Sunday, June 19, 2011


By Schmoel Yitzhak

Describing the current Israel-hating developments in military terms, one could sum them up in three words -- a pincer movement.

On one side -- the Mediterranean -- there is a direct threat of yet another flotilla invasion of Israel's territorial waters by a hostile group of left-wingers whose one and only intention is to embarrass the Middle East's only democracy.

On another front -- this one political -- we have the daily "threat" of a United Nations General Assembly vote for a "Palestinian" state in September. This movement is designed to thrust Israel into a corner from where it will -- the Arabs hope -- capitulate to excessive Islamic demands.

Finally, there has emerged a major anti-Israel front in Egypt, created after President Obama impetuously -- foolishly -- ousted Hosni Mubarak who had been as "friendly" as an Arab leader could possibly be to Israel in these trying times.

Dealing with this three-headed monster is a major challenge for Benjamin Netanyahu yet he has no choice but to meet them head-on and with appropriate force; both verbally and militarily if necessary.

In terms of the flotilla, all signs indicate that Bibi and the Israeli Navy have learned their lessons from the original territorial invasion of Israel's waters.

The IDF now knows that there likely will be armed militants aboard the vessels and that the mission of these invaders is to harm -- kill, if necessary -- uniformed Israelis. This was evident during the first armada invasion and there should be no illusions that it will be different the second time around.

Israel's position is clear and if the armada leaders don't get it, well, that's going to be THEIR problem, not Bibi's.

Nor should the Prime Minister worry about public -- as in international -- opinion. Bibi knows as well as anybody that Israel has no friends -- except, perhaps, the amazing Steven Harper government in Canada -- in the world so he should act decisively and with force if necessary.

A good lesson was provided by the Goldstone Report. It originally slammed Israel, left, right and sideways by a Jewish judge whose judgement was so patently anti-Jewish that one wondered about the last time he went to shul. But, eventually, Goldstone reneged on his original conclusions and, in effect, supported the Jewish state.

As for the threatened UN vote for a Palestinian state. If it happens, so it will happen but it will not change Israel's security needs and, more likely, will stiffen Bibi's negotiating position harder than it would have been before such a vote took place.

There are enough legal issues on Israel's side to negate the effect of such a UN vote and the Arabs -- divided as they are -- are fully aware of such political pitfalls should they go the UN route.

Here again, Netanyahu must be as decisive as possible, clearly stating that his nation never -- ever -- will return to a situation where revised borders place Israel in so vulnerable position that an Arab invasion could come faster than you can say Assad is in trouble.

If any issue is troublesome it centers on the political upheaval in Egypt and its ultimate outcome; if such a thing is predictable.

This much is certain; all signs suggest that the Muslim Brotherhood is in the process of becoming a MAJOR influence; so much so that it could threaten Israel in many ways, particularly in terms of a re-arming in the Sinai Peninsula.

More than ever, Netanyahu must handle this potential tinderbox with care but also a firm hand.

Israel learned a lesson when Nasser ran Egypt and it should be re-studied should the worst-case scenario emerge once more.

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