History's End

History will end only when Man does

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  • Sunday, July 16, 2006

    Securing the Flank

    Many Lebanese bloggers, and people in Lebanon in general, are angry that Syria isn't the target of Israel's aggression at this point. Persuant to my previous post, they fail to realize that military necessarity forces Israel to deal with Hizb'allah first, before going after the Assad regime. Courtesy of Debka, here is one map of the region.

    Notice that the straight route through the Golan to Damascus leaves Israel's western flank open to an attack by Hizb'allah. Israel would be forced, by necessity, to go into Lebanon no matter what it did with regards to Syria. I can't say whether or not Israel does in fact go after Syria, but there are a few indicators, I think.

    The first is how many Israeli units actually go into Lebanon. If it is only a few brigades, then I take a Syrian strike as, perhaps not likely, but certainly on the table. Those units would need to be held in reserve until Israel is ready to make its move

    Second, whether or not Israel goes after the Bekka Valley. Bekka is pretty deep into Lebanon, as the map shows. If Israel goes there, they leave their flank open to a Syrian strike, assuming they later go after Syria. If I was the Israelis I would go after Syria, before going after Bekka. Once Syria is removed from the picture, the terrorists trapped in the Bekka Valley aren't going anywhere. Hence, they can be removed at leisure. So a strike at Bekka first means it is unlikely Israel is looking for a wider war at this point.

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