Setting proper war goals

By Dr. Aaron Lerner February 23, 2007

In all the IDF’s war games, exercises and simulations, which presuppose thousands of Israeli casualties in a clash with Syria, the aim of the war is defined in identical terms: to arrive at negotiations with Damascus “from an advantageous position.” By Amir Oren, Haaretz

What in the world does this mean?

[Ted Belman: Lerner argues if Israel just wants to cede the Golan in exchange for a peace agreement with Syria, why have the war. Why not use the war to achieve a better result. Brilliant. Israel lost the war in Lebanon because it didn’t have the right goals. It feared another occupation and simply wanted an effective UN resolution. Instead it had to settle for an ineffective one. The same goes for any war Israel may have with the PA. The goal should not be return to the Roadmap but to create a whole new reality and a more advantageous result for Israel.]

That the worse case scenario for Syrian president Assad if he murders thousands of Israelis in a surprise attack is that he might have to agree to more generous security arrangements — at least on paper — in order to get the Golan?

Should that be the aim of the war for Israel?

How about the aim of the war being to convince Syria in a swift and decisive way that Assad made a devastatingly wrong move for his regime by starting the war in the first place?

How about the aim of the war also being to send a message to the leadership of the Jewish State’s other neighboring nations that war against Israel is not a good career move?

And if negotiations are a consideration, how about creating conditions under which Damascus sees fit to concede the Golan to Israel as it has Alexandretta to Turkey?

It is easy to understand how Israelis who fervently believe that utopian peace is only a withdrawal away might consider the previous goal acceptable.

But it is the height of irresponsibility to allow Israel’s military planning to be hijacked by what is, at best, an ideological fantasy.

February 25, 2007 | 1 Comment »

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1 Comment / 1 Comment

  1. “…he [Assad] might have to agree to more generous security arrangements.”

    Why would he “have to agree” with anything? He’s gotten away with just about everything he’s been doing for years/decades, and he knows that the worst possible scenario for him is that he’ll be able to walk away with (a) Israel being told to stop, and (b) lots of funding from everyone to rebuild his “social infrastructure.”

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