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Gaza/Israel clashes thread

Discussion in 'Geostrategic Issues' started by Thinkingfor29, Apr 29, 2014.

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  1. Thinkingfor29

    Thinkingfor29 New Member

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    I wanted to create this thread to basically discuss the past of the Gaza/Israel conflict and the future anticipated violence. No political discussion here though please, if we disagree on who sparked the conflict first or who didn't lets not bring that up. Strictly military developments of Palestinian organizations and preparations of both sides for future conflicts. Of course this is part of a larger Israeli-Palestinian conflict so if moderators allow a separate clean thread for political discussion that's up to them.

    We can discuss the past 2012 assault on Gaza and ongoing preparations of both sides for another round of violence.

    Questions about military capabilities of both sides and weapons developed strictly for this conflict can be asked here.

    Thanks, lets hope it works out. :)
     
  2. Just Some Guy

    Just Some Guy New Member

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    in order to speculate who will throw the next punch or how such-and-such will respond, it is required for us (the theorizers) to try to get into the heads of each side.
    as such, it is required for us to speculate on the motives, end goals, political pressures and to an extent even mental stability of these sides.

    I am sad to say that "future anticipated violence" and "political discussion" are mutually inclusive.

    however, if you were to limit the thread to only "discuss the past of the Gaza/Israel conflict".... that would be a different story.
     
  3. Thinkingfor29

    Thinkingfor29 New Member

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    I agree with you, although what made me find out about this forum was a thread on the 2012 conflict which was locked over political discussion. It depends on whether or not it will be tolerated. If it will we might as well go ahead and indulge in political discussion.

    We can speculate all we want although that disregards the context. This is part of a larger Israeli/Palestinian conflict so we will not see any end in perpetual violence as long as the rights of the Palestinian people are violated and all measures are taken to avoid a diplomatic solution. Now, that is what's part of the larger more controversial discussion. Who/What is the factor/s preventing a diplomatic solution to the conflict?

    As for military buildup, that doesn't mean conflict is inevitable. Every government develops military capabilities to protect their interests and their citizens. Likewise for Hamas, their military wing is going to do what they see as necessary for their citizens, and they've lived the conflict. And they know what's better for them better than us foreigners.
     
  4. Bonza

    Bonza Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Please don't indulge in political discussion. I've lost count of the number of times we've had to lock threads over such politically charged discussions as these. If you wish to discuss the topic, unfortunately you must do so in purely military terms. I'd love to see enough maturity to have productive political discussion sitting alongside military discussion, but at this point I've put out too many fires on these forums to believe it's sustainable.
     
  5. Thinkingfor29

    Thinkingfor29 New Member

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    I agree sir, political discussions will get too heated and emotional for most people. So I'm looking to make this a discussion for current military preparations of both sides for an anticipated next round of violence. Although that may be far off, nevertheless, we should discuss military objectives of both sides and how the future will look like.

    I might as well start it off here:

    For Israel, they're doing the usual, Israel's military doctrine against Gaza is similar to that of 2009 and 2012. They want to significantly weaken military organizations in Gaza through air based campaigns and naval shelling. They are collecting intelligence as we speak and preparing 'targets'. Keep in mind, during these air campaigns they also target heads of Gaza anti-tank divisions. In 2009 Hamas was very weak, they had no structure and Israel sought to regain their deterrence capacity after the war in Lebanon in 2006. Israel also seeks to damage infrastructure to keep Gaza invested in rebuilding it.

    For the Palestinians, major developments have occurred since 2009. Hamas has tried converting their arsenal from homemade rockets to an arsenal of grad/107mm/200mm rockets. They also have built underground structures to mobilize, transfer weapons and protect military assets. Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad during the post-2009 period have tried acquiring as many advanced anti- tank weapons as they could. They have moved from single rocket launches to rocket launchers sometimes very concealed and placed underground. This has made it more difficult for Israel to target their arsenals.

    Following the events in Egypt though, the tunnels have largely been destroyed. However, contrary to the rumor going around, there is a smuggling route still available that Egyptian generals are aware of and they profit off of it. This is used nowadays to smuggle raw material for weapons and high quality weapons. Although, Hamas and the PIJ have moved towards domestic production of 200mm rockets with an estimated range of 70-75 km. The warhead is believed to be around 50kg, although Hamas has tested improved versions with increased payload and range. Both organizations have the capability to hit northern Israel as well, how this is not exactly known. Some rumors claim the PIJ and Hamas are in possession of Iranian Zelzal rockets, even also other variants. This can't be confirmed though, it is confirmed that both organizations are now in possession of a few hundred 200mm rockets.

    Hamas also is preparing for a ground invasion, they place explosives all around Gaza underground and under streets, this means they will try burying Israeli infantry under the rubble and they must succeed in heavy hits against invading infantry or else Israel could make advancements from all directions. This is why Israel will try hitting destroying their anti-tank capability and the Palestinians know this so they conceal them.

