John le Carré’s Political Cowardice

Surveying the work of the spy novelist, Nick Cohen notes the corrosive politics found in both his work and his public statements. The latter, writes Cohen, reflect all of the worst tendencies of Britain’s old right and new left—including their “Jew obsession”:

Connoisseurs of [le Carré’s] public statements can tick every space on the bingo card. Le Carré believes that corporations brainwash the bovine masses (check) on behalf of the imperial American hegemon (check), which is itself controlled by a conspiracy of right-wingers (check), who are pulling our puppet strings at the behest of—guess who?—the Jews (full house!). Or as le Carré explained, the [Jewish] neoconservatives are “appointing the state of Israel as the purpose of all Middle Eastern and practically all global policy.”

Then there is the self-pity, that most deplorable affectation of Western intellectuals who have never once faced the smallest threat of persecution or punishment for their writing. At one point during the last decade, le Carré compared himself with the German-Jewish diarist Victor Klemperer, who miraculously survived life under the Nazis. Liberals of a certain age remember that when the Ayatollah Khomeini’s assassins imitated the Nazis and threatened Salman Rushdie’s life, the Klemperer-of-our-time opined that Rushdie had brought death on himself by insulting the great religion of Islam.

Read more at Standpoint

More about: anti-Americanism, Anti-Semitism, Arts & Culture, Ayatollah Khomeini, Victor Klemperer

Hizballah Is Learning Israel’s Weak Spots

On Tuesday, a Hizballah drone attack injured three people in northern Israel. The next day, another attack, targeting an IDF base, injured eighteen people, six of them seriously, in Arab al-Amshe, also in the north. This second attack involved the simultaneous use of drones carrying explosives and guided antitank missiles. In both cases, the defensive systems that performed so successfully last weekend failed to stop the drones and missiles. Ron Ben-Yishai has a straightforward explanation as to why: the Lebanon-backed terrorist group is getting better at evading Israel defenses. He explains the three basis systems used to pilot these unmanned aircraft, and their practical effects:

These systems allow drones to act similarly to fighter jets, using “dead zones”—areas not visible to radar or other optical detection—to approach targets. They fly low initially, then ascend just before crashing and detonating on the target. The terrain of southern Lebanon is particularly conducive to such attacks.

But this requires skills that the terror group has honed over months of fighting against Israel. The latest attacks involved a large drone capable of carrying over 50 kg (110 lbs.) of explosives. The terrorists have likely analyzed Israel’s alert and interception systems, recognizing that shooting down their drones requires early detection to allow sufficient time for launching interceptors.

The IDF tries to detect any incoming drones on its radar, as it had done prior to the war. Despite Hizballah’s learning curve, the IDF’s technological edge offers an advantage. However, the military must recognize that any measure it takes is quickly observed and analyzed, and even the most effective defenses can be incomplete. The terrain near the Lebanon-Israel border continues to pose a challenge, necessitating technological solutions and significant financial investment.

Read more at Ynet

More about: Hizballah, Iron Dome, Israeli Security