Posted by Atilla89 on November 24, 2008
Last year on September 6th, a suspected Syrian Nuclear reactor was destroyed by Israel. There has been a lot of controversy around the world whether this was an actual nuclear reactor or something else less sinister. Finally the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) has published a report (which cannot be accessed by the general public) which decided that in spite of overwhelming evidence it will not make an ‘…unequivocal statement that the site housed a nuclear reactor under construction when it was destroyed on the night of September 6, 2007.’ The Institute for National Security Studies has penned a report stating that:
By leaving out these two elements [referring to the omitted technical details of the sampled uranium particles found in the vicinity of the Syrian reactor site], the report gave everyone what it wanted: Syria and its supporters could happily claim that there was no reactor at the site, while others could vary in their conclusions from uncertainty to firm belief that the destruction of the construction prevented or at least delayed Syria from acquiring a military nuclear capability. This ambiguity on the part of the IAEA should have been expected, since it is in line with its organizational culture – try to have something nice to say about member states.
It should be now very clear to everyone just how toothless the IAEA really is, in fact, I believe that it should be dismantled and replaced by an organisation that has more power to actively search out suspected nuclear reactor sites in states that have finished or are currently building them. At the moment, all the IAEA can really do is inspect reactors that the host state has declared available for inspection. I’m sure you can now see where the problem lies. As you can see the problem of the IAEA can be clearly seen in its latest report to its Board of Governors:
“Regrettably, as a result of the lack of cooperation by Iran in connection with the alleged studies and other associated key remaining issues of serious concern, the Agency has not been able to make substantive progress on these issues.”
This was obviously part of the problem when trying to find out if Iraq in 2002/3 had Weapons of Mass Destruction or not.
Posted in Israel, Middle-East, Military, Syria | 1 Comment »
Posted by Atilla89 on November 3, 2008
One of the most prevailing views of the Israeli-Arab conflict and specifically between Israel and the Palestinians has been that of a cycle of violence. Basically this view opinions that one side launches an attack on the other forcing the other to attack and so on. Thus both parities are guilty of the violence. This has led to the naive opinion that if only they could just sit down with each other and work out their differences everything would be alright. At first glance this may seem to fit but after further analysis in this CAMERA article, things become a little more clearer.
‘The authors found “there is little evidence to suggest that both sides of the conflict react in a regular and predictable way to violence against them. Rather we find that the direction of causality…runs only from violence committed by Palestinians to violence committed by Israelis, and not vice versa.” They conclude “Overall we find strong evidence that the Israelis react in a significant and predictable way to Palestinian violence against them, but no evidence that the Palestinians react to Israeli violence. This stands in contrast to the popular notion that Israelis and Palestinians are engaged in a ‘tit-for-tat’ cycle of violence.”‘
Basically what this excerpt is trying to say that when the Palestinians commits acts of violence, it is almost certain that Israel will react in some sort of way. Whether it fits some people’s definition of proportionate is up for debate. However, like it says above, it is almost certain that Palestinians will not directly react to violence committed by Israel. This is a very important point because usually violence committed by Palestinians will be random. Examples of this include the recent set of attacks in Jerusalem. Most the reasons given were generic for example being against the ‘occupation’, there was nothing specific.
The reason that this article gives for the randomness of these attacks, one that I happen to agree with, is that:
‘…the authors “suggest that the Palestinians may deliberately choose to randomize the timing of their response to Israeli violence…The effectiveness of terror attacks in disrupting day-to-day Israeli life is, almost by definition, greater if these attacks are unpredictable.”‘
Posted in Arab, Fatah, Hamas, IDF, Israel, Middle-East, Military, Palestine, Terrorism, War | Leave a Comment »