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Predicts New Arab-israeli War Will Employ Most Destructive Weapons Short of Nuclear Power

A research paper by a well-known Israeli authority of Soviet affairs, predicts that a fifth Arab-Israeli war will employ the most sophisticated and destructive weaponry from the arsenals of the two super-powers short of actual nuclear weapons. Dr. Amnon Sela. In his paper published today by the Soviet and East European Research Center of the Hebrew University, also suggested that the present precarious military balance in the Middle East “creates a fertile ground for a variety of preemptive strikes.”

He said that Israel is in a military position to seize such an opportunity but does not dare to for political reasons. Egypt might be willing to launch another surprise attack on Israel but does not dare because of its present inferior military position, Dr. Sela said. Consequently, he observed, it is the super-powers which will play a decisive role in the next war. “In a number of ways they have already settled what the next war will be like… and even how long it will last.”

Dr. Sela’s paper, entitled “What Will the Next War Be Like?” envisions that “short of nuclear power, the next war will see the full deployment of the next best from the super-powers’ arsenals, armored forces, air forces and electronics. The price of non-settlement in the area would seem to be soaring sky high.”

Dr. Sela believes that the line between tactics and strategy will continue to be obscure in any future war unless Israel crumbles under the weight of Arab pressure. “If Israel could cross the dividing line between tactics and strategy, that is, winning wars instead of battles, it would become the sole arbiter of Mideastern affairs,” Dr. Sela wrote. “But.” he added, “no Israeli victory of this kind seems possible.”

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