Neocon insider: Bush administration wanted Israel to attack Syria

posted at 5:48 pm on December 16, 2006 by Allahpundit

It’s Meyrav Wurmser, co-founder of MEMRI and wife of David Wurmser, one of Dick Cheney’s top Middle East advisors. Nothing much surprising here except for her belief that defeating Assad would have destroyed the insurgency in Iraq.

Is this a popular stance in the administration, that Israel lost the war [with Hezbollah]?

“Yes, there is no doubt. It’s not something one can argue about it. There is a lot of anger at Israel.”

What caused the anger?

“I know this will annoy many of your readers… But the anger is over the fact that Israel did not fight against the Syrians. Instead of Israel fighting against Hizbullah, many parts of the American administration believe that Israel should have fought against the real enemy, which is Syria and not Hizbullah.”

Did the administration expect Israel to attack Syria?

“They hoped Israel would do it. You cannot come to another country and order it to launch a war, but there was hope, and more than hope, that Israel would do the right thing. It would have served both the American and Israeli interests.

The neocons are responsible for the fact that Israel got a lot of time and space… They believed that Israel should be allowed to win. A great part of it was the thought that Israel should fight against the real enemy, the one backing Hizbullah…

If Israel had hit Syria, it would have been such a harsh blow for Iran, that it would have weakened it and changes the strategic map in the Middle East.

“The final outcome is that Israel did not do it. It fought the wrong war and lost. Instead of a strategic war that would serve Israel’s objectives, as well as the US objectives in Iraq. If Syria had been defeated, the rebellion in Iraq would have ended.”

Lots more at the link, including blame for Rumsfeld, Colin Powell, John Bolton, the Washington bureaucracy, the administration — pretty much everyone except neoconservatives, really.

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I think defeating assad would’ve destroyed half of the insurgency, the Sunni/Al Qaeda side but not the Shiite/Iranian side. Defeating Syria would also have been a huge blow to Hezbullah but by hte same token Israel would have hte responsibility in a way of putting Syria back together and Syrians hate Jews down to their very core. Would’ve been a massive clusterfrack, not to mention it would’ve brought Iran into the fight as well.

Defector01 on December 16, 2006 at 6:05 PM

Lots more at the link, including blame for … — pretty much everyone except neoconservatives, really.

posted at 5:48 pm on December 16, 2006 by Allahpundit

What a surprise. Here’s a bunch that never could admit to making an error, let alone set about making it right.

Israel would have hte (sic) responsibility in a way of putting Syria back together

Defector01 on December 16, 2006 at 6:05 PM

Right like their rebuilding efforts in Lebanon. Not! That job they so graciously left to us and Iran. Lets not forget the largesse of the mullahs.

THeDRiFTeR on December 16, 2006 at 6:19 PM

Beating the crap out Iran and Syria would solve most the problem, but that doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out.

Tim Burton on December 16, 2006 at 6:37 PM

Beating the crap out Iran and Syria would solve most the problem, but that doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure it out.

Tim Burton

It does but then again you have to go through a massive ‘de-nazi-ification’ program with both countries and try and fix what’s left of them

and thedrifter, the Israelis had plans to rebuild Lebanon but when the US split the Israelis decided to just keep Southern Lebanon under their umbrella and not try to fight syria, iran and hezbullah

Defector01 on December 16, 2006 at 6:54 PM

If Israel didn’t have to deal with the pro communist pro terrorist media feeding oh … the ENTIRE WORLD fake footage, pictures, and news stories about how Jewish people eat small children and shoot the elderly for sport they probably wouldn’t have been so iffy about taking out the Hezbollah … of course that would have been difficult considering the UN body shields they were using.


One Angry Christian on December 16, 2006 at 6:56 PM

With the benefit of hindsight, Israel’s botched war will be viewed in history as a horribly botched opportunity resulting in at least hundreds more Israeli deaths and greatly complicating our mission in Iraq.

