Two weeks ago
it was Palestinian militants who abducted a legitimate military
target, an Israeli soldier. On July 12, it was a similar overwhelmingly
orchestrated heroic attack by Hezbollah guerrilla fighters. Both
attacks are there to send a message of resistance: Israel will never
succeed in imposing its sickening unilateral notion of 'peace'.
Indeed, the unilateral disengagement may have had a magical effect
on the Israeli voters as well as some Zionised western leaders such
as Bush, Blair and Merkel. Yet, the inhabitants of Gaza and the
villagers of Southern Lebanon are slightly less impressed with the
Israeli inclination towards peace. In Gaza and in Southern Lebanon
it is rather clear that Arab resistance forces will oppose the Israeli
unilateral agenda til the end of time.
They all know that as much as it takes two to tango, peace will
never prevail unless the Palestinian cause is properly addressed.
In short, the different forms of Israeli unilateral disengagements
from Lebanon, Gaza or even the West Bank (to come) are not going
to provide Israel with peace. Quite the opposite; Arabs are no fools,
they know very well that Israel escaped Lebanon after being militarily
humiliated for two decades. They know as well that Sharon ran away
from Gaza not exactly because he was searching for peace. Palestinians
also know that it is just a question of time before that happens
in the West Bank. If to be precise, since 1973 Israels power
of deterrence is shrinking.
1973 Israel hasn't managed to defeat
any of its enemies. On the contrary,
time after time it is the enemies of Israel
who are able to dictate Israeli political and
Israel hasnt managed to defeat any of its enemies. On the
contrary, time after time it is the enemies of Israel who are
able to dictate Israeli political and tactical manoeuvres. In
the last two weeks it has been two relatively small paramilitary
organisations who use guerrilla techniques who managed to bring
Israel to unleash its full military might against innocent civilians
both in Gaza and Lebanon.
Israeli reaction to attacks by Palestinian militants and Hezbollah
is rather bizarre. Although, both Palestinian militants and Hezbollah
were originally targeting legitimate military targets, Israeli
retaliation was clearly aiming against civilian targets, civil
infrastructures and mass killing directed against an innocent
population. It doesnt take a genius to realise that this
is not really the way to win a war or confront that particular
sort of combat known as guerrilla warfare.
I would argue
that once again the Israeli government serves us with a fascinating
glimpse into the mindset of the Israeli collective psyche. I will
try to elaborate on this issue.
than winning in the battlefield, the IDF
[Israel Defence Force] is now hopelessly
exhausting itself in two fronts fighting
relatively small paramilitary organisations.
Due to some
clear historical circumstances, the Israeli army was originally
formed to combat Arab armies. It was designed to win conventional
war in the battlefield. It was set up as well to exhaust Israels
neighbours will to fight while exercising some overwhelming
air superiority and nuclear threatening policies. Since the end
of the cold war, things changed. Israel isnt threatened
anymore by its neighbouring states. Moreover, in the most recent
years it has become clear that it is actually the Palestinian
people who will eventually shatter the dream of a Jewish national
enough, Israel has never adopted or revised its military doctrine
to fit into the new emerging conditions. Indeed it retrained large
parts of its fighting units as policing forces, it transformed
some of its tanks into policing vehicles. Yet, it has never gone
through a vast military doctrine shift. Very much like the Wehrmacht
at the time of WWII, the IDF (Israel Defence Force) is still a
classic follower of the offensive military doctrine.
Hitherto, rather than winning in the battlefield, the IDF is now
hopelessly exhausting itself in two fronts fighting relatively
small paramilitary organisations. But the situation can get worse,
it is rather possible that Palestinian heroic enthusiasm will
spread to the West Bank. When this happens, the IDF will find
itself engaged in a total war just a few kilometres from Israels
most densely populated centres. Seemingly the so-called strongest
army in the Middle East is fighting a desperate war it can
never win, neither tactically nor morally.
more carnage there is in Gaza,
the stronger the Hamas becomes.
The more bombs dropped over Beirut's Airport, the more will young
men be willing
to join the Hezbollah.
we have enough historic references to conclude that no colonial
army has ever won against guerrilla warfare. The reason is simple,
the more destruction a colonial army spreads, the more popular
the guerrilla fighters become amongst their surrounding supportive
population. This is absolutely the case in Gaza and in Beirut
today. The more carnage there is in Gaza, the stronger the Hamas
becomes. The more bombs dropped over Beiruts Airport, the
more will young men be willing to join the Hezbollah.
But it goes
further, both the Palestinian militants and the Hezbollah were
very clever in picking pure military targets. While in the past,
the Palestinian paramilitary groups were typically associated
with suicidal attacks against Israeli civilians, this time it
was Israeli soldiers and pure military posts that were targeted.
In other words, it is rather impossible to dismiss the fact that
Palestinian militants and the Hezbollah were actually operating
as legitimate resistance paramilitary groups fighting a colonial
army and occupation forces.
reading the news from the Middle East, it is rather obvious that
the Israeli government has no clear agenda to counter the current
daring military operations against its army and if this isnt
enough, the IDF has no means to counter such guerrilla assaults.
Todays merciless collateral damage in Beirut as well as
in Gaza proves that at least militarily, Israel is in total despair.
It has neither the political nor the military answer to counter
Arab resistance. But here comes the catch; Israel doesnt
need an answer as such, it doesnt even look for one.
far as the Israeli political game is concerned,
the rule is very simple, the more Arab blood
you have on your hands the more you are
suited to get on with your governing job.
a racially orientated democracy. Its leaders are engaged in one
thing only, that is, maintenance of their political power. As
far as the Israeli political game is concerned, the rule is very
simple, the more Arab blood you have on your hands the more you
are suited to get on with your governing job. This rule obviously
was in favour of Rabin, Sharon, Barak and Netanyahu. Olmert and
Peretz are still quite far behind. Both the prime minister and
his defence minister lack some real experience in military and
security matters. Hence they have a lot of catching up to do.
words, Peretz and Olmert have to provide the Israeli people with
a glorious spectacle of merciless retaliation. They have to prove
to their keen voters that they have internalised the real biblical
meaning of an eye for an eye. Looking at the carnage
in Beirut today it somehow seems as if they even try to give the
old Hebraic saying a new meaning. As devastating as it may sound,
this is exactly what the Israelis want them to do. Within democratic
Israel the biblical call "pour out your fury upon the goyim"
is translated into a Jewish secular pragmatic political practice.
This isnt sad. This is a real tragedy. And I wonder whether
there is anyone out there who is still overwhelmed with the Israeli
unilateral peace agenda?
Note: Those with strong stomachs who want to see uncensored pictures
of the Israeli onslaught on Lebanon, click
Gilad Atzmon was born in Israel and served in the Israeli
military. He is the author of two novels: A Guide to the Perplexed
and the recently released My One and Only Love. Atzmon is
also one of the most accomplished jazz saxophonists in Europe.
His recent CD, Exile, was named the year's best jazz CD by
the BBC. He now lives in London and can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
here to order Gilad Atzmon's CDs and books.
by Gilad Atzmon:
The Tyranny Of Pronouns
The Myth Of
The Open Society: The Politics Of Auschwitz
And Other Marginal Thoughts
Liberating The American People, by Philip Cheah