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Three things about the war in Gaza that we all must understand.
Influence operations, Israel's neighbors and Iranian, Russian and Chinese interests
Okay everyone, this will be a bit longer TAT piece but also critically important to those following the War between the IDF/ Israeli Defence Forces and Hamas, an FTO/ Foreign Terrorist Organization. If there was ever the proverbial, “onion with countless layers,” it’s this one. Today, we’ll just scratch the surface on three topics: Influence operations, Israel's neighbors and Iranian, Russian and Chinese interests. I will also be building upon the first reports that I published last week, Thursday through Sunday. The background reports are below, for reference.
Let's unpack the complex, barbaric attack on Israel and those to blame. (truthaboutthreats.com)
Short Friday notes after yesterday's long report on Israel (truthaboutthreats.com)
A quick Sunday update regarding the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in Gaza (truthaboutthreats.com)
Below is a chart discussing who is primarily to blame for what Israel and Gaza are now experiencing. Below is the key to understanding this graphic.
Israel in this chart is at the center and the focus of the threats, numbered 1 - 5.
These five threats, are hierarchical from the top being China and progressively down to number 5, representing HAMAS.
The red arrows indicate who threatens who.
Again, 1 -5 are linked in a hierarchical fashion.
Block 6 is Israel’s own, extreme-right-wing government and not linked by a red arrow to the others.
Let’s get started now, looking at today’s three topics, which are immensely important to the events of the past few days.
If things progress now in the path they are currently on, it is almost certain that we will a savage, casualty-ridden ground war in a tiny area, replete with ambushes, booby-traps and underground warfare, on an entirely different level we haven’t seen since the infamous, “tunnel-rat” warfare of Vietnam.
The other type of warfare, employed without exception since man walked upright, is NW/ Narrative Warfare, or the competition for the meaning of information. In layman’s terms, the meaning of actions and propaganda that influence, based on their specific identity. Israel, and thuggish terrorist groups like Hamas, Hezbollah, AQ, IS, White supremacists, Nazis and neo-Nazis, White Christian Nationalist and other far-right and yes, a couple of far-left movements too, for those out there screaming, “political bias,” are fairly effective at this. The US and NATO, hardly at all. Russia and China typically only win at influence because they are mostly unopposed. Fifty years ago, the far-left was far more dangerous but at the moment, globally, Islamist extremists and the far-right are by far, the most dangerous.
What we have witnessed in Gaza, regarding the alleged “Israeli attack on a hospital in Gaza, is exemplary of this NW. Hamas lodged the first report, ascribing the blame to Israeli missiles strikes but in our dense, digital world and military technology, the real truth is coming out, painting a sister terrorist group that backs Hamas in Gaza called Islamic Jihad, turns out is the most likely to blame, by a longshot. Although Hamas reported first, which often indicates successful influence, mostly loses this round of NW because like I said, the IDF is pretty darn good at this too.
While still in uniform, we would train a new team to deploy to a combat zone every four months. Those of us who just had returned from our yearly deployments, being the mentors for the next team, taught the next team. One of the training products that was most helpful, was a documentary about how Hamas stages events that are filmed, complete with crisis actors, fake press and including… fake victims who could be seen climbing off of stretchers and rejoining the filming for another fake victim scene. Regional and global media then become complicit in passing along these fakes.
Israel also has a significant force, capable of effective influence. The difference, one supports defense of civilians and the other the barbarianism we all watched, a week ago, last Saturday.
Even REUTERS, one of my most credible sources did a horrible job at due diligence on this story. If we are going to understand what is occurring in Gaza and the region, we must learn to distinguish between “fake news” and reality. We must also learn how to project and protect truth. This can only be accomplished with a fully demolished and restructured US National Security community that deals with influence operations.
We have almost exclusively experienced failure in this profession for decades. There are many reasons, but the most pointed criticism is in the gibberish called doctrine at DoD and disjointed ops in the rest of the non-DoD, part of the community. We neither know how to defend against influence or to project our national security offensive operations. Americans are largely unprotected from foreign and domestic influence at home, due to these failures.
