web analytics
August 20, 2014 / 24 Av, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat (L) visits the JewishPress.com booth at The Event. And the Winners of the JewishPress.com Raffle Are…

Congratulations to all the winners of the JewishPress.com raffle at The Event



Project Daniel: Israel’s Survival Amidst Growing Worldwide Anarchy (Part Six)


Beres-Louis-Rene

In the concluding paragraphs of our Project Daniel Final Report, Israel’s Strategic Future, we identify a number of critical policy issues that need substantial further study. The first of these issues is described as “the growing anarchy in world affairs.” What does it mean to live amidst such anarchy? What are the expected implications for secure and predictable international relations?

These questions should now be asked everywhere on earth, but most urgently in Israel. For the Jewish State, the prime inheritor of Genesis, an expanding global chaos portends a very special kind of vulnerability. The relentlessly beleaguered State of Israel is like the individual Jew in macrocosm. As such it will likely be the principal victim of international anarchy. In view of the interrelatedness of world politics, this is true even if the particular precipitating events of war and terror should occur elsewhere.

There are vital lessons to be learned from this widening chaos. In a strange and paradoxical symmetry, anarchy may reveal both sense and form. Spawned by explosions of war and Islamic mega-terror, the disintegration of meaningful world authority will have a discernible shape. How should this shape – this “geometry” of chaos – be deciphered and understood by Israel?

The world, like the individual countries that comprise it, is best understood as a system. What happens in any one part of this system affects what happens in all of the other parts. When deterioration is marked and begins to spread from one country to another, the effects can undermine international stability in general. Indeed, when deterioration is sudden and
catastrophic, as it would be following the onset of unconventional war and/or unconventional terrorism, the unraveling effects would also be immediate and overwhelming.

The State of Israel, a system of interdependent and interpenetrating parts like every other state, exists precariously in this chaotic world system. Aware that an incremental collapse of world authority structures will, in one way or another, impact its (few) friends as well as its (many) enemies, leaders of the Jewish state must now advance informed expectations of collapse in order to prepare suitable forms of response.

Moreover, recognizing that rapid and far-reaching collapse of order will occasion a more or less complete return to “everyone for himself” in world politics – what the 17th century philosopher Thomas Hobbes called a “war of all against all” – Israel’s leaders must now consider how they will respond to life in a global “state of nature.” Such consideration is all the more critical to the extent that the triggering mechanism of collapse could originate regionally from chemical/biological/nuclear attacks against Israel.

Chaotic disintegration of the world system, whether slow and incremental, or sudden and catastrophic, will impact the Israeli system. In the most obvious manifestation of this impact, Israel will have to orient its strategic planning to a variety of worst-case scenarios, focusing far more on the whole range of self-help security options than on traditionally-favored forms of alliance guarantees. More precisely, within the country, diplomatic processes premised on assumptions of reason and rationality will have to be curtailed in recognition of increasingly glaring limits to “civilization.” Here, Israel’s judgments about any “Peace Process” or “Road Map” will not be any less important, but they will need to be made in consequence of anticipated world-system changes. From the standpoint of Israel’s overall security, such a reorientation of planning – from anticipations of largely separate and unrelated threats to presumptions of interrelated dangers – would provide a badly-needed framework for facing the uncertain future. The origin of this framework would be a prior willingness to extract pertinent implications from the geometry of chaos.

There is more. Israel’s particular reactions, as a system within a system, to growing expressions of worldwide chaos, will themselves impact these expressions. For example, should Israel’s leaders react to unstoppable anarchy in world affairs by hardening their commitment to all pertinent forms of self-reliance, including appropriate resorts to preemptive military force, Israel’s enemies would surely respond, individually or collectively, in similarly “self-reliant” ways. What, exactly, are these ways likely to be? And how, exactly, should Israel respond to such responses? These are primary questions that should now be raised by Israel’s most capable strategic planners. It is now time for these planners to consider the crucial feedback implications of creation in reverse.

By likening both the world as a whole and their state in particular to the concept of “system,” Israel’s leadership could learn, before it is too late, that states “die” not only because of a direct, mortal blow, but also in consequence of a series of distinctly less than mortal blows. This is because, after a time, even multiple “minor” insults to an organism can occasion a breakdown of “immunities” that pave the way for life-endangering “pathogens.” Taken by itself, any one such minor insult; e.g., a local infection, an injury, an impediment to vision or hearing or memory, will not produce death. Yet, cumulatively, incrementally, over time, these “minor” insults can be fatal, either by affecting the organism’s overall will to live, or by making it possible for a major insult to take place without adequate defense.

