According to Foreign Policy, “The war of words over an Israeli attack on Iran is splitting the political leadership from military and intelligence chiefs. And that dangerous divide in Jerusalem might well lead to real war.”
The “split,” however, might mean two things: in the cloak and dagger world of operational intelligence, internal squabbling is necessary to create an impression of weak political leadership.
On the other end of the political spectrum, the confrontational approach in their oftentimes maligned and well publicized views and speeches might indicate a sheer vinyl of bluff to avoid a costly war with Iran. Simply put, bringing down an enemy without lifting a finger is the best defense possible in dealing with unintended consequences of a protracted war with Iran.
Reminiscent of President Ronald Reagan’s approach during the Cold War, ‘Peace through Strength’ is a slick but smart strategy that bedeviled the Soviet empire for generations to come. It is similar to Sun Tzu’s “the art of war”; a strategic thinking in defeating the Soviet Union without even firing a single shot. The result was a catastrophic decline in the former Soviet Union’s economy leading to the breakdown of the USSR.
Sun Tzu emphasized first and foremost the importance of avoiding bloody conflicts as much as possible. Therefore, the highest form of victory is to conquer by strategy.
In essence, the success or failure of Israel’s economy affects the survival and well-being of the Jewish nation. Therefore like the Asians, competition is a matter of life-and-death warfare.
Political pundits have observed that the Israelis conduct its own business as if they were waging a war; a strategy that emphasized great importance to the classical Chinese military strategies.
Let’s hope we are wrong, but all indications proved that the IDF and Mossad is a good strategist, as they fully grasp the total picture of the situation: “Know your enemy, know yourself, and you can fight a hundred battles with no danger of defeat. When you are ignorant of the enemy but know yourself, your chances of winning and losing are equal. If you don’t know both your enemy and yourself, you are bound to perish in all battles…. Know the terrain, know the weather, and your victory will be complete.”
The Israeli military and intelligence saw the larger picture and understood that the goal was not to contain a nuclear Iran but to prevent it permanently from becoming a de facto member of the nuclear club.
The most intriguing part of the equation is what if former Mossad spymaster Meir Dagan and former head of Shin Bet security agency Yuval Diskin, are mistaken in undermining Israel’s political leadership and the credibility of its military action since it does not makes war unlikely.
The new vice prime minister and former defense minister, Shaul Mofaz support of Diskin before joining the Netanyahu government seemed oddly intertwined. The national unity government in Israel makes early elections improbable. That’s enough indication for a determined and united leadership that Iran simply cannot ignore.
The most troubling aspect of this narrative came from no less than the IDF Chief of the General Staff, Lt. General Benny Gantz. Israel’s military chief said he does not believe Iran will decide to build an atomic bomb and called its leaders “very rational” – comments that clashed with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s assessment, Reuters reports.
As Foreign Policy would not speculate, something has gone very wrong with Israel’s posture on Iran’s nuclear program. Which led us to believe that war is becoming inevitable for the following reasons:
First, the failure of the permanent members of the UN Security Council plus Germany (P5+1) in the upcoming talks in Baghdad on May 23rd arising from Iran’s refusal to stop enriching highly enriched uranium while it secure the transfers of its nuclear centrifuges in underground bunker in Qom; Secondly, the mixed messages and false hopes that the US will stay away from the conflict based on Obama’s secret back-door diplomacy with Iran. Thirdly, Iran calling the Israeli threat as a bluff and finally, the pernicious disagreements between the prime minister and his former intelligence chiefs, more than likely lead to miscalculation by Iran.
With this in mind, we should be able to expand on those scenarios that more closely resemble an imminent war with Iran. Where diplomacy and war overlap, the strategies are interchangeable.
Therefore, it is imperative that before a decision to wage war is made, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu must have certainly engaged in more detailed and careful strategic planning with his allies.
In addition, the surprise grand coalition between the centrist Kadima and Netanyahu’s rightist coalition confers a certain form of legitimacy to provide political cover for a unilateral strike against Iran, should Israel decides to do so- the most important aspect of Israeli realpolitik. The divergent approaches, however does not preclude Israel nor the US to predict victory in its stalemate with Iran.
According to Reuters, the new coalition would, Netanyahu said, focus on redrafting the budget, on electoral reform and on what he called sharing out military duties across the population – his religious coalition partners had unsettled the government by opposing plans to end exemptions from the draft for ultra-Orthodox Jews.
For reasons that seemed obvious, the enhanced strategic military planning has already begun covertly between Israel, the US and NATO. The Iron Dome, the thousands of American troops deployed within the borders of Israel, the secret bidding with Arab Gulf states, the Azerbaijan staging ground, and the purchase last October of twenty of the F-35 stealth jets, considered the most advanced combat aircraft in existence, for $2.75 billion, according to United Press International.
The US transfer of bunker-busting bombs, with American defense officials declining to comment on the number of bombs that had been supplied to Israel -“This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by helping to improve the security of a friendly country,” a news release from the Defense Security Cooperation Agency stated.
As Sun Tzu said, “For this reason, to win a hundred victories in a hundred battles is not the culmination of skills. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the supreme excellence.”