What's being spun in the media with regards to Israeli tactics (or lack there of), paints them as red faced Zealots, kicking a country in the butt, in response to the killing and kidnapping of several of it's soldiers in a border skirmish on the Golan Heights. Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert is acting like an Al Qaeda suicide bomber, in Lebanon.
Smashing things around the house (Gaza) isn't stemming the rage, so like a rage-aholic, first it's the walls, then assault and murder.
This view appeals to everyone concerned; it reflects an adolescent reaction common in the region. Western media eat it up because it's an simple story, it sells - busy western voters want to care, they just haven't time for depth.
Form the western point of view, they're enemies, Iran and Syria may err in thinking their Olmert is stupid or insane, providing them a rationalization away from the thought that a regional war is at hand - and thus not preparing for it.
If one wanted to take Damascus, and thus start a regional war, a number of must-do's exist:
- Ensure the war doesn't leak out of the immediate area; Israel, Lebanon, Syria.
- The Syrian Army must be drawn to a fight and its mechanized capability destroyed, preferably in the Syrian desert.
- US forces (or NATO) must end up in control of Damascus when the fighting stops.
To accomplish this, imagine a 'hard cup' southwest of Damascus, accompanied by a small operation to secure the Turkish boarder to the north; an advance on the centre by a large creeping force, and a fast main force that slices along the Jordanian boarder, completing the encirclement of Damascus.
What caught my interest today was the fighting in Ba'labbak. With-in this plan the city represents the northern arch of that 'hard cup'.
UPDATE: August 9, 2006 Thinking the same thing at Anti-war.com, 7 days later, no connection.
Also, check my link from the article to the opinion of Edward Luttwak, senior adviser to the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies. He thinks the best way to stabilize Iraq is disengagement. With in this plan US forces would withdraw to US bases inside Iraq. Using air power and special operations commandos US commanders could create a 'Balance of Tensions' inside Iraq. This frees US forces to then 'stabilize' other regional players; like Syria and Iran.
(Republished with grammar, style and SEO changes May 23 2007)
Link to original post in FilterBlogs/War Blogs.