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In a episode of his online weekly show, author of Hezbollah: The Philosophy of Power (2018) and senior Lebanese political analyst Nasser Qandil, broke down a recent lengthy interview by Hezbollah’s leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.
In the interview with the Lebanese al-Nour Radio, Nasrallah put forward the ‘very probable’ hypothesis that Israel may reach its demise in the foreseeable future without the need for any military conflict.
The following is a translation of segments (Part 2) of Qandil’s break down of Nasrallah’s hypothesis, in an episode Qandil titled ‘The Road to al-Quds (Jerusalem)’. Middle East Observer will be gradually translating and publishing other important segments of Qandil’s analysis in the coming days and weeks.
Note: we have added our own sub-headings in the below transcript to make for easier reading
Source: Nassser Qandil (YouTube)
Date: May 31, 2020
(To read Part One first, please see here: ‘Scholarly certainty’ in coming fall of Israel)
Therefore, either the Americans will leave the region and the (Israeli) entity will fall prematurely (i.e. without war), or it (Israel) will slip into a war – “the great war” – and the (Israeli) entity will fall by (military) force. Therefore, Sayyed (Nasrallah) put forward (in the recent television interview) the hypothesis that Israel might cease to exist without a (military) war.
Is this statement made by Sayyed (Nasrallah) unique or unprecedented? Has no analyst or researcher made a similar statement before? Of course, we do not need statements from others to confirm Sayyed Nasrallah’s words and give them credibility. But if one of the (Israeli) entity’s people or partisans spoke about an existential danger facing the entity, presented a reading (of events) and laid out conditions that confirm Sayyed Nasrallah’s conclusion, then this would make (Nasrallah’s) conclusion more credible, more powerful.
What do we have here? In 2010, the US State Department, an institution that conducts studies, examined the changes in the Middle East and their prospects. This examination is what led to the Arab Spring, in which (the US) was ready to sacrifice subordinate governments and regimes if Syria would be the prize.
Clinton’s dire warning to Israel in 2010
Why did the Americans get to this point? The US State Department, after conducting studies and holding discussions for two months (from December to February), issued a report in March stating that Israel is facing an unforgiving future in the Middle East. And of course, whoever wants to check if what I’m saying is accurate can listen to Hillary Clinton’s speech at the AIPAC conference. What is AIPAC? It is the Zionist society that not only fights for the survival of the (Israeli) entity, gathers donations towards it and mobilises (Israeli) lobbies inside the Congress, but also supports Israel’s extremism. It (AIPAC) is a powerful force. It is the soul of the (Israeli) entity.
And who is Hillary Clinton? She is the US Secretary of State. When speaking at AIPAC, US presidents usually play the electoral game, i.e. they will try to gain votes. However, Secretaries of States – go back in history to the speeches of Madeleine Albright or James Baker at AIPAC. When US Secretaries of State deliver a speech at the AIPAC conference, they always base their talk on political thinking, on strategies. They do not have to be strategists; they may be petty like Hillary Clinton. But there are external minds that conduct research, think, make conclusions, then prepare a summary in the form of a speech (for US Secretaries of State) to deliver before the Zionist elites (at the conference). This summary would inform them where we are headed and what challenges lie ahead, because the US is responsible for this (Israeli) entity. It is its protector and main supporter.
What does Hillary Clinton say in this speech that is a summary of what can be said publicly from the study? What is not said (from the study) can be revealed if we look into US policy in 2011 and thereafter. The title of this policy is known to all of us: ‘Toppling of US-affiliated governments’, as in the case of Zine El Abidine (Former President of Tunisia), Mubarak (Former President of Egypt), and ‘striking a deal with the Muslim Brotherhood, in Egypt, Tunisia and the region, and giving Turkey the main role of toppling the Syrian regime’. This huge war in the region was the fruit of this (American) study that says what? That says exactly what Clinton said: An unforgiving future awaits Israel (and hence something had to be done). This means that the (Israeli) occupying entity….what does she mean by ‘an unforgiving future’? She means that (the Israeli entity) is heading towards collapse, that it has no hope.
