Beyond the Cusp

April 1, 2018

Hamas March of Return and the Reality Behind the Affair

 

Hamas hoped they could gather as many as one-hundred-thousand Gazan and have them, read as force them, to walk in a mass to the Gaza border fence and with any luck push it over and invade Israel. Why would Hamas want them to break down the border fence? Easy, Hamas hoped to force the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) to have to shoot the invaders and Hamas hoped they might receive hundreds, or better yet thousands, of Gazans shot dead. They also hoped for thousands of injured, preferably bleeding, Gazans so they could take pictures and splash them all over the world media. Hamas even had chosen what they hoped would be their first victim of their planned sacrificial massacre. They sent this special infiltrator ahead of the rest and this individual crossed into Israel and stood to defy the IDF. The IDF met this initial Hamas operative and talked with her, that is right, a female. After hearing her out, the IDF took her into custody and returned her safely to her parents. This advance Hamas operative was a seven-year-old girl whom they hoped could be killed by the IDF and be their first, and probably most advertised to the world, victim of their attempt to infiltrate Israel by forcing crossings along the Gaza border. As far as Hamas succeeding at their goals, they failed on every front. They may have surpassed twenty-thousand but probably even fell short of that figure. Under twenty Gazans died in their mass exercise and even their inflated numbers place the injured at well short of one thousand. All of these numbers have mostly come from Hamas and European media as Israeli media was unavailable during Shabbat, which made them unavailable from sundown Friday until after sundown Saturday. Israeli commentary will likely come available today and will be available to the public. In the meanwhile, we can expect the Arab and Muslim world to attempt to play this as if it were the mass casualty event Hamas had planned. Already Turkey, Jordan and Egypt have condemned the Israeli actions as the use of “disproportionate force” and, according to Jordanian spokesman, Mohammad Momani, “excessive force against peaceful protesters who were marching to commemorate the Land Day and affirm their legitimate rights in accordance with international law and norms.” One can only guess how these nations would respond to over ten-thousand Israelis marching on their borders. I believe we all are fully aware that such a situation would result in a mass casualty event, exactly the kind Hamas desired.

 

Let us look at the entire event as dispassionately as possible. When the Arab world demands that Israel, as the occupying power, provide protection for such demonstrations, we need to answer with the truth. Israel disengaged from Gaza in August of 2005 and turned the entirety of Gaza with greenhouses intact over to the Palestinian Authority (PA). At this time Gaza became the Palestinian State, which has been touted by the world as the miracle that would prove the sincerity of the PA and the Arab’s desire for peace and to build a functioning nation. There was no blockade nor was there any examination of imports to Gaza while the PA was ruling Gaza. The immediate result of the granting independence to the Gazan population under the guidance and rule of the PA was the destruction of the greenhouses and the use of the irrigation pipes to manufacture rocket launch tubes and rockets to launch into Israel. There was an ensuing struggle between the PA and Hamas interests for control of Gaza, which devolved into total civil war and in the resulting coup; Hamas took control of Gaza sending the PA retreating back to Judea and Samaria where because of shared security responsibilities they were protected by Israeli security. In the ensuing period since the 2007 takeover of Gaza, Hamas has initiated three brief wars with Israel by launching hundreds of missiles into Israel targeting civilian locations distinct and separate from any possible military targets. Hamas has also built an entire complex of tunnels throughout Gaza linking rocket launching platforms, command and control bunkers, safe bunkers, and their main command center located in the subbasement of the Gaza Al-Shifa Hospital (image below). They place this bunker tactically so as to protect their elite leadership who hunker down below the hospital cozily safe in the knowledge that Israel will not bomb a hospital full of innocents. Hamas knows that Israel will go to great lengths not to shoot innocents which was the entire hope behind this march of the border. They were hoping that with the confusion, acrid smoke and noise of tires burning, bombs thrown over the fence, rocks also thrown at the troops and people pressing the fence while selected terrorists were assigned to climb the fence probably hoping that excitable youth would copy them and also start climbing the border fence. Hamas knew that anyone climbing the fence threatened to infiltrate Israel. So, what force did Israel use, read on.

