Treppenwitz Again

Tuesday, August 15, 2006
This time he's doing an analysis of modest length concerning lessons learned during the recent unpleasantness. He covers most of the tactical elements fairly well, in particular the Israeli over reliance on armor as the weapon of choice. The Kornet has eliminated about 60% of the utility of using tanks and 100% of the utility of APCs. Mobile fortresses have been turned into convenient kill boxes.

Strategically, his assertion that
"Likewise, no mugger in the history of larceny has ever been convinced to accept only your watch and half the money in your wallet. Terrorist organizations are muggers writ large, and negotiating with the likes of Hamas, Hezbollah, AL Aksa, Al Qaeda, Islamic Jihad, et al simply gives them proof that you are a willing victim and are prepared to hand over far more loot than you already have."
is absolutely correct, as is
Once diplomacy fails, keep the diplomats the hell out of the way. This war proves more than any previous conflict that no foreign diplomat has ever had Israel's best interest at heart. Diplomats can speak for and to civilians, but have no role whatsoever once hostilities begin... except to relay someone's interest in accepting terms of surrender. Israel made a huge blunder by not making our last diplomatic communication an order for all civilians in Southern Lebanon (below the Litani river) to evacuate within 48 hours. The human shield argument doesn't hold water here. These people watched for six long years as Hezbollah build bunkers under their houses and apartment buildings and placed rocket launchers in their back yards. They can't suddenly claim to be hostages. The time to protest to the U.N. or flee was then... not after the start of hostilities. Once the 48 hours was over Israel should have used Fuel-Air explosives to incinerate and asphyxiate every living organism remaining on or under the battlefield. Yes, these weapons are against the Geneva Convention (except to detonate mine fields), but Hezbollah is not a regular army, does not abide by any existing conventions... and is therefore not entitled to their protection.
To that I would add that a public examination and debate as to whether mosques and imams (and or mullahs) are legitimate targets of war should be undertaken. The concept of sanctuary is meaningless when there is an arms depot under a floor and orders are being issued from the pulpit. The muslims have chosen to practice warfare in a manner which dictates that their choices be honored. They have made mosques command and control centers and we should respect their decision - it's the right multicultural choice.

Olmert & c. have performed a necessary service for Israel. Their blundering incompetence has stripped away some of the delusional aspects of the Israeli political divisions and revealed areas of weakness which must be reinforced if Israel is to survive. The 'land for peace' rubbish has been given a deserved setback and perhaps the notion will be discarded entirely. The Palis don't deserve what they have today, let alone anything further.

The Lebanese have also been given some lessons to study. They may be dancing with glee in the rubble today but I haven't heard of an offer from Iran (let alone Syria) to make them whole. The promise may come but the ability to deliver anything but Russian made munitions may be lacking. The current episode is just a prelude and the main show will not end until Iran is on its knees.


David Thomson said...

“They may be dancing with glee in the rubble today but I haven't heard of an offer from Iran (let alone Syria) to make them whole.”

And don’t hold your breath. Iran and Syria only care about spending money to kill Jews. Rebuilding the somewhat secular country of Lebanon is deemed a very low priority. Only the families of the “martyrs of Israeli imperialism” will likely receive any financial assistance.

Syl said...

I don't know, David. Iran knows all about winning hearts and minds. The shia of Lebanon depend on Hezbollah and thus are loyal to them. If the Shia turn away, Hezbollah is toast.

I'm sure Iran will help.

lurker said...

If Lebanon government doesn't watch it and they're about to lose it, Hezbollah would soon convert Lebanon into a Islamic state, which increases a significant threat to Israel. This ceasefire seems to have emboldened the Arabs in the ME with their strong desire to wipe Israel from the world maps. They don't care about the damages inflicted upon themselves.

UN, France, Germany, and Italy had better be very serious in disarming Hezbollah once they step in and replace IDF.

If that happens, Israelis may need to consider immigrating to other places.

I did read something about Olmert saying that the budget cuts have deteroriated the IDF army just like Clinton did to our military over the years.

chuck said...

I don't buy Treppenwitz' military analysis. Nor do I think his total war, burn and sterialize, approach appropriate to the situation. There is no doubt much that the IDF can do to improve, but even in the current conflict they had a great advantage in training and organization. I think the main problem was more lack of direction than lack of performance.

As to the "Lebanese," I think we need to make distinctions. The Shia are just one part of the population, settled mostly in the south and interspersed with Christian villages even there. So I think it a mistake to blindly label the whole population as enemies. To do so would be a military mistake of a different sort, one Treppenwitz is guilty of. And indeed, one of the Israeli mistakes during the Lebanon occupation was antagonizing the southern Christians who had originally been glad to see them. What the US and France are trying to do now is strengthen the other players. Playing the political game in a complex foreign country is tough, but it does have its rewards if it succeeds.