1. The demographic dilemma
Why is there talk about an ‘unforgiving future’? Hillary Clinton cites (a couple of) reasons. She says you are discussing… she is addressing the (Israeli) entity’s people and supporters, AIPAC, Zionist thinkers, the strategic minds supporting this entity. She says: ‘you are discussing the idea of a Jewish state, the declaration of a Jewish state’ – it hadn’t been declared yet at the time. What Jewish state? The problem is that the age of emigration is over and the sources of emigration have run out. There are no more Jews in the world that you can bring to occupied Palestine. There are no more. You want to establish a Jewish state with three million Jews among six million Palestinians? How? According to demographic norms, you (Israelis) can no longer bring immigrants nor displace Palestinians.
A Palestinian today is no longer the same Palestinian he was in the year 1948, when you (Israel) used to burn his crops so that he carries his belongings and leaves in the hope that Arabs will ensure his return in the future. This won’t happen anymore. (Today), (a Palestinian) carries a weapon, fights, blows himself up, rides trucks and runs over soldiers and police (officers). The ability of the (Israeli) occupying entity to displace (Palestinians) is now limited, and its ability to attract migrants has become limited as well. Consequently, since the trends of population growth vary greatly between Jews and Arabs, especially Muslims, the population of Muslim Arabs in Palestine is growing at an accelerated pace while the Jewish population is growing at a slow pace. Some statistics estimate that in the year 2030, the Palestinian Arab population living in post-1948 Palestine will equal more than half of the Jewish population. In the year 2050, they will be as many as the Jews. And after the year 2050, assuming the (Israeli) entity will survive until 2050, if you leave it to the demographic factor…Palestinians say, even mothers and fathers of some martyrs say when a martyr dies, we give birth to another. If you ask a Palestinian: why (do you have) 13 children? He would say these kids are for Palestine, not for me. In other words, there is a Palestinian belief that reproduction is a form of confrontation and resilience.
Therefore, with these (population) laws into account, Hillary says (to Israelis): if we let things proceed naturally, even without politics, wars, the resistance or anything being taken into account, (the Israeli population) will gradually shrink. There is no possible way to solve this issue. “So you need a quick solution”, says Clinton at the end of her speech. (Clinton) starts with the first (demographic) factor, (saying) you (Israelis) are heading towards a demographic problem. If we jump to the year 2100, the Jewish population will reach 15 million, and Palestinian Arabs will be 50 million in the post-1948 Palestinian territories, 100 million in all of Palestine and 200 million when Palestinian expatriates are included. What about you (Israelis)? This is one. In other words, be careful. The talk about a Jewish state, according to Clinton, will become a joke, a subject of ridicule.
2. Huge difference in land mass between Israel & Axis of Resistance
Then Clinton says: ….the age of lightning-fast wars is long gone. Given the small geographical area that Palestine occupies, you (Israelis) live in a region bordering a greater strategic depth formed by the Axis of Resistance and other countries confronting (Israel). Where is Iran? We are talking about (an area that stretches) from the Palestinian borders to the borders between Pakistan and Iran. How large (of an area) are you talking about! (Compare it to the area) from the borders of Palestine with Jordan to the (Mediterranean) Sea. There is no comparison. This vast area of millions of square kilometres (enjoyed by the Axis of Resistance) compared to tens of thousands of square kilometres occupied by the Zionists.
This (Israeli) entity is built on a small geographical area. It has a small population against a sea of people (in Palestine and the Axis of Resistance). What does (the Israeli entity) count on (to survive)? It counts on its great power. What do I mean by great power? (I mean) the air force, the capacities, the management, the mechanical speed of vehicles. Who were they up against? (Arab) armies composed of infantry armed with rifles. You (Israelis) have played this game for fifty years, and have always won lightning-fast wars. But you cannot wage a lightning-fast war anymore. It is over.
3. The age of Israeli lightning-fast wars is over
The proof is that you waged a war on Lebanon and stayed – unlike the time where you waged the Six-Day War in 1967 and defeated all the Arab armies – you fought for 33 days (in the 2006 war) and could not step an inch inside Lebanese territory. You even begged us (the Americans) to show you a way out, until we ended the war. The time of lightning-fast wars is long gone. Where can you (Israelis) wage a lightning-fast war today? Where can you win a decisive victory? Without a decisive victory, the (Israeli) occupying entity will gradually collapse. Why? Because (its existence) depends on its power of deterrence. It depends on instilling fear and terror in the hearts of anyone who thinks about confronting (Israel). Is it still like that? No it is not.
