Skip to comments.Israel Tells the U.S. It Will Retaliate if Attacked by Iraq
Posted on 09/21/2002 3:02:55 PM PDT by ex-Texan
Israel Tells the U.S. It Will Retaliate if Attacked by Iraq
By MICHAEL R. GORDON
JERUSALEM, Sept. 21 Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has informed the Bush administration that he plans to strike back if Iraq attacks Israel, according to Israeli and Western officials.
Mr. Sharon's statements, made privately to senior American officials in recent weeks, represent a major shift in Israeli thinking since the 1991 Persian Gulf war, when 39 Iraqi Scud missiles struck without any Israeli response.
The prime minister's position reflects a widespread belief among Israeli politicians and generals that Arab leaders perceived Israel's restraint in 1991 as weakness. Throughout his military and political career, Mr. Sharon has always held that any attack on Israel must be promptly and powerfully punished.
"I don't think there is a scenario in which Israel will get hit and not strike back," a senior Western official said. "I think the evolving strategy will be commensurate response."
Mr. Sharon's position has significant implications for the Pentagon, which fears that an Israeli entry would stir up Arab public opinion and make it harder for the Pentagon to maintain cooperation from the Arab states where Washington hopes to base American forces
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(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
I don't think Hussein's going to martyr himself to anything.
I really have no special concerns about our troops in the region, beyond the ordinary concern one would always have for one's own side's soldiers. I don't think they are particularly threatened by Saddam's CBW arsenal, which will more likely be targeted at soft, civilian targets in Israel, Europe and the United States. I expect that, if there is fighting (which remains to be seen), most of it will be done from 20,000 feet, or by Kurdish and other local proxies, much as in Afghanistan.
And, in the final analysis, soldiers are for fighting, which may involve dying -- that's what they are there for, and what they sign up for. The United States gets all worked up over the loss of 50,000 men over ten years in Vietnam. In World War I, England lost over 400,000 men in one battle, so let's keep things in perspective, shall we?
Quote: "I say with my hand on my heart, not just to calm everyone, that the state of Israel is ready," Shiri said. "It would be easier for them to carry out a biological attack on even the United States than Israel."
Gee.... with friends like that... who needs Al Queda!
Here's the original quote in context from AIPAC
What's your problem?
Israel Prepared for Potential Iraqi Attack The IDF has never been more ready for a military situation and should be proud of its preparedness for any possible Iraqi attack, Deputy Defense Minister Weizmann Shiri told the Knesset yesterday, according to The Jerusalem Post. He said Israel has been preparing for another Iraqi attack since the Gulf War and has learned the war's lessons. Shiri, who toured the IDF's Arrow Missile program Tuesday, said the IDF can respond to any missile attack before the public is even aware of it. "Whoever decides to attack Israel using ground-to-ground [missiles] will see that Israel has a real response," Shiri said. "I say with my hand on my heart, not just to calm everyone, that the State of Israel is ready. It would be easier for [the Iraqis] to carry out a biological attack on even the United States than Israel
The "it's hopeless so nothing should be done" crowd exists in Israel too. The Israelis could certainly do more than the US was actually doing, unless there was a boomer sitting in the Arabian sea taking target practice with live missles. What the US is capable of doing, and what they might actually be doing are not necessarily the same thing.
But of course you agree with the USA spying on Israel, the Israeli Govenment and the Israeli Military
And just for the record, Pollard did none of the above - he passed on to Israel only the results of the USA's spying on various Arab countries - something the USA had agreed to do in any event but reneged.
If the Israeli gov't really gives a damn about the US population why is this the quote in another thread?
Because it's true. Israel is much better prepared for a chemical or biological attack than is the US. They have issued gas masks to virtually the entire population, including Israeli Arabs. They have done some innoculations and are prepared to do more if necessary. They are perceived as being much more ready to retaliate against any WMD attack with their own WMDs, that is nukes. That may or may not be more than perception, but in this sort of thing, perception counts.
