Fred Kaplan: "Israel's Deadly Gambits"

I largely agree with Fred Kaplan's column here. He's quite often a sensible, intelligent commentator on affairs I'm more or less interested in.

Israel has long-lost the underdog role, and ever since its intervention in the Lebanese Civil War its grand strategy seems to have turned stupid. They're failing to show strategic self-discipline and long-term thinking while having a position of strength - similar to French policies towards social democrats-led German governments in the late 20's. Their strategic behaviour fits what an average 15 year old boy might suggest to do.

The parallels to Crusader history may be quite disconcerting to someone who is paying attention to history. They came from overseas, have mostly religious claims on the land, showed superior martial prowess in face of superior numbers, their enemies are divided, their enemies are weakened by wars among each other and against foreigners, they depend to some degree on immigration, they depend on continued support from overseas (...).

The crusader states survived for about two centuries. Israel survived for about seven decades already. The question is now how far go the parallels - and will they turn towards a smart-enough grand strategy for survival?*


*: Nukes or MAD alone are no guarantee in the long term. The purpose of the state Israel is to provide security, a crisis under the Sword of Damokles known as MAD might force a future Israeli government to yield to meet its purpose.

///Reader comments are shut off because I'm not stupid enough to not know that Israel-related discussions and comments turn ugly way too often.///