NATIV Website in Hebrew:
Editor: Arieh Stav
Associate Editor: Michael Or ■
Managing Editor: Itta Horol ■
Publishing Director: Leah Kochanowitz ■ Subscription Manager: Eli
Production: E. Oren, Ltd.
NATIV - bi-monthly
■ Published by the
Ariel Center for Policy Research (ACPR) ■
ISSN 7092 1187 ■ P.O.B.
830, Shaarei Tikva 44810 Israel ■
Tel: 972-3-906-3920 ■
Fax: 972-3-906-3905 ■
Annual subscription rates: 180
NIS ■ Overseas $60
The views expressed in the
articles do not necessarily reflect the views of the editors.
Nativ cannot return unsolicited manuscripts.
■ Nativ Index
■ Nativ in Hebrew
The Smoking Gun Did
Not Go Up in Smoke
Much to the delight of
the opponents of the war in Iraq, and to the consternation of Bush
and Blair and their respective administrations, commission of
inquiry after commission of inquiry and commentator upon commentator
have wrongly concluded that there was no smoking gun in the war,
since no weapons of mass destruction were found, therefore the
entire rationale and justification of the war went up in smoke.
However, this essay
will show that those commentators, and committees, who had nothing
more than political calculations behind their minds, had falsely
concluded that the absence of evidence amounted to evidence of
absence. For there is much circumstantial proof that Saddam did have
WMD, hid some of it before the war, transferred other parts to
fellow-dictators like him in the Muslim world and destroyed some of
it. But there is no better proof that he had it as the death by
chemical warfare of thousands of Kurds and Iranians at the hands of
In short, there was a
corpse of the victim, fingerprints of Saddam, blood stains and a
blood trail. Only the pistol which was thrown into the river was not
found. But any fair-minded court of law would have convicted the
back to top
The Iranian Nuclear Potential
Is it Really so Threatening?
After the developments
in Iraq and the liquidation of the development of weapons of mass
destruction in Libya and considering the fact that the Syrian Army
has weakened considerably, there remains, for all intents and
purposes, one potential strategic threat against Israel – the
Iranian nuclear program. A nuclear Iran will lead to a shift in the
strategic balance in the Middle East and, as a result, will also
lead to necessary changes in Israel's national security concept in
general and in its nuclear policy in particular.
There is no doubt, in
the opinions of experts dealing with this topic that Iran is
attempting to develop nuclear weapons. Its attempts and courses of
action in this area are extremely diverse, beginning with the
reactor in Bushahar through the facilities containing the
centrifuges for the enriching of uranium.
The attempts by the
international community to lead Iran to a decision to willingly end
its nuclear program have, to this point, been futile. Although in
February 2006, the Board of Governors of the International Atomic
Energy Agency (IAEA) decided to transfer the Iranian matter to the
UN Security Council, which has the power to impose sanctions against
Iran, however at this stage, it is not yet clear if that will indeed
take place and if sanctions are imposed, how effective they will be.
More than a few policy
makers in Israel consider a nuclear Iran an immediate, existential
threat against Israel. According to the approach of those elements,
among them senior officials in the defense hierarchy, Israel must
prevent Iran from deploying nuclear weapons at all costs.
Israel has seven policy
alternatives in case Iran arms itself with nuclear weapons:
1. Military action.
2. Maintaining the
existing policy (ambiguity)
3. Relying on the
defense provided by the American nuclear umbrella
4. Negotiations with
Iran on disarmament and supervision arrangements
5. Passive defense
6. Active defense
7. Open nuclear
An analysis of these
alternatives leads to the conclusion that the first six are
ineffective or are not dependent upon Israel (the American nuclear
umbrella). Military action will not accomplish the objective of
destroying the Iranian nuclear program, but will exact an extremely
high price; the ambiguity policy is unreliable because it leaves
"gray areas" that are too great when dealing with a nuclear threat;
negotiations with Iran are not an option in the foreseeable future;
passive defense (bomb shelters) is ineffective and its cost is
astronomical; active defense (Arrow) is not only ineffective but it
compromises Israel's deterrent capability. Thus, the only option
remaining is the option of open nuclear deterrence as a course of
action that Israel will be forced to take if Iran becomes nuclear.
back to top
Strategy: Naval Deterrence as
Part of the New Strategic Perception
In this essay, I will
attempt to explain that it is not possible to effectively
protect the State of Israel today against the strategic threats
confronting it without sea expanses along with a mobile,
multi-purpose, aggressive (and nuclear) durable navy.
