I doubt Warner could be considered one of the leading candidates for President in 2008. All the talk so far has been about McCain, Giuliani, Romney, Rice and Allen.

At 7:45 PM, Blogger M. Simon said...

You really ought to do a piece on socialism and how it has affected Israel and the war.

No Israeli blogs that I have seen are dealing with the root cause. Socialism breeds timid souls. Mice.

At 6:07 AM, Blogger M. Simon said...

Here is a look at lessons learned:

An Intel Bonanza.

At 7:11 AM, Blogger M. Simon said...

Canuck is right. Mild victories lead to the next war.

Why do Olfart and Putz still have jobs?


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