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Monday, December 22, 2008

Who wants an invasion of Gaza and why?

Israelis in the 'Gaza envelope' spent the entire weekend under rocket fire from 'Palestinian' terrorists in the Gaza Strip, leading to calls for the IDF to go into Gaza and clean out the vipers' nests. Among those in favor of an IDF action are Likud leader Binyamin Netanyahu, Foreign Minister and Kadima leader Tzipi Livni and the IDF. Among those opposed are Defense Minister Ehud Barak and (apparently) Prime Minister (yes, he's still Prime Minister, unfortunately) Ehud Olmert.

And then there are the Arab countries, who'd really like the heads of Hamas to roll but aren't keen on Israel actually sending in anything to chop them off other than helicopters.

Let's look at what they've been saying and try to figure out why. Here's Netanyahu:
"For three years, the ministers of Kadima have been burying their heads in the sand," the Likud leader continued. "And that needs to change. In the long term, we have no choice but to topple the Hamas rule in Gaza. But in the short term, we have to go from the politics of pacifism to the politics of active attack."
Well, that makes sense. Netanyahu is trying to position himself as a right wing politician and right wing politicians make bellicose statement. As I've noted several times, I don't believe Netanyahu is a true right-winger and I believe that given the opportunity what he'd really like to do is replace Hhttp://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gifamas with Fatah in Gaza. Netanyahu would love to have a war now so that it will be over long before the election. And he's anxious to portray Kadima (and Livni) as being the ones who put us in this position (which is true, of course).

Livni, on the other hand, is looking to strengthen 'moderate' 'Palestinian' President Mahmoud Abbas Abu Mazen by weakening Hamas. Livni is likely the number one proponent of a 'Palestinian' state reichlet in the current government, and is zealously guarding the list of concessions she has already made to Fatah. But she's still seen here as a dove, so it's time for her to get a little aggressive:
On Sunday, Livni said that if she becomes prime minister, the government will lead a policy that will end Hamas's rule in the Gaza Strip.
Yes, and restore Fatah's rule, as if Fatah's al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade is not among the Gazan groups shooting rockets at us.

Then there's Ehud Barak, who fled from Lebanon as Prime Minister in 2000, bringing about the 'second intifadeh.' Barak may be known here as a 'bitchonist' (strong on security), but he's in a party where everyone else is way to his left, and he fears that going to war now and incurring casualties is not going to please his leftist base. Not to mention that there's always the risk that in an election campaign, someone else will get the credit. So Barak accuses everyone else of being 'populists.'
"I'm hearing repeated populist statements from those who have never experienced or seen a war, people who are now becoming promoters of 'different politics.' This babbling is costing us lives and may damage the effectiveness of a Gaza operation," Defense Minister and Labor chairman Ehud Barak said at a faction meeting on Monday morning, according to an Army Radio report.

"When these promoters of 'different politics' dealt with war while serving in the government, they demonstrated light-headedness and abandon even in regards to national considerations, at times due to personal motives. The public will eventually need to judge their actions," said Barak.

The defense minister's statements could be interpreted as criticism on Foreign Minister and Kadima chairman Tzipi Livni, whose election campaign focuses on her being a 'different leader.'
The only thing Barak is right about is that the government is talking about this too much. In the words of the Nike commercial, they should "just do it."

The IDF wants to go in to Gaza now because it recognizes that every day that Israel sits aside is a day that the 'Palestinians' build up their weaponry. On Sunday, 'military sources' were quoted here as saying that the IDF was capable of 'conquering Gaza.'
"We have operational plans ranging from conquering the Gaza Strip to pinpoint raids against rocket squads," one officer said. "However, we will ultimately do what we are told to do."
I'm not sure that will happen so long as this government is in power. This government is unlikely to send troops in unless there is an 'exit strategy. ' But the IDF is itching for a battle.

Officers in the Gaza Division (Ugdat 'Aza) said on the subject that "in the month of November of this year, in the framework of the Tahdiyya agreement, Hamas has launched more rockets than in all of last year, when we were not under this agreement." Those officers were fiercely critical of the Security Apparatus's policy concerning the launching of rockets from the Gaza strip.

