Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Waging War With Care

Lieutenant General Stanley McChrystal, the newly appointed commander of American forces in Afghanistan, has told senators his forces will have to be more careful so as to reduce the numbers of civilians being killed in American actions.

As I've said in the past, I'm mostly a supporter of the American war against the Islamists; however, I'm weary of the double standard whereby Israel is required to maintain a level of care towards non-combatants that no-one else would even dream of aiming at, and is routinely damned for not being successful enough, where others are either not noticed at all, or eventualy mildly tutt-tutted at.

In which context, it was interesting to watch this BBC interview from last January, during the Gaza operation. It's with Richard Kemp, a retired British army Colonel who commanded troops in Afghanistan a few years ago. Kemp notes that Israel is more careful than any army in the history of warfare; however, when he offers the BBC lady to elaborate, she declines to listen and instead explains how bad the Israelis are being.
(For some reason I wasn't able to embed the interview. Anyway, thanx for the tip, Vic).


Anonymous said...

how much Israel is a land the "West" likes to fantasize about can be read in 2 articles in The Atlantic.
This one from July 1920 argues something like that Jews have somehow lost over the centuries the ability to manage a state
one year earlier you can read in this one here that through outward radiation the whole world is going to be a better place if one gives Palestine to the Jews

It is obviously either total failure or total success "we" expect from Israel and not only in military matters.

I remember only too well those pre-movie-programs in the late Fifties early Sixties (Vorfilme/Wochenschauen) in German cinemas where they showed us in best Riefenstahl-style how Israelis got the desert to bloom - we were all for those clever heroes but nobody told us that even the cleverest hero may be a fallible human being. Sometimes I think a lot of us non-Israelis have still not come to terms with that simple common sense truth - it is only the √úbermensch who is admirable (read it up: the wonderful Susan Boyle is either good for the whole career package or to be thrown to the scavengers)

And Israel has either to become the Garden of Eden resurrected or to be chastised again and again and again

Anonymous said...

Kemp is an honest guy who understands warfare, unlike the typical BBC presenter, who is cynical and mostly just understands TV ratings. The presenters' understanding of war is only skin-deep, and it's clear that this particular presenter would rather attack Israel than explore the truth.