Top commanders in the Israeli military are warning that the military is completely incapable of crushing an Egypt-style popular uprising in the West Bank, assuming one actually begins.
“There is nothing for it,” one of the commanders noted, and while the Israeli military apparently developed a major program last year to plan a response for mass public protests amongst the Palestinians, it seems the conclusion is that they simply can’t win.
Not that they don’t intend to try: officials emphasized that they would be attacking Palestinian protesters that are trying to damage the military’s checkpoint system, and would also do so to keep them away from the settlements.
But it’s a losing proposition, most of the commanders believe, and while the US would no doubt ensure that there would be no UN sanctions as there are in Libya, violent crackdowns would be extremely difficult to sell to the public across the world, particularly given public awareness for the similar protests across the region.
The pessimism amongst Israeli officials is perhaps the ultimate testimony to how poorly regimes are able to crush the uprisings, as Israel’s military is the best armed in the region and has a level of experience in crushing dissent that few other nations can lay claim to. If they cannot destroy the protests, it makes it difficult to fathom how nations like Yemen hope to do so.
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