Thursday, November 6, 2014

US sent 'lessons learned' team to model Israel tactics in Gaza operation

So, let me get this straight: the Obama administration is sending a team to Israel to learn from Israel how to limit collateral damage and civilian casualties? Didn't they complain that Israel wasn't doing enough in those areas?
WASHINGTON (JPost) -- The United States sent a team of senior officers to Israel three months ago to learn from Israel's tactics in Operation Protective Edge in Gaza over the summer, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey said on Thursday.

Dempsey praised the IDF for taking "extraordinary lengths to limit collateral damage and civilian casualties" in its war against Hamas. The militant organization, Dempsey said, "had become very nearly a subterranean society," burrowing underground and hiding amongst the civilian population.

"We sent a team of senior officers and non-commissioned officers over to work with the IDF to get the lessons from that particular operation in Gaza," he told an audience at the Carnegie Endowment. He referred to the group of officers as the "lessons learned team."

Dempsey noted Israel's development of new techniques, such as "roof knocking," warning residents of an incoming strike.

"They would display leaflets to warn citizens and population to move away from where these tunnels," the general said. "But look– in this kind of conflict, where you are held to a standard that your enemy is not held to, you're going to be criticized for civilian casualties."