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27 July 2006

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Babak Makkinejad

This explains their lack of discipline and propensity to committing war crimes casually.

McGee

Colonel,

Off-topic, but regarding your query half-way up the thread about the Romanian literary personality whom Bad-Tux's comments brought to mind: Andrei Codrescu?

W. Patrick Lang

McGee

Yes!! pl

b

Interesting Haaretz comment that points to the oversized role of the IDF in policy making:
Prisoners to the generals

And this is precisely the difference between us and the others: While in all other democracies, a certain dependency of policy-makers on generals is apparent, together with attempts to reduce it, in Israel, the case is not only one of dependency but the fact that our policy-makers are held captive by the generals.

The security policy-making process is in fact the domain of the Israel Defense Forces and the defense establishment. In the absence of non-IDF national security planning bodies, the major part of the planning - not only operational and tactical planning but also strategic and political planning - is done within the army.

The result is that military considerations have often become more dominant than political ones. Thus, Israel's foreign policies have come to be based on an essentially belligerent perception that favors military considerations over diplomatic ones. Violence is seen not only as a legitimate instrument in international affairs, but almost as the only means that can bring positive results.

As a result, the chief of staff in Israel is afforded power that exceeds that of his counterparts in other Western armies. He is the one to decide on the policy recommendations that will be presented to the prime minister and his ministers. This, of course, gives him great political power.
...
I find it fitting to close with words written in the 1960s by Yigal Allon, one of Israel's few politicians who tried to both influence the shaping of the national security policy and to deal with defense issues with other than military means: "The need to defend the country against aggression, the military confrontations on the borders... the military achievements, the mass drills... all of these create an atmosphere that necessarily harbors acute social and moral dangers. The danger of the spreading of chauvinist and vulgar militarism is a real danger in Israel... The culture of arms bears with it the danger of losing social, moral and cultural values, to the point of the blurring of the nation's image as an enlightened society... This applies to all civilians and the youth, and also military personnel, who may be intoxicated by the very charm of involvement with arms."

pbrownlee

Anyone ever heard of anything like this before?

"The voice sounded friendly enough. 'Hi, my name is Danny. I'm an officer in Israeli military intelligence. In one hour we will blow up your house'.

"Mohammed Deeb took the telephone call seriously and told his family and neighbours to get out of the building. An hour later, an Israeli helicopter fired three missiles at the four-storey building in Gaza City, destroying the ground floor and damaging the upper storeys.

"Mr Deeb was on the receiving end of a new Israeli tactic of using telephone, radio and leaflets to warn Gazans of impending attacks. The army claims it is an attempt to minimise civilian casualties, but Palestinians say it is a new way of terrorising the population.

"Raji Serrani, the director of the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), which has collected several examples of the tactic, described it as 'psychological warfare', adding: 'Since when did Israel feel the need to warn people that they were about to bomb their homes? They are simply playing with people's minds and inflicting a new panic in Gaza.'

"The family of Ibrahim Mahmoud in the Bureij refugee camp in central Gaza were ordered to leave their home by an Israeli intelligence officer. The officer called back one hour later to say she had made a mistake. She ended her call to Mr Mahmoud by telling him to 'be safe', he told the Associated Press."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/print/0,,329540269-103552,00.html

What kind of weirdly lethal Alice in Wonderland world is this?

"Sorry - wrong number."

Question

There was talk about an international force today at the WH press conference with the Pres. Bush and PM Blair. This seems like a bad idea, especially if it involves Americans, but that's what some are saying. How can the US avoid being put into this spot. Does the President see the downside? The politics look grim.

billmon

"Halutz is probably no help in coming to grips with reality"

Well, it looks like Halutz finally cracked:

Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff, Lieutenant General Dan Halutz, underwent a series of tests at a Tel Aviv hospital on Friday after complaining of abdominal pain.

TV reports said the 58-year-old Halutz, who has been leading Israel's 17-day war against Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas, was also complaining of exhaustion.

Halutz: The nabobs. I hate them. How I hate them.

pbrownlee

Has Halutz had a touch of the squitters? I thought this sort of thing was always the deepest of deep secrets but I am obviously wrong:

"IDF chief Halutz released from hospital after undergoing tests

"Israel Defense Forces Chief of Staff, Lieutenant General Dan Halutz, underwent a series of tests at a Tel Aviv hospital on Friday after complaining of abdominal pain.

"The IDF chief was later declared healthy and allowed to go home, the army said.

"An IDF spokesman said Halutz had been taken to hospital with stomach pains and had undergone tests. He was released later on Friday after doctors found nothing wrong with him.

"There is nothing wrong with his health,' the spokesman said earlier.

TV reports said the 58-year-old Halutz, who has been leading Israel's 17-day war against Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas, was also complaining of exhaustion.

Officials at Tel Aviv's Ichilov Hospital said he was sent home after several hours with a recommdentation that he rest and eat properly. The military said Halutz was given a clean bill of health."

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/744013.html

So what exactly was the problem? Some kind of breakdown??

Helluva way to run a "war".

ali

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel_Defense_Forces
“A well-known Israeli joke refers to civilians as soldiers on 11-month furlough.”

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