The State of Israel is
like a “strategic platform”, upon which, in situations of emergency,
crisis and war, a strategic surprise could take place – a surprise
attack employing conventional, chemical or biological missiles and
in the future, even nuclear missiles or bombs. This platform must
deter, prevent, absorb and neutralize the other “strategic
platforms” (Arab countries) from which the missiles were launched.
The platform is narrow, densely populated in its center, where all
of the recruitment, logistic, medical and industrial centers are
also concentrated. Therefore, as technology progresses, threats grow
more ominous and distance (even thousands of kilometers) loses its
significance, the need arises to enlarge the platform, otherwise it
will “collapse” (while Israel’s land expanses are gradually
expansion into space and to sea. Israel has “dabbled” at space and
its accomplishments are tremendous, however the required budgets are
as astronomical as the distances involved. Expanding the country’s
borders (primarily to the east) creates an inconsequential security
belt (as the strike at the center is what counts).
In contrast to all
that, sea expanses create natural strategic depth with strategic
advantages for sea vessels like those provided by land vehicles:
Mobility, quick movement from sector to sector, sea-based deterrent
and defense capability against planes attacking the country’s skies
and the ability to participate in the decisive battle. In terms of
the underwater realm, the submarine has advantages in firing
conventional and non-conventional (ballistic and cruise) missiles
due to its survivability.
The requisite funds
should be provided after a reorganization of the defense components
as a whole in the face of the threats.
In addition, other
forms of cooperation are possible such as the use of ports and
infrastructure, mutual use of intelligence, “reciprocal coverage and
As a result of the
above, in the nuclear era that is liable to become a reality in the
near future (no surprise), the primary strategic threat facing
Israel will be a surprise nuclear attack. Deterrence by means of
submarines armed with cruise missiles with nuclear warheads or
surface vessels armed with appropriate discovery and warning systems
are the optimal operational response at Israel’s disposal at
Today, the navy must
move from the stage of operating strategic vessels – the Saar 5 and
the Dolphin strategic submarine, to a stage of operating
synergistically as a strategic branch of the armed forces, employing
tactical nuclear attack capabilities.
The Navy’s budget should
be upgraded in accordance with those needs.
back to top
Targeted Killing –
Prospect and Risk
computerized encyclopedia for security, defines “targeted killing”
as a military action which (the IDF) operates in order to eliminate
[Palestinian] terrorists who are involved in deadly attacks against
Israelis. This definition tries to avoid entailing innocent
civilians to the violence cycle and also to anticipate the day
Israel will finally sit with uninfected-by-terror Palestinians
around the negotiation table.
The targeted killing
became the most dangerous threat to the terrorist organizations. The
Israeli security forces developed a variety of means which this
paper tries to describe. With these methods, Israel killed more than
400 terrorists, mostly with blood on their hands, who were
eliminated from the air, from ground and in some cases, even from
the sea. In 2005 itself, more than 50 deadly attacks were made from
Apache helicopters – with only few failures.
Palestinian terror is
probably one of the most stubborn of all. Although it knows it
doesn’t have the capability to win in a face-to-face confrontation
with the Israeli security forces, it chooses to act behind the
civilian population’s back. From this hiding place it sends one of
the most deadly weapons – suicide bombers.
back to top
American Foreign Policy:
With a Glance at Israel
refers all important questions concerning American politics and
society to Alexis de Tocqueville. For only the obtuse regard
Democracy in America as a mere historical document, a portrait of a
simpler time and place. Americans recognize themselves in
Tocqueville’s Americans, despite the industrial revolution,
high-tech, and the global village.
