Author Topic: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza  (Read 17176 times)

Planeswalker

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #15 on: January 04, 2009, 01:03:39 am »
Quote from: stratfor 2008-01-03 2318GMT
ISRAEL, LEBANON: THE CONFLICT IN GAZA AND A POSSIBLE NORTHERN FRONT

Summary
Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Israel is prepared should a northern front with Hezbollah open up. Barak spoke the same day Israeli ground forces entered the Gaza Strip. While neither Hezbollah nor Israel is overly eager for a rematch from their summer 2006 conflict just yet, one could emerge should a more aggressive Hezbollah faction win out in an internal debate among the Lebanese Shiite group.

Analysis


As the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) launched an expected ground incursion into Gaza on Jan. 3, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak told the Israeli people in a live TV broadcast that Israel would have to endure a "heavy price" in this military campaign. Barak also raised the possibility of another front opening up, this one on Israel's northern frontier with Hezbollah in Lebanon. Barak said, "We hope that the northern front will remain calm, but we are prepared for any possibility."

While neither Hezbollah nor Israel is gunning for another military confrontation in Lebanon, Barak's warning has substance. Israel is already well-aware of Hezbollah's involvement in the current Gaza affair. According to a source connected to Hezbollah, about 150 Hezbollah military advisers and fighters are in Gaza City prepared to lead Hamas units against the IDF in case the Israelis attempt to storm the city. As of now, Hezbollah appears unsure whether Israel intends to go full force into Gaza City.

If Israel aims just to destroy Hamas' ability to launch rockets into southern Israel, the IDF probably will not accept the heavy casualties inherent in venturing into Gaza City, where Hezbollah-led Hamas units can unleash a major suicide bombing campaign against the invading forces. But with the IDF continuing to call up reservists numbering in the "tens of thousands," Hezbollah and Hamas cannot be sure that Israel does not intend to inflict greater destruction on Hamas by attempting to uproot the group's stronghold in Gaza City.

Israel, with the help of Egypt, is attempting to cut off Hamas' supply lines through this Gaza operation. Israel already has bombed several smuggling routes and placed a naval blockade on the Gaza coast. Meanwhile, an Egyptian security source revealed that Egyptian intelligence officers recently arrested a Hezbollah arms smuggling ring consisting of one Lebanese Shi'i and two Palestinians living in Lebanon. This was one of many Hezbollah smuggling rings that travel regularly between Sudan and Cairo and the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt. From Sinai, Hamas has built extensive underground tunnels into Gaza to smuggle in weapons and supplies.

According to the same source, Hezbollah purchases arms for Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad from Sudan, where the arms market is thriving. The arms are then smuggled into Sinai with the help of sympathetic Egyptian security officers. Once in Sinai, Hezbollah smugglers rely heavily on the help of disgruntled Bedouins, especially the Gawarnas, who also traffic drugs. Hezbollah rewards the Bedouins with light arms, cash and Lebanese hashish, which the Bedouins sell in the Egyptian black market.

Iran allegedly pays the full cost of this arms procurement and of payoffs for the Egyptian security officers and the Bedouins. The source also says that Hamas continues to get handsome contributions from wealthy Gulf Arabs, who prefer to donate money indirectly. Some of the Gulf Arabs transfer funds to Hamas by giving their Palestinian employees money in the form of salary increases and bonuses. The Palestinian laborers then transfer the funds to Gaza, where the money ultimately finds its way to Hamas coffers.

While Hezbollah has contributed a great deal to Hamas' armor, training and supplies, there is a debate raging inside the organization over how much more or less Hezbollah should interfere in Hamas' fight in Gaza against the Israelis. One faction, which includes Hezbollah chief Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, opposes any escalation and believes Hezbollah already is doing all it can to assist Hamas. This faction believes Israel is waiting for Hezbollah to provoke a fight. This would allow the IDF to respond massively in Lebanon, giving Israel the opportunity to make up for the 2006 Israel-Hezbollah military confrontation, which gave Hezbollah a rare symbolic victory over the Jewish state. A more hawkish faction of Hezbollah, however, argues that an Israeli offensive against Hezbollah is inevitable, so it is better to open a second front against Israel now -- forcing the Jewish state into a two-front war.

