web analytics
July 26, 2014 / 28 Tammuz, 5774
Israel at War: Operation Protective Edge
 
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post
IDC Advocacy Room IDC Fights War on Another Front

Student Union opens ‘hasbara’ room in effort to fill public diplomacy vacuum.



Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Israel’s Opportunity To Strike Iran


Tilford-021712

Read the first five books of the Bible and the Book of Joshua. In them, God clearly specified what was expected of Israel: obedience, righteousness and faith being the gist of it. God blessed Israel when it obeyed, and when Israel faltered, God unleashed abundant wrath.

The challenges facing the Israelites moving from Egypt into Canaan where they faced a plethora of established city-states were daunting. Nevertheless, God prepared the way. God demanded that the armies of Israel “put to the sword” every man, woman and child in those states. Peoples who might pose a future threat, whether moved by revenge or whose ways might possibly entice God’s people into cultural accommodations, were to be obliterated. Moses warned before his death that if Israel faltered in its faithfulness, God’s wrath would be unleashed on them. And it was, culminating in two exiles, the last one running from 70 A.D. to 1948.

Jews and many Christians understand the unchanging and eternal nature of God. If one looks at the history of Israel since 1948, its survival testifies to divine influence. Israel’s accomplishments as a modern nation have been remarkable. In a region drenched by draconian theocratic despotism, Israel remains a viable democracy. Its people, even before the establishment of the Jewish state in 1948 and certainly since, have led the world in science, the arts, and ethical philosophy.

Furthermore, Israeli military prowess since 1948 is renowned. In its short history, the Israeli state has overcome staggering military challenges, most notably in 1948, 1967, and 1973. It does this by careful planning, inspired leadership, tactical and operational excellence and fearless risk taking. For instance, in June 1967, at the start of the Six-Day War, the Israeli Air Force sent nearly every combat aircraft in a preemptive attack on Egypt, leaving but seven fighter planes at home to meet any counter-attack.

Today, Israel faces its greatest threat. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has vowed to destroy Israel and, coincidentally, the United States. Some in the West maintain his threats are merely the ravings of a madman. Israelis have six million reasons not to risk the ravings of madmen.

The Israeli Air Force ranks among the best in the world. It is capable of conducting a boldly conceived, well-planned strike to degrade Iran’s nuclear war making capabilities. Risks abound. Almost certainly, the IAF will suffer losses. Iran will certainly unleash Hizbullah from its lairs in Lebanon. Hamas will join in an attack from Gaza. Rockets will rain down on Haifa, Ashkelon, and Rechovot, perhaps on Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. In the end, such a raid will only postpone the Iranian nuclear threat, but that may be enough if the political situation in Tehran – or Washington – changes significantly in the immediate future.

Nevertheless, time draws nigh. In biblical terms, God has “confounded” Israel’s enemies. Both Egypt and Syria are descending into socio-political chaos. The Egyptian armed forces, largely equipped by the United States, would normally pose a significant threat from the south while Syria, armed by the Russians and supported by Iran, would threaten from east of the Golan. While a military response from Egypt and Syria cannot be dismissed, those threats, due to internal unrest, are for now “confounded.”

While the Arab street will erupt in major cities across the Middle East in reaction to an Israeli strike on Iran, leaders in capitals from Riyadh to Dubai and Abu Dhabi will welcome the removal of the Iranian threat. There will be the usual condemnations, but no interference or intervention.

What about the United States? The right thing would be to join Israel in a bold, comprehensive strike with a far greater likelihood of destroying the Iranian nuclear program and so degrading its military capabilities as to obviate any coherent retaliatory response directed at Israel or anyone else.

Unfortunately, given the tenor of American political leadership, such boldness is unlikely. Washington will condemn Israel and threaten to cut U.S. aid. In this election year, the administration will weigh the costs of alienating the far left against alienating Jewish supporters and even growing support for the Palestinians from some segments of the evangelical Christian segment.

The Canaanite world of 3,200 years ago was a dangerous place. For the children of Israel, all that stood between them and annihilation as they crossed the Jordan River was the power of their faith in God. For Christians and Jews alike, for those who believe, that power is no less potent today than it was then.

Dr. Earl Tilford is a military historian and fellow for the Middle East and terrorism with The Center for Vision & Values at Grove City College. A retired Air Force intelligence officer, Dr. Tilford earned his Ph.D. in American and European military history at George Washington University. From 1993 to 2001 he served as director of research at the U.S. Army’s Strategic Studies Institute. In 2001 he left government service for a professorship at Grove City College, where he taught courses in military history, national security, and international and domestic terrorism and counter-terrorism.

