Sunday, April 10, 2011

Hamas Attack On Israeli School Bus A Game Changer

The always perceptive Commander J.D. Dyer(ret.) has a great piece in Hot Air on the recent Hamas attack on an Israeli school bus by a laser guided Russian-design Kornet antitank missile, and why Hamas using this weapon makes it a whole new ballgame:

The account of the attack indicates that the bus was stopped (and had just offloaded most of its 50 schoolchildren, which was why more of them weren’t injured). So Hamas wasn’t attempting to hit a moving target. But the ability to accurately target a bus from a distance of two miles, with an effective modern weapon, is a game-changer in the Hamas campaign to target civilians.

With older weapons and planted-bomb tactics, the effects Hamas could produce were more random and less predictable. Lobbing rockets indiscriminately into southern Israel is certainly evidence of evil intentions, but the probability of achieving specific or catastrophic damage with any individual round was low. Mortars can be delivered with useful accuracy, but they are not missiles capable of guided flight toward a target, which amplifies the destructive effect that can be achieved for the same amount of explosive. Bomb planting requires extensive advance planning and is not a pursuit tactic; it doesn’t adapt to changing conditions, but rather is tied to a place, and a tactical objective that is at least hours old when the bomb detonates, and usually something more like weeks old.

The difference the Kornet antitank guided missile (ATGM) makes, particularly with the laser guidance package, is that it puts accuracy, effectiveness, tactical adaptability, and standoff distance behind the vicious intentions which perennially characterize Hamas.

As Commander Dyer points out, Israel's Iron Dome system,which was successfully used to destroy Hamas Grad missiles launched at Israel is designed to combat weapons with a higher trajectory and is thus useless against the Kornet. It's also prohibitive for Israel to continue to use it - each Iron Dome missile costs $50,000 and some of the lower grade Hamas rockets can cost as little as $200.

Even more problematic, the Arab League is currently lobbying the UN to establish a 'no fly zone' over Gaza, something I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the EU and the Obama Administration get behind. The idea is create a UN shield for Hamas to hide behind as it fires its weapons at Israeli civilians.

You'll recall what I told you about the implications of Libya and the new 'Responsibility to protect ( R2P) doctrine, and how it was essentially a precedent aimed at future use against Israel.

As always, Jewish blood is far cheaper than crude oil.

There's only one solution to Gaza, and it will involve a complete military assault on Gaza, the use of ground troops and wiping Hamas out once and for all. And the sooner, the better.

Ehud Olmert and Tzipi Livni bear a great deal of the responsibility for the current situation - had they not been so anxious to accept a cease fire, IDF would have dealt with Hamas once and for all during Operation Cast Lead.

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1 comment:

B.Poster said...

Folks can support a no fly zone over Gaza all they want. The problem with a no fly zone or R2P or whatever they want to call it is someone has to enforce it. The EU can get behind it but they don't have the planes to enforce it. The US can get behind it too but like the EU and especially with as many places as the US is currently involved in it lacks the planes to be able to enforce such a no fly zone either. Also, while I'm not sure about the EU situation, the US also lacks the skilled pilots and the support personnel that would go with it to provide any serious threat to the Israeli Air Force.

As such, a no fly zone over Gaza is a non starter. There aren't sufficient assets of the kind of quality necessary to be able to implement it. Even if there were, while I'm not sure about the situation in Europe, the American people will not support any more such operations. Its not that they care a whit about Israel per say. Its just that they recognize that there are MASSIVE issues right here in America that need to be dealt with. Another no fly zone especially one that can't be enforced any way will not be supported by the American people or any Congress person who wishes to be reelected. I find it highly unlikely any serious person would be considering this.

You make a great observation that the Hamas missles cost as little as $200 but the Israeli Iron Dome missles cost $50,000. Essentially it costs much more in terms of money and other resources to strictly defense than it does to play offense. That's why the "West" especially America spends so much on its military relative to Russia and China yet the Russian and Chinese forces are superior to Americas in pretty much every concievable area. The Russians and Chinese invest more in offensive capabilities.

A careful study of Russian and Chinese military strategy should be required study at the military academies. If you want to be the best, study the best!!

Finally, commiting American forces to enforce a no fly zone over Gaza is to put those forces into a situation where they have no chance to win. Surely, if I'm aware of this, then the Air Force commanders are. Hopefully even if only out of principle they would resist efforts to commit American Airmen and other American service personnel to such a suicide mission as this would amost definitely be.

I agree whole heartedly with your last sentence. This is exactly what needs to happen. Hamas is also a bitter enemy of America. As such, such an action by Israel would be in our interests. In attempting this, Israel does not need to worry about America or Western Europe. Israeli forces would be able to easily defeat any thing Aemrica could bring to the battlefield. Israel could also likely easily defeat any thing Western Europe as well. As for Russia, I don't know. The Russians supplied the Kornet missle that was used here. Would they intervene to help Hamas? If they did, that could pose a problem for the IDF but I don't think it is insurmountable. Best of luck Israel and may God bless you. Please get on with taking out Hamas!!