Wurmser is correct. Olmert needs to be replaced immediately by Netanyahu so that Israel will be much better prepared in Round Two, will will occur in less than two years, given the rapid recovery of Hezbollah.

ptolemy on December 16, 2006 at 7:26 PM

Neocon insider: Bush administration wanted Israel to attack Syria

And so did many more of us. Isreal lost its “mythical” status as being unbeatable because of how this was so badly handled and implemented. The prestige of the Isreali armed forces was tarnished and they certainly deserve better. Such a small country surrounded by such hostile enemies can’t afford military or political blunders like this. They squandered the unprecedented support handed to them by the U.S. Olmert must go!

thedecider on December 16, 2006 at 7:32 PM

If only Bebe were in power…

Zorro on December 16, 2006 at 8:08 PM

You seem to forget that Iram and Syria and most of the ME was not to thrilled about Isreal. All the UN’s BS was just not what Isreal needed no matter who might have thought America wanted Isreal to attack Syria. Next thing you will want to see id Darth Vader and another star wars program with Korea. Gimme a freekin break, the next attack Isreal will not be so polite or use it’s forces lightly at the gitgo, you only have to wait 6-12 months to see it happen. Mark it down and see when they drop thier nuke. Olmert didn’t flub it in his speach about them having nukes by mistake.

bones47 on December 16, 2006 at 8:35 PM

Real simple here, we didn’t defeat the Japanese kamikazes by shooting down the planes-we detroyed the air-craft carriers they were launching from. If Olmert, a lawyer(first mistake), had listened to his generals, the war would’ve been won and over in a week. There was a plan in place to cut Lebanon in half thereby stranding the Hezbos and cutting off their re-supply line fron Syria. This would have forced Syria into the war, or, made them decide to leave Hezbo out to dry. Iran is not yet ready to tackle Israel, not until Iran is nuclear. That’s the ultimate goal here for the jihadists, a mushroom cloud over Tel-Aviv. Syria as always is a paper-tiger. Never-the-less, Israel should have forced them into the battle. To kill the hornets you need to stir up the nest. Let’s just face a harsh reality shall we; The Middle East needs a blood-letting. Sounds harsh I know, but it really is inevitable. All we manage to do is put off tomorrow what becomes more costly the day after. Yes, a raging M.E. conflict of biblical proportions will be costly for us, but no one ever said live free, they said live free or “die”. It wasn’t just give me liberty, it was give me liberty or give me death. No one wants this, I certainly don’t, but dammit some things just have to happen for the long term health and survival of our nation. We can’t keep kicking the can down the road for the next generation. So, let’s grow some nads and kick some jihad ass……….

ritethinker on December 16, 2006 at 9:00 PM

If Israel had hit Syria, it would have been such a harsh blow for Iran, that it would have weakened it and changes the strategic map in the Middle East.

That is where that coward Nasrallah was hiding so they would have had a semi-legit excuse for taking out at LEAST the Embassy he was cowering in! And THAT would have sent a VERY STRONG message.
I agree that the strategy to cut off Hezbo by dividing Lebanon would have worked very very well but once again we have a “thinker” not a “doer” in a position of power. Same thing over and over…we needed BRUTE FORCE in Iraq and NO MERCY for Sadr. But the “thinkers” prevailed and look where THAT led.
Now Israel is perceived as weak and ineffectual. I dont think that is the truth but it is a perception. I agree..bring back Bebe!!

labwrs on December 16, 2006 at 9:36 PM

If Olmert, a lawyer(first mistake)

On behalf of good and soon to be good lawyers, it isn’t his profession its the wind tunnel between his ears

Defector01 on December 16, 2006 at 9:46 PM

Agreed. The left does not understand or care how bad this will have to get before the enemy gives up. I’d love to bring the troops home TOO – but to a post Berlin wall – pre 9/11 blissfully ignorant – America. Dang growing up sucks sometimes.

Buck Turgidson on December 16, 2006 at 9:49 PM

Ideologs always want to cover their own asses. “Everyone made a mistake except the neo-cons, if they had just done everything the way we said we’d be doing swimmingly.”

Nonfactor on December 16, 2006 at 9:54 PM

RiteThinker just knocked it outta the park and broke somebody’s windshield!

The ghost of General Patton tells me that Israel should attack Syria from the west, while we attack Syria from the east (Iraq) and at the same time we hit Iran from the west (Iraq) and from the north (Afghanistan) in a classic pincer movement. I told him “With all due respect George … uh, I mean, General, sir (nervous smile) we now have much more advanced weapons then we did in your day. We can do this from the air with our stealth bombers.” He looked me in the eye and said “Son, I don’t give a rat’s ass about some new fangled bomber plane, the infantry still has to take and hold the GODAMN GROUND!”

