Originally Posted by guage
A militia org who kidnaps has car bomb makers & users and has no strategic objective when firing rockets in to civilian populace.
You know I've been thinking about those katusha's. I now believe that they did serve an important pshycological purpose and, to some extent, were an indirect military advantage.
But I don't mean that in the way that has been suggested on this forum before i.e., distracting Israel and diluting their air force by forcing them to chase them all over south Lebanon. After all the main purpose of the air strikes (after taking out roads and infrastructure) was precisely to take out the launchers and I seriously doubt that Israel has used more than 20% of its air force's capability in this war. The turnaround time of their fighter planes is simply astounding.
So how can these primitive rockets that cannot be accurately aimed and for the most part fall harmlessly in empty fields be of strategic importance other than scaring (and increasing the resolve) of the civilian population?
Well, simple. Israel made the destruction of these launchers one of the main priorities of this war and they were unable to achieve this objective (which they themselves had set). As long as Katushas were falling on Haifa, Hezbollah was announcing to Israel and to the rest of the world that 'we are still alive and kicking." They were a clear indication that israel had not even come close to achieving their objectives on the ground. They forced Israel to launch an expanding ground offensive (which is what hezbollah wanted) and the Israelis sustained substantial casaulties which Olmert could not stomach (or decided to do so too late).
It may seem strange that Hezbollah is declaring victory. Afterall what kind of "victory" leaves many of your weapons destroyed, your country's infrastructure demolished and 30,000 foreign troops still on your soil? On the other hand Israel failed to achieve a single objective that they had set out for themselves. So in that sense Israel and Hezbollah both
lost this war but Israel lost more than Hezbollah did and thus in a perverse sense they are the winners in all of this.
Another factor to consider is the matter of expectations
. Prior to this conflict I think everyone would have expected Israel to blitz south lebanon and make short work of hezbollah and for Hezbollah to rapidly collapse. Neither happened. Thus Israel performed below expectations and Hezbollah performed above expectations and was perceived as having won the war, the reality on the ground notwithstanding.
By the way I should add that Israel's failure was one of political will rather than of military defeat. They were fighting this war with one hand tied behind their back and while constantly looking over their shoulder to access world public opinion.