In loving memory of the author of this blog

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To the dear readers of “With Much Courage and Peace”. This message is long overdue, I know that many of you expressed such kind wishes and concern when this blog was closed last year. 

It is with great sadness that we inform you that our dear father, the author of this blog, passed away earlier this year. He was surrounded with love and his close family when he passed. 

Our father had an inquisitive and sharp mind, which he demonstrated here with his deeply moving and personal insights into the situation in Israel, his home and always close to his heart. 

We want to thank you for the support and encouragement you gave him and this blog in his lifetime. It brought him so much happiness and he was always eager to get back to the computer to continue his discussions with all of you. He was very sorry to have to stop writing and always hoped to continue one day. 

Our father still wished to remain anonymous, and so we won’t be unmasking The Wizard of Oz in public, but if anyone wishes to know more about the man behind the blog, please leave a comment with your email address and we will answer any questions you have. 

With much love, courage and peace, 

The family of The Wizard of Oz

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To the Readers of With Much Courage and Peace

Dear readers.

Life brings its own challenges, in the personal arena as well as in national security. In the near future I will have to concentrate and direct all my attention to my health, my family and my work, in this order of priorities. From time to time, I may find the required space and concentration to write more.

The truth is that I already wrote the main and important things I had to say when I opened the site in previous articles. In the archives of the last few months you will find nearly 150 articles, the vast majority of them are as relevant today as they were when they were written.

I thank you all for your continuing support of this site, and wish all of us security and mainly peace. The kind of peace that only much courage can bring.

With blessings,

The Wizard of Oz

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Finally – a Few Encouraging News

You may not have noticed, but the last few days brought with them a few encouraging news, after a long period of glum.

In Damascus, the Hamas man Kamal Ranaja, known as Abu Mujahad, who was the right hand man of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, the saint from Dubai, was eliminated. It appears that the assassins also managed to lay their hands on many document folders. Ranaja joins a long list of terror activists taken out by Israel over the years. As Yossi Sarid once said – Abu after Abu.

The Turks and the Syrians are positioning large armoured forces on their mutual border, as a follow-up to the shooting down of the Turkish spy plane and on the background of a possible intervention by other countries in events in Syria. Every Syrian tank destroyed by the Turks is one less Syrian tank Israel will have to destroy when the day comes.  Every Turkish tank destroyed by the Syrians will be a punch in the face of Isreal’s hater Erdogan.  May they be many.

The issue of national service for all – including the ultra-orthodox and the Arabs – is finally getting the attention it has been evading for dozens of years. Rights go hand in hand with duties. When I was a boy in the 1960s, whoever avoided military service, and you could count them on the fingers of one hand, did not get a driving licence and could not find a job. As I wrote once – if it makes Tibi and Zuabi scream murder, then it is good for the Jews.

Arab youngsters setting fire to Jerusalem’s forests on a terrorist nationalistic background, are beginning to appear in courts. Even the police and the fire brigade stopped plastering over the truth and admitted immediately that the huge fire on the highway to Jerusalem that miraculously ended with no fatalities was an arson attack. Let us hope that the next step will be the real-time treatment of arson terrorists carrying fuel cans and tyres as if they were carrying Kalashnikov rifles and bombs. There is no difference.

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Gaza – the Sad and Simple Truth

Despite the chief of staff’s words which described the IDF as standing firmly in the face of the Gazan terror attack during the officer course graduation ceremony a few days ago, and despite the frustrated declarations of southern command officers in their media interviews regarding the intensifying of military response if the firing of rockets would not cease, the truth is sad and simple. Whilst the hands of the IDF are completely tied by the political leadership who is paralysed with fear, the Gazan terror organisations are making the most of Israel’s weakness and its determination to avoid at all cost an all-out confrontation. And the worst is – they are totally prepared, militarily and mentally, to the possibility that the cards would be shuffled and that Israel would eventually decide to go out for a wide military operation in the strip. In their view, they have very little to lose and a lot to gain. A heaven for the typical Middle Eastern gambler.

The leaderships of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad in Gaza know too well that operation Cast Lead, which cost Israel a very heavy international political price, did not achieve any of its declared and undeclared aims, and all this four years ago, when Mubarak was still ruling Egypt with an iron fist, when the rocket fire power they possessed was much smaller, and when they did not yet have advanced anti-aircraft, anti-ship and anti-tank weapon systems. The strategic equation has changed so significantly in their favour that they are willing to take the minimal risk that someone in Israel would gather their wits and order a wide ranging military operation, against the massive gain of humiliating Israel and presenting it as a paper tiger which is not capable of translating its military might to political and strategic achievements.

The instability in Egypt will continue for a very long time. Only God knows what will happen there even tomorrow, when the results of the presidential elections will be published. We have already understood the Egyptian frame of mind, not just of the Islamic Brotherhood and their more extreme allies, but also of the men of the ruling military council. When Israel announced that Grad rockets were fired from within the Sinai towards Ramon and Uvda air force bases, a senior Egyptian military commander determined that this was a lie that was aimed at affecting the results of the elections in Egypt.  If Israel will continue for long avoiding taking actions that will safeguard the lives of its citizens out of consideration to the Egyptian ‘sensitivities’, then it can close right now the security and defence stall and declare bankruptcy.

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The Forests of Jerusalem are Going Up in Flames

The media festival surrounding the state comptroller’s report on the Carmel fire disaster has not calmed down yet and we are being informed of new records in arson attacks on the forests around the city of Jerusalem. In many cases, fuel containers, matches and burning tyres are discovered at the arson sites. The inhabitants of Arab neighbourhoods close to the fires repeatedly throw Molotov cocktails into the burning forest to fan the flames. Fire fighters approaching the area are attacked by a barrage of stones. This is what happens in a state that has lost both its sovereignty and it deterrence.

There are swift and effective solutions, but nobody will order their use. This is, after all, a state that is happy to receive 150 incoming rockets and mortar bombs within two or three days and wait, doing nothing, until the murderers would feel like stopping the fire. Lighting a forest is an attempted murder. It has no other definition. Facing an attempted murder, one should use what can be defined as self-defence.  There is no reason not to ambush and shoot ‘youngsters’ carrying fuel containers and tyres into the forest. There is no shortage of snipers in the IDF and the other security arms. The Knesset knows how to gather and pass new legislation at breakneck speed when it feels like it. A minimum sentence of 30 years in prison to whoever is caught carrying means of arson or igniting forests is not disproportionate taking into account the murderous results such an act could cause. Fire fighting vehicles approaching Arab neighbourhoods must carry armed guards. Throwing a barrage of stones is also attempted murder, which should be met with immediate live fire.

A few weeks of intensive security activity of this kind, not just around Jerusalem but also on the Carmel and in the area of Misgav where arson is rife, and we will be able to read about a dramatic drop in this terrorist, nationalistic activity that is aimed not just at damaging property but also at taking lives. Will anybody do anything about it? You can forget it. The Israeli government has long ago ceased being the landlord.

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Guest Article – Supertanker of Neglect

By Yehonatan Shiran

Slowly slowly, when I watched the huge plumes of smoke rising up, I understood that we are faced with a natural disaster which will hit us consciously, socially and nationally at a level approaching that of the Yom Kippur war.

We were surprised, we geared up, we went out to halt, we asked for help from the world, we overcame and we buried the dead.

The intensive pain that flooded me was mixed with another sensation: shame. Our Chanuka miracle ended when foreign aircraft sent by the states of Turkey, Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Azerbaijan and other countries started landing. At that moment I understood that the state of Israel, with its mighty army, its developed economy, the massive hi-tech, fell down on its knees and could not cope with a forest fire that in other countries is considered of a medium magnitude.

The frightened faces of the prime minister and the other ministers said it all. We did not think, we did not know, it is not our fault. It was our predecessors in the role that failed. Dealing with the unimportant, not taking responsibility for the future and cowardly political subversion are the reasons to the Carmel disaster and the national disgrace.

After the state’s comptroller report will be published and the storm will calm down, we ourselves will need to reckon, how did we let a bunch of incapable people like these lead us and the state of Israel into the 21st century.

Divisions, political rot, corruption, all these will lead Israel into a disaster that perhaps next time we would not be able to come out of.

The strongest words were said by Superintendent (Ret.) Zeev Even-Khen who lost his daughter Topaz RIP.

“You are taking the risk that you and your children will be the next in line. An earth quake, a Tsunami, dangerous substances, chemical missiles, the houses will shake and there will not be 40 dead, there will be 40,000 dead. And then they will say in the government – we did not know, there were no budgets. The state of Israel was exposed naked, at the height of its weakness. Our enemies around look and are pleased. We are losing our deterrence, we have no leadership, we must not wait to the next hit. Anybody who cares about the state must stand up and shout.”

In memory of the dead and to the future of the state of Israel.

Yehonatan Shiran is a regular reader and responder of ‘With Much Courage and Peace’

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Mole 3 – Operation Order

Clarification

The summary operation order you will read below is the fruit of my feverish imagination. Any resemblance between it and the sad reality is unfortunately completely accidental. The purpose is to wake up the commanders of Israel’s Air Force Ltd. and the political and military leadership which is supposed to activate it in the defence of the peace and security of Israel’s citizens, and to remind this respectable bunch what those citizens are expecting from their air force in return to the tens of billions of dollars they had invested in it.

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Top Secret

Mole 3

Operation Order

Aim

The destruction of the smuggling tunnels infrastructure along the Philadelphi route to stop the supply of advanced weapons from Iran and Libya to the Gazan terror organisations and in response to murderous terror activity along the Israel Egypt border.

Participating Forces

12 fighter squadrons of the IAF.

Time Table

The operation will start at first light on Tuesday 19 June 2012 and will end at first light on Thursday 21 June.

Method

The IAF will attack the weapon smuggling tunnel infrastructure of the Philadelphi route during 48 consecutive hours and at a rate of four aircraft every ten minutes. Each of the 12 participating squadrons will launch a four aircraft formation every two hours. In all 1,152 sorties will take place and 3,456 tonnes of ordnance will be dropped. Each aircraft will carry out in average 3 bombing runs on each sortie. The tunnels located outside densely populated areas will be attacked first, and at the same time leaflets will be dropped from the air warning this population that the attacks would be widened to cover populated areas and ordering it to clear the area immediately to the north until the end of the operation.

Ordnance

Each aircraft will carry 3 tonnes of bombs ranging in weight from 250 to 1,000 kg. The types of bombs and their guidance methods will be determined by the different targets, their proximity to the border with Egypt and to concentrations of civil populations. For some 70% of the tunnels there exists precise intelligence which will enable their destruction using relatively light weight bombs. The rest of the tunnels, where exact routes are not known, will be attacked with heavier bombs.

Threats

The Gazan terror organisations hold several types of advanced anti-aircraft shoulder launched missiles, both soviet and western made. With the launch of the operation these organisations are expected to respond with a massive firing of rockets on the cities of southern and central Israel. The IAF has deployed its Iron Dome batteries to pre-planned locations and squadrons of drones and helicopter gunships will attack rocket launching squads in real time. A sharp response accompanied by military threats is also expected from the new Egyptian regime. The Israeli government will deal with these threats in close coordination with the American administration.

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