Op-Ed: Hagel’s $160 Billion 'West Bank' US Troops Deathtrap
Mark LangfanThe writer, who specializes in security issues, has created an original...
There is only one reason that Chuck Hagel was picked by President Obama to be US Defense Secretary, and why Obama will go nuclear to get him confirmed:
Hagel is the only person alive now dumb enough to deploy US “peacekeeping” troops to what is surely a "West Bank" deathtrap. Don’t believe me? Well, in early 2009, two years after Hamas violently took over Gaza, Hagel along with a ragged has-been crew of “Israel Lasters” had some strong “recommendations” for the incoming President Obama.
I will let Hagel’s 2009 “recommendations” speak for themselves. But to lend a note of rationality, Florence Gaub, a NATO researcher, in 2010 published a NATO Research paper outlining some of the problems of such a deployment. (I.e. it would need about 60,000 US/Nato troops and about 160 billion Dollars over 10 years) I and I will excerpt her report as well.
Obama’s determination in confirming Hagel is based on Obama’s belief that Hagel will cripple Israel at any price: including the deaths of thousands of US soldiers at the hands of Hamas suicide bombs in the Palestinian Authority.
START OF HAGEL’S 2009 REPORT:
“A Last Chance for a Two-State Israel-Palestine Agreement,” April 2009. “Submitted to the administration of President Barack Obama” by Zbigniew Brzezinski, Chuck Hagel, et al.
The U.S. parameters should reflect the following fundamental compromise:
[A] non-militarized Palestinian state, together with security mechanisms that address Israeli concerns while respecting Palestinian sovereignty, and a U.S.-led multinational force to ensure a peaceful transitional security period. This coalition peacekeeping structure, under UN mandate, would feature American leadership of a NATO force supplemented by Jordanians, Egyptians and Israelis. We can envision a five-year, renewable mandate with the objective of achieving full Palestinian domination of security affairs on the Palestine side of the line within 15 years. Page 6
III. Substantive Issues to be Resolved: Israel-Palestine
The borders between the two states must be physically secure and fully controlled for their entire length. A U.S.-led multinational force would likely be essential for a transitional period once a peace agreement is concluded. Palestine would likely be non-militarized. No doubt Jerusalem will require a special security and administrative regime of its own and special arrangements will be needed for the use and regulation of Palestinian airspace. Page 12
Security. Demilitarization of the Golan Heights and limited forces zones on both sides – all likely to be supervised by multinational forces featuring American leadership – will be mandatory. Page 13
Annex: Addressing Israel’s Security Challenges
Beyond the current efforts we expect that, upon the full agreement of the parties, there will be a robust international effort involving outside armed forces for a period of indeterminate length assisting Palestinian authorities in executing their responsibilities in the security sphere and helping them build capacity in order eventually to act without outside assistance. Page 14
Naturally, the U.S. will play a large and perhaps decisive role. Yet it should not act alone – there should be broad participation reflecting international consensus on the importance of supporting the emergence of a truly sustainable two-state outcome. Page 14
Although General Jones’ mandate has focused exclusively on the Israel-Palestine track, clearly there would also be a robust American role in implementing the security-related aspects of any Israel-Syria accord. Beyond helping the IDF with improving capabilities designed to compensate for full withdrawal from territory occupied on the Syrian front since 1967, the U.S. would undoubtedly play a vital role in monitoring a demilitarized Golan Heights and providing early warning services to both parties. Page 16
In our view there is no avoiding a central U.S. role in helping the parties (especially the Palestinian side) meet their security-related responsibilities to each other in the context of two states. Page 16
GAUB’S 2010 NATO REPORT:
Research Paper – Research Division – NATO Defense College, Rome – “NATO: Peacekeeping in the Holy Land? A feasibility study,” by Florence Gaub. March 2010.
This paper argues that such a mission would struggle to be successful, and is very likely to fail. Although the idea is attractive to some who would like to prove NATO’s global peace-enforcing capacity, the chances are that this endeavor would turn bad and tarnish NATO’s image in more ways than one. NATO is not currently ready to take on this kind of mission, and might never be. Page 2
Bright lights, big city
Also, there are over 19 cities with more than 100,000 inhabitants. In total, 4.2 million inhabitants in the area live in cities of this kind, with more than half a million living in refugee camps. This itself implies two things: first, arms caches are difficult to locate without local knowledge, and arms smuggle is facilitated greatly. Disarmament measures would be even more difficult to enforce than they already are under friendlier circumstances. Page 8
Less is not more, less is less
Independently from the local security forces, the NATO force in Palestine (hence the minimalist version) would, if it follows the example of the successful cases of Bosnia and Kosovo, need forces ranging from 43,700 to 76,000 men, including the police forces. Of these, between 16,100 and 28,000 would patrol Gaza, and between 27,600 and 48,000 the West Bank. Page 10
Current theatres of operations would have to be reduced in size before a suitable size NATO mission in Palestine would be available without introducing longer deployments – something many Allies would like to avoid. Page 11
Stabilisation missions are largely infantry missions. This is topped in our case by the fact that in worst case scenario, the tasks would entail urban warfare and counterinsurgency, which are also infantry heavy tasks. Page 11
According to some estimates, 57,000 of the 76,000 men would preferably be international civilian police or gendarmerie. Page 11
Time is Money
Aside from the costs for the mission itself, additional costs can be expected, due to the training of the Palestinian police, building infrastructure and providing equipment. Some estimates calculate between $9.61 billion and $16.72 billion per year, not calculating reconstruction efforts, which in the case of the recommended 5 years would result in a total number between $48.05 billion and $83.6 billion. Page 11
In a Nutshell
NATO’s mission in Palestine would have slim chances of success, and a high probability of failure. One should not be blinded by perceptions of a historical opportunity and embark on an endeavor that could cost NATO credibility, prestige, money and lives simply because it seems to be a politically symbolic chance in a lifetime to establish NATO as a global security provider.
