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So, what do people make of the cease fire? I've already seen people calling it yet another defeat for Israel. By "defeat" the commentators meant that Israel's stated objectives for entering Gaza have not been achieved. Specifically, Hamas still exists, it's still armed, the smuggling routes have not been closed, rockets only stopped firing because Hamas agreed to a ceasefire, etc.

The interesting thing is a couple of posts back I suggested that Israel could have asked the US to pressure Egypt into shutting down the smuggling routes instead of enacting/maintaining harsh economic sanctions and/or launching a large scale military offensive. Apparently the US, at Israel's request, did just that as part of the ceasefire arrangement. Interestingly, as of yesterday Egypt said that they weren't going to do it even though apparently they said they would. I suspect they are doing the usual... tell the Arab/Muslims one thing to keep them happy, do another thing to keep the West happy. But we'll have to see.

Steve

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Battlefront/Steve, 200 posts 6820 views in this thread !

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Now with the ceasefire in place... Isn't it time for ordering us all a nice little IDF module from your 3rd-party-contractor to buy? (no delay for Normandy so) ;-)

I just quick-browsed the back story in the manual again. I think there is still some wiggling room for IDF-action at the Lebanese and Golan boarders, even a preemptive-trip into Gaza to keep that place quiet, while the USA and Allies deals with Syria, could have been possible...

btw, did Battlefront ever got some heat from Syrian officials, Syrian citizens or even threats from radical Muslims (more then we fellow Westerners already get on a daily basis for - living our lives - reprinting nice caricatures - having troops deployed in Afghanistan - or more or less supporting Israel...) for releasing an 'entertainment product' which is just as much a piece of fiction like an Hollywood movie or an A.McNab or R.Marcinco novel?

No need to shy away.

Israel with its high number of English speaking vets, reservists and active duty personal would be also a prosperous market for the whole series. It doesn't has to be in Hebrew either ;-)

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Of course Isreal did not remove Hamas or their ability to launch rockets, but I would not go as far as to call it a defeat for Isreal as that implies that Hamas was somehow victorious. That is, however, unless you call hundreds of Hamas including leaders killed, hundreds of Palestinian civilians killed while Hamas uniformed police and leaders hide, thousands more wounded and squalid conditions compared to the West Bank even before the IDF attack a victory, then yes, Hamas was victorious!

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Claims that anyone 'won' anything with all that ghetto blasting are far fetched. For Israeli government it was a nice opportunity to boost their standings in the coming elections, and really the only option they had in that sense, but it didn't bring any decisive victory, and if the result is an end to the Gaza embargo, it will be a slap on Olmert's face. Meanwhile Hamas emerged from the debris probably more popular than ever, and I'm not talking just about Gaza, even solid Fatah supporters in West Bank were cheering Hamas. But while expectation of martyrdom is pretty much a requirement for joining Hamas, IDF did deal considerable damage to their organization and munitions, and Hamas' performance proved true the suspicions that they know poop about warfare.

And they both declare victory to themselves... pfft.

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I did find the calls from senior Hamas officials, sometime last week, rather silly. Saying stuff about blood was not spilled in vain and victory over Israel was nearly at hand, etc. That seemed to be a wee-bit out of context with reality ;)

Personally, I think it's a draw. Unlike Lebanon, Israel withdrew without much in the way of casualties, shock, or domestic discontent. So in that sense Israel didn't lose. Hamas, on the other hand, suffered much more than Hezbollah did in terms of damage and losses of personnel. Therefore, I find it hard to call the fact that Israel had set unrealistically high expectations for the action a victory for Hamas. But I don't think it can be said that Hamas suffered a defeat since it's still there and the local support base is even more anti-Israeli than they were a few weeks ago.

As I see it, Israel could not really afford to come out with a draw while Hamas certainly could. Especially since Israel would like everybody to think that if you attack Israel you lose. This action in Gaza reinforces the results of Lebanon... and that is you can hit Israel and survive to tell about it.

Steve

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Yes, nobody 'won' anything, except for increased support among their own people. Hamas support among Palestinians is stronger than ever, as is the support for Israeli lawmakers involved in the offensive by Israeli citizens. International support seems to be split in support of Israel and Hamas by Western and Arab countries, respectively, and as always. Unfortunately this probably paves the way for more intense fighting in the future.