    The issue here, is if a wider conflict erupts, smuggling is no longer a viable option. So it's a scenario of survival for the Palestinian military organizations and they need to develop more weapons domestically as quick as possible. They've been testing many rockets over the past year in an attempt to find alternatives to higher powered rockets. Hamas also probably has studied the Iron Dome and is trying to finds way around it besides large rocket barrages. They say they have found weaknesses in Israel's defense system, although I can't speculate on what that means.

    Hamas and the PIJ have also dug offensive tunnels, which would be used in a scenario of a war to inflict casualties on the IDF and take captive Israeli soldiers.

    Israel says it's prepared at any time to go on a offensive, so we must estimate as the past 2012 conflict they have over a thousand available targets. However, in the past conflict Israel ran out of targets, meaning the Palestinians are doing something right. They manage to survive pretty well, which makes us wonder how long this will go on in the next round. It depends on the state of the Arab world and international community.

    The next round will be much more dramatic and similar to the last one, hopefully with much less casualties. This is if a diplomatic solution isn't reached over the next two years.

    This is all I can think of for now, please join the discussion and if anyone has questions feel free to ask.
     
  6. My2Cents

    My2Cents Active Member

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    In any discussion of Gaza/Hamas you also have to consider Hezbollah in Lebanon. If either engages Israel on their own, they will most likely lose. If they engage Israel at the same time they will probably be able to force a draw, which can be spun into a victory.

    At the moment both forces have problems that are causing them to avoid anything that they perceive as likely to result in a full scale Israeli response. Hamas has had its smuggling lines cut by Egypt and Hezbollah has their best forces tied up in Syria and opposition attacks in Lebanon. So both are limiting themselves to harassment operations.

    I see 4 likely trigger scenarios, in order from least to most likely.
    1. Hezbollah comes under enough pressure in Lebanon that they launch their missile attack on Israel to trigger an Israeli response that they can use to gather support.
    2. A Hamas tunnel team manages to kidnap an Israeli and move them into Gaza.
    3. Israel launches an attack on southern Lebanon to clean out the Hezbollah arsenal prior to the return of Hezbollah’s fighters from Syria.
    4. If/when peace breaks out in Syria and Sinai and both can finish preparation of their rocket and missile arsenals, then they can simultaneously launch a mass missile attack on Israel, splitting the Israeli response and hopefully inflict significant Israeli casualties and setting up a situation where at least one of them can claim victory.
     
  7. Thinkingfor29

    Thinkingfor29 New Member

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    No we don't, Hezbollah has nothing to do with the I/P conflict.

    This isn't completely true, although none of them will engage Israel.

    They don't plan on going on the offensive as evident in the 2012 assault on Gaza. The Palestinians were the ones responding and this is supported by factual evidence.

    This might make some sense in the future.

    Hamas has stated it would only use the tunnels in an event of a war.

    Do you really believe that's something they're considering? I think it would be bad on their part since it would take much time. It would also give Hezbollah a justification to attack Israel.

    This is unlikely due to regional events and internal Palestinian reconciliation. They're both working on improving their weapon arsenals as we speak. Although going on the offensive is far off their agenda. The plan for a next round is to inflict heavy casualties against the IDF.
     
  8. surpreme

    surpreme Member

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    Hamas need more training

    The Israelis knew that Hamas training did not exist. If you think about it if Hamas did do some heavy training it would have been pick up by Israelis intelligence. Somehow Hamas has do some undercover training especially in communication and tactical area. Israelis has the advantage military and can hit at will. Using human shield is not going kick it this time. All Hamas forces must evolve in small teams and not use electronic equipment which can easy be traced. The next battle will be different each forces has adjusted to what coming ahead. One thing Hamas need not to get Israelis to strike them yet they need time to regroup it forces.
     
  9. Thinkingfor29

    Thinkingfor29 New Member

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    What do you mean by training? They do have military training.

    They have to be secretive and their communication is based underground.
    Of course they have massive advantages.


    Don't be so childish brother, they don't resort to such tactics. There are private homes and underground concealed launchers. Civilian casualties are due to strikes again infrastructure and pre planned strikes against civilian homes.


    This is true my friend, they figured out how to have an effective communications system after the 2012 assualt and have rearranged all their medium range rocket launchers.

    Yes, it may be a dramatic battle.

    This is what the underground cities are for. ;)
     
  10. surpreme

    surpreme Member

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    Oh what a change this is. Hamas better forces this time. Just talk about the training of Hamas on a post. Hamas standing there ground what going on? Not surprise at all, knew they had to have training for the next encounter. Hamas is feeling the force of Israel. Hamas have drones up above them massive artillery/air power they in tough position. With the odds against them they doing good. Now it just of matter if they have the will to keep going. If this is true that Iran help Hamas. That just prove a point that Iran has the ability to train a good force.
     
  11. Thinkingfor29

    Thinkingfor29 New Member

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    Hamas performance on the ground has certainly improved. But, much credit goes to their own training as well. They learned from their past mistakes. Keep in mind, both Hamas and Hezbollah get training from Iran, although they have their own training as well. Iranian support to Hamas lately has been limited. Although rumors are they are normalizing ties again.

