Fast Draw – The Next War – Two Options

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Last week, the IDF chose to frighten the citizens of Israel, publishing the next war scenario. One could doubt the rationale behind this move, however what is more important is that there was no information regarding how the IDF would react to such scenario in case it becomes a lethal reality.

According to IDF’s forecast, 1% of the missiles and rockets that will reach Israel’s territory will target populated zones.

IDF evaluates that 95% of the missiles and rockets which will be fired into Israel in a future conflict will be short-range, 10kg weight, and up to 45 km. According to the army, 3,356 rockets were fired from Gaza in the summer of 2014, 116 of which exploded in built-up areas, and 2,532 of the rockets exploded in open areas – some 580 were intercepted by Iron Dome batteries.

Basing on these figures, it is assumed that in a future operation some 1,500 rockets will be fired towards Israel. In a more severe scenario that will include several arenas, a total of 230,000 missiles and rockets would be fired by Iran, Syria, Lebanon and the Gaza Strip, of which some 10,000 would fall in built up areas. Possible consequences would include the destruction of buildings and considerable damage.

So this was the horror scenario published by the IDF. There are two options to confront it: either we would all stay at the shelters for weeks, or the IDF would receive instructions from the political level to eradicate the threat immediately. Is it feasible? If you pose the question to the army commanders – they would not hesitate to give a positive answer.

The explanation is simple – let’s take Lebanon as an example. If the Hizballah starts firing rockets – the IAF and some artillery units should be ordered to stop half of the power stations from working immediately. Then the Lebanese government which is still formally responsible for this state should be told that the other half would be destroyed unless the rocket barrages halt instantly. A state without electricity is also a state without water. We’ll wait and see then Hizballah heroes in such a situation.

The trouble is that I’m not quite sure that the leaders of the country, participating in the war cabinet, would actually take the right decisions. During Protective Edge operation, there were information leaks and conflicts among ministers of the cabinet, and the only thing that didn’t happen there was in fact firm decisions that ignore the prism of “what would the Americans or Europeans say”.

By the way, the same possibility exists also if the Hamas in gaza would start firing rockets. For the time being I only hear about plans to evacuate the settlements neighboring Gaza, instead of to retaliate with the right response.

So, as I said, there are two options, the question is if there will be anyone who would chose the right one.

Arie Egozi iHLS editor-in-chief
Arie Egozi
iHLS editor-in-chief