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Well insurgent army types like Hamas cannot be literally beaten with military force. It's like Hydra's heads. You killed one and then ten others pop up to avenge and continue the fighting. Gaza has way too many young people and it must be rather easy to recruit some new blood after what happened. So, while Israelis think they have achieved victory and now can sleep better I suspect this victory will be short lived. It is the law of the universe, action brings action and violence brings violence. They just gave the palestinians more reasons to die for than to live.

Israel showed its teeth to the enemy but what were their goals really? To cease the rockets? These are not scud missiles, these are even homemade rockets that can be easily launched anytime agaisnt Israel. Using your state of the art army against these threats is like trying to kill flies with an AK-47. And I wouldnt bet against numbers palestinians have reported about the relatively small number of dead Hamas fighters. Civilians are far more vulnerable than them. Or the warehouses hit? Literally every building in Gaza has a basement with a cache of weapons.

Domestically it may seem like a victory but internationaly it just filled papers with cartoons of IDF soldiers with star armbands executing unarmed people. And UN and amnesty international are directly accusing Israel for crimes agaisnt humanity. So, what is left really? A good election result? At that price?

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(First off, let me admit that I have not gone through and read each post in this thread, so forgiving me if I'm rehashing...)

As far as I have observed, the factor which has gone conspicuously not discussed in regard to this war is the pressure that Israeli officials (both political and military) must have been getting from the populace in southern Israeli -- the ones suffering, both directly and indirectly, from the Hamas rocket/mortar attacks -- leading up to the repeated airstrikes on Gaza and then sending in the IDF.

In the end, though, isn't this a war between ideologies, a conflict in which there can ultimately be no mediation because at any given time one side refuses to say "we will no longer attack [the other side]"? Just because the Israelis cease their attacks on Gaza doesn't mean Hamas will no longer launch rockets into Israel. Conversely, even if Hamas were to say "we will no longer attack Israel", that doesn't mean that individuals in the Gaza Strip would not strap explosives to themselves and try to infiltrate across the border and blow themselves up in marketplaces.

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Considering the question of who lost and who won from the point of view of "asymmetric warfare", I would go as far as to say this is a defeat for Israel and a victory for HAMAS, even thought this won't be apparent for quite some time yet until all the data is in and various "war crimes" investigations have come to their conclusions.

1. Israel has failed to ultimately defeat HAMAS. True, HAMAS has taken a beating, but they will recover, and have more support now than ever before.

2. Israel has failed to stop the rockets. True, HAMAS is honouring the ceasefire now, but has also sworn to continue to obtain and manufacture the "holy weapons" as they call them for future attacks. Israel says it will revert back to full-scale war against HAMAS if they do this but politically that might prove difficult and probably wouldn't happen for the odd rocket now and again.

3. Israel is further now from being safe and secure in a two-state solution - Palestine and Israel living alongside each other in peace - than ever before. They would probably have had to remove HAMAS entirely for that, which they failed to do.

4. Israel has lost huge amounts of support around the world. The devastation in Gaza looks to the rest of the world like collective punishment, indiscriminate use of force, war crimes, illegal weapon use, and an attempt to wreck the civil infrastructure built using international aid money to help the Palestinians achieve statehood.

I cannot see how this can bee seen as anything but a bad mistake by Israel.

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Steve,

Having just finished Clay Blair's phenomenal THE FORGOTTEN WAR: America In Korea 1950-1953, I find myself astonished as to your characterization of the Chinese Army in combat there. Your perception seems to be that the Chinese simply threw their troops into a meatgrinder generally, and accomplished nothing of consequence. Hardly. Time and again, the Chinese shattered even dug in UN units, levered whole armies out of position, sent them streaming rearward in retreat, only to find the way barred already by forces which had infiltrated unseen or executed a high speed bypass maneuver following the initial breakthrough. It took everything we had to stop them, and the situation was so bad that the U.S. seriously planned to evacuate South Korea outright if it looked as though the Pusan Perimeter (a perimeter fortified zone of ~50 x 100 miles) couldn't be held a second time. There was serious consideration given to nuking the Chinese armies in South Korea, but their belt hugging tactics, together with numerous other factors, killed this idea. When tacair was unavailable, the Chinese forces did terrible things to all they encountered. Troop handling was of a very high order, with commands in night attacks given via bugles, whistles, signal flares and even flutes, and the Chinese did fearsome damage with their mortars and artillery, much of the latter obtained from UN forces, including quite a bit from the U.S. Army. Certainly, it wasn't our style of warfare, but the Chinese used what they had and used it well, even while operating on nothing by our standards amidst truly horrific weather. Had the U.S. not a) gotten sufficient artillery, especially 155 howitzers and guns, plus 8 inch howitzers, into the theater and B) learned anew how to properly integrate and mass all fires, we would've been driven from the country. It's that simple. Tacair could and did clobber the Chinese on occasion, but often, it was tasked for interdiction, ineffective because of lack of CAS training and emphasis, or simply prevented from flying by awful weather.