Tony737 on December 16, 2006 at 10:33 PM

Hey Tony737, did the “ghost of General Patton” also ask you to lead the attack. Sounds mighty damned easy to do so from your mommies basement. BTW, when does she get to use the PC?

THeDRiFTeR on December 17, 2006 at 3:27 AM

I guess ya weren’t payin’ attention there Drif, he doesn’t want us Air Corps boyscouts leadin’ the way, he wants his ground pounders up front.

And don’t be hatin’ just ’cause your mom threw you out at thirteen :-)

Tony737 on December 17, 2006 at 9:12 AM

I agree with Ritethinker.
But just to ensure everyone is pissed off, I say just nuke the whole area. Beaded glass that glows in the dark, all of it.
Should make the libs happy. No more Middle East conflict and the Nuclear Winter should clear up global warming in no time ;)
Seriously, we have been pansy for way too long. And both parties are guilty of it. Diplomacy and talks and ‘Committees’ only go so far.

OF COURSE we wanted Israel to attack Syria! Hell, Bush would be dancing in the streets if they began bombing Iran, is this news to anyone?

Ritethinker has this down pat. War sucks, we try to avoid it..but some people are just jerks who want to kill you, and guess what! Talking ain’t gonna change their mind about it. So we gotta send in our Brave Men&Women to kill the baddies. And some of the good guys die, and that sucks, and some civilians die, and that sucks.

But the alternative is far far worse.

When is the pansyism going to end?!? Politicians are afraid of offending people who are actively trying to kill them? WTF?
The good news is, people are starting to wise up. Hamas and the Hezbos havn’t had a very good weekend.

KeaponLaffin on December 17, 2006 at 10:05 AM

Oh, drifter, can you come up with anything more original than the “chickenhawk” refrain? It’s as predictable as the sun rising in the morning.

Here’s an idea: Why don’t you share YOUR ideas for protecting US interests in the ME and security at home? Even better: Try to do it in 100 words or less without using the words dialogue, zionists, concession, or crusaders.

SailorDave on December 17, 2006 at 10:45 AM

Keapon, very well said. War sucks, but is the

Tony737 on December 17, 2006 at 11:58 AM

Keapon, very well said. War sucks, but is the alternative in this case is unacceptable. “Peace” is not just the lack of war, it’s also the lack of the THREAT of war, the threat of islamic terrorists who WILL come here to convert or kill you. The *lack* of snipers, carbombs, hijackers, trainbombs, hostagetakers, busbombs etc is also a form of peace that we take for granted because we have highly trained professional soldiers fighting these terrorists in THEIR countries instead of ours.

This enemy has declared war on us, we tried to ignore it, we gave peace a chance, and what did we get in return? 9/11.

I don’t want my beautiful wife and daughter to have to wear burkas, if you don’t think it can happen here, you’ve got your head in the sand, and THAT makes your ASS and big fat target for those who’re determined to kill you, whether or not you choose to accept it.

Tony737 on December 17, 2006 at 12:15 PM

OK, OK. All present lawyers excluded. My real point about that though on the serious side, is that I don’t believe a legal mind is the right mind-set to govern Israel. Not at this time in history. Unfortunately the neighborhood they reside in demands a military mind-set. The lawyer in Olmert is always seeking consensus and diplomacy, when he should be thinking offense and more offense(meaning: aggressive use of force in the face of terrorism). Don’t worry, I’m not going to end this thread with a lawyer joke…that would be too easy anyway……

ritethinker on December 17, 2006 at 2:58 PM

They blame Rumsfeld, Bolton & Cheney for it not happening? Those are the only guys (at the time) in the administration that WOULD have been smart enough and tough enough to support such a move.

Sorry, but barring further information, I think this whole story is a complete crock…..

…..Although that could kind of explain why Condi did what she could to get Israel to lose to Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Ah, I thought I understood (but did not agree with) the Bush Administration’s words and actions on this subject, but this makes me question everything I thought I knew about it. I guess it is just too ‘nuanced’ for me.

But I still find it hard to believe there is much truth in the article.

LegendHasIt on December 17, 2006 at 4:58 PM