    The ground fighting is primarily based on the outskirts of Gaza. There is massive Israeli artillery shelling as we speak on the border areas. Such as Jabiliya, Beit Hanoun, Khan Yunis, Rafah, Abbasan, etc..

    Hamas has proven that under intense bombardment it is able to hold ground and make Israel pay a price. They have adopted Hezbollah tactics of much anti-tank fire at Israeli forces. No longer do they try causing damage to Israeli armor. They do that with IED's. It fights the battle out and doesn't flee. They have good concealed positions and able to inflict damage immediately. They have managed to place IED's under homes Israeli forces were occupying. Hamas snipers have proven to be more effective with their new .50cal snipers.

    Hamas is conserving its rocket arsenal. So they can last another few weeks or months on the ground. It is clear though, that Iran needs to come up with a solution to penetrate the Iron Dome defense system. Hamas is in ire need of anti-ship missiles. Although, last time those were used were in 2006 manned by Iranian technicians and not Hezbollah.

    Israel's strategy is a war of wills. They are trying to cause enough civilian casualties to shock Hamas thinking it will force them into surrendering. Israel had an intelligence failure this time which is why they're resorting to targeting civilian targets and why Hamas is defiant to this point.

    Politics aside, we are only discussing military aspects.
     
  12. surpreme

    surpreme Member

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    What get me the most is how in the hell they get so much rockets and anti- tank weapons in tiny space. I come to conclusion it must have been a intelligence breakdown on Israelis part. Has Hamas up there intell and know how trick the Israelis in there own game. That just something to think about. Hamas learned from it last engagements and move it units correctly this time. Israelis military has learned also it doing good work against Hamas in urban area which not easy to do. I think Iranian technical are not in Gaza because Egypt close the border. Once they received the intell that Egypt is closing border they were gone.
     
  13. Thinkingfor29

    Thinkingfor29 New Member

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    Hamas has more experience than Hezbollah when it comes to putting up under the Israeli aerial offensives. In the two offensives of 2009, 2012, they gained experience in regards to concealing their weaponry. Before, it used to be a small amount of weapons stored in homes. Today, there is an underground city in Gaza. I'm not joking.

    The weapons are stored deep underground well spread out all over the Strip. Israel can't find this out anymore because. Hamas doesn't smuggle traditionally. If they smuggle weapons into Rafah(the southern portion) bordering Egypt. The weapons do not come above ground. They have passage ways underground to transfer them from place to place. So this makes it impossible to detect and Israel can only rely on double agents. Also, many of their rockets are produced in Gaza city underground as well. So they can transfer them to northern Gaza underground as well. So when Israel tells you it estimates so and so many rockets. Don't take that seriously. Only they truly know what is in their arsenal.

    As for anti-tank missiles. They have been trying for the past 4 years to get as many as possible. They used to get some from Iran. Although the relations became bad around late 2011. Iran hasn't supported them much but lately wants to return ties. Most were coming from Libya. Islamic Jihad gets theirs from Iran.

    I am disappointed with the performance of the Rpg-29's. They haven't been able to cause massive damage to Israeli armor as of yet.

    Israel has not fought the ground war well. The only way it's been advancing is a 'war of wills' doctrine. The areas they advanced in had heavy civilian casualties. Also massive destruction, such as that east of Gaza city. Israel can't advance if it fought ground war like men. It's disturbing they resorted to killing civilians indiscriminately.

    You are right about the tiny space though. They can't do what Hezbollah does in Lebanon. So they urgently need to find a solution to this rocket arsenal and make it less in quantity but higher in quality. They need effective rockets, heavier rockets, maybe even guided missiles. They should get rid of the of some lighter weapons. Invest more in effective mortars with longer range to hit Israeli military concentrations. They need to find something more effective that doesn't relate to ground warfare where they have been effective.

    Iran needs to produce a missile to take out the Iron Dome. But, this requires intelligence as well.

    I also wonder if there are any anti-ship missiles in Gaza. It would make a lot of sense to acquire them after this is over.
     
  14. OPSSG

    OPSSG Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Part 1 of 2: Providing context on Operation Protective Edge

    There are some issues with this thread. In particular, there is little or no attempt by Thinkingfor29 to provide sources for his unsubstantiated claims, in support of his preferred cause. Let me just make a few points (with some sources) to cover some of gaps in the discussion of this thread thus far on Operation Protective Edge by providing some basic context. It is hoped that the context provided will raise the quality of the discussion:-

    1. Beyond the failure of the latest round of the peace process in April 2014, and of all the reasons for the ongoing conflict in Gaza, the most important is the lack of money - a lack of money even to pay salaries - when Egypt closed many of Hamas' tunnels on their side of the border. Egypt's closure of the tunnels on their side of the border affected Hamas' ability to tax the goods smuggled through these tunnels. But before we go further, there are three points on background with regard to these tunnels:-

    One, the New Republic has an article by Neri Zilber that is well worth reading for background (see The Israeli Army Knew Gaza Was a "Ticking Bomb" Before War Broke Out: They were even developing a plan to improve conditions there). As Neri Zilber noted, before Hamas started firing rockets into Israel, before Israel responded with airstrikes and ground forces, and before the kidnapping and murder of Israeli teenagers, and one Palestinian teenager, there were the Gazan banks. In early June, Hamas gunmen physically forced the closure of all the banks in the Gaza Strip, due to a dispute over salaries with the West Bank–based Palestinian Authority. While Hamas did win one election, it is also a group of armed people imposing their will on the other Palestinian people, via violence, if there is dissent. They are an armed group within the population and there is an article called 'Under Cover of War: Hamas Political Violence in Gaza', which documents the alleged Hamas extra judicial killings of suspected collaborators and various incidents of the maiming of Palestinians by masked gun men.

