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  • Two Good Analyses of the Gaza War

    Posted by Jonathan on August 27th, 2014 (All posts by )

    Strategy Page has a very interesting discussion of how Israel’s military has learned and adapted from its failures in the 2006 Lebanon war:

    After the 2006 war Israel realized two things; its military was still superior to Arab forces and its military was not as superior as Israel believed it was. The major Israeli deficiency was communications. What the Arabs, or at least Iran-backed Hezbollah, had done was learned to move faster and more resourcefully than the Israelis expected. What really shocked the Israelis was that although they could spot and track these Hezbollah moves they could not get artillery, aircraft or ground troops moved quickly enough to take out a lot of identified targets before the enemy managed to change position. All the different levels of Israeli headquarters and combat units could actually communicate with each other, but not fast enough to hit a target that had been identified and located but was not staying put long enough for the completion of all the procedures and paperwork required to get the strike order sent to the unit best able to carry it out.
     
    The solution was new technology and procedures. Since 2006 Israel has built a new communications system that is faster and able, according to Israeli claims, to hit a lot more targets than the 2006 era forces could manage. Much of the solution had nothing to do with radical new hardware but to simply standardizing the procedures everyone had long used to call for fire, or to deliver it. Now commanders at all levels can see the same data and call for and receive fire support quickly. Thus when a target is identified the bombs, shells or ground attack follows quickly. Everyone was shown how easy, and damaging it was to underestimate the enemy. In training exercises the “enemy” is controlled by Israeli troops with ordered to be imaginative and try real hard to not get spotted and hit. It’s been amazing what these “enemy” troops come up, and necessary to keep this secret so that the real enemy does not find out.

    While we withdraw from the world in the face of external threats, downsizing our military, slow-walking R&D and firing thousands of experienced NCOs and mid-level officers, other countries are learning and adapting. Not all of those countries are our allies.


     
     
    Caroline Glick puts the Gaza war into political perspective:

    The Obama administration’s decision to side with the members of the jihadist axis against Israel by adopting their demand to open Gaza’s borders with Israel and Egypt has served as the final nail in the coffin of America’s strategic credibility among its traditional regional allies.
     
    As the US has stood with Hamas, it has also maintained its pursuit of a nuclear deal with Iran. The US’s position in these talks is to enable the mullocracy to follow North Korea’s path to a nuclear arsenal. The non-jihadist Sunni states share Israel’s conviction that they cannot survive a nuclear armed Iran.
     
    Finally, President Barack Obama’s refusal to date to take offensive action to destroy Islamic State in Iraq and Syria demonstrates to Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf states that under Obama, the US would rather allow Islamic State to expand into their territory and destroy them than return US military forces to Iraq.
     
    In other words, Obama’s pro-Hamas-, pro-Iran- and pro-Muslim Brotherhood-axis policies, along with his refusal to date to take effective action in Iraq and Syria to obliterate Islamic State, have convinced the US’s traditional allies that for the next two-and-a-half years, not only can they not rely on the US, they cannot discount the possibility of the US taking actions that harm them.
     
    [. . .]
     
    The partnership that has emerged in this war between Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia is a direct consequence of Obama’s abandonment of the US’s traditional allies. Recognizing the threat that Hamas, as a component part of the Sunni jihadist alliance, constitutes for their own regimes, and in the absence of American support for Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia have worked with Israel to defeat Hamas and keep Gaza’s borders sealed.

    Obama characteristically follows an ideological script at odds with American traditions. Also characteristically, Obama is colossally inept in executing his plans and in failing to anticipate the second- and third-order consequences of his actions.

    (Thanks to Lex for the Strategy Page link.)

     

    5 Responses to “Two Good Analyses of the Gaza War”

    1. Mike K Says:

      This is an interesting discussion of the issue although I’m not as sure that pure anti-Semitism is the answer. There is also a rule that “never attribute to malice that which can be explained by incompetence.” Most reporters are leftists and leftists instinctively seek out incompetents as underdogs, even if they turn out to be rabid underdogs.

      The left was in love with the NVA and the Khmer Rouge as pure primitives. Almost no one acknowledged the genocide after 1975 in both Viet Nam and Cambodia. If Israel failed to defend itself, it would probably reacquire the role of underdog, regrettably unable to receive its praise due to a long term dirt nap.

      The left is very fond of mad dog causes as long as the mad dog stays far enough away. For example, MSNBC egged on the protestors/rioters in Ferguson Mo from behind a fence to keep said rioters away from the TV talking heads and any valuable equipment that looked to be available to steal/ liberate.

    2. Gringo Says:

      Seems like Hamas shot itself in the foot. Each time that Hamas broke a cease fire, or stopped cease fire negotiations with maximalist demands, the IDF took down some Hamas honcho or destroyed another tunnel.

      To all those US Historians for Hamas: please show your support for Hamas by moving to Gaza- permanently.

    3. Whitehall Says:

      Interesting that the UAE is jumping in with concrete military action against jahadis in Libya.

      Yes, the other Arabs are beginning to see that supporting the bad actors threatens blowback to their own interests.

    4. ErisGuy Says:

      I hope Israel invents the first combat robot. And uses it to attack the worst anti-Semitic political institutions on the planet: Hamas, the Islamic Republic, and UN.

    5. ErisGuy Says:

      “the US would rather allow Islamic State to expand into their territory and destroy them”

      Couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch. When Nazis (or ISIS) and Communists (or Wahhabis) fight, you’re not supposed to choose sides. You’re supposed to wish for an asteroid.