Blair's book was a real eye popper for me, as is this oh so volatile thread, but it gave me a whole new perspective on and respect for the ground war in Korea. Prior to this, my major read had been S.L.A. Marshall's THE RIVER & THE GAUNTLET, which is but a small piece of the action. The scope, scale and ferocity of ground combat there were simply astounding. The initial Chinese attack was 300,000 strong, and that pales when compared to forces committed later.

Regards,

John Kettler

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Does anyone else think its more than coincidental that Israel pushes for a ceasefire and pull out of Gaza just as Bush steps out of office and Obama becomes president?

It almost seems like the whole military adventure was timed to take advantage of the transition. Which is one of the reasons why I question the whole idea that this was done merely done to defend Israel from rocket attacks by Hamas.

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There are definitely Palestinians who think Hamas is bad for them. But I'm not sure there are more of them now than there were before the invasion. This is why I think it would have been better for Israel to have let Hamas alone (for the most part). I'm sure they would have screwed things up and lost favor with the bulk of Palestinians. Now, a Palestinian has to choose who to be mad at... the ones who invited the bombs and the ones who actually dropped them. Human nature says there is going to be more anger directed at Israel.

John,

You misunderstood my comments about the Chinese Army. We were talking about low level leadership and how that translates to a military which can achieve results without requiring numerical advantage. Depending on which casualty statistics you use, the Chinese lost twice as many men as all UN nations involved combined. Almost as much as the North Koreans, which basically got chewed up and spat out after their initial success.

Sure, the Chinese showed VERY good skills in the field overall. Same can be said for the Red Army or the NVA. But since I wasn't saying that these forces were ineffective because of a lack of professional NCOs it's not relevant.

As far as China achieving nothing... not at all... they rolled back a North Korean defeat to a stalemate where things were, pretty much, back to square one. This is why it can't be said that the UN forces "won" the war, because they had a chance to come out ahead and they merely came out where they started from.

Steve

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Does anyone else think its more than coincidental that Israel pushes for a ceasefire and pull out of Gaza just as Bush steps out of office and Obama becomes president?

It almost seems like the whole military adventure was timed to take advantage of the transition. Which is one of the reasons why I question the whole idea that this was done merely done to defend Israel from rocket attacks by Hamas.

Yeah, the whole madness and slaughter, above everything else, was just because they could. Because of a stupid "window of opportunity" before the inauguration a president, no less.

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Let me some more things, I dont know how you think of us as terroists? We arent bombing Gaza for 8 years in a row are we? We are setting up hospitals inside of Gaza, Im not sure that Hamas is doing that near Ber-Sheba and Ashdod. We have asked for peace again and again only to get nil. When the cease fire ended and we asked for another they said no. I dont get why the Gazins voted the HAMAS....

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Let me some more things, I dont know how you think of us as terroists? We arent bombing Gaza for 8 years in a row are we? We are setting up hospitals inside of Gaza, Im not sure that Hamas is doing that near Ber-Sheba and Ashdod. We have asked for peace again and again only to get nil. When the cease fire ended and we asked for another they said no. I dont get why the Gazins voted the HAMAS....

I am a strong supporter of Israel.

Many here are having second thoughts about our support for your great country after witnessing developments in the attack in Gaza. The reports on the number of Israeli civilian casualties from Hamas rockets (last I heard it was ~20 deaths?) compared to ~1,000 deaths of Gaza civilians is quite worrisome.

Our support for Israel is turning into empathy for the Palestinian civilians! Get your act together, Israel!

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Patrocles

Interesting observations about your changing support for Israel. I too, like you, am a strong supporter of Israel - and remain so.

