Monday, January 26, 2009

Gaza and Basra

In the Spectator, a British soldier who served with the army's Intelligence Corps in Iraq and Afghanistan gives his perspective on Israel's Gaza operation. In the problems faced by the IDF during Operation Cast Lead he sees direct parallels with the difficulties that were encountered by British forces in Iraq, including the public relations dimension opened up urban warfare and the methods needed to combat an enemy such as Hamas, which "is willing to dress in civilian clothing, attack from legally protected sites and use civilians as human shields". He also addresses the issue of so-called "disproportionate" firepower:

A fact often unappreciated by those with no military experience is that the selective use of overwhelming force, aimed at key targets, actually shortens conflict and saves lives. In Basra in 2003 the USA and the UK chose to use extreme force against locations that had been fortified by the Ba’ath Party, in order to spare our troops and the people of Basra the horror of a drawn-out street battle. It appears that the IDF made the same choice in Gaza.

Via Z-Word Blog
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