JPod from NRO has a great article in the New York Post (and I assume syndicated other places too;) on whether or not Israel has what it takes to win a war. I totally agree with the whole premise. We had to nuke Japan and bomb Dresden to win WWII. Could we do that again?
Didn’t the willingness of their leaders to inflict mass casualties on civilians indicate a cold-eyed singleness of purpose that helped break the will and the back of their enemies? Didn’t that singleness of purpose extend down to the populations in those countries in those days, who would have and did support almost any action at any time that would lead to the deaths of Germans and Japanese?
I really feel that this is a huge component that has led to Israel’s current predicament. In 1948 (and the quick wars there after) Israel would do what ever it had to because their very suvival was under threat. Now Israel is so dominant a military power that their existant is firm but their quality of life and individual security is in question. This started again with the Oslo agreement. Israel was so concerned with the Palestinian quality of life that they sacrificed some of their own. This is a war, civilians die in war because their leaders keep them in the war (either as the agressor or defender). I do not want to see needless civilian death but if Lebanon wanted to put an end to this they could dethrone Hezbollah. The civilian death count in Lebanon can’t all rest on Israel’s shoulder but JPod asks a great closing question and I have no answer:
If Lebanon’s 300-plus civilian casualties are already rocking the world, what if it would take 10,000 civilian casualties to finish off Hezbollah? Could Israel inflict that kind of damage on Lebanon – not because of world opinion, but because of its own modern sensibilities and its understanding of the value of every human life?