The eight-day Gaza duel between Israel and Hamas was the showcase. Behind it, a coup went forward, masterminded by at least three intelligence wizards: Israel’s Mossad Direct Tamir Pardo, Turkish National Intelligence Organization – MIT chief, Hakan Fidan and the Qatari Prime Minister Sheikh Jassim al Thani, who also heads the emirate’s intelligence service. The CIA was in close touch.
Their aim was to abort the military ties Tehran was cultivating with Hamas before the Gaza Strip is grabbed as Iran’s springboard to Cairo. To this end, wave upon wave of multiple missile assaults on Israel were provoked.
The coup action was designed as Part One of US President Barack Obama’s overall plan, which is to harness the Arab Spring to key US objectives. His partners were – and are – Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, Turkish premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.
Obama’s next stop is Syria where matters are coming to a head on several fronts.
The plan, if Israel’s Operation Pillar of Defense worked, was to chart a new future for the radical Hamas terrorists by their transformation into the legitimate voice of the Palestinian people for which they still need some grooming and more than a touch of the airbrush.
Hamas has the advantage of being the most popular boy on the Palestinian block, which is why the Fatah leader and Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas has avoided an election for six years.
In the short term, the Israeli miniwar was meant as a vivid lesson for Tehran about the fate awaiting its Arab allies. Hizballah is advised to watch what happened to Hamas before its leader Hassan Nasrallah looses tens of thousands of rockets with which Iran filled its armory against Israel.
For these objectives, Israeli ground action was not necessary at any stage of the Gaza operation.
Its opening shot was a bull’s eye, eliminating Hamas’s military commander, the pro-Tehran Ahmed Jabari and Iran’s kingpin in Gaza.
Iron Dome stole the show by knocking out most of the 1,000 missiles launched from Gaza before they hit town centers. Israel lost six dead. Many of the injured were shock victims.
So was the coup strategy played out in Gaza a success?
Time will tell; Israel has meanwhile begun easing its land and sea blockade on the Gaza Strip. Turkey and Qatar are committed to major investments in the Gaza economy to make it more prosperous than the rival West Bank. And the US and Egypt have undertaken a joint effort to stem the flow of Iranian arms to Gaza through the smuggling routes of Sinai.
A million things could go wrong along the way. However, the same coalition has meanwhile shifted it sights from Gaza to Syria. NATO is about to post Patriots with American crews on the Turkish-Syrian border and the rebels are finally beginning to hem Assad’s military resources in.