Friday, May 14, 2010

Usrael and The Iron Dome...


Barack Obama is to ask the US Congress for an extra $200m in military aid to help Israel get a short-range rocket defence system in place.

The system is designed to shoot down mortars and rockets from Gaza or Southern Lebanon with guided missiles.

The system, called Iron Dome, has gone through testing and installation will start later this year.

According to US State Department figures, direct military aid to Israel was $2.55bn in 2009.

This is set to increase to $3.15bn in 2018.

Easing tensions

A White House spokesman reaffirmed what he called the administration's "unshakeable commitment" to Israel's security - adding that Mr Obama recognised the threat posed by missiles and rockets fired by Hamas and Hezbollah.

I want to look on the bright side [cough!] of this one. Iron Dome will contribute to Israel's much craved for National security, a prerequisite it claims for being able to make peace.

Let's now also assume that Israel manages by whatever means (an aptly chosen term I feel) the 'threat' from Hamas and that the IC succeeds in turning Iran's uranium into ploughshares. Israel will then have nothing or no one to fear in this world. Do you think that new paradigm would make Israel any more amenable to making 'concessions', so necessary to make the advocated 'Two State' solution work? 'Malicious tongues' would have it that further fortifying Fortress Israel will allow the US/West to further project power in the Region. Answers on a postcard in the comment section, please...


At 5:29 PM, Blogger Emmanuel said...

I can understand opposition to offensive weapons being sent to Israel, but Iron Dome is completely defensive.

At 3:14 AM, Blogger Ernie Halfdram said...

If defensive weaponry is so unobjectionable, then Israel would not protest if, say, Hamas were to import, say, anti-aircraft weapons from, say, Iran?

At 11:27 AM, Blogger Emmanuel said...

Anti-missile weapons are purely defensive, especially when they're aimed at protecting the civilian population. Anti-aircraft missiles, on the other hand, can also be used offensively.

Second of all, it is legitimate for a country to acquire certain weapons. That's not the case with terrorist organizations (or any private organization, for that matter, even if you don't see them as terrorists). That's why Syria and Lebanon have the right to do so, and Hamas and Hezbollah don't.

By the way, the fact that a country has a right to get weapons doesn't mean other countries (or people) can't try to stop it. Israel has a right to object to the sale of weapons to Syria and Gert has a right to object, even if I don't understand what's so bad about a system that isn't supposed to kill anyone, but only save lives.

At 11:41 AM, Blogger Gert said...


ALL weapon systems can have a dual purpose: if a particular 'defensive' weapon system renders a country nigh invulnerable, then that invulnerability can be useful to cover offensives, to carry out offensives with impunity. That's any Genera's wet dream...

At 2:25 PM, Blogger Emmanuel said...

Rest assured - Iron Dome is not perfect.

At 11:12 AM, Blogger Tarig Musa said...

Actually Emmanuel, all weapons shield systems are by their very nature offensive, they are just tagged as 'defensive' for PR reasons. Think about it this way, a weapons shield system cannot defend against missiles lauched without adequate time to prepare (it is widely recognised that the few seconds it takes a firework to get from Gaza to southern Israel is far too short for any existing Missile shield to be effective, without pre-warning of an incoming projectile:; they are simply too expensive to have operational at all times:

They can however act as a shield for any retaliation to an offensive attack as said retaliation is a given, and the system can be 'turned on' and operational in the immediate aftermath of the offensive strike with relatively low cost, and certainty of effectiveness.


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