Friday, April 24, 2009

IDF Animation Shows Hamas Tactics

Via Powerline comes this very effective vid released by the IDF, which visually summarizes the results of their investigations of "Operation Cast Lead" in Gaza earlier this year. Nothing especially new to those who have even a passing familiarity with Hamas' penchant for placing their civilian populations in the path of any reprisals for their casual atrocities. Still, the vid does a good job of depicting the chillingly systematic calculations whereby Hamas uses the deaths of innocents to deflect their own guilt. Seen in their broader context, it is difficult to conceive of those who engage in these tactics as anything even remotely resembling a legitimate authority or a realistic "partner in peace."

Think about this the next time the IDF is blamed for an exploding apartment complex or Mosque, or that Israeli Intransigence is blamed for the lack of progress toward the eternally-receding "Two State Solution."


Mike said...

Hi 'Cyte,

If this is an attempt to discuss something a little less inflammatory and find some common ground, it is much appreciated. If not, it works well anyway :).

One more thing about your previous post: I find that you follow the Republican party line on everything but Abortion and Gay rights (thank god for that). I really hope my last response helps you add an item to that list.

OK, back to Israel/Hamas. We agree about the proposition that Hamas is about the lowest form of life on the planet. There is nothing bad you can say about them with which I disagree, and I am confident the reverse is true.

What confuses me about your position as I understand it, though, is what exactly you feel should be done about them. What do you think Israel should do? What do you think the U.S. should do?

I have no realistic answers to these questions and strongly suspect these people's descendants will be killing each other long after we are both dead. But you're big on nation building, so I'd like to hear your take on this.

Noocyte said...

What confuses me about your position as I understand it, though, is what exactly you feel should be done about them. What do you think Israel should do? What do you think the U.S. should do?It may surprise you to hear that I don't think the US should do much of anything at all in this case, besides backing Israel's play. Israel is a liberal democratic State, which comports itself in a civilized manner (for the most part) in the realm of international affairs. It is a Core country, in other words. As such, it would be inappropriate for the US to blunder in and presume to make policy for Israel.

As for what Israel should do, this is a rather more thorny matter, for which I have no simple answers since, as you point out, these are very long-standing enmities, the matter of manymanymany generations. Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah faction in the West Bank has shown itself to be at least marginally able to manage its population, and to stumble along in a manner which suggests that it may someday be able to fashion a State (setting the bar pretty low, I'll grant, but with this bunch, you gotta adjust your expectations!).

Hamas in Gaza, by sharp contrast, is a band of bloodthirsty brigands, seemingly incapable of tending to its people's needs in even the most rudimentary fashion. Worse, they cultivate the cult of victimhood and direct their rage toward Israel in a way which shows not the slightest indication of being amenable to reason.

In the case of the West Bank, the best policy seems to be one of careful engagement, rewarding good behavior with aid and trade and diplomatic overtures. Over time, there might be something there...

For Gaza, I'm for completing the fence, interdicting smuggling, occasionally culling the most virulent of the violence, and letting the misery take its course (as much as my heart bleeds for the innocents who will suffer until and unless the "Palestinians" have their moment of clarity). It burns my breeches to say this, but there simply is no intervention which currently shows any hope of resulting in positive change until and unless Hamas is ousted, and/or renounces its foundational goal of exterminating the "Zionist Entity." Hope you have a good humidor for those cigars.

Much of this ultimately rests on the international response to Iran, which is the chief "benefactor" of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and the rest of the rogues' gallery in the region.

Perhaps if Obama shakes the right hands...

Mike said...

OK, we are basically on the same page here. There are probably some differences in detail that bears discussion, but it brings up a potentially more important question: How is Iraq different from Palestine/Israel? Is it the size? The oil? What?

Noocyte said...

How is Iraq different from Palestine/Israel? Is it the size? The oil? What?In very brief (about the best I look to be able to muster this week; overtaxed Life-RAM):

Although supported by a regional actor with broader ambitions (Iran), the Usual Suspects in the Levant pretty much have their sights fixed on the singular, idiosyncratic goal of eradicating Israel. Given numerous examples from recent and ancient history, it is not unreasonable to suppose that if --the gods forfend-- they should succeed in their proximate goal, they would not rest easy on the shores of the Med and cease all militant missionary activities. But for now, their goals and reach and military capabilities are essentially local, with Israel an able counterweight on site.

Saddam's Iraq was avowedly expansionistic right from the get-go (Saddam being a loose adherent of the Nassrite Pan-Arabic model of Baathist socialism). While never a match for the US military, it was a very formidable regional player, threatening political and economic stability in a way that had global implications, from the attempted overthrow of Iran in its infancy, to the later, ill-fated bid for Kuwait (and clearly for Saudi Arabia thereafter). Further, by providing bounties for dead Jews ('prox $25K to surviving family members of Hamas suicide bombers [, it should be noted...], etc.), and offering shelter to the likes of Abu Nidal...not to mention repeated overtures to al Qaeda (which were not comprehensively rebuffed...), Iraq showed a dangerous willingness to become a player in the Islamists' designs, as well as a well-documented interest in cultivating global reach through its contacts in that world. Add to this, the very credible, nearly universally-accepted accounts of its possession of (and history of using) non-conventional weapons, and you have a scenario which could not be more different (and more menacing) than that currently present in Gaza.

Very different pictures, calling for very different postures, particularly in the months and years immediately following 9/11.