    Two, it has been reported that Hamas killed hundreds of children in the construction of its extensive tunnel network, built partly to carry out attacks on civilians across the Gaza border in Israel. That report--confirmed by Hamas itself--emerged in 2012, not from the Israeli government, but the sympathetic Journal of Palestine Studies, in an article that otherwise celebrated the secret tunnel system as a symbol of Palestinian resistance to the Israeli "siege" of the Gaza Strip. This article traces the extraordinary development of Gaza’s tunnel phenomenon over the past decade in response to Israel’s economic asphyxiation of the small coastal enclave. It focuses on the period since Hamas’s 2007 takeover of the Strip, which saw the industry’s transformation from a clandestine, makeshift operation into a major commercial enterprise, regulated, taxed, and bureaucratized. In addition to describing the particulars of the tunnel complex, the article explores its impact on Gaza’s socioeconomic hierarchy, strategic orientation, and Islamist rule. The larger geopolitical context, especially with regard to Israel, the Sinai Peninsula, and the Nile Valley, is also discussed.

    Three, Mohsen Rezaei, a member of the Iranian government and an adviser to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has criticized Hamas for failing to protect civilians in the Gaza Strip during the conflict with Israel, saying the group should in future allow civilians to hide in its tunnels. ​

    2. The thing that has not changed is that the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) ground incursion is an urban battle, with three points to note:-

    One, as usual, man-portable anti-tank weapons are playing a major role in Hamas counterattacks against Israel's ground incursion into Gaza, and have accounted for around 40% of the fatalities experienced by the IDF during the first ten days of the ground operation. Up to 18 of the 43 reported IDF fatalities during this period were caused by anti-tank weapons. A further five were reported on 29 July, apparently when attackers who had emerged from a tunnel near Nahal Oz fired an anti-tank missile at the base of an IDF watch tower (see this 30 July 2014 CNN report: Hamas films deadly tunnel attack - YouTube).

    Two, there has been some IDF changes for the ground forces as well. IDF commanders have been trying to make their firepower more accurate and more autonomous. One tank brigade commander, for example, stated that he has been calling in air strikes, artillery strikes, missile strikes, and tank strikes at the same time. If an IDF unit are hit by mortar fire, the UAV tasked to support the unit can send the coordinates of the enemy mortar to that IDF unit under mortar attack instantly, and the tank can counter attack the enemy directly.

    Three, pictures released on Internet during the Israeli military operation Protective Edge has showed a new version of the Magach 5 fitted with 12 anti-tank guided missile launchers. The Magach 5 tank is based on the old American-made M48A5 main battle tank. The Magach Spike is fitted with 12 Rafael Tamuz (Spike -NLOS) missile launchers mounted at the rear of the turret. A curved Spike NLOS antennna is mounted on the top of the turret, which is lowered in road position. The front part of the turret and the hull are fitted with add-on armour to increase protection against anti-tank missile. More stowage box are fitted to each side of the turret. The Spike NLOS is a multi-purpose, electro-optical missile system with a real-time wireless data link for ranges up to 25km. As such, it is possible for an armoured unit belonging to an armored brigade equipped with ground sensors to conduct an attack directly with their Spike NLOS missiles or relay coordinates and other information to other forces, including the air force and artillery batteries. ​

    3. Recently, Robert H. Scales and Douglas Ollivant have observed that 'Terrorist armies fight smarter and deadlier than ever'. This frightening new age is emerging due to several factors that neither the United States nor Israeli forces fully anticipated and I would recommend reading the article for the four reasons they gave. Beyond the four reasons, at a broad level, the traditional comparative advantage of a professional army, like the IDF, has diminished, relative to terrorist groups like Hamas. These terrorist groups are increasingly able to turn their para-military organisations into effective fighting forces, often pairing their fanatical dedication with newly acquired small unit tactical skills. Over a period of six years, Hamas has evolved in its tactical proficiency, and in:-

    (i) Operation Pillar of Defense in November 2012;

    (ii) Operation Returning Echo in March 2012;

