Understanding the Enemy

Continuing that series recently begun at Algemeiner (which I’ve begun to post as a series here) with a look at “the enemy”:

Of all human endeavors, war is least forgiving of wishful thinking and ambiguity.  Which is why it is vital to judge an opponent not by what they say but what they do.

This can be tricky in the case of a propaganda campaign like BDS where words are the weapons being deployed, as well as the tools used by the enemy to convince others (and often themselves) that their actions are just and justified.  But if you look at how and when those words are deployed, a pattern emerges that can be viewed as a pattern of activity.

For instance:

  • When there is not a shooting war going on, BDS advocates run Israel Apartheid Week events and other similar programs designed to paint Israel as so hideous that any action taken against it should be considered moral.
  • During “quiet” periods when groups like Hamas and Hezbollah are readying for the next war (by collecting weapons, building rockets or digging terror tunnels), these “peace advocates” say and do nothing to limit that war preparation.
  • Once a shooting war breaks out, they take to the streets condemning Israel’s counterattack and demanding a ceasefire as soon as the aggression of Israel’s enemies start bearing a price.

Taken together, these actions demonstrate not just a political movement playing a military role (by justifying attacks against Israel and then trying to limit the Jewish state’s military options once those attacks begin) but a foe with clear-cut and militant goals: to see Israel destroyed or weakened to the point where someone else can handles the trigger pulling.

As in any area of life, having clear goals is a force multiplier since, only by knowing where you are going can you make a plan to get there.  And, in the case of war, “getting there” involves selecting strategies and tactics that will help you achieve well-understood goals.

With regard to strategy, anti-Israel advocates themselves have spelled theirs out pretty clearly by labeling their project the “Apartheid Strategy,” one which involves “branding” Israel as the successor to Apartheid South Africa through endless accusations of racism and human rights crimes, with the implication that what befell the white regime in Pretoria (dismantling) should be applied to the Jewish state.

With goals and strategy spelled out, we finally arrive at BDS which is revealed as simply a tactic in service to the Apartheid Strategy, designed to achieve the “movement’s” militant goals.  Given that the fall of Apartheid was preceded by well-known institutions (churches, universities, governments) boycotting, divesting from and sanctioning Apartheid South Africa, the theory behind the BDS tactic is that if those same organizations can be recruited to target Israel with similar economic punishments, this will demonstrate to the public the accuracy of the boycotter’s accusations.

There is a lot more to be said regarding the effectiveness of BDS and other tactics, as well our opponent’s overall strategy and goals.  With that knowledge in place, we can then use what we know to plan effective counter-tactics, above and beyond “naming and shaming” Israel’s enemies by pointing out their true militant nature.

Before doing so, however, we need to understand our goals, our strategies and our tactics as well as we now understand our opponent’s.  In other words, before going into battle it’s best to answer the question: Who are we?

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One Response to Understanding the Enemy

  1. Barbara Mazor May 25, 2016 at 10:59 pm #

    This sounds like it should be a pretty rockin’ event. I don’t know yet if my schedule will be free to attend:
    Ambassadors Against BDS – International Summit at the UN


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