Horse pucky. The Intifada (phase 2 I might add) was planned and ready to go way before he went to the Jewish holy site. Yes it's a Moslem holy site too, but when the Moslems, ie. the Jordanians, controlled access to it, Jews were not allowed, once the Israelies took over access they allowed people of all faiths to have access to the Temple Mount. He had every right to visit a holy place of his religion, esepcially in light of the fact that he wasn't denying Moslems access to their part of it. Even after the Jews once again had access to the Wailing Wall, it was common for the Islamists on the top of the mount to pelt worshipers with rocks, and not just little ones either.
Why should Sharon, or any other foreign leader, need permission of the US to move their forces within their own country?
I think our army forces, if sent into an Iraqi city, would be susceptible to chemical attack. I doubt that chemical weapons could hit US cities. However, biological weapons can hit US cities ad nauseum and we wouldn't know it for weeks. Because of this view, I have alerted our physicians in our practice to work on bioterror and chemical weapons clinical pathways. We need to make sure we can ID the threats quickly in the civilian population.
Losing US lives because Sharon screws up our campaign plans is not good.
Sure there is such a boundry. But if Iraq attacks Israel, wether the US is engaged with Iraq at the time or not, then Israel becomes involved, do they not? Israel has as much obligation to defend itself as we do. The threat is more immediate and more serious in their case.
That's total BS - what's your source?
Israel's official "stated policy" is: "Israel will not be the first to introduce nuclear weapons into the region."
I believe that they have the weapons but the Israeli government has never admitted to it let alone threatened their use as you claim.
I don't think there's any way to be certain that Saddam or one of his henchman would not loose off CBW in the end game. I do not expect him to use them, either in battle or in the form of terror strikes, until or unless it's game over. I do not think they will be of much use on the battlefield anyway, so I think we will see them used against civilians, if at all. There is some possibility that he might stage some kind of large-scale "demonstration" of his CBW, using al-Qaeda proxies, prior to the end game, but I think that is somewhat improbable.
I think he's staked everything on the notion that the United States would be deterred from removing him by the threat of biological attacks on the civilian populations of the US and its allies ("WE HAVE THIS ANTHRAX YOU CAN NOT STOP US"). He's hoping that Bush will be satisfied with a face-saving wrist-slapping involving a showdown over the weapons inspectors, and simply let the issue of Saddam's authorship of 9/11 drop. Then Saddam could capitulate to the inspections, which mean nothing, and live to fight another day, when the world is looking the other way. Basically, this would be a replay of his successful Gulf War strategy, but on an intercontinental scale.
I think our army forces, if sent into an Iraqi city, would be susceptible to chemical attack.
I doubt chemical weapons will be of much use to Saddam locally. If that's his best shot, he would just be commiting suicide by using them. But it isn't his best shot.
I doubt that chemical weapons could hit US cities.
Concur. Nerve agents like VX are not so easy to deploy effectively. It's not like anthrax, where you can just toss a bag of the stuff on subway tracks and kill millions of people.
However, biological weapons can hit US cities ad nauseum and we wouldn't know it for weeks. Because of this view, I have alerted our physicians in our practice to work on bioterror and chemical weapons clinical pathways. We need to make sure we can ID the threats quickly in the civilian population.
Concur. This is very important work. Although things have been happening behind the scenes, with respect to stockpiling smallpox and anthrax vaccines and informing doctors, I really wish plain old-fashioned civil defense were being given a higher profile. Guess they don't want to scare us, hurt the economy, etc.
Losing US lives because Sharon screws up our campaign plans is not good.
I've no doubt Sharon has been working hand-in-glove with the US administration since 9-11. The strategy of "isolating" Yasser Arafat -- an important chess piece in the end game with Saddam -- was brainstormed in the aftermath of the WTC attacks, I've little doubt, and can be viewed as a prototype for the "isolation" of Saddam Hussein. As for Israel's commitment to go nuclear on Saddam's ass if he makes a move against them, that too has been dialed into the isolation plan, along with the similar threat recently issued by Great Britain. Every pressure that can be brought to bear on Saddam will be brought to bear on Saddam. It will take time, but it seems to be going rather smoothly, from where I'm standing.