 

Gaza Al-Shifa Hospital

Gaza Al-Shifa Hospital

 

Israel initially used tear gas and stun rounds to break up the people rushing the border. The people continued towards the border. When the rocks and explosives being thrown over the fence at the troops became a threat, the Israelis used rubber bullets. This deterred the masses, but it did not prevent the more hard core from attempting to scale the fence into Israel. When such individuals, most of which were likely terrorist agents using the demonstration as the intended cover for their infiltration, reached the point of entering Israel, those few were the ones Israel shot with live rounds. These were the less than twenty people total who died as a result of IDF action. Hamas admitted that five of those killed, Jihad Farina, Mohammed Abu Amaro, Ahmad Odeh, Saari Abu Odeh, and Musaav a-Salul, were members of Hamas’ military wing. According to International Law, every nation has the right to enforce their border. Were members of a drug cartel to attempt a new way of smuggling their drugs into the United States by hiding the couriers within a mass of people and walking the entirety at the United States border, the United States would do everything in their power to coral and prevent them from entering the nation and any who would attempt to run to infiltrate, they would be shot and killed. This was no different. Those from the mass of people who attempted to enter Israel were prevented from doing so. There was an exception to shooting the Hamas operatives who attempted to infiltrate Israel, and where we do not know her name, we do know that she was treated well and returned to her parents, as Israel does not shoot people indiscriminately, Israel only shoots when they have actual cause and threat. This is why out of around fifteen to twenty-thousand actual marchers, according to initial Israeli estimates, or if you prefer the thirty to fifty-thousand reported by other counts, gathered along the Gaza border along five separate locations (see map below), there were less than twenty deaths according to any report and anywhere from three hundred injured as initial reports claimed to the later estimates of well over a thousand injured. Let us seek an answer why the later estimates were so significantly higher than the initial estimates given by the hospital and clinics data.

 

Gaza Fence Assault Areas

Gaza Fence Assault Areas

 

The obvious answer is that Hamas later asked that anybody who was injured, including bruises or welts caused by rubber bullets or coughing from tear gas to report their injuries. These would include all who had any injury, real or imagined. Hamas can play games with injury numbers as injuries heal and therefore, injuries cannot be investigated a month or two down the line. Injuries do not always require medical treatment as injuries come in an infinite variety of severity. We can believe that the hospitals initially reported the number of people they treated for injuries, and that is one total. We could understandably even triple that number and believe it is a realistic number. Some are trying to multiply the initial hospital numbers five fold and more and these numbers should be viewed with a great deal of skepticism. Is it an actual injury if you were bumped and slightly bruised by other marchers? And even if such is so, is that the fault of the IDF? Those treated for welts and contusions caused by rubber bullets are IDF caused injuries. These people likely reached the fence and attempted to climb the fence or push the fence over. This resulted in being shot with rubber bullets and those who persisted after such a severe warning were the few who suffered a potentially worse fate. Hamas simply collected whatever numbers they could conceivably count as injured from their efforts knowing it is the one number they could enlarge without consequences and nobody could prove them lying. Let us now explain the final point, why Hamas did not bother to exaggerate the numbers who were killed, and this you will just love.

Do you remember the so-called Jenin Massacre? Remember the reported number of Palestinians killed started around twenty-five and within hours, they reached over one-hundred. By the next morning, the number of dead reached into the hundreds and some even reached as high as a thousand and even more. Then there was the Jenin investigation for potential war crime charges against the IDF troops and their commanders. The United Nations investigators found that the IDF numbers were the accurate estimates with a total of fifty-three dead (forty-eight militants and five civilians). Where the Palestinian and Arab estimates ran into difficulty when the audits are done by investigative agencies, they count death certificates and actual gravesites leading to hard data and realistic numbers. Hamas, and likely the entirety of the Palestinian terror groups, including the PLO, Fatah, the PA, Islamic Jihad and the rest, know that they must report actual deaths as exaggeration will not stand up to scrutiny which results in their appearing to be liars and thus making all their reported numbers suspect. Casualties can be reported in larger numbers when they are injuries, as injury can be defined to include everything from serious wounds requiring surgery to a simple scratch or bruise. So, the number of those killed will be somewhere between fifteen and twenty and the number of injured will be whatever number people decide to assign to the conflict. The problem is not over as Hamas has declared there to be extended protest until Nakba Day which comes in mid-May, with the promise of especially intense weekly demonstrations on Fridays. Expect grand protests with additional violence and threats on Israeli soil and peoples with these demonstrations as they continue and particularly those of Friday afternoon after prayers and the Imam delivery of particularly inflammatory sermons for the occasion.

