Tuesday, November 20, 2012
I was watching TV in Mike's Mansion with a brew in my hand and almost choked!
I thought to myself that watching anymore of these talking heads might just rob my dear readers of my "pearls of wisdom" (not to mention saving my wife years of my drooling on the couch pillows). Unfortunately, ITV channel 2 has nothing else on but Pillars of Cloud, the current Gaza operation, (nor do any of the other channel for that matter) and seeing that my only other choices were CNN or BBC I continued to watch the lesser of the evils.
So, the talking head invited Danny Yatom, former head of Israeli Intelligence, and asked him if it was possible to defeat a terrorist organization and Yatom went on to explain how. I will attempt to recall everything I heard but remember I was fighting for my life in the middle of a coughing fit so you may have to cut me some slack here. It goes something like this:
.....We first have to hit them hard and destroy as many of their launching sites and weapons stores as possible, (so far so good, even I, the ultimate armchair General, figured that one out a few years ago).
......Secondly we have to come to an agreement with Hamas through Egypt that they will desist from firing anymore rockets into Israel and refrain from any more terrorist activities against us. (yeh, right)
.....He goes on to say that we should then, over a period of time, lift the blockade on Gaza and start allowing them to export and import their own goods (does this mean importing rockets and exporting them airmail to Israel?).
......The imports would be monitored, of course, by a neutral third party so that no military hardware would enter Gaza.
It was at this point, dear readers, I had my near death experience so the rest of the interview was lost to me but up to this moment it was enough.
Danny Yatom is an experienced Intelligence officer and I give him a lot of credit for that, but that's as far as I can go. How on G-d's green earth could such a naive man become an Intelligence officer (an obvious oxymoron here).
His first point was OK, normal military strategy, in his second point he starts losing it. To use Egypt as a guarantor for the cease fire agreement with Hamas is like putting a pedophile in charge of a nursery school. Hamas has become part and parcel of the Muslim Brotherhood and I'll give you one guess where the Egyptian alliance lies nowadays.
The point about lifting the blockade could only have been thought of by a blockhead.
At this very moment a shipload of rockets are on their way up the Red Sea towards the Suez canal having left Bandar Abbas on Nov. 18 according to DebkaFile. Now this ship has three choices:
a) to meet a few fishing boats in the Red Sea, transfer the rockets to them so that they can put into a Sinai port to transfer the rockets overland and through the tunnels between Egypt and Gaza,
b) put into a port on the Sudanese coast and transport the rockets overland to Gaza,
c) to go through the Suez Canal (with Egyptian permission, of course) and offload at the Egyptian port of El Arish in the Sinai Peninsula and thus overland to Gaza. Now where does this leave Egypt considering point two above?
Now we get to the point where I was miraculously saved from a horrible fate.
Monitoring third party, I wonder where Danny Yatom was after the last Lebanese war when the UN passed a resolution (1710 I think it was....it's here you have to cut me some slack the exact res. number eludes me). The UN was given the responsibility to monitor Southern Lebanon to prevent arms entering a buffer zone between Israel and Hezbollah who control southern Lebanon. Needless to say, they failed miserably. That area has become, probably, the most armed area in the ME with stores of thousands of medium and long range rockets supplied by Iran. If things get any worse in this area we will be seeing the influx of Syrian chemical weapons. This, of course is a worst case scenario but highly likely.
Now, at this stage of the conversation of talking heads there was a sudden ray of hope. A member of the panel was Naftali Bennet a new-comer on the Israeli political field. He has just won the primaries for the largest religious-zionist party in Israel and will be elected to the Knesset in the next elections. Here is a man who served in one of Israels elite army units and the youngest Party leader in Israel who took Yatom to task. Bennet's solution is so much like mine that he could have stolen it from me (he didn't of course because I haven't met the man, yet). His solution is to escalate the current action in Gaza to include ground troops to make sure that Hamas won't have not only ammunition but soldiers as well. Without weeding out some of the Hamas ground troops we will have done nothing but delay the next rocket attack. This was the objective of the last Gaza operation (remember Cast Lead?) but we were prevented from finishing it because of US and EU pressure.
Unfortunately this will happen again. Israel hasn't been allowed to finish a war since the State was declared in 1948. We have always been forced into a cease fire as soon as the tables have turned in our favor. Nothing is said to the aggressors until they start losing and so it has been in this action too. How many of you have heard that there are more than 150 people killed every day in Syria, very few I imagine, but you certainly heard about the killing of the Hamas chief-of-staff by Israeli forces. Everyone complained about that crime, even Syria, Now that's what we jews call huzpa.
So, I'll stick with Naftali Bennet and let Danny Yatom sink back into Lala land and keep smoking whatever it is to keep him in nirvana. We have to get in to Gaza, kick their rear ends so hard that they'll have to open their fly to blow their noses and create a buffer zone between them and Israel and them and Egypt so that we can police whatever it is they want to smuggle in.
Now all we have to do is to see what Netanyahu is made of....will he or won't he?
Posted by Mike Packer at 7:00 PM