Study: Israel would be unable to repel all-out Arab attack : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Study: Israel would be unable to repel all-out Arab attack By Daniel Sobelman, Ha'aretz CorrespondentHa'aretz Correspondent, and Ha'aretz Service A study published in recent days by an American research institute for strategic and international studies states that Israel would not be able to repel a comprehensive surprise attack from the Arab nations for a prolonged period of time. The study, headed by historian Anthony Kurdsman and published in its entirety in Saturday's edition of Al Hayat, says that the quantitative advantage of the Arab armies would eventually outweigh the qualitative advantages the IDF has over the Arab militaries.

According to the study, one of the reasons for the expected lack of Israeli success in repelling such an attack stems from the sensitivity of the Israeli public to casualties. Another of Israel's weaknesses mentioned in the report is the reaction to psychological warfare waged by enemies such as the militant Lebanese group Hezbollah, who have successfully used this tactic in the matter of the three IDF soldiers abducted by the group in October of last year.

The study, which also focuses on the balance of power in the Middle East, states that Saudi Arabia is the Arab country with the most modern air force, matching that of Israel. Kurdsman claims that Israel's efforts in recent years to develop a missile defense system have been at the expense of the navy.

Intelligence reports on Israel's nuclear capabilities states that Israel's arsenal contains some 400 nuclear warheads.

The study determines that Russia and China are Iran's main sources for weaponry. With regards to Syria, the study estimates that last year the Syrian army tested a Scud D missile with a 600-kilometer range. It was noted that according to information held by the United States Central Intelligence Agency, Egypt "has not given up its plans" to develop a ballistic missile, called "Victor" with a 1,200 kilometer range.

The editors of the study points out that unconventional weapons are the greatest danger in the region, saying that Iran will be able to develop a nuclear bomb in the next five years. Syria, the study states, will be able to produce bombs containing anthrax, a type of biological warfare, which according to the study, has an effect similar to that of a small nuclear warhead.

The study concludes that the Middle East is the most armed region in the world and that in 1997 the Arab countries spent some $20 billion on arms deals.

-- Martin Thompson (, July 28, 2001

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