    (iii) Operation Cast Lead in February 2009; and

    (iv) Operation Hot Winter in March 2008, ​

    Israeli troops had to stop short of attacking Hamas leadership who were sometimes camped underneath al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City - a reporter from Finnish TV (Helsingin Sanomat) confirmed that a rocket was launched “right in the back the parking lot” of the Al-Shifa Hospital at 2 a.m. on Friday morning, 1 August 2014. Further, the problem with Netanyahu’s strategy, is that Netanyahu may never be able to achieve the ending to the war he’s looking for in this July to August 2014 round. As bad as Hamas is for both Palestinians and Israelis, it’s the least bad alternative - that is why Israel is not trying to destroy Hamas as an organisation. "We wanted to have an address on the other side on the day after. This address could be the enforcer against militants and take care of its citizens," a senior IDF source said. This time round, the IDF was compelled into action after the bodies of Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar and Naftali Frankel -- a dual Israeli-American citizen -- were found on 30 June 2014. The country was grief-stricken, and had to act to protect their citizens from further terrorist acts.

    4. Broadly speaking, there are some similarities in how professional armies go about establishing target lists to attack the leaders and key nodes of a terrorist organisation. A quick review of the Find, Fix, Finish, Exploit, Analyze, and Disseminate (F3EAD) process, may be useful for a layman reading about it for the first time. This version of the targeting methodology utilized by the US Special Operations Forces responsible for some of the most highly-publicized missions in support of overseas contingency operations (likewise the IDF would have a very similar process). F3EAD is a system that allows the Commander of these forces to anticipate and predict enemy operations, identify, locate, and target enemy forces, and to perform intelligence exploitation and analysis of captured enemy personnel and materiel. Central to the F3EAD process is the functional fusion of operations and intelligence functions throughout the military organization. In F3EAD, commanders establish targeting priorities, the intelligence system provides the direction to the target, and the operations system performs the decisive operations necessary to accomplish the mission. Weapons release, via aircraft or artillery, is the last step of a multi-step intelligence and operational planning process for IDF at the joint force headquarters. Relevant working group and boards to the F3EAD process for operational planning teams may include:-

    One, the joint targeting working group, which provides target system analysis for plans and operations with lethal targeting support;

    Two, the joint targeting coordination board, which facilitates and coordinates joint force targeting activities within each component's scheme of maneuver to ensure joint fires priorities are met; and

    Three, the joint synchronization board, which approves near term lethal and non-lethal actions.​

    And these process exist to determine (i) the threat validity; (ii) the actual importance of a potential target (before it is treated as high-payoff target); (iii) the best means to engage the target; (iv) the expected effects of engaging the targets (which will guide actions to mitigate negative effects); and, (v) any changes required to the exploitation plan. Another concept (interrelated with F3EAD) is 'Attack the Network'. Sophisticated intelligence software systems have been developed - such as Palantir - to sift through the many intelligence reports and organize the information into useable and timely "actionable intelligence".
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2014
  15. OPSSG

    OPSSG Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Part 2 of 2: Providing context on Operation Protective Edge

    5. The targeting of an individual insurgent that must be acquired and successfully attacked (exploited, captured, or killed) for the success of the commander's mission under the F3EAD targeting process takes into consideration the risk of collateral damage. However, beyond the F3EAD or Attack the Network, Michael Carl Haas writing for the National Interest has noted:-
    "First, intelligence gathering is never comprehensive; its depth and scope are limited by the assumptions and the resources that flow into it. It finds what it is looking for—some of it, anyway—and seldom uncovers that which is not expected to be there.

    Secondly, the collection of high-quality, actionable intelligence will not keep pace with a high-tempo operation’s voracious appetite for new targets. As the initial supply of preplanned strike options dries up, the attacker faces steeply diminishing returns and less elegant approaches must be relied upon to sustain the momentum.

    Third, the value of the prewar intelligence picture depreciates sharply once the fighting is joined. Competent enemies seldom behave as anticipated, and they tend to have an ace or two up their sleeves." ​

    6. The IDF said that the militants fired a third of the 10,000 rockets they were estimated, of which 3,356 were launched against Israel and another 356 at its ground forces operating inside the Gaza Strip. The IDF said they had destroyed another third of the rockets before they could be launched. The statistics also show that the rocket fire was significantly less intense during 'Protective Edge' than 'Pillar of Defence'. The eight-day Operation Pillar of Defence saw an average of 188 rocket launches a day, a figure that dropped to 128 during 29 days of Operation Protective Edge. IDF's July to August 2014 ground incursion into Gaza serves three objectives:-

    (i) to weaken Hamas and its capabilities, in particular, to significantly reduce its rocket arsenal to a more manageable level;

    (ii) to protect Israeli citizens from rocket and missile attacks (so that the Iron Dome retains its core strategic function - to provide Israel with the option to selectively respond to Hamas' rocket attacks); and

    (iii) to dismantle a network of terror tunnels which extend from the Gaza Strip into Israel (providing security from attack at the short to medium term). ​

    7. Israeli leaders say that Operation Protective Edge targets rocket launchers, Hamas leaders and other symbols and institutions of the Gaza-based regime. Due to the F3EAD and the Intelligence Preparation of the Battlefield (IPB) processes, they say the focus is shifted to the subterranean labyrinth supporting command centers, storage sites and staging grounds for cross-border assaults. Instant military history is always dangerous and inaccurate. This is particularly true when one goes from an effort to describe the fighting to trying to draw lessons from uncertain and contradictory information. Having warned of the dangers of trying to draw lessons from instant military history, from my perspective, there are four key differences thus far:-

    One of the defining differences between Cast Lead and Protective Edge is the degree of IDF effort invested in searching and destroying Hamas' tunnel infrastructure, storage sites and staging grounds. The tunnel threat from the Gaza Strip has revealed the limitations of air strikes. Much of the ground forces’ efforts in Gaza are concentrated underground, as the tunnels have shown that there is still a need for “low-tech” tactics. The tunnels do not require “sophisticated and unmanned equipment,” as in many cases low-tech bulldozers get the job done. See this video on IDF Forces Find & Destroy Terror Tunnel In Gaza Mosque: IDF Forces Find & Destroy Terror Tunnel In Gaza Mosque - YouTube

    The second difference is that this time round, the tunnels on Egypt's side of the border have been largely shut down, which has an impact on Hamas' ability to resupply even at a rudimentary level - in other words, they using up their war reserve stockpile (with little or no hope of resupply until hostilities end). That being the case, it is not in IDF interest to bring Operation Protective Edge to a premature end, despite the casualties, as this time round, they can aim to hit Hamas much harder in the hope of reaching a tipping point in ground morale. And if the IDF can destroy enough of Hamas' tunnel infrastructure, storage sites and staging grounds, they can reduce the risk to their communities that are close to the Gaza border. That means the normal goal of minimizing IDF casualties, takes a back seat to actively seeking out entrances and exits of Hamas' extensive tunnel infrastructure. There is alot of hard fighting in unforgiving urban terrain. See this POV Footage of Special Forces Storming Building in Gaza: POV Footage of Special Forces Storming Building in Gaza - YouTube

    The third difference is that once tunnels are detected, the mission becomes a combined arms operation involving infantry, combat engineers, and special explosive-ordnance disposal teams - which is very labour and time intensive, to keep the site secure until the tunnel is destroyed. To secure the site, where the tunnel clearing and the various underground demolition teams are working, the IDF needs to maintain a security bubble, part of that bubble is provided by troops on the ground, assisted by artillery and air support; which would explain the much heavier use of artillery this time round. In Operation Protective Edge, IDF forces are staying in Gaza, at specific locations for long, extended periods of time, which exposes them to counter attacks - which is a complicating risk factor. Suppressible fire support and armour operations are necessary tools used by troops providing the security bubble to keep Hamas' counter attacks at bay while the underground demolition teams are working. However, this is not without its downfalls and risks, especially if the security bubble is breached, as was indeed the case in the latest development, where Second Lieutenant Hadar Goldin, 23, was seized during a ceasefire in Gaza.

    The fourth difference is Hamas' lack of success with killing IDF armoured vehicles equipped with an active protection system (APS). In the case of the Merkava Mark IV, integration of the Trophy APS has eliminated anti-tank missiles as a threat. The system includes an F/G Band fire-control radar with four flat-panel antennas mounted on the vehicle, with a 360-degree field of view. When a weapon is fired at the vehicle, the internal computer uses the signal from the incoming weapon and calculates an approach vector. Once the incoming weapon is fully classified, the launchers fire the neutralizing agents, which are usually small metal pellets. The system is designed to have a very small kill zone, so as not to endanger troops adjacent to the protected vehicle. The system is designed to work against all types of anti-tank missiles and rockets, including handheld weapons such as rocket propelled grenades. The system can simultaneously engage several threats arriving from different directions, is effective on stationary or moving platforms, and is effective against both short and long-range threats. Newer versions of the system include a reload feature for multiple firings. The system is equipped with several sensors and a search radar with four flat-panel antennas, to create a hemispheric protected zone around the tank, to intercept and destroy incoming threats. See this video on the Trophy APS: Rafael Advanced Defense Systems - Trophy APS For Heavy, Medium & Light Vehicles [720p] - YouTube

    8. Although the IDF’s Chief Rabbi Rafi Peretz had not yet formally confirmed the death of Hadar Goldin, it seemed clear from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s press conference on 2 August 2014 that he did not anticipate anything but bad news about the fate of the Givati Brigade officer. Netanyahu said he empathized with the Goldin family, and that “The State of Israel will continue to do its utmost to bring home its MIAs.” A major IDF operation had searched for Goldin, kidnapped in a Hamas attack near Rafah on Friday morning. But late Saturday night, two hours after Netanyahu had spoken, a committee headed by Peretz established, on the basis of “findings in the field,” that Goldin was dead, and designated him a fallen soldier whose place of burial is unknown. By beginning to withdraw troops from Gaza, without entering negotiations over a ceasefire, the prime minister is aiming to deny Hamas an immediate concrete achievement.

