Saturday, June 5, 2010

Israel's "preemptive" Six Day War

Mike Geary wrote, " Do you not know the history of the region?  Are you ignorant of the lead up to the Six Day War?  Do you not know that it was a preemptive war initiated by Israel?  Are you ignorant of the fact that Israel drove out hundreds of thousands of Palestinians, confiscated their properties and have never compensated them and deny them right of return?   And the religious fanatic settlers and doing the same in the territories.  The Pals have ever right to fight back." 
            If one knows very little about the Six Day War, then one might accept that anti-Israeli calumny -- that Israel attacked the defenseless and peace loving Arabs for no justifiable reasons.  But let us consider the history.  I have Oren's Six Days of War back which at the time I read it (2005) seemed to be the best account of that war in English.  On page 63 we read "Nasser, in a statement released on Palestine Day -- a day of mourning throughout the Arab world, lamenting Israel's Independence -- exhorted, 'Brothers, it is our duty to prepare for the final battle of Palestine.'  While Rabin did not believe that Nasser wanted war, a momentum was gathering that could seriously erode Israel's deterrence power, to the point where the Arabs felt free to attack.
            "That danger seemed to skyrocket between the nights of May 15 and 16.  Initial IDF estimates had put the size of the Egyptian buildup at one division, the 5th -- this in addition to the 30,000 troops already stationed in Sinai and the 10,000 man Palestine Liberation Army division maintained in Gaza.  But then the numbers jumped threefold.  the 2nd and 7th Infantry Divisions had also crossed the Canal, and the 6th Armored was not far behind.  Significantly, the 4th Division under the command of Maj. Gen. Sidqi al-Ghul had crossed the Canal and dug in at Bir al-Thamada.  Each of these units comprised 15,000 men, close to 100 T-54 and T-55 tanks, 150 armored personnel carriers, and a range of Soviet artillery: howitzers, heavy mortars, Katyusha rockets, SU-100 anti-tank guns.  Along with these forces came vast amounts of ammunition, MiG-17 and 21 fighters, and -- IDF intelligence believed --  canisters of poison gas.
            "Rabin was baffled.  The Egyptian deployment, though still defensive, with tanks and troops digging in, had surpassed the dimensions of a mere power display.  With the 4th Division on the move and heavy bombers transferred to the forward base at Bir al-Thamada, the enemy could be preparing to invade the Negev or to bomb the Dimona reactor.  Cairo's tenor was bellicose -- 'If Israel now tries to set the region on fire, then Israel itself will be completely destroyed in this fire, thus bringing about the end of this aggressive racist base' -- and was duly echoed by Damascus: 'The war of liberation will not end except by Israel's abolition.'  Syrian troops were also reportedly advancing . . ."
            On page 84, Oren writes that Egypt "issued the order to close the Tiran Straits.  ". . . elation was registered throughout the Arab world, where Nasser's Ablan Wa-sablan reverberated.  In Hebron and Jerusalem, in the streets of Baghdad, Beirut, and Tripoli, mass demonstrations erupted in acclaim of Egypt's action.  The armed forces of Lebanon, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia were activated; Irawqi armored columns were reportedly moving toward the Syrian and Jordanian borders 'to participated in the battle of Honor.'  King Hussein donned a military uniform and reviewed units of his army, among them American made tanks that were not supposed to cross the Jordan River, parading toward the West Bank."
            On page 86 Oren writes "News of the closure reached IDF intelligence on 2:30 A.M., on May 23, along with reports of Egyptian submarines passing through the Straits and the emplacement of heavy guns at Sharm al-Sheikh.  On the Golan Heights, Syrian forces were at Maximum strength and war footing; the movements of UN observers had been strictly curtailed.  The chief of staff would recount that 'the key piece of Middle Eastern puzzle -- Nasser's provision of a casus belli -- had just fallen into place.  In effect , the ball was now in our court . . . ' At stake, [Rabin] knew, was more than just the issue of free passage and the well-being of Eilat.  'It is now a question of our national survival,' he told his generals that night, 'of to be or not to be.'"

            COMMENT:  If one isn't already bent upon Israel's destruction, he should be able to understand that Israel by May 23 was justified in believing it very likely that they were about to be attacked.  Arab Armies were building up on all sides.  And yet Anti-Israeli (and usually Anti-American) Leftists well blame Israel for attacking first.  Perhaps the U.S. is large and spread out enough to be able to wait until they are attacked before responding, but tiny Israel doesn't have that advantage.  Any attack might prove fatal; which is what the Arabs dearly desired (and still desire), that Israel would be utterly destroyed. 
            We of course know that for Leftists "deaths" trump national defense.  Thus, Leftists feel free to dismiss the threat against Israel and wring their collectives hands about the number of Arabs killed, about the aftermath where, "gasp," Israel didn't immediately restore all the land they conquered and pay reparations to the people they defeated.
            Will there be another attack against Israel?  Qutb-inspired Islamism demands one.  Islamists are not to give up just because Israel defeats them a few times.  Allah, after all, is on the Arab side.  Islam will win eventually they fanatically believe.   And when that victory occurs and the Israeli remnant flees destroyed Israel to such lands of sanctuary as . . . (well where else other than the U.S.?) all the Arab and Left-wing world will breathe a sigh of relief and collectively say, "it's about time."
            I can refer to histories of the Six Day War and show that Israel had good evidence, evidence they could not afford to ignore, that they were about to be attacked.  But while I can assume, as I do, that it would be a bad thing for Israel to be attacked, I cannot force an Arab or a Leftist to make that same assumption.  For them "revolution" is more important than Israel's survival.  In the case of the Arab Islamist it is the ongoing Jihad (Revolution) begun by Mohammad.  In the case of the Leftist it is revolution for revolution's sake.
            And it isn't the nature of the Anarchistic-Leftist to ever be happy, however much of a revoltuion he has managed.  There was singing in the streets and in Memphis bars when the radical Obama was elected, but now, in the same message I have been referring to, Geary can write, "Obama is Bush in black-face.  Where's the goddamn liberal we elected???  Playing community organizer, I fear.  Presidents aren't elected to "do" things, technicians do the work.  Ronnie boy Reagan knew that.  Have the "look", have the words -- that's all we elect a President for.  Carter tried to be a technician President -- he was probably more intelligent and decent than the last ten Presidents combined, but intelligence isn't what we hired them for.  We want them to speak our prejudices, our indignation, our rage, our smugness.  We want to believe that we are in charge.   You should love Obama, Lawrence, he's been such a disappointment to us socialist, Marxist, pacifist liberals."
            Chuckle, chuckle, chuckle!

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