If Netanyahu comes out now, and Sharon rises from his grave, along with Menachem Begin and Golda Meir, and if we put Trump next to them with Obama, Bush and the (Arab) rulers of the Gulf. If all of them, the living and the dead, came together, went on TV and said…which Arab country do they want, Lebanon? Syria? The countries that confront (Israel)? Iran? If they (Israelis and their allies) come out and say that “we call upon the people of Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Iran to spend their nights in the shelters”, the Lebanese, Syrians, Iraqis and Iranians will mock them. However, if his eminence (Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah) goes out, on his own, and says: “I advise (Israeli) settlers to remain in their shelters tonight”. Compare the two (in terms of credibility). It is over. The age of power and terror that this (Israeli) entity was spreading is long gone. Consequently, you (Israelis) can no longer wage a lightning-fast war, nor achieve a decisive victory. What can you do?
4. Israeli refusal of any ‘reasonable’ political compromise
Hillary Clinton says: regarding the conflict between the two opposing Arab camps, the camp that supports the United States (becoming weaker) – she is the one who said that, the US Secretary of State said that the camp that supports the US is getting smaller and weaker. Why? Because (this camp) said to its people ‘count on us to gain back the rights of the Palestinians through the United States’. So far, the path of negotiations has not been able to produce any results that Palestinians or Arabs can believe in. On the other hand, she says: the ones who call themselves the “Axis of Resistance” (she means us), has been able to prove to its people that it is producing achievements. Some great examples (of these achievements) are the liberation of southern Lebanon and Gaza. Therefore, if things proceed as they are now, and I am still quoting Hillary Clinton… If things do not change, what will happen? They (the camp supporting the US) will completely lose their credibility. While (the Axis of Resistance) will gain more credibility.
There will be no more lightning-fast wars, no decisive victories, population growth (rates) are not in (Israel’s) favor. (Clinton) ends by saying that an unforgiving future awaits Israel unless its leadership has the political courage to present a generous offer for a historical, reasonable settlement with the Palestinians. (Israel should offer) a compromise that could be supported by a strong (Palestinian) leader who will convince his people to go with that option. I mean (a settlement that would offer) the establishment of a (Palestinian) state in the 1967 territories, (and definitely) not like Trump’s ‘Deal of the Century’.
At the time, (the Americans) planned, drew up maps and decided to put a line next to the settlements around Ramallah and neighboring cities. (According to this plan), there were 25,000 settlers that had to be evicted from the area between Jerusalem and that line. But Netanyahu rejected the whole project and said “I don’t want it, I will not take one step back, nor will I evict a single settler.” Not only did they not cling to the hope that Hillary Clinton offered, but they took the opposite road with the ‘Deal of the Century’ that does not at all strip Palestinians of their land, but rather unites them, because this deal is not acceptable in any way, shape or form. So this door, this small window, is now closed.
Israel’s existential question emphatically returns
What does Hillary Clinton say? In the absence of a brave leadership that can make a generous offer to reach a settlement with the Palestinian leadership, a settlement that the Palestinian people would accept…if there is no (such leadership), then an unforgiving future (awaits Israel). What does the unforgiving future mean? It means the countdown to the demise (of Israel), because you (Israelis) cannot wage war, nor bring in (new Jewish) migrants, nor displace Palestinians, nor achieve a decisive (military) victory, and you, in return, cannot make a settlement.
His eminence (Sayyed Nasrallah) is building (his conclusion) on (such analyses). He is not building (it) on sand, but rather, on solid foundations. These solid foundations are engraved deep in the Western and Zionist psyche, they realise that they are in deep trouble. They are using this expression for the first time. The (Israeli) entity’s ‘existential question’ has returned to the table. The existential danger (that faces Israel) is now under discussion. “We (Israelis) went back to the time of the War of Independence”, these are (Ariel) Sharon’s words, “we went back to where we were in 1947. Will we survive or not? Will the (Israeli) entity remain or will it cease to exist?” Hence, his eminence (Sayyed Nasrallah) is not drawing (such conclusions) without (such solid) data.