Thomas Wictor

Unable to see one’s place in the larger scheme of things

Unable to see one’s place in the larger scheme of things

I had a suspicion. Sadly, it was confirmed. I can’t say that I’m surprised. The evidence has indicated that too many American politicians and military leaders are unable to see the big picture and how they fit into it. Egos get in the way.

Unable to be honest

When I began defending Israel in 2014, it became screamingly obvious to me that the IDF is far superior in every way to the American armed forces. But since this isn’t a competition, I have no problem admitting what’s true. The US armed forces are magnificent.

But the Israelis are better.

What convinced me was the Battle of Shijaiyah (July 20, 2023). The IDF went into a densely populated urban setting and completely destroyed terrorist infrastructure without killing any civilians. The Hamas Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad al-Quds Brigades had created the equivalent of Iwo Jima, except with over 65,000 human shields.


At a little after midnight, the IDF entered Shijaiyah in Namer armored personnel carriers (APCs)


They also had a few older American M113 APCs.

At 1:00 a.m., the terrorists carried out the largest ambush in the history of urban warfare. They set off gigantic improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that had been set into the streets, sidewalks, buildings, and lampposts two years earlier. Shijaiyah was also filled with landmines. The terrorists fired on the Israelis with heavy machine guns, automatic cannons, antitank guided missiles (ATGMs), rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs), mortars, rockets, and recoilless rifles.

After two hours, the Israelis were ordered back inside their Namer APCs, and the Air Force dropped 100 MK-84 2000-lb (946-kg) bombs.


The Artillery Corps also fired 600 155mm high-explosive artillery rounds.


It took twenty minutes to neutralize the terrorists. Then tanks of the 188th Armored Brigade arrived, and the IDF destroyed the terrorist factories, weapons depots, bunkers, rocket launchpads, and tunnels over the next five hours. Some buildings had so many booby traps that the Air Force simply bombed them.

But apartments right next to ground zero of the fighting were untouched. Even the glass in the windows (right) was left intact.

A total of about 100 Palestinians died. After examining the death lists, I conclude that virtually all were combatants or killed by the Palestinians.

In other words, Israel killed no civilians in a major, seven-hour urban battle. The US military is unable to duplicate such an outcome. That’s just fact.

Unable to face the truth

Since June of 2014, I’ve had the suspicion that the US armed forces feel contempt for the IDF.

I was correct. Major General Peter Gersten, US Army, Deputy Commander for Operations and Intelligence, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve, recently discussed the failed American attempt to mimic the Israeli “knock on the roof.” This involves firing a small munition onto the roof of a building to warn the occupants to evacuate before the real strike.

What I could’ve told Major General Gersten and everyone else: The IDF uses phone calls and MULTIPLE roof knocks. Why do you think there was a camera filming the house that was bombed? That was the second or third roof knock.

Also, the Palestinians always edit out time. Below is 0:40 in the video. A large bird suddenly materializes between one frame and another. Each frame is 0.03 seconds in duration.

The Palestinians shortened the interval between the last knock and the strike.

Major General Gersten was asked why the Americans hadn’t consulted with the Israelis before attempting this tactic. He bristled at the question.

Now, as to whether we are working with the Israelis on this or did they teach us this, what you’re looking at is a highly skilled military force that has spent personally 25 years across the spectrum of warfare. I’ve watched warfare being operated across the entire region. We did not work with them. We’ve certainly watched and observed their procedure.

Gersten began his sentence speaking about the US armed forces, but then he switched to his own experience. He interpreted the question as a personal insult. Well, the reality is that since the US didn’t talk to the Israelis, we weren’t successful at using their tactic.

About three years ago I learned in the worst way possible that the US armed forces had dropped their standards for recruitment. I’ll go so far as to say that functionally, we no longer have standards. Anyone can get in, and nobody is allowed to wash out. When I was a young man, the story below would’ve been unthinkable.

The head of Naval Warfare Special Command [Admiral Brian Losey] had warned Navy SEALs against betraying their promise to maintain secrecy just days ahead of a SEAL’s “60 Minutes” interview defending his publication of details from the Osama bin Laden mission.

The open letter specifies that the warning holds even after a mission is over, and it scolds those seeking public credit.

The letter is not the first. Losey’s predecessor also sent a letter reminding SEALs to keep the confidence of the mission.

Even Navy SEALs want fame and adulation from imbeciles.

Unable to see

I possess information that would allow me to publish what would be one of the best-selling books of all time. The main reason I don’t do so is that others would suffer. Also, fame and money are ephemeral. Tonight I watched A Star is Born (1954) for the first time.

It wasn’t for me, because I hate alcoholics. I say that as an alcoholic myself. Self-pity drives me crazy.

The character I like the most in the film is studio publicist Matt Libby (Jack Carson).

After Norman Maine (James Mason) demolishes his acting career by being an arrogant, narcissistic drunk who habitually makes life harder for everyone he knows, he goes blubbering to Libby about how tragic it all is. Libby angrily mocks Maine’s implosion.

“Go a little slow, Libby. I don’t want to forget that we’re friends,” Maine mumbles.

“Friends, my eye!” Libby shouts. “Listen, I got you out of your jams because it was my job, not because I was your friend! I don’t like you. I never did like you! Nothing made me happier than to see all those cute little pranks of yours catch up with you and land you on your celebrated face!”

Libby is the wisest person in the movie. He has a great line.

The wheel goes round and round, and if you just wait long enough, it’s finally your turn.

He’s absolutely correct. The wheel grinds every one of us. When it’s your turn to become dust, what kind of legacy will you leave behind?

Unable to feel sorry

Americans had it all, and we chose to throw it away. Our story isn’t tragic; it’s stupid. The next few years will determine whether or not we’ll return to what we once were.

As of today, the best armed forces in the world are those of Israel and the Arab League. They make me PROUD. I’m a huge admirer of heroism and improvement. And professionalism.

Today I learned something. In 1990, the US armed forces adopted the Desert Camouflage Uniform (DCU), which has since been discontinued in all branches of the service.

Middle Eastern unconventional warriors still wear it.

Egyptian Rapid Deployment Forces.


Saudi Arabian Special Forces.

United Arab Emirates Special Forces.

And Israeli Special Forces.

I didn’t know that the IDF has the DCU. That’s because the Israelis don’t advertise it. They wear DCUs when they carry out operations with the Arab League.

In five years at most, the Middle East will be at peace. Count on it.

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