Rick Ballard said...


It was the Republican Congress that allowed Bubba to have his way with the military - and his way wasn't much different than that proposed by Bush Senior.

The Israelis seem to have erred primarily by believing a line of BS dished out by their pols that is remarkably similiar to that dished out by our Dems. Giving proven liars a second chance carries a fairly high price.

I just wish we would give a program of making local sheiks in Iraq responsible for maintaining order - on penalty of losing their property through destruction for their first failure and losing their lives for the second. Fooling around killing jihadis is just a waste of time in the same way that stepping on an ant is wasted effort towards curing a problem with ants.

Israel gets a breather when they get methodical about killing islamic leaders. Killing the flunkies is wasted effort.

lurker said...

Al Qaeda dressed in drag

No wonder they enforce women to wear their Burqas.

lurker said...

Well, Rick, I don't think the world in general has the willpower and serious intent in tackling Islamofacism and other types of facisms.

lurker said...

Full transcript of Mike Wallace and the manian Iran president:

transcript (link: vital perspectives).

Peter UK said...

Lurker,So when they go to Paradise,they get logged in as one of the 72 virgins,makes a mockery of the recruitment poster,"It's a mans life in al Qaeda".

lurker said...


And do they try to put on a wig, makeup and fingernail polish before they don a Burqa?

Egypt just proposed a 1 - 600 prisoner trade between Israel and Palestine. Shalit for 600 prisoners.

Geesch, obviously, the Arabs think they have a bargaining chip.

Why did Israel release the Palestinian ministers so fast?

Peter UK said...

"And do they try to put on a wig, makeup and fingernail polish before they don a Burqa?"

Perhaps we should draw a veil over that.

terrye said...


The Arabs do not need a cease fire to embolden them, it is their natural state.

I tend to agree with chuck here and I think that the bitching at Olmert etc is uncalled for to a large extent. After all Hezbellah has been in Lebanon for decades. It is not as if they were not there for the years that Likud was running things. If it was really so easy to destroy them, why wasn't it done years ago?

It is true that we have an enemy and my guess is he is really getting a kick out of watching westerners go after each other over tactical differences.

lurker said...

One Cheer for Ceasefire


But then the dems are trying to claim Bush did not do anything to make the country safe (as opposed to safer).

Ah, now UNIFIL chief: Let us use 'strong measures' to enforce resolution

When asked how he would enforce it, he couldn't answer it.

It's gonna require alot of police work and how would they know who is a Hizbollah activist / supporter?

lurker said...

Tactical differences?

HHHMmm...the more emboldened Hizbollah is, especially when they claim UN has no weight with them, will this force UNIFIL / international forces to reality that they may have to force disarming of Hizbollah?

They weren't ready to step in until Hizbollah disarms; now, they are.


lurker said...

ANALYSIS: Bashar Assad is fighting against regional change

I wonder what this means to Syria.

They now want to grab Golan Heights through arms.

Guess a half-measured war has greatly emboldened the Arab world against Israel. Israel is going to have some serious thoughts about how to improve its IDF and soon.

lurker said...

PUK, a veil? Yeah, with eyeliner!

Peter UK said...

Lurker,Don't laugh the Taleban wore eyeshadow and kitten heels,look at how much kohl the Ayatollahs use.

Peter UK said...

If the Israelis fighting for their lives couldn't disarm Hezbollah,how on earth are a bunch of soldiers from uninvolved countries going to do it?
How many troops who get loaned to the UN by their countries are going to seriously take on a homicidal terrorist group?

lurker said...

:) You're still making me laugh.

There is such a thing called "Koheilan" stran in the breed of Arabian horses.

Koheilan is supposedly derived from Kohl. It also means "purity" as the Bedouins bred Arabian horses for thousand of years since Mohammed Ali determined which mare was pure and Kadish or a mixture of pure and Kadish (I forget what that term is).

Similar for Saluki and falcon breeding.

CF said...

Iran is in financial difficulty with a huge unemployment problem and seething resentment that so much of its money is being spent to destroy Israel who are not considered the enemy by most Iranis. I do not see that they will give much for the rebuilding. And the Arab countries for the most part wanted Iran/Hezbollah to lose.

The Oslo accord and all that followed have been a disaster. The world will never love Israel. It's time to go back to recognizing that and acting in their own self interest.
nd, yes, Olmert has to go.