    9. Beyond the EU and the US, leaders from as far away as Indonesia, have spoken about their concerns about the humanitarian crisis that arose from the latest round of fighting. With regard to the difficulties in getting a cease fire, Jacob Stoil has noted the following with regard to Hamas:-

    "Hamas’ reasons for not accepting a ceasefire are largely unchanged since its rejection of the Egyptian ceasefire proposal earlier this month, as I discussed in a previous article at War on the Rocks. For Hamas, a ceasefire must at the very least see Egypt reopen the Gaza border to trade and cease interference with Hamas’ ability to import weapons and financial resources. Failure to achieve these concessions may jeopardize Hamas’ ability to maintain its power in Gaza and perhaps its role as a major player in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. However, as the conflict continues, Hamas needs an even bigger payoff to justify the war to the population of Gaza. This at least in part explains Hamas’ recent insistence that all its conditions including the release of prisoners be met before any ceasefire can take place. The needs of Israel and Hamas have become so zero sum that envisioning a mutually acceptable ceasefire package is difficult.

    The situation in Egypt further complicates any effort to make a lasting ceasefire. Egypt has its own needs and objectives that a ceasefire must address. In practice, Hamas’ ceasefire demands require concessions from both Israel and Egypt." ​
    In 2012, the ceasefire that ended Operation Pillar of Defense called for “opening the crossings [into Gaza] and facilitating the movement of people and transfer of goods, and refraining from restricting residents’ free movement.” This time, Netanyahu is not sending a team to Cairo to discuss a ceasefire with Hamas at all. Hamas deliberately breached Friday’s UN- and US-brokered 72-hour truce, he said, with the “pre-planned” attack in which Goldin and two others were killed. Why bother trying to negotiate another deal with a terrorist group that cannot be trusted?

    10. Well meaning external observers have hoped that the agreement of 23 April 2014 between Hamas and the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to form a unity government suggested a pragmatic move towards political and diplomatic solutions, including to its relationship with Israel. There are two additional aspects to consider:-

    One, external observers hope against hope that working with the PLO was a means by which Hamas could retain relevance, improve conditions and deliver key services in Gaza. However, in view of the depressing history of the region and looking at Hamas' track record, I am not optimistic of the outcome of the 23 April 2014 agreement or the current attempts at a ceasefire with Israel.

    Two, with regard to Israel’s strategic interests, the cost of granting concessions to the people living in Gaza is less than the cost of not granting them. Yes, if Gaza’s borders are opened, its people will celebrate. Yes, they might applaud Hamas, and they might conclude that belligerence works. But if the borders are not opened, the people might further radicalize. The irony is that Hamas and its violent inclinations might gain more support from a continued blockade than from its relaxation.​
    Israel’s military response may deliver temporary security by reducing the number of Hamas rockets and weakening its capabilities and the tunnels in the short term and mid term; however, in the long term, a military strategy without understanding the conditions in Gaza will not get Israel what it wants. There is also an impact from the IDF offensive in Gaza on Palestinians in the West Bank. The longer this conflict drags, the more Hamas will try to use the clashes to inspire a third intifada, which will weaken the PLO in the West Bank.
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2014
  16. OPSSG

    OPSSG Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Thread reopened on request.

    Any attempt by a member to threaten a Moderator, for moderating a discussion thread, will not be viewed kindly. Further, anyone responding to disagree with a warning post issued by the Mod Team, here, will be banned. While this thread is closed, the Mod Team asks all who wish to participate in this thread in the future, to consider the following points of guidance when posting in contentious defence matters threads:-


    1. Be aware that certain posting styles may be seen by some other forum members as offensive. Kindly consider:
    (i) sticking to the limitations specified in this thread:

    (ii) taking heed of the Moderator warnings in this thread; and

    (iii) reading DefenceTalk's forum rules before posting.​

    2. The Mod Team believes that some aspects of this thread:-
    (i) presents a purely subjective point of view;

    (ii) does not contain any meaningful analysis of the Israeli or Hamas actions/tactics in the 2014 round of the Gaza conflict (see post above, for examples of the differences);

    (iii) is not supported by links or references (see the various links provided in the post above); and

    (iv) does not seem to be aware that Hamas is not just a security threat to Israel, it is also a security threat to Egypt. Hamas was allied with the old Morsi regime in Egypt. The current el-Sisi government is therefore concerned that a strong Hamas will pose a threat to Egypt. It fears that an open border with Gaza will allow weapons and money to flow both ways. Weapons from Gaza could find their way to Muslim Brotherhood members opposed to the regime or into the already unstable Sinai Peninsula. ​

    3. In the conflict between Hamas and the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) during Operation Protective Edge, we see some significant evolution of the tactics used. Beyond the use of combat swimmers by Hamas, which were eliminated by the IDF, we also see fighting over Hamas' extensive tunnel network. If members participating in this thread, were to focus on the shifts in the tactics of both parties, this discussion can steer clear of politics. Further, there is international concern about the humanitarian crisis brought about by the latest round of conflict. Through an open letter uploaded in Strait Times and his official Facebook page, President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono urged world leaders as well as leaders of Israel and Hamas to call for immediate cease fire to end the humanitarian tragedy in Gaza. Below is a link to the open letter from Indonesian President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono as published in Strait Times, in Singapore, on 31 July 2014. However, not all foreign advice on the latest Gaza conflict is sound advice. Former US President Jimmy Carter and Former Irish President Mary Robinson in a new issue of Foreign Policy magazine called on the West to recognize the US-designated terrorist group Hamas as a legitimate "political actor" that represents the bulk of the Palestinian population. Following Carter's advice to recognize Hamas would alienate Israel, undermine Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, a more moderate figure who governs the West Bank, and anger the Egyptians, who helped negotiate a cease-fire between Hamas and Israel, said Aaron David Miller, a vice president of the Wilson Center and a former Middle East negotiator.