 

 

The United Nations Security Council has declared a closed-door session as requested by Kuwait, as Jordan, Egypt, Arab League and Turkey accuse Israel of using disproportionate force against Palestinian demonstrators. There will be the usual denunciations of Israel for defending their sovereign territory. There is never an emergency closed-door United Nations Security Council session called by the other members when border guards shoot and kill drug and human smugglers crossing the southern or any other border. There is no emergency closed-door United Nations Security Council session called by the other members when illegal immigrants heading for the United States are shot crossing the Guatemala-Mexico border by Mexican border guards as Mexico takes their border very seriously. China is never investigated for shooting North Koreans escaping the totalitarian oppressions under Kim Jong-un in a closed-door session by the United Nations Security Council called by the other nations. There is only one nation which is investigated for protecting the inviolability of their sovereign border. It is only Israel who is placed under the microscope of international scrutiny, where even the most mundane acts are made out to be crimes against all of humanity and cause for continuous investigations. When Israel defends her border, investigations are demanded, when Israel imprisons terrorists who use vehicles to intentionally run-down civilians, the world demands investigations for Israel treating simple vehicular accidents as criminal events, when Israel responds to thousands of rockets by defeating the terror armies who launched the projectiles into her civilian areas she is investigated. One could almost believe that Israel would be investigated for holding election should the world dislike the resulting coalition seeking to replace the government with one more pliable and easily persuaded to take steps which might endanger the existence of the Jewish State. Perhaps even stating such is dangerous as it might give the world another idea on how to manipulate and strangle Israel leading to her final defeat and destruction. Europe would support such an end, the Arab and Muslim World would largely celebrate such an end and work to bring such about while the American people and the few nations who remember the great and timely assistances received from the tiny little Jewish enclave when natural disasters struck or the agricultural technologies and medical technologies provided by IsraAID and Save a Child’s Heart (SACH) asking only that these receiving the Israeli provided aid take the knowledge and use it to advance their nations and its health. There is no charges and no payment demanded as the smiles of those assisted is sufficient payment. The result of the United Nations Security Council closed-door session on Gaza will ignore the one truth which appears to have escaped the world, Gaza is actually the real Palestinian nation as Israel no longer occupies any of that land and had surrendered all claim to Gaza. Israel gave Gaza to the PA and Hamas took it in a coup and now rules in partnership with Islamic Jihad. Perhaps the United Nations Security Council will discuss the responsibility of Hamas to allow the reconstruction rather than use the concrete to build tunnels infiltrating Israel. Perhaps the United Nations Security Council will investigate why there is no economic development in Gaza and the numerous other oppressions executed on the people of Gaza by their rulers who spend every amount of aid they can take to destroy their neighboring country of Israel. Israel would love to be able to ignore much of what occurs in Gaza but when the government of Gaza spends well over three-quarters of their available resources for Israeli destruction and swears they will murder every Jew on the planet, is it any wonder that Israel is nervous when thousands of Gazans approach her border. Perhaps the United Nations Security Council can investigate these little truths and do something positive for a change instead of trying to fault Israel at every turn.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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March 13, 2018

Lapid Using Liberman to Shoot for the Stars

 

Everybody knows the worst kept secret in Israel, Yair Lapid has designs of replacing Bibi as soon as he can get elections and then he is aiming to replace the Heavenly Choir. Yair Lapid thinks very highly of himself and his silver tongue which has gotten him far in life. His ability to set dulcet tones to the lyrics written on his teleprompter should remind people of another great speaker whose heart was cold and calculations have placed the Middle East in jeopardy by strengthening Iran. That sweet talker was President Obama, the still revered leftist who used Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals to take the already radical Iran and use an injection of Russian military airpower to reinstate al-Assad and Iran in a power position in Syria and with Hezballah in Lebanon while allowing Hamas to reunite their ties with Iran who are looking like the strong horse. These also emboldened Turkey to attempt and solve their Kurdish problem with another genocide which will be denied while it is occurring. All the wrong players in the Middle East are now playing more powerful positions and Russia is stuck in the quicksand.

