Posted on | November 18, 2012 | 10 Comments
Israeli air attacks now are, in the words of IDF Capt. Eytan Buchman, “part of our overarching goal of toppling Hama’s command and control capabilities.” That is to say, degrading the organizational infrastructure, which would hinder a concerted resistance to an Israel invasion on the ground in Gaza. The IDF has mobilized reserves and is clearly prepared to make such an invasion, but U.S. officials are worried:
The Obama administration is increasingly concerned about the escalating violence in Gaza, believing that a ground incursion by Israel there could lead to increased civilian casualties, play into the hands of the militant Palestinian group Hamas and inflict further damage to Israel’s standing in the region at an already tumultuous time.
Though President Obama uttered immediate and firm public and private assurances that Israel has a right to defend itself from rocket attacks emanating from Gaza, administration officials have been privately urging Israeli officials not to extend the conflict, a move that many American officials believe could benefit Hamas.
Frankly, I doubt Bibi Netanyahu will let his military options be dictated by worry-warts in Washington — or London, for that matter. Melanie Phillips notes that British Foreign Secretary William Hague is making concern-troll noises about the “international support” Israel might lose if it sends troops into Gaza:
So according to these leaders, Israel absolutely has the right to defend itself — but not actually to take the action that will defeat its attackers! And just whose international support might Israel lose by such a casualty toll? Why, the support of leaders like Hague and Obama! What hypocrisy, furthermore, from those who have been bombing the living daylights out of Afghanistan but impose a totally different standard on Israel.
Western leaders who reserve to themselves the right to use military power as they see fit, evidently wish to apply a special standard to Israel, and if Netanyahu ignores them, perhaps it will disabuse Israel’s enemies of the idea that Israel is a tool of Western imperalism.
It was on the occasion of the three-week Israeli invasion of Gaza in January 2009 that I invoked Sonny Corleone’s famous warning to Carlo: “If you touch my sister again, I’ll kill you.”
Some people never learn . . .
UPDATE: In the aftermath of the 2009 Gaza War, the eminent hysteric Glenn Greenwald emitted some of his inimitable idiocy about “America’s ongoing, one-sided support for Israel generally and for Israel’s attack on Gaza specifically.” This prompted me to write one of the acknowledged classic entries in the category, “Gee, Stacy, Why Don’t You Tell Us What You Really Think?”
Swear to God, if they ever want a Gentile prime minister, my first order would be to deploy the IDF in a north-south line, facing east. My second order would be “forward march” and the order to halt would not be given until it was time for the troops to rinse their bayonets in the Jordan. After a brief rest halt, the order “about face” would be given, and the next halt would be at the Mediterranean coast.
That’s my “Middle East peace plan,” and until it’s carried out, there will be no peace.
That post inspired Andrew Sullivan to nominate me for a “Malkin Award” and, in the final voting, I placed second to Glenn Beck that year.