A former officer weighs in.
I have extensive first hand experience there both as a soldier and as a frequent visitor.
Follows a simple recounting of what I know.
The military personnel now serving the perimeter and posted at crossings and assigned to nearby community security details, sea and air operations are roughly in the division range. General Gallant was in charge of the GAZA Division.
About the same number of soldiers as before the disastrous self serving strategic blunder by Sharon and his ilk.
Presently at least a squadron of AH-64’s and a number of F-16’s are dedicated to the sector.
In the past those services were limited if at all used.
The number of drones in service there is substantial.
The motorized units at least double in number those in place while Gush Katif existed.
At that time the Gaza threat was considered tactical at military level.
Today is strategic and tactical.
Many of the multiple casualties encounters during the Gush Katif era were caused by the “safety” ideologists setting up many soldiers at isolated perimeters.
Note that during major operations there today, a very limited number of troops are hurt.
NOTE: An isolated military unit or soldier are sitting ducks which will surely be taken down by the enemy if enough time is given to said enemy.
Gaza posts an idled International grade airport, (interdicted), and a updated Ocean going vessel port, (blockaded).
Gaza will without a doubt evolve further into a major strategic theat as they gain control of the port and airfield.
This would not have existed as during Gush Katif there was no airport and the port was abandoned.
Most experienced military personnel can easily point to a major strategic debacle in Gaza the consequences of which will be made more and more evident as time goes by.
Woe to all of us as those facilities will become operational for Iran.
Before the act by Sharon we had control over the whole area, since “disengagement” Gaza has turned a trainig and staging center for the worst enemies.
ABOUT SOLDIERS SERVING. Being a soldier is a high risk job and the pretense that we must make them “safe” as a main stand alone condition is not well thought.
We must make them deadly and thus they will be safer. Soldiers with rubber bullets or paint ball guns hardly represent a worthy threat to enemies….
My Commanding Officer during Lebanon ! was Sgan Aluf Hamze, Druze. I saw with my own eyes how the islamic units would simply run as they got wind that our Regiment was moving in. They knew that Hamze’s boys had a fame of seldom taiking prisoners during previous wars.
Manhigut Yahudit weighs in
I’m not logged in either, so please indulge me.
Chodoff and Ne’eman are correct about the “Disengagement” from their point of view. Yes, it took too many soldiers and other resources, etc., to protect such a small area. The problem is not their analysis. The problem is their point of view.
They look at the situation from an “Israeli” point of view instead of from a “Jewish” point of view.
Prior to the Rabin/Arafat handshake, it only took Israel 3 jeeps to control Gaza. 12 years later, it took Israel 65 tanks plus numerous other army resources to control Gaza. The problem was not Gaza, per se. The problem was the “peace process” brought on by Rabin.
This “peace” shifted us from “Jewish Justice” to “pragmatism” in our minds, and from strength to weakness in the minds of the Arabs. And as you have pointed out so many times, Ted, the Arabs view weakness as an invitation.
Gaza is clearly part of the Land of Israel (see Genesis and Joshua), and as such, how can we just give away something that G-d has given us? We can’t.
Chodoff will say that we did it to save lives. That’s his argument, but the reality is that many Jews have been killed as a result of the Disengagement and the Peace Process in general. More Jews have died from terror attacks since 93 than during the first 45 years of the state.
And since we are shattering myths, it should not have been called “Disengagement” because we didn’t disengage from Gaza. It truthfully should be called the “Expulsion” because it was simply an expulsion of 10,000 wonderful Jews.
Now, back to the Chodoff/Ne’eman argument. They claim that it cost Israel too many resources to guard Israel when we had our settlements in Gaza. However, this is so simply because of the self-imposed Israeli policy of restraint used against her enemies. Israel, as we have seen with all of our eyes for so many years, let’s her enemies attack her and her citizens virtually with impunity. The Gaza Arabs sent an average of 4.5 rockets/missiles/mortars into settlements and towns both inside pre-67 Israel and into Gaza with impunity for almost 5 years without response. Then Israel responded by running out of Gaza and handing it to the enemy. If Israel had, for instance, told the Arabs in Gaza that each time that they shoot one missile into Israel – or commit one act of terror against a Jew – that an Arab-occupied town in Gaza would be wiped off the map, and if Israel had done it just once, then the Arabs would have understood, and in my opinion, with history as a guide, the Arabs would have stopped the rockets and shootings after this one display of force. This is actually the policy of Alan Dershowitz, the noted leftist, and not the policy of an “extremist”.
But the Israeli governments want to get rid of the Jewish presence in Yesha, because they are scared of the political influence of the Jews who live in these areas. They are scared of Jews who will run Israel from a Jewish perspective instead of from an Israeli perspective running the show.
The Jewish point of view – noted often by Ariel Sharon himself – is that when an enemy comes to kill you, you get up before him and kill him first. It was very ironic that a leftist like Dershowitz should advocate much closer to the Jewish point of view than the observant Chodoff and Ne’eman.
Ariel Sharon said that the World will love us after we leave Gaza. Well, we’ve had the Lebanon War, Cast Lead, Goldstone and the Flotilla, and the World’s anti-Semitism is growing to bounds not seen since 1945. It appears that the World now hates us more than ever because we are running away from ourselves and our G-d, and it is my opinion that they want us to stand up and be Jewish in our actions and not be Israeli.
We’ve tried appeasement in all of its forms. Maybe we should try running to our roots, our heritage, our history and our G-d?