Glick on Gaza

Caroline Glick gives her unconventional perspective on the Gaza campaign in an interview with Kathryn Lopez at The Corner. Remember that Glick, like me, thinks that the Gaza campaign is a fraud (see this and this). The Israeli war cabinet (Olmert, Livni, and Barak) are not seeking to defeat Hamas, but to smooth the way to Israel’s surrender, first, in the form of a negotated settlement that would make anti-Israel powers such as the EU responsible for policing Gaza’s borders, and, second, in the form of a Palestinian state.

Below is the key segment of the interview:

Q: What does the fighting mean for the future of Hamas-led Gaza?

A: There are four possible outcomes for Israel’s current campaign—two would be positive and two would be negative. The best outcome would be for Israel to overthrow Hamas’s regime and destroy its capacity to wage war against Israel or threaten Israel in any significant way. To achieve this goal, Israel would have to reassert control over Gaza. Since the Israeli government has already stated that Israel will not reassert control over Gaza, and since reasserting control would be extremely embarrassing for the current leadership, which led Israel out of Gaza with promises of peace three and a half years ago, it is fairly clear that this outcome will not be forthcoming.

The next best outcome would be something analogous to the end of the 1991 Gulf War. Although the U.S. left Saddam Hussein in power after that war, it asserted control over the no-fly zones and set up a clear sanctions regime that by and large prevented Iraq from rearming and apparently prevented Iraq from reconstituting its weapons of mass destruction programs.

Here too, chances that this outcome will prevail are not great because the Israeli government has already stated that it is unwilling to reassert control over Gaza’s border with Egypt which is where most of Hamas’s weapons are imported from.

The third possible outcome, which is already not a good one, would be for Israel to end its current campaign and just walk away with Hamas still in charge. In due course, Hamas would reconstitute its military forces and missile arsenals and reinstate its campaign against Israel. The positive aspect of such a future is simply that, subject to domestic political constraints, Israel would be able to go in and bomb Hamas anytime it felt that threatened. Israel would be under no international obligation to avoid defending itself, beyond the regular anti-Israel pressure.

The fourth, and worst possible outcome is that Israel reaches some sort of internationally sponsored ceasefire agreement whereby foreign powers the EU, the U.S., Egypt, Turkey, or whomever agree to form some sort of international monitoring mechanism to oversee Gaza’s borders with Israel and Egypt. The reason this would be the worst outcome is that Israel’s experience with such forces in Lebanon and in Gaza itself has been wholly negative. These international forces will never fight Israel’s battles for it. Instead they inevitably shield terrorists from Israeli attack while ignoring the terrorists’ moves to rearm, reassert political control over their populations and reinstate their assaults against Israel. Moreover, because these international forces fear the terrorists they shield, they tend to side with them against Israel and blame Israel for any violence that takes place.

Unfortunately, this is the outcome that the Israeli government is now pushing for in its diplomatic contacts relating to the war in Gaza.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 06, 2009 11:58 PM | Send

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