Monday, October 05, 2009

Diseased Thinking

"with what is now known about the costs in blood and treasure that the U.S.-Israeli relationship has imposed on the U.S., its key ally, Israel could fall within five years...Absent external pressure, Israeli behavior will not change."

There's a lot of misinformation in this article, but especially misleading is the thinking that U.S. military and economic support keeps Israel alive. This probably has its roots in the lie circulated by Arab leaders in the aftermath of the Six-Day War that it was the U.S. and Britain that defeated them, not Israel.

Consider that until the 1967 war the Soviet Union and France were Israel's biggest arms suppliers, and that U.S. support for Israel didn't really take off until the 1973 war. How did that happen?

In October 1973, after initial retreats from the sudden attacks of the Egyptian and Syrian armies on Yom Kippur, the holiest day of the Jewish year, the Israel Defense Forces defeated the Egyptian 2nd Army and totally surrounded and cut off the Egyptian 3rd Army. The U.S., trying to pry Egypt from the Soviet orbit as part of the Cold War, didn't want to see the Egyptian Army destroyed.

Thus the U.S. issued Israel an ultimatum, and Israel faced a choice: either destroy the Egyptian 3rd Army and forgo substantial U.S. military and economic aid, or let the Egyptian Army remain trapped, but unmolested and re-supplied with food and water.

Israel chose to let the trapped Egyptians remain alive, new cease-fire lines were drawn, and eventually Israel permitted the evacuation of all but a fraction of the Egyptians. After a few years, Egypt and Israel signed a peace treaty.

So U.S. aid isn't what keeps Israel strong enough to destroy Arabs. U.S. aid is a massive bribe to Israel NOT to destroy or uproot Arabs and crush their armies. After all, everyone says Israel is the strongest military power in the region, and that it's the policy of the U.S. to keep it that way.

Now suppose Israel is faced with the prospect of decreased U.S. support, or increased U.S. support for its enemies who wish to destroy Israel and slaughter at least its Jewish population. What do you think Israel's response will be?

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