Like our Minutemen at the beginning of our war with Britain for independence, American citizens must protect ourselves. That means media literacy, better news media selection and the resilience that comes from our true national identity, not the made-up, fake patriotism of MAGA. There are countless tactics and strategies for reading accurate reporting. I will offer an article I wrote on this topic for the remarkable team at Homeland Security Today Magazine in this embedded link. In fact, I actually wrote a book on this and related topics before the 2020 election. There is nothing political in it. It is exclusively about protecting the nation from foreign and domestic influence.
What can protect us at home from mis and disinformation from adversarial influencers is much the same as what we need to find truth about stories emanating from Gaza. Bottom line… if something prompts you to emotionally and spontaneously react, do your homework on sources, authors and more.
Israel and her neighbors
There has been a lot of information about what Israel and her neighbors are and have been doing regarding the Arabs/ Palestinians trapped in Gaza. This section will be a bit shorter. To make it complete would require a set of Middle Eastern History, including deep dives into several different religions and their variations. No time for that so, here are a few of the bullet points from recent news about Egypt, Jordan and Syria.
Netanyahu heads an extremist right-wing administration that has worked tirelessly towards the abuse of the Palestinian people, not just Hamas. His Minister of National Defense, Itamar Ben-Gvir was not allowed into the IDF for his mandatory military service because he was deemed too much of a far-right extremist. He had no experience and hence, was part of the overall failure of Israel’s blindness to the attack.
Like Reuters faux pas on the hospital bombing, most of the globe’s news outlets fell for the same. It takes true expertise in influence operations for news agencies to understand some of the most difficult issues from experienced influence operators, like Russia, China, Iran and the Hamas/ Hezbollah terrorists. They get it right often, but this is a glaring and painful reminder that due diligence is more important that speed of reporting.
There has been a great deal of credible reporting that the neighboring Arab states are refusing refugees. This is painfully accurate. They refuse, even for a short period of the conflict to accept their brother Arabs for safety’s sake. POTUS and Sec State Blinken, along with their teams have been working tirelessly to gain access to Gaza for the distribution of life-saving supplies. Until just this morning, Egypt, who has the only gate open to Palestinian refugees, has not allow aid nor the exit of foreign nationals who hold dual citizenship in Palestine and another nation.
Lebanon is the home of Hezbollah, another Iran sponsored, trained and equipped terrorist organization. They are protected and Hezbollah has fought several conflicts with Israel and been a terrorist thorn in the side of several of their neighbors. Their fighters have even deployed to Syria in support of Assad’s and Putin’s barbarism. Their indoctrination of youth into terrorist ideology, plagues the future of every child raised on the venom of barbarians. They are also accomplished at propaganda.
Putin’s control over Assad’s Syria will prevent Syria from offering relief as well. Putin also must keep as much of Hezbollah and loyalist Syrian forces, intact. Any conflict in the would drive a harsh and immediate scorched earth response, eliminating much of the combined Hezbollah/ Syrian military of troops, equipment and aircraft. The US also may respond to such an attack although the situation must dictate this last choice response. Botton line, Putin needs as many resources as possible for his Ukraine fight and to maintain control at home.
The bottom line to section 2, is that Israel lives in a rough neighborhood and won’t see a great deal of help in managing the non-combatant crisis. It will be the usual, the US, other western nations and NGO/ Non-Governmental Organizations like the Red Cross and Red Crescent among others, that carry the weight of serving the Palestinian victims of Hamas.
Iranian, Russian and Chinese interests
Over the past few days, we’ve seen telltale of all three of these thug nations, making strategic moves to further their collective interests. Gaza is a smoke screen of sorts for Xi, Putin and the Ayatollahs. These three are but three of an expanding axis of human oppression. As we go through the series of points below, please remember the hierarchy of threats from the diagram at the beginning. China is the big dog, with Putin doing some of Xi’s dirty work. Iran is an attack dog for both Xi and Putin, but more so for Putin’s desperate needs after his failing, genocidal war against Ukraine.
Xi will do and demand anything that keeps his China Dream alive. In order to do this, he requires a friendly, stable Russia, Middle East and North Africa for his BRI. What he expects from Putin, Iran and their thuggish proxies like Hamas and Hezbollah, to help him advance his growing influence in the Middle East. Like ancient times, Israel is the crossroads of civilizations and for Xi’s complex of rail, overland, maritime and commercial access to the west.
