We Need to Be Vigilant on All Fronts

Ron Ben Yishai writes an excellent anyalysis of the war in Gaza. He makes a lot of good points, and says that we need patience and endurance and that we will eventually beat the terrorists in Gaza.

Another point that I think is important when judging our success or failure in Gaza is the very concrete reality that we in Israel have to be vigilant on many fronts. We are literally surrounded by enemies and need to be able to “pivot” to face more than one enemy at a time. It is dangerous for us to committ too many troops in one place for too long.

The defense ministry is now concerned about the threat to Israel by Islamic fanatics in Syria. We need to be able to fight up north if need be, and it is a good thing that we don’t have troops fighting a ground war in Gaza.

Faster Please

There will be a new air defense system to compliment the Iron Dome that Israel has deployed against the kassam and Grad rockets fired from Gaza. This system, sometimes called Magic Wand, is supposed to be ready for deployment within two years, and was unveiled at the Paris Air Show rcently.

This system will be very much needed if Hizballah decides to start firing rockets at us from Lebanon. The craziness in Syria has its affect in the other countries surrounding Israel – as this interesting analysis of last night’s rocket fire from Gaza points out.

I’m Not Holding My Breath

The news that “moderate” (who decides who is a moderate, anyway?) cleric Rouhani has won the presidential election in Iran is a good sign, but I am not holding my breath waiting for him to shut down Iran’s nuclear plants. Call me a pessimist, but I think that the real power in that country is held by the Ayatollah, and whatever he decides goes. If he had wanted to stop Iran’s development of a nuclear bomb it would have been stopped already.

I am sure the IDF isn’t putting away their plans just yet either. There have been newspaper reports that Netanyahu is spending the major part of his time dealing with the security threat from Iran and from Syria, and letting others squabble over economic issues in the Knesset (which is as it should be, in my opinion).

Third Iron Dome System Operational in Northern Israel

The IDF has set up the third Iron Dome battery in the northern part of Israel.  The other two were set up within the past few weeks. This is a sign that Israel expects rocket fire coming from the north – either from Hizbollah in Lebanon or from either Assad or the rebels in Syria – or perhaps even both.

This comes in a addition to the anouncement that President Obama will (finally) come to visit Israel next month. He is coming supposedly to further peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians (good luck with that….) but I think he will be speaking more about the problems in Iran and Syria.

The fact that Ahmadinejad is visiting Egypt now – the first time an Iranian leader has done this in three decades – is a warning sign too. For those of you not familiar with history, the sliver of land called Israel has been in the middle of wars between the ruling powers around Egypt in the southwest and Syria in the northeast for centuries. The players change frequently but the fight for supremacy is the same. The fact tha Iran has backed Assad in Syria has made it in conflict with Egypt – but perhaps now that there is a new ruler in Egypt Iran wants to warm up relations.

In any case the IDF is making preparations for the next round.

Hamas Calls for Terror Attacks Against Israelis

A senior Hamas leader, Ahmed Halabiyeh has called for terror attacks against Israelis, including suicide bombers in the “heart of Israel”.

This means of course that he wants other people to go out and throw stones and Molotov cocktails at innocent civilians on the roads where I live, and other people to strap on bombs and try to blow themselves up on buses and in cafes in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. He wants other people to die in order to murder innocent Jews.

Very brave of him.

Not to worry though. It also means that he has put himself on a list. This list is one that the IDF keeps of what I call “VIT’s” Very Important Targets. The IDF will track him down, and if he is truly responsible for terorrist attacks, he will be taken care of.

In the meantime the IDF will also be doing what they do all of the time – far from the limelight – patrolling, gathering information, arresting suspected terorrists, and keeping an eye on us here in Israel.

Waiting to See if the Ceasefire Holds

There was an announcement last night about a ceasefire between Israel and the terrorists in Gaza. The reality on the ground is that we in Israel are waiting to see if it holds. Schools in the south within 40 kilometers of Gaza are still closed. Most of the reserve soldiers are still on duty – a few have been sent home with the proviso that they can be called up any second again.

The analyists, both military and political, are of course expressing their opinion in the media. I have my own take on what happened this past week and what it means, but I am not going to write about it yet. We need to see how the next few days play out. I can say that in general there are a lot of frustrated men in Israel (who wanted to go in and fight the Hamas terrorists) and there are a lot of relieved women in Israel (who, although they agree that you need to fight Hamas, are happy to think that their husbands and sons are not needed to fight a war now).

 

Hamas Lies

Don’t believe everything you read in the papers – especially from Hamas. Here are a series of videos with a list of their lies:

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