U.S. imperialism orders its Israeli attack dog to deepen blood bath in Lebanon
An editorial in the Washington Post refutes the popular "tail wags the dog" theory -- which holds that Israel calls the shots in the US-Israeli strategic partnership.
A popular (but mistaken) idea in some sections of the left (and in society at large) is that the U.S. backs Israel (with billions of dollars per year and unlimited high-tech weaponry) because of "Jewish influence" and the power of the Israeli lobby. This is often called the "tail wags the dog" theory (ie: the little Israeli tail supposedly wags the big U.S. imperialist dog). This theory is promoted by anti-semites -- but that is not the reason it is popular. The "tail wags dog" theory holds appeal to those who (1) are becoming aware of the scale and the history of Israeli attrocities in the region but (2) do not yet have a class-based understanding of how modern imperialist society works.
But the "tail wags dog" theory is bullshit -- as demonstrated by a recent Washington Post editorial which reveals the real power relationship: Israel exists to serve the interests of U.S. imperialism's "divide and rule" strategy in this oil-rich region.
In this article Krauthammer (yes, that is his real name -- you can always remember it if you just think of "Nazi hammer") gives voice to the views of U.S. imperialism's leading circles: Israel must deepen its ground offensive into Lebanon -- in order to help U.S. imperialism curb the rising influence of Iran. (Iran is an emerging regional power which will eventually have nuclear weapons that will deter US/Israeli threats to bomb it.)
If Israel (which had been reluctant to deepen the ground offensive because of concerns for high causalty rates in the Israeli army) refuses to obey U.S. imperialism's command -- then, Krauthammer notes, Israel's "survival" will be a stake -- because U.S. imperialism will abandon it -- and will leave Israel alone to face the millions of enemies that it has made in this region with its decades of genocide and aggressive wars.
This helps to show that it is really U.S. imperialism which is calling the shots -- and that U.S. imperialism cares no more for the Israeli soldiers who will become cannon fodder in this war -- than for the thousands of Lebanese civilians who have been murdered or the million (a quarter of the Lebanese population) who have been made homeless.
The dateline for Krauthammer's article was August 3. News comes this morning (August 9) that Israel's war cabinent has rubber-stamped the plan to expand the bloodshed in Lebanon.
Key quote from Krauthammer's article are below. Following that is the article in full.
* Antiwar agitation and cartoons
* The open struggle over the decisive tasks in antiwar movement
* For a democratic & accountable Indymedia: proposals/criticism
* The time has come to confront the crisis of revolutionary theory
Isolated from one another we are easily defeated.
Connected to one another no force on earth can stop us
There is fierce debate now in the United States about whether in the post-9/11 world Israel is a net asset or liability. Hezbollah's unprovoked attack on July 12 provided Israel the extraordinary opportunity to demonstrate its utility ...
America's green light for Israel ... is seen as a favor to Israel. But that is a tendentious, misleadingly partial analysis. The green light — indeed, the encouragement — is also an act of clear self-interest. America wants, America needs, a decisive Hezbollah defeat.
Iran is on the march. It is intervening through proxies throughout the Arab world — Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in Palestine, Moqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi Army in Iraq ... Its nuclear ambitions would secure these advances, give it ... an absolute deterrent against serious counteractions by the United States [and] Israel ...
Hence Israel's rare opportunity to demonstrate what it can do for its great American patron. ...
The United States has gone far out on a limb to allow Israel to win and for all this to happen. It has counted on Israel's ability to do the job. It has been disappointed. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has provided unsteady and uncertain leadership. Foolishly relying on air power alone, he denied his generals the ground offensive they wanted ...
the complete editorial:
Aug. 3, 2006, 9:44PM
Krauthammer: U.S. needs a Hezbollah defeat as much as Israel
By CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER
Israel's war with Hezbollah is a war to secure its northern border, to defeat a terrorist militia bent on Israel's destruction, to restore Israeli deterrence in the age of the missile. But even more is at stake. Israel's leaders do not seem to understand how ruinous a military failure in Lebanon would be to its relationship with America, Israel's most vital lifeline.
For decades there has been a debate in the United States over Israel's strategic value. At critical moments in the past, Israel has indeed shown its value. In 1970, Israeli military moves against Syria saved King Hussein and the moderate pro-American Hashemite monarchy of Jordan. In 1982, American-made Israeli fighters engaged the Syrian air force, shooting down 86 MiGs in a single day without a single loss, revealing a shocking Soviet technological backwardness that dealt a major blow to Soviet prestige abroad and self-confidence among its elites at home (including Politburo member Mikhail Gorbachev).
But that was decades ago. The question, as always, is: What have you done for me lately? There is fierce debate now in the United States about whether in the post-9/11 world Israel is a net asset or liability. Hezbollah's unprovoked attack on July 12 provided Israel the extraordinary opportunity to demonstrate its utility by making a major contribution to America's war on terror.
America's green light for Israel to defend itself is seen as a favor to Israel. But that is a tendentious, misleadingly partial analysis. The green light — indeed, the encouragement — is also an act of clear self-interest. America wants, America needs, a decisive Hezbollah defeat.
Unlike many of the other terror groups in the Middle East, Hezbollah is a serious enemy of the United States. In 1983, it massacred 241 American servicemen. Except for al-Qaida, it has killed more Americans than any other terror organization.
More importantly, it is today the leading edge of an aggressive, nuclear-hungry Iran. Hezbollah is a wholly owned Iranian subsidiary. Its mission is to extend the Islamic Revolution's influence into Lebanon and Palestine, destabilize any Arab-Israeli peace, and advance an Islamist Shiite ascendancy, led and controlled by Iran, throughout the Levant.
America finds itself at war with radical Islam, a two-churched monster: Sunni al-Qaida is now being challenged by Shiite Iran for primacy in its epic confrontation with the infidel West. With al-Qaida in decline, Iran is on the march. It is intervening through proxies throughout the Arab world — Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in Palestine, Moqtada al-Sadr's Mahdi Army in Iraq — to subvert modernizing, Western-oriented Arab governments and bring these territories under Iranian hegemony. Its nuclear ambitions would secure these advances, give it an overwhelming preponderance of power over the Arabs and an absolute deterrent against serious counteractions by the United States, Israel or any other rival.
The moderate pro-Western Arabs understand this very clearly. Which is why Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan immediately came out against Hezbollah and privately urged the United States to let Israel take down Hezbollah. They know that Hezbollah is fighting Iran's proxy war not only against Israel but against them and, more generally, against the United States and the West.
Hence Israel's rare opportunity to demonstrate what it can do for its great American patron. Defeating Hezbollah would be a huge loss for Iran, both psychologically and strategically. It would lose its foothold in Lebanon. It would lose its major means to destabilize and inject itself into the heart of the Middle East. It would be shown to have vastly overreached in trying to establish itself as the regional superpower.
The United States has gone far out on a limb to allow Israel to win and for all this to happen. It has counted on Israel's ability to do the job. It has been disappointed. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert has provided unsteady and uncertain leadership. Foolishly relying on air power alone, he denied his generals the ground offensive they wanted, only to reverse himself later. He has allowed his war Cabinet meetings to become fully public through the kind of leaks no serious wartime leadership would ever countenance. Divisive Cabinet debates are broadcast to the world as was Olmert's own complaint that "I'm tired. I didn't sleep at all last night." (Haaretz, July 28.) Hardly the stuff to instill Churchillian confidence.
His search for victory on the cheap has jeopardized not just the Lebanon operation, but America's confidence in Israel as well. That confidence — and the relationship it reinforces — is as important to Israel's survival as its own army. The tremulous Olmert seems not to have a clue.
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