With regard to your comment about many "here" (presumably Americans) having second thoughts about their support for Israel - by implication because of the disproportionate casualty figures, could I draw your attention to Operation Phantom Fury (Second battle of Fallujah) April 2004? Consider the following estimates:

On the one hand US service personnel KIA - 94, versus - 1,350 KIA insurgents.

"Collateral" damage - estimated 6,000 civliian deaths and 200,000 internally displaced persons (presumably homeless immediately after the fighting). Allegations about the use of white phosporus in built up civilian areas.

Now, do you believe that those same people are also reconsidering their support for the US Marines?

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But its funny when an a doctor in Gaza has proven that Hamas were lieing with there death tolls of civies, and found out that what the Hamas are doing is putting the same body in 4 diffrent places so from 1 death, to 4...People dont seem to like reading that stuff and instead read about how we are "Masacering" the Palistinians.

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Israelistyle,

Welcome to the forum and I wish you a have a nice day. :)

So far the nice part of my post.

You asked 'why palestinians vote Hamas'. Well, I guess something or someone gave them a reason to do so. As a Israeli citizen I guess you are perhaps in a better position then me to answer that question. That is, unless we have a Palestine in this forum ofcourse.

The last post you made in this thread doesn't hold any reference to any verifyable sources, I would be conscious on this forum with posting subjective comments about a very delicate conflict that is not finished yet.

Myself, i'm a strong supporter of justice and in my opinion justice isn't being served by the Israeli government and its policies, even the creation of the current state is, in my opinion, not favourable for all involved. And thus it doesn't serve justice. So, you can say I favour Hamas above the Israel state.

I don't have any problems with jews or israeli individuals in general, by the way.

I once had two Israeli room mates (Jewish) when I lived in Rotterdam, and learned a lot from them about how the Palestinian people are being treated like dogs. The future presented to an average Palestine boy is so depressing that they often see warfare as the only option (It is a fact that Hamas is conducting asymetric warfare against the state of Israel. You can call it terrorism but they don't have an army, so if they want to fight a war this is their only option. And in that case, you should call the war that Israel fights against the Hamas government 'state terrorism' also.)

Please read the following website provided by the United Nations.

http://www.un.int/palestine/history.shtml

More specific:

http://www.un.int/palestine/imp4.shtml

For example, Itzel and Stern (and other) 'terror' groups are comparable to modern day Hamas, maybe even worse. They are to greater extent responsible for the creation of the state of Israel in its current form. The people of Palestine never forgot the year 1948 and still feel they are under occupation of an enemy force.

I won't jump to any conclusions about how the Palestinian people feel now, I let that over to everyone owns imagination.

To make a long story short; I guess the Israelian - Palestinian conflict is like a glass that is half full and half empty. It is just from which side you are looking. Would I be an Israelian I think that I wouldn't want to care about what happened in 1948, because that would be like putting a mine under my own country.

However I am not.

I am not surprised Hamas keeps shooting rockets. What can they do else? Did Israel treat the palestinians so good they are happily going to their work/business everyday? Israel has controlled Gaza for a very long time. Since they left it, the palestinians didn't send any nice presents so to say. They did send rockets however. So I guess its obvious they didn't like something Israel did too them. Then they all voted Hamas which has as one of its principles the destruction of the state of Israel.

I'm sorry if i'm repeating myself, but WHY do you think they voted HAMAS? Perhaps Hamas leaders make the best shoarma?

To answer your question; yes I do think the current leaders of the Israel state are barbarians. In fact, I quite agree with what Prime ministier Erdogan told to Shimon Peres: "As long as it goes about killing babys on the beach, you are quite competent indeed". That is my opinion, 1200 deaths is a too high death toll for what has been accomplished by the Israel incursion. I understand that a reaction was un avoidable after the rockets had been fired by Hamas. But Hamas claimed that was a reaction on the killing of one of their leaders. Which was a reaction to [...], which was a reaction to [...], which was a reaction to [...], [...] oo [...].

> I think a discussion on this forum (CMSF) about Gaza should not get into too much subjective comments. This will probably result in toes being stepped on and so on. Perhaps we should keep to the facts and forget our opinions when we are here.

Have a nice day, Cheers.

EDIT, by the way; I was just looking at my SIG. Perhaps the Israeli leaders should read their Sun Tzu again, becaus 'the best way to win a war, is to win a war without having to fight.' Probably these killings are better for Hamas then for Israel.

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