This debate is still playing out, but Hezbollah has heard Barak's warning: Israel is not looking to open another front in the north while it is battling Hamas in Gaza, but will (according to Israeli security sources) target high-value Hezbollah targets in Lebanon if provoked. Though Hezbollah has been preparing long and hard for a rematch with the Israelis in southern Lebanon, it cannot be assured that it would survive a fight in which Israel is likely to throw its full force into dismantling Hezbollah's military arm. Just as important, Hezbollah cannot be assured of Syrian cooperation in another fight against Israel, especially as the Syrian regime is already pursuing complex negotiations with Israel that would involve Damascus turning on its militant proxies. Under these circumstances, Hezbollah is more likely to lay low and provide more indirect assistance to Hamas in this fight. That said, Israel is not taking any chances, and will prepare for the possibility that the more hawkish Hezbollah faction wins out.

Copyright 2009 Stratfor

bolded some key aspects for tl;dr
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wade

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #16 on: January 04, 2009, 03:33:32 am »
you did it to yourself wade, the impression we get is based on the posts you have made, putting a  :fap: over bombing post and a oh how tragic i feel sad post one after another just reinforces the opinion we have...




  what.

*has never used a :fap: referring to any types of horror.
REALLY real discordians

i wouldnt hurt a fly
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Cain

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #17 on: January 04, 2009, 05:49:47 pm »
This will last exactly long enough for the current Israeli government to get re-elected.

Also, while the obvious comparison is to the 2006 campaign in south Lebanon, Gaza does not have the strategic depth that Hezbollah did, so expect it to be bloodier on both sides.

Also, wade's trolling schtick would no doubt become much more boring if people did not respond with the typical outrage they do.

Cain

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #18 on: January 05, 2009, 10:13:29 am »
The Israeli military historian, Martin van Creveld, has my quote of the day:

Quote
In other words, he who fights against the weak - and the rag-tag Iraqi militias are very weak indeed - and loses, loses. He who fights against the weak and wins also loses. To kill an opponent who is much weaker than yourself is unnecessary and therefore cruel; to let that opponent kill you is unnecessary and therefore foolish. As Vietnam and countless other cases prove, no armed force however rich, however powerful, however advanced, and however well motivated is immune to this dilemma. The end result is always disintegration and defeat.

Link
« Last Edit: January 05, 2009, 10:32:29 am by Cain »

Bebek Sincap Ratatosk

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #19 on: January 05, 2009, 03:53:52 pm »
The Israeli military historian, Martin van Creveld, has my quote of the day:

Quote
In other words, he who fights against the weak - and the rag-tag Iraqi militias are very weak indeed - and loses, loses. He who fights against the weak and wins also loses. To kill an opponent who is much weaker than yourself is unnecessary and therefore cruel; to let that opponent kill you is unnecessary and therefore foolish. As Vietnam and countless other cases prove, no armed force however rich, however powerful, however advanced, and however well motivated is immune to this dilemma. The end result is always disintegration and defeat.

Link

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #20 on: January 05, 2009, 04:01:38 pm »
I always find it pretty disengenuous when people say that Hamas is "hiding among civilians".

1.  The civilians aren't allowed to leave Gaza by orders of Israel.

2.  The Gaza strip is 140 square miles.  In comparison,  Los Angeles is 500 square miles.  Where the hell else are Hamas gonna be?

Cain

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #21 on: January 05, 2009, 04:06:08 pm »
Furthermore, Hamas are

a) a terrorist organization, and
b) armed to the teeth

If they want to hide a rocket launcher in your house, what you gonna do about it?  Whine to another group of armed thugs like Fatah?

