Israel Says "Never Again"
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The summer 2006 war between Israel and the terrorist Hezbollah in Lebanon ended with mixed reviews on the outcome. Because Israel did not evict all of the terrorist base in Lebanon, nor destroy all its weapons capability some observers counted it an Israeli loss. Expectations of a swift route of a ragtag group of terrorists by the vaunted Israeli army are built on the swift and expansive victories in 1967 and earlier.
Without doubt there are lessons Israel will take from this new type of threat. Strategies will be rethought, weapons redesigned and plans will likely include swifter preemption. the give back off territory to Hamas and the PLA will be reconsidered.
But there is a school of thought that says Israel did not really lose anything. That this skirmish was more a prelude to something larger. It is accepted that Hezbollah acted as a surrogate for Iran. Iran was testing international opinion as well as Israeli will. What Iran learned will determine the shape and scope of the next encounter, especially when they obtain a nuclear bomb. what happened in Lebanon this past summer is a "pre-nuclear clarification" for the antagonists in a yet to be fought war.
Mark Helprin, a senior fellow of the Claremont Institute and a defense expert, wrote the following in the the Fall 2006 Claremont Review of Books. His view on the Israeli army comes from service in the Israeli infantry and Air Force. He writes that Israel did not lose this war but gave a clear cogent answer to Iran's probe for information. Israel once again gave the message of Masada, "never again". Note Mr. Helprin's summation:
"I believe that history will see that the essence of this was is that it has served as an exchange of messages and proofs in in the prelude to an Islamic nuclear confrontation with the West. Nations can and often do speak to one another in a way that transcends the intent of even their highest authorities, and the question Iran has posed to Israel, the Muslims to the Jews, and the East to the West, is, What will you do if we open the door to Armageddon? Israel has provided the answer, and it reads quite simply. To an Iran that calls for its destruction and is proceeding headlong toward nuclear weapons, Israel has stated in the war in Lebanon that it will not go down alone."
Can Israel stand by and wait for Iran to develop nuclear weapons? As other Arab states prepare a nuclear capability what will be the response of America, Europe and other world powers? Bible prophecy tells us all nations will eventually be drawn into an age ending conflict in Jerusalem. But before that happens America will see a reversal of fortune and its current role as the preeminent world power.
Which brings us back to the question, why are Israel and America so tightly joined in a political and cultural embrace? Why do the Israeli prime ministers go to Washington, instead of Moscow, Paris or London, like a ballplayer goes to the sidelines of a game to confer with a coach for direction on the next play?
The answer is found in some of the far reaching prophecies of your Bible. I'll cover that in the next post.