Sunday, October 08, 2023

Worthy Goal, Not Easily Obtained

As Nikki Haley hasn't quite learned, the key to Republican hearts is not to criticize President Biden for almost anything, but to criticize him for everything.

At least, it's a good sentiment, and it wasn't until 1:13 into her remarks that she mentioned "Iran." By contrast, most GOP politicians are selling a fixation on Iran and Joe Biden::

Not missing a beat, the ever-confused governor of Florida got in on the bashing.

These latter two were the much more typical Republican responses to the invasion by Hamas of the ancient land of Palestine- uh, er, the state of Israel despite (or because) the $6 billion hasn't even been received by Iran. According to State Department spokesman John Kirby, the funds now are held by the Qatari National Bank and though available for withdrawal if requested by Teheran, "are paid to vetted third-party vendors for food, medicine, medical products and agricultural products to go into Iran over a period of years. If there is any diversion, we'll know it and we'll lock up these accounts."

The deal with Iran, which included the return of five Americans held hostage there, played no role in the invasion by Hamas, with weaponry supplied by Iran, of the only democratic nation in the Middle East. Nor did the money come from American taxpayers, but instead funds seized as part of the sanctions imposed upon Iran.

Haley understands the need for Israel to prevail over Hamas, even apart from Iranian influence, though her lust for the GOP presidential nomination may color her emphasis in the coming days. However, there is otherwise reason for skepticism about her comment, especially in regard to "finish them."

Presumably- and hopefully- she's referring specifically to Hamas, rather than to the Gazans generally. And 'tis the rub.  There are several dozen- maybe more- Israelis being held hostage by the terrorists of Harakah al-Muqawaman al-Islamiyyah. They may be held in a dining hall, tunnels, and/or "safe places."

Rescuing these hostages may be tricky, requiring a major invasion at the least, which may result in the deaths of numerous innocent civilians in Gaza.  And when you're a democratic nation which always has prioritized minimizing casualties among non-combatants of your own and the enemy, the operation becomes even more difficult to pull off successfully.

So "finishing them" will be very difficult even for, ironically maybe especially for, the Israeli Defense Forces. The idea of finishing off Hamas itself may be unrealistic, yet would be, as Haley seems to understand, the best possible outcome of the war.

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