Further reflections on the Israel-Hezb'allah War

As Israel, having abandoned the terrible simplicity of 'never again,' awaits the French army to bless it with the fruits of the ceasefire, further reflection on this war increases its mysteries.

Take the Germans as an example.  As any student of World War II is aware, the Germans were great planners.  Not all their plans worked out, but planning was the basis of their military operations.  This included the question of doctrine — how would the next war be fought, which led them to come up with the combined arms doctrine of armor plus dive bombing which became known as blitzkrieg — to what specific plan of attack should be used for a given theater.  The plan for the attack on France, for instance, was the subject of raging debate within the General Staff, with the dramatic 'southern attack' being forced through by Hitler.

The point of all this is the extensive thought and experimentation that went into German planning for war.  Fast forward to Israel—Hezb'allah. 

This was a war of choice for Israel.  Yes, Hezb'allah provoked the war, but if Israel felt unprepared to fight it, it could have ignored the provocation and negotiated for the return of the soldiers.  So, how is it possible that there were Israeli cabinet meetings where war plans were being approved or not approved after the war had begun?  That is the type of thing that occurs when you are the tactical defender, when the situation on the battlefield is unclear and decisions have to be made when you don't know where the center of gravity of the attacker is.

But the whole point of the Heb'llah position is that (a) they were the tactical defender (albeit the strategic attacker) and (b) they were dug in.  Mobility was not the issue.  Yes, uncertainty about the location of the launchers was an issue, but not the physical location of the enemy.  And even if unknown, the enemy was not moving.  So, how could there have been such uncertainty about what the IDF was going to do?  The analogy would have been the German army attacking France and then the Germans having emergency meetings as to what they were going to do, or more particularly if they were going to do something, next.  That presumably has been solved in the planning process, which includes the techniques you expect to use to overcome the advantages of the defender.

Curiouser and curiouser.

Greg Richards   8 15 06

As Israel, having abandoned the terrible simplicity of 'never again,' awaits the French army to bless it with the fruits of the ceasefire, further reflection on this war increases its mysteries.

Take the Germans as an example.  As any student of World War II is aware, the Germans were great planners.  Not all their plans worked out, but planning was the basis of their military operations.  This included the question of doctrine — how would the next war be fought, which led them to come up with the combined arms doctrine of armor plus dive bombing which became known as blitzkrieg — to what specific plan of attack should be used for a given theater.  The plan for the attack on France, for instance, was the subject of raging debate within the General Staff, with the dramatic 'southern attack' being forced through by Hitler.

The point of all this is the extensive thought and experimentation that went into German planning for war.  Fast forward to Israel—Hezb'allah. 

This was a war of choice for Israel.  Yes, Hezb'allah provoked the war, but if Israel felt unprepared to fight it, it could have ignored the provocation and negotiated for the return of the soldiers.  So, how is it possible that there were Israeli cabinet meetings where war plans were being approved or not approved after the war had begun?  That is the type of thing that occurs when you are the tactical defender, when the situation on the battlefield is unclear and decisions have to be made when you don't know where the center of gravity of the attacker is.

But the whole point of the Heb'llah position is that (a) they were the tactical defender (albeit the strategic attacker) and (b) they were dug in.  Mobility was not the issue.  Yes, uncertainty about the location of the launchers was an issue, but not the physical location of the enemy.  And even if unknown, the enemy was not moving.  So, how could there have been such uncertainty about what the IDF was going to do?  The analogy would have been the German army attacking France and then the Germans having emergency meetings as to what they were going to do, or more particularly if they were going to do something, next.  That presumably has been solved in the planning process, which includes the techniques you expect to use to overcome the advantages of the defender.

Curiouser and curiouser.

Greg Richards   8 15 06