 

Where would Yair Lapid fit into this formula? He would be the next installment in what next can go wrong. Lapid is very talented at telling everybody what they wish to hear. He will tell much of Israel that he is strictly a Zionist and stands to the right of Netanyahu. He will tell the university crowd that he strongly supports all versions of individual rights and the Two State Solution is the central spine of his Middle East policies. He tells the labor union that he stands one-hundred-percent behind Histadrut and supports stronger worker mediations. Basically he is the chameleon who stands before any crowd and adopts their greatest hopes and fears into reality and instantly becomes their best hope. Lapid only really believes in three things, his visceral distaste for everything religious, especially Jewish; his belief that he can find a gift so worthy that he will found two states for two people even if both those people will end up as Arab states and the Jews vanquished, and Lapid believes in Lapid and would claim to be the Messiah if he believed in the Messiah. All in all, the three things are all actually just ways for aggrandizing the last one, Yair Lapid.

 

Yair Lapid Enticing Avigdor Lieberman into Challenging Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu

Yair Lapid Enticing Avigdor Lieberman into Challenging Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu

 

Lapid is also very good at wrapping people into his plans by making them promises, some which he would actually keep. Currently Yair Lapid wants one thing and only one thing, a means to replace Bibi Netanyahu as Prime Minister. His plan is so painfully obvious; it would take a deaf, dumb and blind man not to see it. Currently, Lapid is planning to drive a wedge between Yisrael Beytenu leader, Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman and his boss, Prime Minister Netanyahu. The weapon is the Haredi draft bill which has been laboriously hammered out to almost everyone’s satisfaction. Lapid has been whispering into Lieberman’s ear telling him of all the power he will bestow upon him when he makes his coalition after new elections. Unfortunately for Bibi, Lieberman has been soaking the praise and lauding up like a schoolboy receiving praise from his favorite teacher. The fact that Lieberman and his party share much of Lapid’s dislike for the religious is not a secret but this new draft law was drawn up extracting almost everything possible from the religious parties and is actually a fair and tough bill. But Yair wants elections and is willing to do anything to get them and to get them now. So why is it so important to get elections immediately?

 

That is an easy one to answer. Currently Bibi is, as usual, under a myriad of investigations and has been recommended for being brought to trial once more by the police who never tire of rejections. They were unable to get a single charge leveled against Bibi with a far more leftist Attorney General in the past and they are now facing a serious and strict law abiding Attorney General who will not take kindly to having his office used or his time wasted. Lapid knows that if he can force elections, then he can go to the police, who already have him as their main witness for at least one of their cases against Netanyahu, and drop a few well-timed “bombshells” and they can add that to their attempt to have the Prime Minister arraigned, and that could seal the deal. If an arraignment can be timed to coincide with new elections, Lapid can sue in the Supreme Court to have Netanyahu barred from seeking the office of Prime Minister which would weaken the power of Likud and as his party is polling number two, he sees himself as naturally replacing Likud with his party, Yesh Atid. He has even gone so far as to file bills to dissolve the Knesset in conjunction with Meretz. Meretz Party has no chance to lead a coalition and thus is filing purely to help Lapid. If filing with Meretz does not show his true alignment to the world, and Israel particularly, nothing will and his con just might work. The main part of the Lapid coup is to have Bibi arraigned and new elections so the Supreme Court can take Bibi out of the picture making Yair Lapid, as he sees it and us fear, the next Prime Minister. That is a frightful scenario which we would hate to watch occur.

 

The problem here is that Lapid is trying to pull down the coalition while working to have the Prime Minister prevented from defending himself through elections and will do whatever it takes to become Prime Minister and impose his cleverly concealed leftist principles and love of the Two State Solution in his attempt to win a Nobel Peace Prize even if that requires the destruction of Israel as the Jewish State and homeland to the Jewish People. Everything Yair Lapid does is for the aggrandizement of Yair Lapid. He views himself as a larger than life, anointed by the fates, and infallible man of principle. We view him as utterly lacking that final quality, flawed in many ways, and hope he is fated to never hold power of Prime Minister of Israel. We foresee his attaining that dreamed of position leading to placing Hamas backed completely by Iran and armed similarly to Hezballah into Judea and Samaria after agreeing to remove all the Jewish communities from beyond the Green Line. Did we mention he hates them as well though would promise them he would protect them to their faces, redividing Jerusalem, removing all border checkpoints, destroying the terror barrier on his way in full retreat and pulling every last IDF and other force and all intelligence operatives from beyond the Green Line and expect the Arabs to remain an unarmed state. Of course as soon as the Palestinian Authority has been overthrown and Hamas, or worse, Hezballah, replaces them with all the officials still seen as belonging to anything other than a fully religious theocratic terror state supporter removed from any position of power and possibly violently removed, Iran will arm the area and ready it for an attack on Israel. For Iran and both Hezballah and Hamas, being a nationalistic terror state supporter would be inadequate as only pure religious fanaticism will be accepted once Iran gets into the act. This would leave only the Jordan and the Sinai Peninsula left before Israel would be encircled by Iran on every land border.

