BLOG 215 August 25, 2014
The Israeli-Hamas conflict is winding down and we’re talking about the next war? Sounds like media commentators in America speculating about the next presidential election two days after the last election was over. Unfortunately, that’s the way things go in the Middle East.
Both sides are aware that the current conflict will eventually end but the war is not over. The mindless resistance of Hamas continues even though their leadership, rocket launchers, and attack tunnels are being pounded into oblivion. Nevertheless, Israel is already hard at work accessing the conflict and its meaning for the next round.
Here are some of the implications we can ponder.
- America came out of this conflict looking even worse than previously viewed by the Israeli population. President Obama and Secretary of Defense Kerry tried to lean on Prime Minister Netanyahu to stop fighting. The implication was that the USA was siding with Hamas. Once again, America failed to grasp the nature of the conflict until it was nearly over. Trying to reverse themselves, American advisers disclaimed the Obama – Netanyahu conversations. Sorry. The damage was done and America is even distrusted more now. In the next conflict, American advice will mean even less.
America must come to understand that economic pressure is not the issue. Hamas has one primary goal –to destroy Israel. Failure to get this point reduces US negotiating to nothing.
- If the West backs away from Israel, they will develop new relationships with countries like China, India, Korea, and Russia as well as Japan. Israel will not remain isolated. The West had best pay attention to this fact about their most reliable Allie in the region.
- Hamas will claim a victory in the war because their political leaders were not killed. They will also think that without their strong resistence the IDF (Israeli Defense Force) would have penetrated more deeply into the Gaza area. Well, forget that. When the Palestinians figure out the scope of their losses because of Hamas’ strategy, the Hamas propaganda link will sink.
However, expect the propaganda to continue.
4.The current cost to Hamas is great. Israel will not be making any concessions at the bargaining table. The war started with Israel defending itself then two goal evolved: destroying terrorist tunnels and demilitarizing Gaza. Hamas is not going to agree, but their back is to the wall. The point is that attacking Israel hasn’t proved to be a good idea.
- Hezbollah is watching. Israel knows the next war may well be with this terrorist organization based in Lebanon. Supposedly, Hezbollah was disarmed after the 2006 war with Israel and left with only 6,000 to 12,000 rockets. That idea was a colossal failure. Today it is estimated they have at least 60,000 rockets and maybe double that number. Intelligence sources indicate they are also developing drones with long range capacity. It doesn’t take an Einstein to figure out the implications of their stockpile of weapons.
The West has believed that co-existence is possible. In the Middle East, no one believes this idea to be true. Since Israel has been the main stay of American foreign policy, the next president (whoever that might be) better wake up to how the game is played. Failure to do so will seriously injure America as a real player in a deadly game.