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International opinion is becoming irrelevant

Reader comment on item: Why Does Hamas Want War?

Submitted by Michael S (United States), Jul 11, 2014 at 18:01

Everything you have said about HAMAS, Daniel, is true. Some other things are also coming true, however, at the same time:

1. As the world's response to these things becomes increasingly predictable (Israel is always blamed, even when they do nothing), world opinion should figure less and less into Israeli planning. Why should Israel fret, for instance, about killing Arabs, when the world gets equally incensed about their adding extra toilets to their caravans?

2. The ability of Israel's enemies to back up their threats becomes less every year. The US has effectively withdrawn from the Middle East (The few hundred US troops in Gaza are essentially cover for a withdrawal), the Arabs are engaged in fratricide for the forseeable future, and Mr. Obama's arrogance is embroiling him in conflicts with friend and foe alike. Meanwhile, the Russians have their fists stuck in tar babies in Syria-Iraq and the Ukraine, Turkey is enmeshed in internal dissent, repression, corruption, scandal and a Kurdish resurgence, and China has less apetite than ever for engagement with the Arabs and Iranians.

3. Oil is no longer an effective weapon against the West, so the Arabs and Iranians have lost their leverage. The US is now the world's largest oil producer, and Israel stands to become an important supplier of natural gas to Europe. In every economic front, the advantage has turned to Israel: Even Egypt's Suez Canal now has lost its shipping monopoly to the Ashdod-to-Eilat railroad and pipeline.

Increasingly, international opinion is becoming irrelevant to Israeli military planning. As Iran continues to be encouraged by the West to enhance its nuclear weapons capability, moreover (Western companies are drooling from the lips, to sign new Iranian contracts); and as Hamas and Hizbullah rockets continue to increase in range and accuracy, Israel's strategic planning will come more and more on a hair trigger. Whether this is what the world wants to achieve or not, this is what it is getting; and empty threats from Obama and the others are not going to reverse it.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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