The territory involved presents aspects that would cause any campaign planner nightmares – densely populated, urban areas with highly intermingled conflicting populations, a volatile political ambiance where the tides can turn any second, and a very experienced opponent if it ever comes to counterinsurgency. Thus, this mission would need thorough preparation, careful planning, sufficient staffing and funding, a significant amount of political will, and would leave a very narrow margin for success. At the current stage, and with its other operations ongoing, it seems irresponsible to hasten NATO into a mission that has all the ingredients to turn into a quagmire that equals the Alliance’s involvement in Afghanistan. Page 12
END OF GAUB’S 2010 NATO REPORT:
And now for my analysis: Florence Gaub’s NATO College real analysis exposes Hagel’s US “peacekeeping” “recommendation” for the US defense policy fraud it is. Based on Hagel’s sheer hate of Israel, and without a whit of real thinking, Hagel would have had Obama commit the greatest US defense error in US history bringing the deaths of thousands of US soldiers, and the destruction of Israel, America’s anchor in the Middle East and Eastern Mediterranean.
Can anyone imagine the depraved analysis Hagel has been spewing while, at this very moment, he is currently the “Co-Chair” of Obama’s “President Intelligence Advisory Board” (“PIAB”)?
In fact, Obama specifically nominated Hagel as Co-Chair of the PIAB as reward for Hagel’s 2009 insane Middle East “recommendations.” No wonder Obama’s policy has enabled Iran’s nuke program, and betrayed all our historic allies. “Hagel” and “Intelligence” are mutually exclusive terms. For 3 years, Obama has seen Hagel prove himself to be a useful-idiot who will dance to any Kill-Israel tune Obama plays for him.
So, in conclusion, Obama will do anything and everything to get Hagel confirmed because Obama knows Hagel, and only Hagel, hates Israel enough to sacrifice 1000s of US soldiers in body bags, and dumb enough to gladly blow 160 Billion US dollars, we don’t have, in order to grossly cripple, or perhaps even destroy Israel. In 2007,
Hagel saw Hamas takeover the Gaza Strip in 10 seconds flat. So in 2009, he knew the 60,000 US troops he was recommending Obama send into the "West Bank" would have been instantly trapped by Hamas, and subject to multiple Marine Beirut Barrack’s-type suicide blasts and kidnappings. But to compound Hagel’s rank stupidity, Hagel also wanted to put US troops on the Golan at the same time. Imagine what Assad would have done with US troops on the Golan Heights!! Add to the thousands of US body bags,
Hagel would happily spend 160 Billion US dollars we will have to borrow from the Chinese (over ten years of a minimum deployment) to expose US troops to mass-murder suicide bombing by Iran’s Hizbullah, and Tel Aviv to Hamas fired chemical-katyusha rocket barrages. (As an author’s note, if AIPAC plans on lobbying the US Congress for their “West Bank/Golan-for-Dead-US-GIs” “peace” plan, they should also plan on fighting Mark Langfan like they did in 1994; when they tried it the first time, and lost. Remember well the Nickels’ Defense Authorization Amendment fight!!!! See, US Troops On Golan Quicksand, by Mark Langfan,1994,
But get this, in early 2009, Hagel proved his total obsession with annihilating Israel by his stating in the 2009 paper’s preface: “In short, the next six to twelve months may represent the last chance for a fair, viable and lasting solution.” (Toto, we’re not in Nebraska 2009 anymore!) So, in 2009, Hagel was fiercely advocating for 60,000 US troops to have been already deployed by 2010, and 45 Billion US dollars already poured down the drain!! Such defense policy insanity conclusively proves Hagel is uniquely and inherently disqualified to be US Defense Secretary. Hagel’s 2009 “White Paper” shows only one thing: Obama has, in Hagel, knowingly nominated someone whose abysmal defense policy judgment is only “exceeded” by his evident virulent hate for both Israeli and American Jews.
The US Senators now voting for Hagel’s confirmation don’t know that they are now really voting for a deployment of 60,000 US soldiers to the "West Bank" and Golan Heights. If the Senators don’t stop this catastrophic train now, the Obama-Hagel “peace” locomotive will run them over when the actual time comes for the deployment decision.
Calling Israel’s “Guardian” Chuck Schumer? Where are you?