Eretz Yisrael Time

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Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Dan Halutz the current IDF Chief of Staff opposes reoccupying Gaza. In his words, "We were in Gaza for 38 years. In all the years of fighting in Gaza, we never managed to cut the number of Qassams to zero."

He mentions that there are those in the Defense Establishment that are saying we need to reenter Gaza, but says they don’t understand the price it will entail. He feels we can safely (and effectively) hit them from a distance if we wanted to.

He says that no one has been killed since we left Gaza as opposed to dozens each year before that.

If there were ever an example needed as to why an Air Force man should not be put in charge of an army, much less ground troops – Dan Halutz is it. (At least there are still some people in the Defense Establishment that still have a head on their shoulders even if they are currently suppressed.)

If the IDF had run a mission in Gaza like we did in Jenin and do in Shechem, and this time also used to Air Force for support (which we didn’t do in Jenin) then there would have been no Kassams for all
those years, just like there are currently very few (few, not zero) missiles or mortars are being launched out of Judea & Samaria.

Unfortunately, the IDF actually never ran a Jenin-like cleanup operation in Gaza (and I also mean even right before the disengagement), so it is difficult to accept Halutz’s excuse.

As a stereotypical Air Force man, Halutz overestimates the Air Force’s capabilities in long-term strategic matters (as opposed to short-term strategic & tactical strikes, and support), and underestimates the strategic use of ground troops. No surprises there. That was also a concern before he was appointed.

Halutz also overestimates the infrastructure needs of his enemy.

The Palestinians have proven that they can suffer financial and infrastructure losses that far outweigh our own capability to suffer similar losses, but Halutz simply hasn’t ingrained that he isn’t fighting a modern country, but a barbaric backwater that doesn’t rely on their infrastructure anywhere near what we do.

Remotely hitting ‘hard and soft targets’ like he wants will simply spur on their desire to hit us even more, but not cause them irreversible damage. Besides which, as we all know our hands our tied (or we tied them ourselves) so we won’t really hit the targets that we need to.

As for the price he mentioned, there are two prices he can be talking about: soldier’s lives or the political price.

Once a Katyusha hits a power plant fuel tank (and a third of the country loses electricity) or worse, a full kindergarten, no one is going to be asking about the cost of soldier’s lives. They may ask for a commission of inquiry to discuss why soldiers weren’t deployed in the first place to prevent that.

As for the political price, everyone already knows that disengagement failed, but sending ground troops back in is a public admission of failure.

It’s funny how the Left are always happy to declare that the settlements are outside the boundaries of the State of Israel, and are always worried about the poor settlers lives. Yet for years the security forces reacted to attacks far differently when they hit settlements than when they hit pre-67 sites.

Halutz basically claims that leaving settlements will save dozens of lives each year.

Yet maybe, just maybe, if the IDF had been told to react even once to a serious settlement attack (or after 5000 kassams) like it would have reacted to a Netanya attack, dozens of people wouldn’t have died every year. But no, it didn’t.

Before disengagement, pre-67 sites in the south were hardly ever hit by Kassams. Now they are daily fodder. It is only a matter of time before the numbers start to ring up.

Why reach that state?

It’s because Halutz doesn’t feel he has the moral right to attack because the PA isn't declared an enemy (sic)!

In Lebanon, Hizbollah continues to show that they and they alone hold the cards. When they want to escalate, they escalate and all the North goes to hide in shelters. When they want it quiet, the Israelis come out of the holes. They want to kidnap soldiers? They’ve done that.

Most people forget that the majority of deaths in Lebanon over the past few years were due to accidents (helicopters, electric wires, etc.) and not attacks (the largest was the Shayetet blunder).

But all that ignores that the political situation in Gaza is not the same at all as it is in Lebanon. Hizbollah is a proxy for Syria and Iran, and are utilized that way. While Caroline Glick believes that Gaza is becoming a proxy for Al-Qaida, for the moment it is still independent with its own goals.

Regardless, it is only a matter of time before the Katyushas and Kassams reach Tel Aviv and Gush Dan becomes like the North and Sderot.

But why reach that state when we can stop it now?

Halutz’s explains it with this unbelievable line, “I don't think that Hamas came into power because of the disengagement.”

This man has his head in the clouds.


Anonymous said...

clouds!? the man has his head up his a**.

Rafael V. Rabinovich said...

Chalutz, IMHO, has got a point. We should not "re-occupy Gaza", we must, once and for all, LIBERATE the corner of Eretz Yisrael where Yitzchak Avinu spent more of his live than anywhere else.
To that, a new disengagement and a new expulsion is due:
Have Hamas/PLO/Ahmed-Watchamacallit disengage from the region, and the unlawfull Arab foreigner expell from that occupied Jewish land.
Otherwise, "occupying" the land as though it didn't belong to us will never work.

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