Thursday, August 17, 2006

How should Israel prepare for the next round?

Efraim Inbar has sage advice in the Jerusalem Post on what Israel should do to prepare for the next round. Here it is, plain as day.
SUBDUING SYRIA is the key to managing the Lebanese crisis, to rolling back Hizbullah, and to weakening Iran and its radical Islamist influence in the Middle East. In order to attain victory in the next military engagement, Israel should target Damascus.
Just to be clear, nobody is talking about mounting a surprise attack on Syria. But it is perfectly reasonable for Israel to deliver an ultimatum to Bashar Asad, "stop shipping weapons to Hezbollah or we will strike your country." This would be particularly effective if backed up with a security council resolution against Syria supplying terrorists in Iraq and Syria. Putting this kind of pressure on Syria would be a huge win for the United States in Iraq as well as for Israel. And far from being without precedent, this move would be almost a mirror image of the 1998 campaign by Turkey to stop terrorists attacking their country from operating out of Syria.

Hannah Begelman-Sevsay writing in the Turkish Daily News says that this should have been Israel's strategy from the beginning.

The biggest problem with this strategy is that currently it is Iran and their meddling in Iraq and nuclear ambitions, not Syria that is perceived as the greatest threat to American policy in the region and at this critical juncture I would think that the security council would be loathe to take up this matter and would not welcome the distraction if Israel pursued it on their own.

So for now, this plan probably goes on the shelf. This is another good argument for dealing with Iran quickly rather than allowing them to continue to stall.


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