Planeswalker

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #22 on: January 05, 2009, 04:06:38 pm »

And I think there is even some Israel & Gaza left on this map... nothing unites people like a brutal display of power followed by a big beach party.
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Cain

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2009, 03:12:26 pm »
Stephen Walt has a thought experiment here:

Quote
Here's a thought experiment:

Imagine that Egypt, Jordan, and Syria had won the Six Day War, leading to a massive exodus of Jews from the territory of Israel. Imagine that the victorious Arab states had eventually decided to permit the Palestinians to establish a state of their own on the territory of the former Jewish state. (That's unlikely, of course, but this is a thought experiment). Imagine that a million or so Jews had ended up as stateless refugees confined to that narrow enclave known as the Gaza Strip. Then imagine that a group of hardline Orthodox Jews took over control of that territory and organized a resistance movement. They also steadfastly refused to recognize the new Palestinian state, arguing that its creation was illegal and that their expulsion from Israel was unjust. Imagine that they obtained backing from sympathizers around the world and that they began to smuggle weapons into the territory. Then imagine that they started firing at Palestinian towns and villages and refused to stop despite continued reprisals and civilian casualties.

Here's the question: would the United States be denouncing those Jews in Gaza as "terrorists" and encouraging the Palestinian state to use overwhelming force against them?

Here's another: would the United States have even allowed such a situation to arise and persist in the first place?

LMNO

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #24 on: January 06, 2009, 03:21:51 pm »
Is there a linkify thinging to this?

Cain

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #25 on: January 06, 2009, 03:27:49 pm »

LMNO

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #26 on: January 06, 2009, 03:36:30 pm »
Grazie.

the last yatto

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #27 on: January 07, 2009, 11:37:53 am »
any bets if it will be all solved by easter or  :?
Look, asshole:  Your 'incomprehensible' act, your word-salad, your pinealism...It BORES ME.  I've been incomprehensible for so long, I TEACH IT TO MBA CANDIDATES.  So if you simply MUST talk about your pineal gland or happy children dancing in the wildflowers, go talk to Roger, because he digs that kind of shit

Cain

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #28 on: January 07, 2009, 11:42:59 am »
 :lol:

Isn't the current thinking that this is an election ploy, and pretty blatant one?  It might be that when Likud and its allies are secure in their victory, the operations in Gaza will mysteriously be phased back.

Not that I am suggesting politicians would ever politicize security issues for electoral gain.

Cain

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Re: Israeli ground forces to enter Gaza
« Reply #29 on: January 07, 2009, 06:08:20 pm »
http://walt.foreignpolicy.com/node/14926

Walt has a better thought experiment up.

Quote
Several readers took issue with my "thought experiment" asking how the United States would have reacted if the Arabs had won the Six Day War and if Israeli Jews had faced similar conditions to the Palestinians in Gaza and had responded in a similar fashion.

It's a thought experiment, folks, not history, and my aim was to challenge the moral certainties and tribal loyalties that normally dominate debates on the whole Israeli-Palestinian morass. Obviously, it's child's play to identify differences between the hypothetical that I sketched and the way history actually turned out, though I didn't see how any of the ones raised in the comments invalidated my basic point. But it is hardly far-fetched (let alone anti-Semitic) to imagine Jews engaging in acts of resistance against an oppressor. That's what I would expect any group to do, regardless of their ethnic or religious background. It is precisely what the Zionists did against the British during the Mandate period, and it was Irgun leader (and later Prime Minister) Yitzhak Shamir who wrote that "neither Jewish ethics nor Jewish tradition can disqualify terrorism as a means of combat." 

But if you don't like that "thought experiment," here's another, offered by philosophy professor Joseph Levine at University of Massachusetts: what if Hamas was hiding out among the civilian population of Tel Aviv, and attacking Israel from within? Would the IDF be using massive force to eradicate them? Unless you think that Palestinian and Israeli civilian lives are not equal, what justifies the current policy?

Israel is hardly unique in placing a higher value on its own citizens' lives than it places on the lives of others, and we should not forget that U.S. forces have caused plenty of civilian casualties in places like Iraq and Afghanistan. "The strong do what they can, and the weak suffer what they must." But that doesn't make it right, and there are good reasons to question whether it will even be effective in this instance.