Excerpts of News Items

Israeli Ground Troops Have Entered Gaza: Army

Hussein Assi  

03/01/2009 … And on the eighth day of the deadliest offensive against the Palestinians in the Gaza strip, the Israeli occupation ground troops have entered the Gaza Strip.
According to an army spokesman, Israeli ground units, backed by helicopters, penetrated on Saturday evening into the Gaza Strip. “I can confirm that Israeli troops have gone in,” she said. Witnesses inside Gaza Strip said soldiers had entered the territory in the north.
Earlier during the day, Israeli officials seemed perplexed over the potential move and its usefulness. In this context, Israeli daily Haaretz wondered, in an analysis, whether air strikes were enough, or is a ground op needed in Gaza.
The daily noted that the challenges faced by the Israeli officials at this stage were exactly the same they faced in the July 2006 war against Lebanon. “Two and a half years of a lull, six days of fighting, and we are almost back where we started. The dilemma faced by Israel’s decision makers this week is not all that different from the one that hounded them (in some cases it’s the same people) throughout most of the Second Lebanon War: To enter or not to enter?” the daily said.
“But those who sought to apply the lessons of Winograd in their entirety appear to have overlooked a few critical elements, and those lacunae are liable to have an effect on the final result, adding that “it became apparent once again that the personal element (“What will people say about me at the end of the war?” “How can I play up my part at the expense of my rival in the government/General Staff?”) plays a tremendous role in the behavior of the decision makers and sometimes affects the decisions themselves.”
“The dilemma, in a nutshell, is this: Is the heavy pounding from the air enough, or will Hamas simply rise out of the ruins later, shake off the dust and declare, as Hezbollah did in 2006, that it succeeded in surviving against the army that purports to be the strongest in the Middle East? And if ground forces enter, will they inflict on Hamas sufficient damage to force the organization to moderate its demands in cease-fire talks, or will the operation get bogged down, slide into mass killing of Palestinian civilians, cost the IDF dearly in casualties and erode the internal consensus in Israel?” Haaretz went on to say, proving the level of hesitation and fear it has come to.


Written by morris

January 3, 2009 at 7:06 pm

Posted in Gaza, Hizbollah, Israel

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