It may well be,
moreover, that Democracy in America can teach us much about Israel
and about many Israelis. Even though Israel (as the first author has
shown) is not a democracy from a political perspective, this does
not diminish Tocqueville’s potential relevance to this country
because by democracy he does not mean a form of government so much
as a way of life. In other words, Tocqueville is primarily concerned
about the sociological characteristics of American democracy, which
characteristics may also be found among many assimilated Israelis.
Still, one does
not usually refer questions of foreign policy to Tocqueville.
Nevertheless, that extraordinary philosopher saw that “a democracy
can only with difficulty regulate the details of an important
undertaking, persevere in a fixed design, and work out its execution
in spite of serious obstacles. It cannot combine its measures with
secrecy or await their consequences with patience.”
would not have been surprised by the mistakes the U.S. made before
9/11. He saw that, given the democratic love of physical
gratification, “There are two things that a democratic people will
always find very difficult, to begin a war and to end it.”
How indeed can
the President of the United States arouse his fellow-citizens to
engage and persevere in a war against Islam, when Americans are
bombarded daily by media steeped in moral relativism, which saps the
will to win? And how does this President maintain moral consistency
when his country’s economy depends on Saudi oil, and when his
people, habituated to ease and comfort, will not long endure the
material sacrifices demanded by a protracted (and amorphous) war?
As for Israel,
how can it win a war against its enemies when Israel’s political
elites are forever intoning the mantra of peace, and when its
military, emasculated by the doctrine of “self-restraint”, lack
cardia, “heart”, and dynamis, “the will to fight”.
Israelis can learn much from Tocqueville.
back to top
In 1917 – the year of
the Russian Revolution and the Balfour Declaration – Rahel Yanait,
an activist in the “Hashomer” movement, declared: “National
redemption is the harbinger of social redemption.” Ben-Gurion
also espoused that messianic approach and he, too, ascribed it
clear-cut universal significance. The socialist founding fathers
considered the State of Israel an indivisible component of their
Marxist-internationalist vision of constructing the new communist
world in which there is no separation between peoples and nations,
races and religions.
The totalitarian state
religion, which was conceived in Platonic philosophy and whose
modern beginnings lie in the anti-Semitic French Enlightenment
movement, led, in our time, to the nightmare of the transfer of Jews
from their land by their State; the handing over of Jewish
synagogues for incineration by their murderers, the desecration of
Jewish graves by the Military Rabbinate of the Jewish State; the
cruel violence exercised against the victims of the expulsion by the
soldiers and policemen of the regime, which came into being as the
“harbinger of socialist redemption”. The State of Israel would not
have succeeded in perpetrating these crimes without the cooperation
of the victim, which was first and foremost spiritual and religious
cooperation – and only consequently actual cooperation.
How is it possible that
good, religious Jews found themselves in a situation of that sort?
The answer lies in the fact that Religious Zionism considers the
priests and adherents of the universal, messianic religion of the
Left as almost sacred brethren and it is incumbent upon the
religious-Zionists to facilitate their repentance. However, an even
more significant factor is that the ideology of this community
states that viewing the State of Israel as the “harbinger of
redemption” is based on the Torah. The State of Israel succeeded in
perpetrating ethnic cleansing of the Jews thanks to those two facts,
which are interdependent.
The monster has risen
up against its maker.
The expulsion of the
Katif Bloc Jews succeeded. However, many are unaware of the fact
that in the course of its implementation, an unusual event
transpired involving a meeting between the new Jew and the old Jews
whom he came to expel. Here there were no embraces between the
expellers and the expelled. Here the victims of state political
terrorism did not weep on the shoulders of the emissaries of the
despotic regime. Here there were no joint prayers for the well-being
of the State at the conclusion of the action. Here, the violent
policemen were not given the opportunity to embrace and kiss the
Torah. Here, there was a clear and absolute separation between good
and evil, between light and darkness, between sanctity and impurity.
back to top