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#1 "Now, war is too important to be left to the politicians. They have neither the time, the training, nor the inclination for strategic thought."
Posted by Col. Jack Ripper 2009-01-28 10:42||
#2 I think the operation was at the point that the IDF couldn't do any more damage to Hamas without inflicting huge numbers of civilian casualties. While that is Ok with Rantburgers, the rest of the world might actually take action against Israel.
Hamas was hurt, most of the equipment was destroyed and most objectives were accomplished. Hamas had gone to ground by that time and the ones that were left were dispersed in civilian areas dressed as civilians.
Not much else the IDF could do without leveling Gaza.
Politically, I think they called it off at the right time with the note that ANY rocket or mortar fired from Gaza will bring immediate pain. The added threats to Syria were a nice touch. The Arabs have been put on notice that Israel is done playing tit-for-tat and being a punching bag. They are ready to do the punching now.
Posted by DarthVader 2009-01-28 10:47||
#3 I think that destroying the remaining tunnels would have been useful, relatively easy, and doable without large-scale civilian collateral damage.
Posted by Thing From Snowy Mountain 2009-01-28 11:35||
#4 Inflicting huge numbers of civilian casualties is NOT ok with this Rantburger.
But let's be clear: when a civilian population actively aids, abets and supports their fighters, then they suffer along with their fighters. The people of Gaza overwhelmingly support Hamas. They elected Hamas to be their leaders, they provide men, money and sustenance to their military, they allow their land and buildings, even expressly civilian buildings like schools and hospitals, to be used by Hamas for military purposes, and they stand by Hamas even after Hamas has been flattened.
Well fine. As an American I'd stand by my military if it got whacked in a war.
But I'd also expect our enemy to have a less than completely charitable view of my conduct in that regard.
I don't support expressly targeting civilians. But Hamas and the Gazans want to be a country and to be recognized as such by the rest of the world. They've complained that the world won't recognize the election of Hamas, etc. Fine -- you want the rights and privileges of being a country, you get the responsibilities that go with it.
And one of those responsibilities is, you share in the pain and misery that your government and military create.
Hamas gunnies and hard boyz challenged the Israelis. They fired mortars and rockets at expressly civilian targets in Israel (world opinion, please note, didn't much care). They drew a line in the sand and the Israelis stepped across and whacked them. That's what happens when a government and a military start a war, and then lose it.
The world didn't much care about German civilians on May 8, 1945. The message was simple then: start a war, live with the consequences.
The Israelis, to their great credit, took substantial measures to avoid killing civilians. But the Arab world is indeed on notice: start a war, live with the consequences. And next time, that might include a lot less care to avoid civilian casualties. I'm not sure the Gazans got the message. It's hard for me to care.
Posted by Steve White 2009-01-28 11:41||
#5 Might be more to the IDF strategy than meets the eye. IED's and things of that nature need a degree of attention when by-passed or while not in use.
Posted by Besoeker 2009-01-28 12:17||
#6 Let's remember a few dispositions of the Geneva convention:
1) Reciprocity: If you target enemey's civilians (eg Coventry, Sderot) your own civilians become a target. And there is no such thing as reuirement of proportionality: if it had been applied and given that in 1944 Germany was unable to do more than very small scales bombings on the United Kingdom and none on America it would have been impossible to bomb it and soften it before D-DAY.
Second: Nobody told that you have to smile and to allow the enemy to shoot you at leisure (and still less give him time for killing your civilians) becuase he is hiding behind his own civilians. What the Genava Conventions say is that you are allowed to say "Sorry", use all your might and after the combat sort civilians from bad guys, heal the former and shoot the later. These makes war crimes not pay and goes a long way for reducing their number.
3) You are a civilian as long as you try to stay away from combat. If you shoot (obvious), act as an oberver for artillery or air strikes, spy or purposefully stay in the area in order to restrict the enemy from using its full firepower you are no longer entitled to the protection given to civilians.
Posted by GolfBravoUSMC 2009-01-28 12:40||
#8 steve it's alright with the majority of the rest of us because the civivlians are the ones who elected them into power and knew what their objectives where in the first place so that pretty much puts the in the same thought process or have the same agenda as Hamas does. tough shit they wanted it they got it
Posted by rabid whitetail 2009-01-28 12:45||
#9 The civilians are actively supporting, supplying and helping Hamas kill innocent Israelis. Therefore, they are targets as well and terrorists. That is more of what I was referring to as civilians being OK. Destroying the city of Cairo because they root for the other side, not OK.
The "civilians" of Gaza ceased to become non-combatants the day they elected Hamas and helped support them kill Israelis.
Posted by DarthVader 2009-01-28 13:01||
#10 I keep hearing that logistics is the most important factor in military success. Gazans are demonstrably the logistics arm of Hamas and therefore should be legitimate targets.
Posted by AlanC 2009-01-28 13:20||
#11 Also, the IDF got the opportunity to plant lots and lots of spies in the strip to pinpoint targets for the inevitable rematch.
Posted by mojo 2009-01-28 14:22||
#12 Another one who doesn't get the point---you can eliminate Hamas without a much broader elimination.
Posted by g(r)omgoru 2009-01-28 14:33||
#13 Meh, so stop killing the civilians.
Start dehousing them.