Daily Archives: November 17, 2012

Stratfor: The Sinai Buffer Zone

I pulled the map seen here from a Stratfor teaser email. They really want to sell me a subscription to their weekly updates, and they’ve been very busy the last few days due to the troubles in Gaza.

The agreement (Carter’s 1979 Camp David Accords) divided the Sinai Peninsula into four zones of increasing neutrality. Egypt is allowed an entire mechanized or infantry division in Zone A, which abuts the Suez Canal. In Zone B, its armed presence is limited to municipal police and border patrol. 1,600 international peacekeepers are spread out across 32 bases in the east of Zone C, and Israel is allowed a limited presence in Zone D.

Egypt was under significant American influence for the last several decades and in the past they have closed the official crossing into Gaza in cooperation with Israeli goals there. Now, with their new government, they are still somewhat cooperative, but will not close the border. This means the Israelis may move military units right along the line between Israel and Egypt, which has not been the case since Israel withdrew in the early 1980s.

I put this up because I am still puzzling over Stratfor: Hamas Long Range Rockets. The new ones that can hit Tel Aviv and Jerusalem are either brought in, or locally built. That doubling of range is a significant escalation.

This is all just too much – Gaza, Sinai, and next stop is the Golan Heights. It reminds me of sitting with my dad watching the six o’clock news when I was a tween.

Stratfor: Hamas Long Range Rockets

I pinched this rocket attack radius map from Israel pounds Gaza from air as troops assemble, Arab League meets

This bit from Stratfor’s Updated on Israel-Gaza Conflict caught my eye.

New intelligence indicates forces in Gaza may be manufacturing long-range rockets locally. If this is the case, a significant ground force offers the Israelis the best chance of finding and neutralizing the factories making these weapons. Meanwhile, Israel continues its airstrikes on Gaza, and Gaza continues its long-range rocket attacks on major Israeli population centers, though Israel claims its Iron Dome defense system has intercepted most of the rockets.

It makes sense for Hamas to develop domestic production capabilities, but is it possible? Maybe the looser policies of the new Egyptian government regarding the border with Gaza are facilitating such a change.

There is nothing to do but wait and see what is found – it appears Israel will be going in, given 75,000 troops are in position.