 

It has been known that the Syrian leader, Bashir al-Assad, and his father before him, have always had designs on rejoining Jordan to Syria as they see Jordan and Israel as parts of Southern Syria and have designs on militarily reestablishing their Syrian hegemony. Any Syrian hegemonic interests would merely be serving the hegemonic obsessions of Iran. Iran would hardly need but blink in order to overwhelm the Jordanian forces and take Jordan. That would be an easy task except for two small items, Jordan has long been allied with the United States and Britain plus Israel is well aware that it is in their interests to prevent such a takeover. During the Black September attempted coup by Yasser Arafat and the PLO in 1970, Syrian forces dressed as Fedayeen crossed the border with air support. The Syrian efforts ended fairly quickly as they met more formidable resistance than they expected and their PLO allies were being decimated and were fleeing to Lebanon. Syria gave up on that attempt to reunify Jordan into southern Syria. That lesson was given Bashir’s father, he may require his own lesson before he learns plus he has Iran whispering in his ear. Another difference is that Jordan and Israel have a signed peace agreement and the United States has a rather unpredictable President in Trump. President Trump has pretty much steered clear of much in the Middle East beyond strongly backing Israel and recognizing the obvious by announcing that the United States will move its embassy to the Israeli capital of Jerusalem.

 

Syria has already fired into Israel sufficiently and been sternly blunted by IDF responses. When Syria and Iran invaded Israeli airspace with a military drone, not only was the drone quickly destroyed, but the command and control center which sent the drone and other similar installations were destroyed in response with Israel losing one aircraft as a response. Attempting at testing Israel through attacking Jordan may not be the wisest course of action, but we are talking of the Assad Regime which has never shown much of a propensity for wisdom guided actions. Let it rest that the Middle East is dangerous enough and does not need Yair Lapid as Prime Minister of Israel; it requires a strong and dependable Israel ready to act as necessitated. That would, for the present, mean Bibi Netanyahu at the very least until the end of this government’s legal term and elections on November 5, 2019. After that many expect that Bibi would either allow a new person to lead Likud or announce that this would be his final time serving as Prime Minister and start to groom a new leader for his party. It would be wise for that to begin immediately and there are a number of contenders, but that should wait for another time.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

February 22, 2018

Iranian Nuclear War with Israel or the World

 

After reading Professor Louis René Beres’s article “Looking Ahead: Longer Term Prospects for an Israel-Iran Nuclear War” we found some additional aspects which were either dismissed or ignored. We decided that perhaps we could add some information by looking more closely at the Iranian perspectives and what these should mean to Israeli planners. The one item with which we took the most critical concern was his statement, “In essence, there are no conceivable experts on fighting a nuclear war, not in Washington, not in Pyongyang, not in Jerusalem, not in Tehran.” He also postulated that, “Insofar as a nuclear war has never been fought, what will be needed is more broadly intellectual guidance than Israel should ever reasonably expect from even its most senior and accomplished military officers.” The reality is that senior officers often have educations equal to that of many professors and their minds are just as keen and capable of any academic. We will grant that officers exist who are nowhere near the expert of some academics, but mostly those are junior officers and by the time an officer makes Full Bird Colonel they have at the least a Bachelor’s degree and probably a Master’s degree and many a General will have a Doctorate in at least one field from Military History to Mathematics, Physics and possibly Nuclear Physics. They will all have taken courses in Military Tactics, as even Noncommissioned officers are required to take such courses. They will have been required to take a number of command courses and often have attended some very rigorous military training courses which is how they get those impressive patches such as Ranger, Airborne and even Special Forces or Seals in the United States. So, to be honest, there are likely very few professors or other experts who would be better trained, educated and able to make the decisions and make plans to handle any threat including, or even especially, a nuclear standoff or even an actual nuclear exchange.

