[Marxism] Juan Cole on Israeli military performance

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Tue Jul 25 12:12:19 MDT 2006


(Go to http://www.juancole.com/ for embedded links below.)

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Problems with Israeli Military Performance

If you read Reuven Pedatzur's article in Haaretz attentively, you will see 
that he is indicting the Israeli armed forces as incompetent and also will 
detect that he is extremely alarmed. Despite his confidence, expressed at 
the outset, that Israeli military mistakes (primarily grossly 
underestimating Hizbullah) will not affect the course of the war, he admits 
that it will cast a shadow over its public reception. I don't think we can 
rule out an impact on the course of the war yet.

Wire services report

     ' Israeli Armed Forces effectives returning from the Lebanon's front, 
say they are facing an intelligent, well prepared and ruthless guerrilla. 
The soldiers describe Hezbollah guerrillas hide between civilians and in 
underground bunkers that are two or three stories deep, evidence that this 
has been prepared for years. They are hard to beat and show no fear of 
dying, expressed an Israeli soldier. '

The Israelis are finding that the Hizbullah guerrillas have excellent 
intelligence on Israeli weaponry, and that they are capable of fighting 
orderly tactical battles from buildings with machine guns and 
rocket-propelled grenades. In other words, they are not facing the militia 
of tobacco share croppers. They are facing a highly professional military 
force, perhaps the most professional in the region aside from Israel's own.

The Israeli military is rapidly scaling back its military goals, since the 
ones initially announced with such confidence (pushing Hizbullah back 35 
miles and completely destroying its missile arsenal) are obviously pie in 
the sky. The Israelis are stumbling around so badly that yesterday they 
lost a helicopter and killed 6 of their own men (it could have been much 
worse).

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