Taken by themselves, Israel’s intended surrender of land, its probable reluctance to accept certain indispensable preemption options, and its misdirected negotiation of “peace agreements” may not bring about the end of the Jewish Commonwealth. Taken together, however, these insults, occurring, as they do, within a worldwide pattern of escalating chaos and anarchy, would have a decisively weakening effect on the Israeli “organism.” Whether the principal effect here would be one that impairs the Jewish State’s commitment to endure, or one that would open Israel to a devastating missile attack or calamitous act of terror, is unclear. What is clear, however, is that Israel must now ask itself the following question: What are the true sense and form of chaos in the world system, and how should this palpable geometry of chaos affect our country’s survival strategy on this imperiled planet?

LOUIS RENE BERES (Ph.D., Princeton, 1971) lectures and publishes widely on international relations and international law. He is Chair of Project Daniel as well as Strategic and Military Affairs columnist for The Jewish Press.

About the Author: Louis René Beres, strategic and military affairs columnist for The Jewish Press, is professor of Political Science at Purdue University. Educated at Princeton (Ph.D., 1971), he lectures and publishes widely on international relations and international law and is the author of ten major books in the field. In Israel, Professor Beres was chair of Project Daniel.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Project Daniel: Israel’s Survival Amidst Growing Worldwide Anarchy (Part Six)”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Wanted dead and not alive: Mohammed Deif
Israel Tries to Eliminate Hamas Chief Terrorist Mohammed Deif
Latest Indepth Stories
Mowing the lawn

Judging by history, every time Hamas rebuilds their infrastructure, they are stronger than before.

Digital StillCamera

His father asked him to read Psalms from the Book of Tehilim every day.

Bosch-Fawstin-They-Say-We-Say

(Reposted with permission from author’s website) Moderate truth-teller Daniel Pipes (Dream) has further moderated his stance on Islam by actually entertaining the idea of “Moderate Islamism”, with Andrew C. McCarthy- whom I’ve debated about this- giving it some credence. We’ve gone from Naming the Enemy -Nazism, Communism- to Renaming the Enemy – “Islamic Totalitarianism”, “Radical Islam”, “Islamism”, […]

Light up the world copy

Maimonides: “Your 1 mitzva may tip the scales and bring redemption to the entire world and creation”

Jerusalem has been aware of the importance of China to its growth and security.

In other words, how by any rational playbook can one even begin to explain anti-Semitism?

Israel has nine Iron Domes, but you Mr. Hannity are the tenth.

Entire movements within “orthodoxy” propagate a Judaism of outlandish folklore and Jewish mysticism

The Rebbetzin began campaigning to increase public awareness of the importance of saying Amen.

Obama is transparent, if you read his oracular signs with the right key.

Everything I imbibe is with my inimitable fervor for being Jewish.

The multiculturalism that animates the hate-Israel crowd is sprinkled with code words of oppression

All the tactical problems have solutions. The real problem is not with the enemy; it is with us.

Israel feebly begged Hamas to end the barrage, promising that “quiet will be met with quiet.”

The UN ignores humanity’s worst war criminals while incessantly condemning Israel.

Haredim possess strong feelings of kinship and belonging, desiring to contribute to Israeli society.

More Articles from Louis Rene Beres
Louis Rene Beres

President Obama’s core argument on a Middle East peace process is still founded on incorrect assumptions.

Louis Rene Beres

Once upon a time in America, every adult could recite at least some Spenglerian theory of decline.

President Obama’s core argument is still founded on incorrect assumptions.

Specific strategic lessons from the Bar Kokhba rebellion.

Still facing an effectively unhindered nuclear threat from Iran, Israel will soon need to choose between two strategic options.

For states, as for individuals, fear and reality go together naturally.

So much of the struggle between Israel and the Arabs continues to concern space.

An undifferentiated or across-the-board commitment to nuclear ambiguity could prove harmful to Israel’s’s overall security.

    Latest Poll

    Do you think the FAA ban on US flights to Israel is political?






    View Results

    Loading ... Loading ...

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/columns/louis-bene-beres/project-daniel-part-six/2004/08/11/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: