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Generational Dynamics Web Log for 23-Jun-2014
23-Jun-14 World View -- Jordan on alert as ISIS captures more Iraq border towns

Web Log - June, 2014

23-Jun-14 World View -- Jordan on alert as ISIS captures more Iraq border towns

Pakistanis fear nationwide blowback from military offensive against Taliban

This morning's key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

Israeli troops kill two Palestinians during hunt for kidnapped teens

Israeli troops on Sunday killed two Palestinians in the West Bank as they conducted a hunt for three Israeli teenagers who disappeared and were allegedly kidnapped ten days earlier on June 10. Their deaths raise to four the number of Palestinians killed in Israel's largest military operation in years. The operation is being conducted across both the West Bank and Gaza.

While condemning the killing of the Palestinians, the Palestinian Authority (PA) security forces are cooperating in the manhunt. PA president Mahmoud Abbas has condemned the kidnapping, and this has caused a rift between PA/Fatah and Hamas, shortly after the two groups formed a "unity government."

Abbas on Sunday reiterated his commitment to help Israel find the kidnapped teens, but warned that the actions of Israel's military could ignite the Palestinian street:

Israelís continued destructive actions, including shooting innocent Palestinians in cold blood, while Ramadan is around the corner and the situation on the Palestinian street is explosive, can only serve to ignite the West Bank and take things out of control."

Israel has been bitterly opposed to the unity government, and is using the kidnapping as an opportunity to crush the Hamas organization in the West Bank by arresting 340 Palestinians, about two-thirds of them members of Hamas. Hamas claims that it had nothing to do with the kidnapping, but Israel's prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he has "irrefutable proof" that Hamas is guilty, and that the proof will be made public soon.

Part of the "game" being played on both sides is the potential for trading prisoners for hostages. In 2011, Israel release 1,027 Palestinians held in Israeli prisoners in exchange for Gilad Shalit, and Israeli soldier who had been held hostage by Hamas for five years. More Palestinians were released from prison during the "peace process" that collapsed a few months ago. Many of the Palestinians being arrested by the Israeli forces had been previously released. Some reports indicate that Palestinians are in favor of efforts to kidnap Israeli teens, because they can be exchanged for prisoners, as in the case of Shalit. If that's Hamas's strategy, then we can assume that Israel's strategy is to arrest as many Palestinians as possible, so that they can be freed in exchange for the teen hostages.

Israel's massive reaction to the kidnapping reminds me of 2006, when Israel panicked and launched the Lebanon war with Hezbollah within four hours, with no plan and no objectives. The result was a disaster for Israel and for Lebanon. That isn't the case so far this time, but it may begin to approach that point. Jerusalem Post and AP and International Middle East Media Center (Gaza)

Israeli air strikes hit Syria after cross-border attack

Israel says that it's carried out air strikes on nine military targets within Syria. The air strikes were in response to mortar fire or shelling from Syria that killed a 15-year-old Israeli boy in the Golan Heights. In March, Israel conducted air strikes against several Syrian military targets after a bombing that injured four of its soldiers in the Golan Heights. BBC

Pakistanis fear nationwide blowback from military offensive against Taliban

Some 350,000 people (known as "internally displaced people" or IDPs) from the North Waziristan agency in Pakistan's tribal area are now refugees, fleeing the military action that's clearing out militants, bases, communications centers, safehouses and weapons stores in the agency. (The different regions in the tribal area are called "agencies.")

Some are fleeing to Afghanistan, as we described yesterday, but most, including tens of thousands of children, are waiting in long lines in extremely hot weather to get security clearance to enter the town of Bannu, where they hope to be safe. They're escaping from the violence of the military action by Pakistan's army against Taliban hideouts and weapons stores in North Waziristan in Pakistan's tribal area. There are fears of a humanitarian disaster, or that the IDPs could spread polio, as many of the displaced children have not been vaccinated.

The Pakistani Taliban have been bombing schools, mosques and markets across Pakistan for years, and there have been repeated calls for the army to go into North Waziristan, where most of the Taliban bases are located. The government and the army resisted those calls for years, fearing blowback, but now military action was triggered by the terrorist attack on the Jinnah International Airport in Karachi earlier this month. Investigations showed that the airport attackers were not only Pakistanis, but were also Tajiks and Uzbeks from the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) and the East Turkestan Independence Movement (ETI).

However, once the airport attack occurred, it was clear to everyone that the military action would begin soon, and so the Pakistani, Uzbek, and Tajik terrorists have all fled, leaving behind seven million civilians and a possible humanitarian disaster.

Now the concern is rising quickly that the predicted blowback is about to occur. Targets in the capital city Islamabad are already being threatened, and concerns are rising of a new, more dangerous wave of terrorist attacks across the country. BBC and Daily Times (Pakistan) and Asian Tribune (Sri Lanka)

Jordan on alert as ISIS captures more Iraq border towns

Jordan is increasing its border defenses and putting some military units on alert after the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) captured three more Iraqi border towns, including one on the border with Jordan, only 200 miles from Amman. ISIS now has unchecked control of hundreds of miles along the Iraq-Syria border, allowing easy travel of people and weapons between the two countries, and putting ISIS in easy reach of Jordan and Saudi Arabia. Washington Post and Reuters

(Comments: For reader comments, questions and discussion, see the 23-Jun-14 World View -- Jordan on alert as ISIS captures more border towns thread of the Generational Dynamics forum. Comments may be posted anonymously.) (23-Jun-2014) Permanent Link
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