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31 July 2015


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Swami Bhut Jolokia

Questions about the success rate of Iron Dome bring to mind the tests we did on some missile defense system here in the US a few years ago. The details are hazy to me (but I'm sure others here are familiar with them) but I vaguely recollect that even when the path, trajectory and speed of the dummy target were provided to the missile defense operators, they were not able to hit it.

It ain't easy, people. Not for nothing is it called rocket science.

William R. Cumming

Has the US IC ever completed an NIE on Israeli risks and vulnerabilities to its enemies and related threats to US?


Any comments re whether Hizbullah is being worn down, somewhat/alot in Syria? Or being 'harden/gaining experience there? I opt for a bit of both...but personally, I doubt they are as strong as they were the day before they made the decision to enter the Syrian conflict.


SBJ, and that is why there is so much emphasis on directed energy weapons and rail guns. We are learning to build them to fire many rounds (or shots) per minute and that is needed.

The problem with rocket powered interceptors is that they are big and, on a per round basis, expensive. When you can shoot a relatively dumb round at a fixed target and can shoot many of them at the same time and the defense has expensive and therefore limited numbers of interceptors, you get Hamas vs Iron Dome.


Has Israel ever considered that it might be a better idea to make friends instead of provoke another war?



Much, much more importantly you get Israel vs. Hizbullah. pl


Agree, Pat.


Dr. Postol blew the pixie dust decorating the purported effectiveness of Patriot during Desert Storm. Had to check wikipedia to make sure my memory was right. Here's the link. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIM-104_Patriot#Success_rate_vs._accuracy. For his troubles, his integrity and patriotism (pun intended)were questioned. Looks like he's still doing good work. Carry on, doc!


In a cone of silence, when do tactical nukes become the better way to avoid your army humiliated by getting kicked out of Lebanon again? Which of course you are forced to do as it is an existential conundrum, most moral course for the most moral forces, et alia.

Babak Makkinejad

That would be the last act of State of Israel.


I wonder how hard Hizbullah has to work to maintain their operational security given the high probability that the entire Christian and Druze population and most, if not all, of the Sunnis are more than happy to collaborate with the Israelis against them. Not to mention the stay behinds entrnched from their long occupation.

If they have managed to maintain security it speaks loads for commitment and esprit de corps, I should think.


This finally makes sense to me why Israel and USA are so against Assad in Syria, and why they would risk helping Sunni extremists..its because Israel/USA fear Hezbollah more than the Sunni extremists...and are actually trying to use the Sunni extremists to defeat Hezbollah (and Hezbollah sources of support Syria and Iran)....and I guess Israel/USA believe that they can eventually manage/defeat Sunni extremists if they ever get in power in Syria...seems risky.

Thanks PL, once again, for helping me understand just what is going on over there....



I cannot help but say that US policy in the ME remains in thrall to Zionism, that and the idiocy of the larger Borg. I applaud the Goat Boy Messiah's fitful attempts to free us but alas, it has been in vain. The absurdity of our hostility to Hizbullah and the Syrian government is beyond belief and in no way reflects US interests. With Mr. Jefferson I fear that God is just. pl



It is not difficult. They trust no one other than their own. I habituated Shia social centers in south Beirut, have played many games of Tawla there with pictures of Shia divines staring down at us. They never pretended to trust me. I was grateful for that. They were interested that I was a knight of the Holy Sepulchre. They always talked of it. pl


I agree with Pat - Israel faces a formidable enemy in Hezballah. My nephew, a Golani captain, still talks about the harrowing time at Maroun al-Ras during the second Lebanon war. He said that Israeli "intelligence" estimated 3 Hezballah fighters in the area and it would be easy for Israel to capture the strategic point. Instead they ran into fortified positions, anti-tank missles and enough fighters to repel the Israelis. My nephew hopes to be out of the IDF before they ever go back into Lebanon.

It is pretty common knowledge in Israeli military circles that Israel really has no effective way of combating Hezballah's tens of thousands of missiles. Their strategy is simply to carpet bomb Shia civilian areas in hopes of putting political pressure on Hezballah to stop quickly. Another relative is an F-16 jockey and confirmed that Israeli "intelligence" is terrible when it comes to Hezballah positions and strength. During the second Lebanon war he said he bombed many an empty field that were supposed to contain Hezballah bunkers.

Babak Makkinejad

As well as French policy - for all appearances...



SWMBO says that only Jewish Americans who love the US more than they fear the goyim can free us. I agree. pl


This assumes the other side doesn't get rail guns. If you have a rail gun you don't need expensive rockets. I doubt Hamas will get rail guns anytime soon but i'm not so sure about Hezbollah. I think there would only be a few years between an operational Israeli defense and an operational offensive hezbollah

William R. Cumming

Any good links to history of rail guns?

William R. Cumming

P.L. and ALL: Is the study of Israel in any way officially off limits to the IC?



No. pl



Policy makers pretty much always think they are smarter and better informed than the intelligence people. They think that if the intelligence people were smart they would be policy people. So, it really doesn't matter if the IC studies Israel. The policy people will act on their own wonderful opinions anyway. pl


According to this:
Iron Dome only intercepted about 27% of 180 rockets that were fired (2014). The remaining 70+% resulted in zero deaths.


slightly OT: Why it is important to never allow unrestricted no-passport travel w/Israel: "Alleged leader of Israeli organized crime ring gets 32 years": Drug lord here in San Fernando Valley of L.A., running massive international smuggling organization linked to Israel-based Abergil crime family, finally brought down by FBI/DEA: http://news.yahoo.com/alleged-leader-israeli-organized-crime-ring-gets-32-175519975.html

makes one wonder about Israeli international arms smuggling, which has not been heard much of recently.


The IAF's most likely course of action in the context of another Israel/Hizbullah war will be to ravage the whole country in the hope of intimidating Hizbullah into a de facto cease fire

This is reminiscent of the way the Germans attempted to deal with partisan attacks in the Balkans during WWII: hang a dozen civilians, taken at random, for every serviceman killed. The Lebanese people will suffer terribly. On the other hand, the world will be rid forever of the abscess of mass theft and genocide currently styling itself "Israel".

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