At the moment, despite this, they refrained from drawing direct criticism on the policy of the Minister of Defense, Ehud Barak. Thus, for example, a senior officer in the Gaza Division said yesterday in a private conversation: "What's happening today in the Gaza strip is incomprehensible. We must respond."

"Frustration on the Ground Following Indecision"

According to him "Since the Tahdiyya was broken, Tzahal [the IDF. CiJ] hasn't reacted in the depth of the Palestinian territory, save only for defensive attacks against [rocket] launchers. We've arrived at an unprecedented position in which we identify the location of the launchings from the very [Palestinian] houses and don't do anything in response. The tanks don't move. No one takes any decisions."

The senior figure added, furthermore that "What dictates the order of the day is the alarm of [incoming] mortars, shouting to us to enter protected shelters. Our deterrence ability is being eroded and sometimes it's difficult to explain the complicated reality of it to the soldiers."

An additional senior officer in the division said last night the following: "We are rotting in buildings. Standing around and take the hits. I personally feel the frustration in every level from the fact that nobody takes a position. This is the [official] instruction. To sit and get hit [by rockets] and be ready to prevent penetration [of the separation wall, by Palestinian terrorists] on foot or by means of a tunnel.

In his words, "to whom does it seem logical that [in exchange] for 24 rocket attacks into Israel, the IDF will respond with a strike on the launcher? It reminds the officers of 1999-2000, when we sat in the defense posts of Gush Katif and were [primarily] occupied in defending ourselves."

But the most curious piece of this puzzle is the Arab countries. On Thursday, Maariv published an article that claimed that the Arab countries have asked Israel to go in and remove the Hamas leadership.

A moment before the end of the tahdiyya [lit. "calming"] Israel received a green light from senior Arab officials for the elimination of senior Hamas figures: "If they won't extend the tahdiyya - eliminate them."

Israel recently received messages from senior figures in Arab states encouraging the resumption of targeted eliminations in Gaza. In one of the messages it was even said "Take off their heads", referring to the Hamas leadership in Gaza. The Arab officials referred to the possibility that Hamas will implement its threat[s], won't lengthen the tahdiyya and will enable the resumption of firing Qassam rocks into the Western Negev.

And who are the seniormost targets for elimination? Hamas's organization in Gaza is divided into a Military leadership and Political leadership. Among the leaders of the first type, who are likely to become targets for elimination, are three people: Ahmad Ja'bari, head of Hamas's military wing in Gaza; Ibrahim Ghandour, a senior official in the military wing; and Muhammad Daf, another senior official in the military wing, who has already been injured in a number of IDF removal operations.

Among the characters who compose Hamas's political leadership are Isma'il Haniyyah, Prime Minister of the Palestinian government, Sa'id Siyam, Minister of the Interior in Haniyyah's government, and Mahmoud Az-Zahar, one of the organization's leaders.

An additional individual likely to become another IDF target for elimination is Dr. Jamaal al-Houdari, a member of the Palestinian parliament in Gaza. Houdari claims that he is a humanitarian unaffiliated with Hamas, yet [when discussing him] one is dealing with a Haniyyah confidant involved in a great deal of anti-Israeli propaganda.

Another actor who is apparently opposed to an IDF action is Prime Minister Ehud K. Olmert. One can only wonder if he fears getting involved in another war after his miserable failure in Lebanon, or he fears that his moonbat wife Aliza will invoke the Lysistrata decree on him if he embarks on a military action. Someone ought to tell him that it's his last chance to have any kind of positive legacy from his miserable two and a half years in office.

But I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for Olmert to get that message. Aliza takes precedence.

1 Comments:

At 8:31 PM, Blogger Tim Marshall said...

Hi Carl. Olmert's legacy will be the bombing of the Syrian facility.
But itll take years to establish that legacy. Just as Peres will be remembered, long term, for one thing.
www.skynews.com/foreignmatters

 

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