The myth of Israeli ‘deterrence’

July 19, 2018 by Martin Sherman - Mida via JNS
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For more than a decade, Israel has inflicted heavy damage on Hamas. It has, however, never really managed to deter it in the real sense of the word—i.e., of breaking its will to continue the fight…writes Martin Sherman/JNS.

Martin Sherman

True, it has regularly forced it into several inter-bellum ceasefire, which it has always exploited to regroup, rearm and redeploy, but has never really eliminated its readiness to engage at some future opportunity, usually of its choosing—whenever it feels  able to do so or unable not to. Thus, Israel has never succeeded in eliminating the tangible threat of continued conflict and combat.

Quite the opposite! Despite the losses it suffered, Hamas has emerged from each round of fighting ever defiant, still spoiling for a fight. Indeed, not only has it never surrendered, it has even declared victory—not entirely without justification from its perspective.

Moreover, after the end of each round of fighting, Hamas has managed, within a relatively short space of time, to enhance its offensive military capabilities dramatically.

In this regard, Hamas has demonstrated impressive ingenuity in developing its martial prowess.

Indeed, in 2005, the most formidable weapon it had at its disposal was a primitive rocket with a half-kilogram explosive charge and a range of 5 kilometers. Today the Islamist terror group has missiles with a range of up to 100 kilometers and warheads of up to 100 kilograms. In addition, Hamas has burrowed a vast array of underground terror tunnels, developed naval capabilities and is reportedly engaged in producing drones for use against the Jewish state.

Clearly then, if Israel cannot dissuade the Palestinian terror groups from persisting with their murderous aggression, then it must cripple their ability to launch such aggression.

However, to do this, it must extricate itself from the constricting bonds of the two-state formula and the failed land-for-peace dogma on which it is based. It must cease relating to the Palestinian Arabs as prospective peace partners that can be cajoled into some enduring armistice and treat them as irreconcilable enemies that must be defeated in battle.

Only then will Israel be able to deal effectively with the endemic Judeocidal impulses of its sworn adversaries

Martin Sherman is the founder and executive director of the Israel Institute for Strategic Studies.


One Response to “The myth of Israeli ‘deterrence’”
  1. Paul Winter says:

    Martin is perfectly correct, as are indeed, others who point out the stupidity of the non-fighting IDF commanders. A war not won is lost, especially with an enemy whose goals are not realistic but ideological, who views conflicts in terms of centuries and who has no regard for the welfare of their own people as long as they can keep stealing from them and maintaining their fierce postures from the safety of their bunkers.

    The IDF commanders and others who have their hands on the levers of power in Israel cling to their ideal of peace through kindness and the Jewish ideal in the brotherhood of man. As well, their egos will not allow them to admit that facts prove that their political opponents are right.

    I can see no lessening of dissensions in Israel’s society until the kibbutz generation has died out and realists take over. The same thing happened thousands of years ago when the Jews entered the Promised Land only after the generation that had known slavery had died out over the forty years in the wilderness.

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