About the Author:


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 “Israel’s Opportunity To Strike Iran”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
John Kerry
Entire Israeli Cabinet Rejects Kerry’s Proposed Ceasefire, Talks Continue
Latest Indepth Stories
Jewish Home leader Naftali Bennett

Because let’s face it: Hamas obviously can’t defeat the IDF in the field, soldier against soldier

Shimon Peres meets with the family of fallen IDF soldier Max Steinberg.

As Peres retires, Israel fights sour legacy: Insistence on setting policy in line with hopes, rather than with reality.

Keeping-Jerusalem

Our capital was not arbitrarily chosen, as capitals of some other nations were.

UNHRC High Commissioner Navi Pillay accuses the IDF of possible war crimes in Gaza again, cutting slack to Hamas.

There is much I can write you about what is going here, but I am wondering what I should not write. I will start by imagining that I am you, sitting at home in the Los Angeles area and flipping back and forth between the weather, traffic reports, the Ukraine, Mexican illegals and Gaza. No […]

Should Jews in Europe take more responsibility in self-defense of community and property?

It is time for a total military siege on Gaza; Nothing should enter the Gaza Strip.

Germany’s The Jewish Faith newspaper ominously noted, “We Jews are in for a war after the war.”

The truth is we seldom explore with kids what prayer is supposed to be about.

Almost as one, Jews around the world are acknowledging the day-to-day peril facing ordinary Jews in Israel and the extraordinary service of the IDF in protecting them.

So on the one hand Secretary Kerry makes no bones about who is at fault for the current hostilities: he clearly blames Hamas.

King Solomon said it long ago: “Cast your bread upon the waters” because you don’t know when you’ll hit something. Our job is to do.

The anti-Israel camp does not need to win America fully to its side. Merely to neutralize it would radically alter the balance of power and put Israel in great jeopardy.

More Articles from Dr. Earl H. Tilford
Tilford-021712

Read the first five books of the Bible and the Book of Joshua. In them, God clearly specified what was expected of Israel: obedience, righteousness and faith being the gist of it. God blessed Israel when it obeyed, and when Israel faltered, God unleashed abundant wrath.

As Israel celebrated its 60th anniversary last month, there were the usual voices raised accusing Israel of victimizing the Palestinian Arabs and “running them out” of the Jewish state.

Most Christians, including many (if not a majority of) members of the mainline Protestant denominations, support Israel. Nevertheless, the Christian Left persists with its sometimes vehemently anti-Israeli and unabashedly pro-Palestinian sentiments. Why?

For a generation after World War II, particularly given revelations of the Holocaust, most American Protestant denominations embraced a more tolerant attitude toward Jews. Since the 1980’s, however, there has been a marked shift, evident in the anti-Israel positions adopted by more liberal denominations like the United Methodist Church (UMC); the Evangelical Presbyterian Church in America (ELCA); the Episcopal Church in the United States of America (ECUSA); and the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. (PCUSA).

The American left clings to the myth that the antiwar movement ended the U.S. war in Vietnam. In fact, the antiwar movement failed to prompt any substantive changes in U.S. war policy.

According to recent intelligence reports, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) killed 40 Hamas terrorists in Gaza last month without inflicting a single civilian casualty. In fact, over the past five years, collateral damage and civilian casualties caused by Israeli military actions have decreased dramatically. Meanwhile, Hamas continues to fire Kassam rockets indiscriminately at the working-class town of Sderot and into the suburban areas of the nearby seaside city of Ashkelon.

Recently, after I’d given back examinations in one of my classes, one student who received a failing grade laughed, showed the exam to students on each side, and laughed again.

Former Alabama football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant said, “I hate to lose worse than anyone … but if you lose with humility you can come back” a winner.

Back in the early 1970’s I served as an Air Force intelligence officer at Udorn Air Base in Thailand, home of the 432nd Tactical Fighter Reconnaissance Wing. Most of the bombing in 1970 and 1971 focused on Laos, especially the Ho Chi Minh Trail logistical network down which Hanoi funneled troops and supplies onto South Vietnam’s battlefields. Occasionally, the 432nd’s F-4 Phantoms would “go North,” striking targets inside North Vietnam.

    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/opinions/israels-opportunity-to-strike-iran/2012/02/15/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: