A former CIA analyst looks at nearly three decades of U.S. Middle East policy to examine the pervasive and too-often disastrous influence of Israel’s right wing Likud party.
Did Donald Rumsfeld model the Second Iraq War on Israel’s 1996 invasion of southern Lebanon? The similarities are striking: the overwhelming air power, limited ground forces, targeted attacks on infrastructure and few safeguards against civilian casualties mirror the war strategy of Israel’s Lukidist Party, which has played on increasing role in shaping Middle East policy in the United States since the Reagan era.
In this revelatory volume, Stephen Pelletière, the CIA’s Iraq analyst in the 1980s, argues that not only did Rumsfeld’s plan for a quick, decisive military victory in Iraq reflect the ideas of Israel’s right-wing party, but that it exemplifies Lukid’s profound, little-understood, and at times disatrous influence on the United States' Middle East policy for nearly three decades.
Israel in the Second Iraq War: The Influence of Likud describes U.S.-Israeli relations from the fall of the Shah—when President Reagan anointed the Israel as America's surrogate in the Middle East—through a string of Mid-East policy fiascos, including the 1982 invasion of Lebanon, the Iran-Contra arms-for-hostages scandal, and the ill-fated second Iraq War, which Likudniks in the Pentagon promoted and which produced the ongoing Iraqi resistance. The book also chronicles the growth of resistance movements including Hamas and Hezbollah, arguing that these are not part of a vast jihadi conspiracy, but are instead Arab attempts to stop land seizures by the Israelis and the Americans.
• Includes a bibliography focusing on irregular warfare, the Arab-Israeli dispute, and America's involvement in Iraq going back to time of Reagan
• Offers a comprehensive index
• Traces the growth and increasing effectiveness of irregular warfare in the Middle East as practiced by Hezbollah, Hamas and the Iraqi resistance
• Chronicles the numerous missteps perpetrated by the Occupation Authority in Iraq whereby control of the provisional government there was practically handed to the Iranians
• Critiques the so-called federation scheme whereby Iraq is supposedly slated to be broken up into cantons of Arabs and Kurds, and shows how this scheme, inimical to U.S. interests, largely benefits Israel
• Argues that, in seeking to establish a military base in Iraq, the United States has put itself in a trap from which it cannot escape