Saturday, February 09, 2008

Israel continues not to defend its civilians

And the rockets just go on falling on Sderot. The kassams fall there day after day. Today it looks like an eight-year-old boy may have lost his legs from shrapnel. Just imagine this on one of our border towns. Meanwhile, the "Palestinians" in Gaza celebrate this successful attack.

HT Israel Matzav


William Luse said...

I don't understand. If you're attacked, you have a right to respond. Why aren't they doing it?

Lydia McGrew said...

I'd say it's because the only response likely to be effective is a major ground offensive to clear a DMZ big enough to make it harder to get the kassams over, which is a darned big DMZ. And the "Palestinians" have such a suicidal culture that they would make sure children were all mixed up with the combatants; in fact, they'd try as hard as they could to make children be combatants, as far as that is possible. They would do all they could to insure that there would be major civilian casualties if Israel undertook any major military response, send women running towards the soldiers and what-not, and then everyone would blame the Israelis. So the Israelis take out some people here or there just about to launch a rocket, they hit a nest of terrorists here and there, and they bombed an empty building, too, and that's about it. It's astonishingly ineffective. I gather kassam rockets can be launched from a launcher about the size of a coffee table that can be set up in moments, they're apparently not very expensive to make, easy to transport, so the palis can basically make life in Sderot totally disrupted--and have been doing so--at very little cost to themselves, knowing well that any effective response would be a public relations disaster for Israel.

It's a smart game, and the evil Gazans play it well and will continue to do so indefinitely.

I have read that the last major employer left Sderot recently as have many of its inhabitants. The mayor tried to quit but was personally asked by Ehud Barak to stay on, so now he feels he has to. But it's pretty much a matter of "last person out of Sderot, turn out the lights."

Lydia McGrew said...

I shd. add that in my tentative opinion, Israel's simply retaking the Gaza strip altogether would be not only the most effective but also the most humane option. Once they are in control of the Gaza strip militarily, they can stop the missiles directly and on the spot. This might also allow goods to pass more freely between Gaza and Israel itself, since more terrorists would be rounded up and their activities curtailed, which would be to the benefit of whatever innocent people there are in Gaza.

Unfortunately, the ground campaign to retake the Gaza strip would be prone to the problems I laid out in the previous comment.

William Luse said...


Yaacov said...

1. It is indeed depressing.
2. There are multiplying indications that Israel actually is gearing up for a major offensive. Olmert's trip to Germany today, according to this explanation, was part of the effort to secure the diplomatic flanks.
3. If and when, it will be fiendishly complicated.
4. The strategic goal, if and when, will be somehow to change the rules, somewhere along the lines of the success in beating the 2nd Intifada in 2002-2003. Except that this will be even more complex.
5. The long-term result will be another future round, on different terms, but perhaps a few years down the road.
6. Yep, it's still depressing. Tho the alternatives are worse.

Lydia McGrew said...

Thanks for stopping by, Yaacov!

I would think one of the complexifying factors is that Israel supposedly is no longer occupying Gaza, whereas in 2002, they weren't trying to leave particular areas "unoccupied" after responding to terrorism.

Btw, I just saw (on Dry Bones, actually) that apparently the UN still designates the Gaza strip as "occupied terroritory." Which is nuts. But they have to have _some_ way to blame the Israelis. But the way I look at it, if Israel is getting 0 credit from the world for not occupying Gaza anymore, and if that was one of the major points of the disengagement, and if it's turned out to be a disaster (at least for the people of Sderot, if nothing else), then they might as well reconsider the whole thing.