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By Chris Steyn
Islamic extremism can be defeated.
But, it requires actionable intelligence – and that intelligence must be acted on “ruthlessly and relentlessly”.
That is the view of military sources – specialising in intelligence and strategy – who spoke to BizNews about the options Israel has after the worst terror attack in its history sparked a renewed conflict in the Middle East.
Firstly, military experts strongly advise against a ceasefire. “For Israel to opt for a ceasefire, it will incentivise more similar attacks and will be seen as showing weakness. And no successful negotiation can be done from a position of weakness.”
Instead, they suggest a blockade of Gaza that allows all non-combatant people to leave – after they have been screened; intensive human intelligence collection; and then the conduct of “direct action/decapitation operations.”
An example of such a decapitation operation was the assassination of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani, the commander of the Quds Force, on 3 January 2020 by US forces. “The Israeli forces are well capable of similar actions.”
“No pity must be shown to those who practise terrorism and indiscriminately murder and maim innocent civilians. The intensity and tempo of such counterterrorism operations must be maintained and where possible, increased. The perpetrators of acts of terror must be given no respite.”
Letting Gaza’s non-combatants leave would prevent the trapping of the civilian population in cross-fire, and allowing the non-combatant casualties to escalate. “That would only give Hamas an opportunity to exploit these casualties to gain international sympathy for them and their cause. As has already been witnessed, they are hard at work attempting to dominate international media reporting in an effort to gain the moral high ground.”
Meanwhile, a conventional ground assault on Gaza could turn out to be “very problematic” as Hamas knows the terrain intimately. “They can use this knowledge to channel the Israeli forces into preprepared ambush zones”.
And simply razing Gaza to the ground is another action that could backfire. “It has to be taken into account that not all Muslims are extremists. Not all Palestinians are Muslim, and not all Muslims support Hamas. So, that could just breed more Islamists and escalate the situation.”
The biggest challenge for Israel would be to defeat the terrorist organisations on its borders without hostile superpowers coming to the aid of Hamas and Hezbollah.
“Drawing Iran into the conflict will create its own set of problems as it is considered to be a regional hegemon, and is supported by Russia, North Korea, China and others. Plus, Iran has long been active in developing its NBC (nuclear, biological, chemical) weapons and will very possibly use them if it feels threatened.
“Also, Iran has been internationally positioned as a pariah state, but has consistently tried to establish itself as a hegemon in the Middle East region. To achieve that end, they have been known to support numerous Islamist movements to act on their behalf as proxy forces to increase their influence and control over Islamist groups and movements.”
As for how the world has so suddenly come to the brink of a possible World War III, “one must look at this all as a consequence of the Afghan/Iraq invasions and how the West armed and trained extremists to fight other extremists without considering the consequences. They overlooked the fact that ‘My enemy’s enemy is not always my friend’.
“Then, how Libya was used as a staging point for weapons deliveries to anti-Sadat forces in Syria but with little to no control over how those weapons were distributed. In fact, the US stated they did not know how many members were in their proxy force ‘Free Syrian Army”.
“The conflict in Syria has also bred a lot more Islamists and many of them have ‘fled’ to Europe as ‘refugees’. We believe they are readying themselves in Europe to distract and divide.”
“So it is a very complex situation but it has been allowed to fester for decades.
“But can Islamists be defeated? The short answer: ‘YES” but it will require clear thinking, a consideration of the consequences of an all-out Israeli ground offensive, and a reassessment of dragging the world into a new war where states will fight against states.”
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