    4. Please also note that Hamas is a para-military organisation (and considered a terrorist organisation by a number of states), whose leaders truly believe that if they kill enough Israeli civilians or otherwise, Israel will just give up and quit the region forever. It’s a delusion, but it’s what they believe. Palestinians in Gaza are encouraged by the Hamas leadership from the top down to kill themselves in attacks that also kill Israeli civilians. Children in Gaza are indoctrinated at school and summer camps with Hamas’ ideology of hate. They are taught that there is no higher value than martyrdom — no higher honor than dying while murdering Israelis. Of course, suicide attacks are not the only way that Hamas tries to kill Israelis. Hamas has strapped explosives to animals, not just people. Rocket fire, kidnappings, shootings, firebombs and bus bombs are just some of the other daily threats with which Israel must contend with.

    5. Israel is fighting a religiously motivated enemy, who are determined not to live in peace with Israel. And you can't understand Hamas until you take into account the religious motivation or zeal behind their attacks to further their ultimate goal of the destruction of the Jewish state. Therefore, there shall be no attempt to draw an equivalence of Hamas' actions with any western style military organisation that has a set of written rules or Rules of Engagement (ROEs), with chain of command and judicial oversight of the enforcement of these ROEs.
     
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2014
  17. NatIsrael972

    NatIsrael972 Banned Member

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    Thread closed?

    @OPSSG

    So is the thread closed because some people don't see the full picture and comment nonsense? Also, may I ask when this thread may be open again?
     
  18. Traveller

    Traveller Member

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    .The Kirya (IDF HQ) does not apply a "doctrine" on Gaza. Respecting the limitations of this discussion I will simply state that the IDF does not act unilaterally. This situation has been visible in open source media following events after 2012 to the current Friday fence riots. The same problem arose in the Summer War of 2006 in Lebanon where doctrine existed but was not applied.

    For the Palestinians, major developments have occurred since 2009. Hamas has tried converting their arsenal from homemade rockets to an arsenal of grad/107mm/200mm rockets. They also have built underground structures to mobilize, transfer weapons and protect military assets. Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad during the post-2009 period have tried acquiring as many advanced anti- tank weapons as they could. They have moved from single rocket launches to rocket launchers sometimes very concealed and placed underground. This has made it more difficult for Israel to target their arsenals.[/quote]

    .HAMAS have used the Russian Kornet system several times since 2012. Especially with its later iterations it remains a first world ATGM.

    .The 200mm M-75 rockets confirmed to date are based on the Iranian F, however Al Qassam have tested what are believed to be extended range models.

    . Perhaps in certain lines of assault, but I would take this with a grain of salt. This tactic can back-fire.

    .Most of these tunnels have been identified and as at writing anti-tunnels methodologies are being employed.

    . I don't agree "Israel ran out of targets". The target bank isn't the issue. Hitting a hospital with a HAMAS HQ in the basement or an active school being used as an arms store is problematical. For Israel the media space is part of the battle-space.

    .No diplomatic solution has occurred in those two years. What has occurred is an increasing acceptance that the solution is to retake Gaza and destroy HAMAS. The problem is the same as the 2005 withdrawal from Gaza, who will take over?

    @Traveller if you are going to comment on posts within each post as you have done, can you please us the proper coding to do so. The Moderators don't have the time or inclination to correct everyone's formatting errors.

    To enclose a quote before the first word of the quote insert the following <quote> and at end of quote </quote> IMPORTANT For purposes of illustration I used the symbols < > WHEN you actually go to use the coding USE [ ] because if I'd used the actual symbols the system would've bought up an empty quote section.

    Ngatimozart.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 21, 2019
  19. Traveller

    Traveller Member

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    @Traveller if you are going to comment on posts within each post as you have done, can you please us the proper coding to do so. The Moderators don't have the time or inclination to correct everyone's formatting errors.

    To enclose a quote before the first word of the quote insert the following <quote> and at end of quote </quote> IMPORTANT For purposes of illustration I used the symbols < > WHEN you actually go to use the coding USE [ ] because if I'd used the actual symbols the system would've bought up an empty quote section.

    Ngatimozart.
    [/QUOTE]

    @ngatimozart, Understood and thanks for the guidance tips. Apologies for the extra workload.
     
    ngatimozart likes this.
  20. ngatimozart

    ngatimozart Super Moderator Staff Member Verified Defense Pro

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    No probs at all