 

Professor Beres also said that there had never been a nuclear war, but that is technically not entirely valid as the War with Japan at the end of World War II was ended by the use of nuclear weapons which kind of means that the War with Japan did turn into the first, and thus far, only nuclear war. That was a completely one sided nuclear exchange as Japan had no nuclear weapons with which to respond which is what made the American use on Hiroshima and Nagasaki so effective. Fortunately, the Japanese did not know that the United States had used every nuclear weapon at their disposal and did not posses a third weapon. Had Japan tested the resolve of President Truman, the American’s next move was to build fifty additional nuclear weapons in the ensuing year and strike Japan with most of them in simultaneous strikes including Tokyo and a number of nuclear weapons into Mount Fuji in the hopes of causing a massive eruption. This was not much of a lesson for a nuclear standoff between two nuclear-armed adversaries. Such a standoff has limited lessons to teach us with only two which come to mind. The minor one has been the battle of the boasting idiots between President Trump and Kim Jong-un. Deciding which one is the larger idiot would be a difficult call but we would have to side with Kim Jong-un if he honestly believes he is a man-god and that his nation is as happy and well off as any other on the face of the planet. All he would need do is look southward to the Winter Olympics in South Korea to see that his nation is in dire shape and has some extreme problems. But then he knows this and this was what caused him to test President Trump and pressure the world with threats trying to force them to treat his temper tantrum by sending his beleaguered nation food and money. The more serious standoff between two nuclear powers was the Cuban Missile Crisis. This pitted the United States and President Kennedy against the USSR and Commissar Khrushchev. This standoff ended peaceably but not before nerves throughout the globe was frayed to the breaking point.

 

So, let us now look at what the future nuclear situation might be between Israel and Iran as well as Iran and the rest of the world. The first thing which can be stated, is, that Israel would not be the first to use nuclear weapons except in response to an attack using weapons of mass destruction (WMD) against Israel. Israel has made this their policy on nuclear weapons and their use such that they would only be used in response to a WMD attack. Now, such a nuclear response might be used on Iran if there were a massive WMD attack emanating from Syria or Hezballah which could be traced as being ordered by Iran. Should Iran launch a nuclear or other WMD attack on Israel then an Israeli nuclear response should be expected against Iran and for Israel to go on alert in case of an attack across the northern border from Hezballah or Syria. This covers every use of her nuclear weapons by Israel except for one rumored plan known as the Samson Option, used as the basis of “The Samson Option: Israel’s Nuclear Arsenal and American Foreign Policy,” a 1991 book by Seymour Hersh. The theory put forth presumably from an Israeli intelligence source who told of plans that should Israel be facing being overrun and destroyed by invading armies, then she would respond by launching her missiles at the main population centers of numerous Arab and Muslim nations which was hoped to prevent any attacks by Arab armies. The last organized assault on Israel by national military forces was the Yom Kippur War of October 1973, which was before Israel was assumed to have a nuclear arsenal. Since then the Arab world has not launched an assault on Israel using conventional forces and only through terror forces. There may be a question whether Hezballah, with there over one-hundred-thousand rockets and missiles could be considered to be a national type military force equating any attack by Hezballah into an attack by Lebanon and possibly their masters in Tehran thus including Iran? This is a conundrum for the heads of state and the military in Israel and we are not about to second-guess them and will wait for any announced policy. There has been some mention that should Hezballah attack Israel that Israel now considers Hezballah as being the governance of Lebanon and thus any attack by Hezballah would, at the least, be considered an attack by Lebanon.

 

This leaves Iran and what their leadership might be thinking about nuclear confrontations. It was reported by CNN on September 11, 2015, that the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said during a speech that week in Tehran, state-run media report, which translated as, “I’d say (to Israel) that they will not see (the end) of these 25 years.” That, in and of itself, is ominous enough to rattle nerves or it could be written off to bluster meant to impress the Iranian people. One thing people need to understand about the Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is that his life revolves around the Quran and it is the Quran which provides him with his authority, gives him authority to make Iranian foreign policy decisions, and allows him great latitude concerning internal decision making within Iran. The Ayatollah Ali Khamenei is all but unopposable when it comes to decision making and his word is as good as law. If the Supreme Leader were to order a nuclear attack on Israel, the missiles would be launched within minutes with almost nobody even thinking of questioning these orders. What is unknown is who, other than the Supreme Leader, is able to order such an attack. This is not as well known and there are suspicions that there are some military high level officers who might also be permitted to give such orders including the leader of the IRGC, the special forces and most fanatical of the Iranian military. These are also the forces responsible for foreign operations including terrorist attacks. For our concerns, we will limit our concerns to address just the possibility for the Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei ordering a nuclear strike on Israel or on any other nation.

