"Restraint following the second abduction would have been interpreted in the Middle East simply as outrageous weakness, and would have invited further challenges." - Oren A strangely silly article. Either all or nothing. What does restraint mean, doing nothing? In the past, Israel struck at Hizballah military targets after every military strike by them. We now know that the IDF had precise info on the location of middle and long-range missiles, and was able to destroy most of them (90% estimate) on the ground. This would have been a nice limited, "restrained" response to the abduction of the soldiers. There was no hope to get them back by military means anyhow! Now that Israel has chosen to go to war, what it wanted to avoid (according to Oren) came true. It lost its deterrence, as all acknowledge, while Hizballah gained more deterrence. The day after the war in Lebanon, the Syrians started mentioning their own missiles and raising the possibility of war with Israel. And Sudan got courage and told the UN it will not get into Darfur. Israel is now planning for a new war in Lebanon, perhaps an even less restrained one.
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U.S., allies conduct 22 strikes against ISIS targets in Iraq, Syria (Reuters)
from the article: Was it a war of choice?