Israel at War

The Hamas attack on Israel, an attack that deliberately targeted Israeli civilians, was fully backed by Iran. In fact. Iran continues to celebrate the attack, with posts on X like the one below. 

“God willing, the cancer of the usurper Zionist regime will be eradicated at the hands of the Palestinian people and the Resistance forces throughout the region.” #AlAqsaStorm

It would be reasonable to think that, if nothing else, the sheer savagery of the attack would give a moment’s pause to the progressive left as well as the Trumpkin right. But reasonableness was left in the dust a long tome ago. Already we are seeing the usual moral equivalence and calls for “restraint”. 

Congresswoman Cory Bush, an expert in moral equivalence, posted a statement on X that read in part: 

 ”I am heartbroken by the ongoing violence in Palestine and Israel… following attacks by Hamas militants on Israeli border towns and Israeli military bombardment of Gaza… I urge an immediate ceasefire and de-escalation to prevent further loss of life.”

Which translated into English means that Hamas should be free to attack Israel and its citizens without fear of retribution. And just in case anyone missed the message, she went on to say: 

“As part of achieving a just and lasting peace, we must do our part to stop this violence and trauma by ending U.S. government support for Israeli military occupation and apartheid.”

Then there is Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY), who was recently caught on tape pulling a false fire-alarm to slow down Congressional proceedings. He weighed in with this gem of moral equivalence: 

“We need a way to end this deadly violence that is killing and traumatizing generations of Israelis and Palestinians alike—including the blockade of Gaza.”

Maybe it is time to call this what it is. Hamas, for one, is a terrorist organization; in fact terror is its raison d’etre. For example during the attack, Hamas gunmen knocked on Israeli doors and when Israeli citizens answered, assuming it was Israeli police officers, the Hamas terrorists gunned them down. The reason why is obvious; the Hamas gunmen wanted to instill terror in the Israeli civilian population. 

The attack, which apparently caught the Israeli intelligence services by surprise, was no spur of the moment affair; it had to be planned far in advance. Probably for symbolic reasons the planners chose the 50th anniversary of the Yom Kippur war to launch their attack.  The fact that it will almost certainly disrupt and delay an Israeli—Saudi rapprochement was just icing on the cake. 

Soon we will see more calls for “restraint” on the part of the Israelis; for “cool heads” to prevail, for engaging in “dialogue” and for preserving what we laughingly refer to as the “peace process”.  Needless to say, Hamas, Hezbollah and other Iranian proxies will show no interest in any kind of restraint at all. They intend to wipe Israel off the face of the map. 

Iran a totalitarian state, has, through its proxies, launched a war against Israel, a democratic state. They did so for the express purpose of “eradicating the Zionist regime” as the Ayatollah puts it. While there should be little doubt that the mullahs are in a panic over the prospect of an Israeli—Saudi peace agreement, we should not be under any illusion that Iran is interested in peace under any circumstances. They simply want to destroy Israel and they are not going to quit trying. Nor are they shy about it. 

The Israelis are no doubt aware of this, even if a good portion of the West is not. Which begs the question, What is Israel going to do about it? 

The source of the problem has to do with the totalitarian nature of the Iranian state and (of course) its proxies. There is no discussion and no dissent. We are left to assume that the powers that be in Iran, Hamas, Hezbollah and their fellow travelers speak for the Palestinian people. But since dissent is dealt with harshly, sometimes by imprisonment or even execution, it is impossible to know.

All of which makes Israeli decisions extraordinarily difficult. They can, for instance, obliterate the infrastructure Hamas maintains in Gaza. But that is not a permanent solution. A permanent solution requires dealing with Iran. Which also suggests that Israel is going to have to think long and hard (again) about the ramifications of a nuclear Iran, facilitated by Western naiveté. That in turn will lead to a decision about whether to decisively attack Iran with the intent of bringing down the mullahs. It should be fairly clear that time is not on the side of the Israelis. 

A final consideration is that maybe, just maybe, this latest episode will knock some sense into the empty (and mostly) Republican heads of Congressmen and Senators who are hesitant about providing more aid to Ukraine. 

It should be obvious that with Iran waging a proxy war in the Mideast, Russia launching a war of aggression in Ukraine, China building up its war machine and making noises about Taiwan, that the America needs to build up its defense capabilities and solidify its alliances. 

The idea that America is stretched too thin to accomplish this is patently absurd. U.S. GDP for  2023 is projected to be a shade under $26 trillion, per capita it’s about $80 thousand. Russia’s GDP (PPP) is estimated at about $5 trillion, per capita (PPP) is about $28 thousand. Iran’s GDP (PPP) is projected to be about $1.7 trillion, per capita (PPP) GDP is about $20 thousand. China’s GDP (PPP) is projected to be a bit below $19 trillion, per capita (PPP) GDP is about $11.5 thousand.

In a nutshell: the aggregate GDP’s of China, Russia and Iran combined are less than that of the U.S. On a per capita basis the combined GDPs of Iran, Russia and China amounts to about $60 thousand—which is 25% below America’s. 

Assuming that the current administration, despite its best efforts,  doesn’t succeed in running the economy into the ground, America has the wherewithal to fully defend itself and still be a beacon for democracy, the rule of law and free markets. It’s simply a matter of choice. Let’s hope that America makes the right one. 


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