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Principles of Warfare in the Densely Populated Areas of Arab Non-State Entities

Author(s): Shaul Mishal

Journal: Military and Strategic Affairs
ISSN 2307-793X

Volume: 4;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 25;
Date: 2012;
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Keywords: Operation Defensive Shield | Israel | IDF | warfare | Jenin | urban | military | non-state | Hizbollah | Hamas | Hassan Nasrallah

In Israeli research there are two types of discourse regarding how to asses and judge warfare in densely populated areas: the normative discourse and the operative discourse. In Israel, the two types of discourse, the normative and operative, limit the value of feedback and trial and error mechanisms that allow for learning in real time about the enemy's multifaceted conduct and responses. Conspicuously absent is the interactive discourse with the non-state enemy, i.e, the willingness to look at oneself through the eyes of the enemy in the course of the fighting. This discourse exists among non-state organizations such as Hizbollah and Hamas. This essay discusses three articles dealing with Operation Defensive Shield and Operation Cast Lead that reflect the normative and operative discourses common in Israel. It will also discuss statements made by Hizbollah and Hamas leader that reflect the interactive discourse.
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