Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Israel: A gem of prognostication from Stratfor

From Stratfor's George Friendman, we have this gem of geo-strategic prognostication:
Let's consider the strategic position of the Palestinians. Their primary weapon against Israel remains what it always has been: random attacks against civilian targets designed to destabilize Israel. The problem with this strategy is obvious. Using terrorism against Americans in Iraq is potentially effective as a strategy. If the Americans cannot stand the level of casualties being imposed, they have the option of leaving Iraq. Although leaving might pose serious problems to U.S. regional and global interests, it would not affect the continued existence of the United States. Therefore, the insurgents potentially could find a threshold that would force the United States to fold.

The Israelis cannot leave Israel. Assume for the moment that the Palestinians could impose 1,000 civilian casualties a year. There are about 5 million Jews in Israel. That would be about 0.02 percent casualties. The Israelis are not going to leave Israel at that casualty rate, or at a rate a thousand times greater. Unlike the Americans, for whom Iraq is a subsidiary interest, Israel is Israel's central interest. Israel is not going to capitulate to the Palestinians over terrorism attacks.
A rate 1000 times greater than 1000 casualties a year, is a million casualties a year. That would wipe out the entire population of Israel, Jewish and Arab, in seven years. Long before that time, Israelis would assuredly start leaving, if we could not do something about the terror.
Ami Isseroff
Cross posted: Israel News Middle East Analysis   

No comments: