Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Notes: William S. Lind, "Collapse of the Flanks," August 11, 2006.

In Lebanon, it appears Hezbollah may win not only at the moral and mental, strategic and operational levels, but, astonishingly, at the physical and tactical levels as well. That outcome remains uncertain, but the fact that it is possible portends a revolutionary reassessment of what Fourth Generation forces can accomplish. If it actually happens, the walls of the temple that is the state system will be shaken worldwide.

One pointer to a shift in the tactical balance is the comparative casualty counts. According to the Associated Press, as of this writing Lebanese dead total at least 715, of whom 628 are civilians, 29 Lebanese soldiers (who, at least officially, are not in the fight), and only 58 Hezbollah fighters. So Israel, with its American-style hi-tech "precision weaponry," has killed 10 times as many innocents as enemies. In contrast, of 120 Israeli dead, 82 are soldiers and only 38 civilians... the long term Israel's existence depends on arriving at some sort of modus vivendi with the region. The replacement of Mubarak, King Abdullah, and the House of Saud with the Muslim Brotherhood would make that possibility fade.
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