 

First, let us look at what logic might be used by the Ayatollah. He would be aware that the United States has extended their nuclear umbrella to Israel which would imply that any nuclear attack upon Israel would potentially result in the United States striking back at the attacker. Between Israel and the United States, there is little comparison between their nuclear capabilities as the United States has a far more capable nuclear capability. The first question is whether or not the United States truly would respond as promised to a nuclear strike on Israel. The Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has witnessed a number of United States Presidents and has very probably noticed that the level of support Israel receives wavers from President to President, especially under the administration of President Obama. Thus, it is more likely that the Ayatollah would be more likely to consider taking any actions when the United States has a President who has shown preferably hostility to Israel or possibly only an indifference towards Israel and has pressured Israel over the ill-fated peace process. The real problem comes back to the one book which guides the Ayatollahs and much of the higher officers, especially those of the IRGC, which is the Quran. The one command from the Quran which has appeared again and again when it comes to relations towards Israel are two-fold, first, to kill the infidel wherever one finds them, and second, that the hour (end times) will not begin until you fight the Jews. The combination of these two concepts could lead to problems as the Iranian leading Imams and Ayatollahs have repeatedly proposed that Iran was chosen to bring on the coming of the Mahdi and the End Times. They have claimed that should they cause sufficient chaos and follow prescriptions written in the Quran, that they can cause the onset of the End Times and the coming of the Mahdi. This has often been stated to be solely the hope and ideas held by the Twelvers but some in politics have also adopted these ideas in order to gain greater acceptance by the ruling clerics. Many claim that Iran is not ruled by Twelvers though former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad brought this threat to a head and since then there have been more and more in the power structure who have been revealed as Twelvers. The prevalence of the Twelvers would make the leadership more aggressive which could be a problem, a definite problem.

 

Israel and Iran

Israel and Iran

 

What would possibly push a greater threat would be a Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah who came under some suspicions of impropriety or other weakness which might lead them to make a desperate grab at ending the rumors replacing them with a far greater news story. The Supreme Leader Grand Ayatollah could be completely above all suspicion; but should the economic situations worsen leading to greater demonstrations and complete civil unrest and the regular military side with the people and the Ayatollahs believe they are losing control of the nation and may soon be deposed, then having nothing further to lose they might take equally desperate moves. Either threat could lead the Iranian leadership to throw everything they have in their arsenals at Israel and potentially also the United States. But no matter what the immediate future will bring, eventually the Ayatollahs will decide to use any weapons they have and in the not too distant future, that will mean nuclear weaponry. The Quran will eventually force the leadership who will be pressed by the IRGC commanders to press their revolution and Israel and Saudi Arabia are the two targets highest on their list. This means that sooner or later the Iranians will launch weapons at Israel. We will grant that this would not happen until Iran had struck Saudi Arabia and taken over Mecca and Medina, the two holy cities of all Islam. They also have desires to take over Egypt and would have to take Turkey so as to place somebody to rule there as President Erdoğan still has dreams to reestablish the Ottoman Empire and as he will support Iran, that will only last for as long as the Iranian dreams of reestablishing the Persian Empire do not interrupt his idea for the Ottoman Empire. There is no way for the two empires to coexist as the Persian Empire included all of Turkey and much of the Ottoman Empire plus, the Ottoman Empire also included Mecca and Medina, something the Iranians already have their own ideas about. The one place where Turkey and Iran will agree is on attacking Israel, providing that Israel will only be striking back at Iran and Turkey can remain unscathed. The problem is that at some point in the future the Iranian Supreme Leader and Grand Ayatollah will call for an all out attack to destroy Israel and should Israel see a fair number of ballistic missiles headed for Israel launched from Iran, Israel will no longer have time for diplomacy, Israel will need to reply anticipating that the Iranian missiles are tipped with WMD’s and most likely nuclear weapons. We can only hope that before such an eventuality comes to fruition that the people of Iran succeed in replacing their theocratic dictatorship with a true democratic governance which represents the people’s desires and write a constitution which will revitalize the Iranian economic situation and liberate the people from the Ayatollahs and their oppressive rule. We need remember that before the return of the Ayatollahs in 1979, Israel and Iran were friends with embassies and good relations and vital trade. A return to such would be good for Israel, good for Iran and good for both Iranians and Israelis as well as the rest of the Middle East.

 

Beyond the Cusp

 

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