This is critical to China due to Xi’s dependence on his BRI/ OBOR, Belt and Road Initiative or One Belt one Road plan. Two names, same project. The BRI serves Xi’s China Dream strategy.
Gaza fighting is a diversion for Putin. His failures in Ukraine and becoming legendary. He doesn’t care about human lives… not one bit.
It is almost impossible to talk about the brutal and immoral Iranian theocracy without sneering. With very few exceptions, they have long brutalized their long-suffering citizens with violence, based on an aberrant theocratic ideology. Iranians are some of the most courageous resistance fighters on the planet, as we’ve seen over the protest of women being brutalized and murdered by the Ayatollahs’ thugs.
Israel–Hamas War (Iran Updates) | Institute for the Study of War (understandingwar.org)
This is an excellent site to follow for daily, professional military insights into Iran’s, Hamas’ and Hezbollah’s activities in the region, related to the war.
This attack has long been strategized, planned and executed with varying levels of Iranian cooperation. Now, Iran erroneously believes that they are on the threshold of significantly upending the power paradigm in the region. They are wrong, no matter how much they boast.
So, let’s get something straight right now. Iran has long had a much bigger bark, than their bite. Without terrorism, they have an untested military, still flying an antiquated air force and depend largely on Russian Weapons systems. These have proved widely flawed in Ukraine when matched against western systems. Without cowardly terrorist acts, most often via Hamas and Hezbollah, they seem quite afraid to do any dying for their own cause (s). Let’s see the stories below for examples of some of their vacant bellicosity and other relevant developments:
Treasury hits Hamas, Iran with sanctions - POLITICO
“TEHRAN, Iran — President Ebrahim Raisi said Wednesday that Iran will retaliate against Israel for its attacks in the Gaza Strip and accused the United States of complicity.
Addressing a crowd of thousands in central Tehran, Raisi warned of “severe revenge.”
Raisi called Washington an “accomplice” of Israel, saying “the bombs that are falling on the people of Gaza belong to you.”
He said Iran and other Muslim nations are ready to defend the Palestinian people.”
The summary here is that Iran, is playing a game of suck up to Russia by causing trouble by way of their terrorist proxies. Putin is sucking up to Xi, in order to have a, “big brother” to back him up in exchange for Chinese support. Xi is the ultimate puppet master.
Phew!, we’ve covered a lot today, so let’s wrap this up and save some for the developing events in the next edition.
Here are the most Spartan-like takeaways from today’s piece:
The coming attack by Israel will likely change the dynamics in the region by eliminating for now, the imminent threat of an empowered Hamas. It will be a bloody affair on both sides, however devastating for Hamas. No foreign leader should counsel Israel to have patience. This would be immoral.
Israel, the US and countless moral nations, NGOs and alliances will do all possible for the Palestinian refugees. Hamas won’t. In fact, the civilians that die in Gaza in the coming days, every one is a tragedy but will be a result of Hamas not allowing them to leave as that they are human shields. Like most terrorists, they are oblivious to anyone’s lives but their own. In most languages, this is called cowardice.
Everyone Must Be a Modern-Day Minuteman to Protect Our Election (hstoday.us)
We must… let me repeat this, it is incumbent upon all media and individual readers of media to do their own due diligence to validate truth, sources and events. We cannot protect anyone from evil with lies. Lies from any of the countries and terrorist organizations on the opening chart, lie the way I breathe. There is no equivalency between Israel’s efforts to protect herself and the intentional targeting of civilians by Hamas, Hezbollah or what Iran is mostly famous for.
We also must demand that real news entities stop the insanity of misleading, “both sides” equivalency. It is untrue, handcuffs the good guys and does irreparable harm to the already toxic US and global media environment. When it comes to terrorism, every single one of us plays a roll. here in the states, our role is to clean up the “fake news/ Yellow Journalism” media world. I cannot speak for you, but I’ve had enough of the deceit.
So long as there’s interest, I will continue to explain some of the nuances surrounding this horrific conflict. The last thing that I will say is also of critical importance. Don’t forget to support Ukraine as well. Putin needs us to ignore his genocide against the innocent Ukrainian people. Don’t give him this win.
My best to all for your evening and tomorrow.