Thursday, December 16, 2010

Good Reports On Situation Along Israel's Northern and Southern Borders

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By Barry Rubin

Here’s a good report on Israel’s amazing intelligence activity along its northern border, with new types of information-gathering and targeting equipment concealed in rocks:

And here’s a good report on the heating up of terrorism activity along Israel’s Gaza border:

Note that something very important is happening here--unnoticed [surprise!] by the international mass media. Hamas is showing that it can rake in foreign aid money and rebuild, while simultaneously continuing to attack Israel. Of course, if Israel were to retaliate, Hamas would then run crying to the world about how it is the victim of aggression and how all of its beautiful humanitarian projects are being ruined.

Presumably, though, this also means that Hamas will keep the level of attacks low and carried out mostly by Hamas's friendly allies--notably Islamic Jihad--so Hamas can say that it isn't doing anything and "can't stop" others from attacking Israel. 

This is, of course, a con-game but it is one that usually works.

Israel will respond with sporadic attacks on specific targets, avoiding a war unless the situation deteriorates sharply and attacks from Gaza vastly increase.

Regarding the north, Hizballah is busy consolidating control of Lebanon and is not seeking a war either. But it has also been playing the same game as Hamas. It brings in advanced weapons, bullies everyone else in Lebanon, supports Iran-Syria hegemony over the country, and rebuilds bases in the south.

The world, through the UN resolution ending the 2006 war, promised to stop these things and sent a large UNIFIL force to do so. But the UN, UNIFIL, EU, and US do nothing.

And then all these same people ask: I wonder why the Middle East is unstable? What could possibly be the cause of these problems?

Barry Rubin is director of the Global Research in International Affairs (GLORIA) Center and editor of the Middle East Review of International Affairs (MERIA) Journal. His latest books are The Israel-Arab Reader (seventh edition), The Long War for Freedom: The Arab Struggle for Democracy in the Middle East (Wiley), and The Truth About Syria (Palgrave-Macmillan). The website of the GLORIA Center is at and of his blog, Rubin Reports,

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