- Feb 15, 2006
I kinda lost you the moment you depicted Hizballah as a defensive organization. While it might have been true in the past, it should have been dismantled or at least disarmed when Israel left South Lebanon 2000. It's not unlike the Taliban today, radical rogue Muslims who are heavily armed and have their own political agenda.-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I somewhat disagree on a number of points.
1. Its all well and fine to wish a plague on both houses, but the point being, its beyond stupid to pretend either group will cease to exist, and maybe even more absurd to pretend to the Israeli or Hezbollah goal is to exterminate each other.
2. The current reality is that Hezbollah is the first near Israeli near neighbor to achieve limited self defense capabilities against Israeli aggression. And by limited, I mean on the ground, total Israeli hegemony still exists from the air. But the point being, a decade ago, one Israeli tank could go from the Southern Border of Lebanon to to its Northern border without meeting any significant opposition. Not only is that no longer true, what is true is that Hezbollah still has zero defense against the Israeli air force.
While the Israeli air force can't be effective in breaking Hezbollah ground based self defense capability.
3. Its now time to revive the ghost of the still not debunked Seymour Hersch contention, namely that the 2005 Israeli incursion into Lebanon was a Dick Cheney based brainfart based on three things. (1) An incident was needed to justify it, the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier would do, but there were no shortage of such incidents on all sides so why should that one incident justify it all? The other point being, Israeli armor was pre put in place a waiting any incident and ready to go at an instants notice. (2) Dick Cheney regarded it as a dress rehearsal for a US invasion of Iran, the terrain was similar and if Israeli tanks could sweep all opposition aside, surely more US tanks could do the same in Iran. (3) Given the then minority popularity of Hezbollah in Lebanon, at that time 25%, Israel would be seen as liberators by the Lebanese people. With the same effect hoped for by Cheney in Iran. ( As we now know it was an epic fail for Cheney on all fronts, Israeli armor became quickly got bogged down as Israel got the shit shocked out of them when they started losing state of the arts tanks. Cheney found the liberator assumption an epic fail as Lebanese popular support of Hezbollah soared to 75%, and even higher than that in the Arab world because they became the shining example. And therefore Iranians would rally around their government also. As a result, Cheney lost face and the US never tried to invade Iran.
4. But as pointed out, Hezbollah learned its lesson too as Israel raped all of Lebanon from the air. And as a result over Hezbollah underestimating the Israeli response, they no longer attack Israel as a maybe desirable balance of power is established. It still does not stop both sides from continuing to build up offensive and defensive capacity, but it does result in desired non aggression.
5. In short, to call this entire thread thesis FOS, Hezbollah is now the least of Israeli worries. And instead, its going to be the rest of the Arab world aping the Hezbollah example that should be the Israeli worry. As we see in the recent Israeli incursion into Gaza, the arms capacity build up has not yet extended into Gaza. But in the fullness of time it likely will. We already know the Gaza borders leak like a sieve, the same will be likely true West Bank, and doubly so if Farah gets the ole heave ho for making no progress as a reward for being Uncle Tom's.
6. In short things do not happen fast in the Mid-east, but the 2005 Israeli incursion into is still a mile stone. What worked for Israel for the first 57 years may be an epic fail in future.
That itself amazes me, the fact you think Hizballah has the legitimacy to attack Israeli soldiers on Israeli land and not be punished.(1) An incident was needed to justify it, the kidnapping of an Israeli soldier would do, but there were no shortage of such incidents on all sides so why should that one incident justify it all?
The war of 2006 was a rehearsal for the IDF on how to deal with a terrorist organization, as evident in the success of Cast Lead operation and minimal IDF losses. I'm sure the next time would be better for Israel (new active defenses for the armory should be interesting to watch). The only thing Israel did bad in 2006 was not starting with a full scale operation before it did.