(Times of Israel) As the hulking US war machine comes to life, pivoting menacingly toward Syria, five insights and one suggestion regarding the developing situation to the north:

1) There are still fundamental differences of opinion within the Israeli security establishment as to the preferred results of the looming US offensive in Syria and the eventual outcome of the war.

After two and a half years of fighting, including a Hezbollah-driven triumph in Qusayr in June, the prevailing opinion is that weakening Bashar Assad harms Hezbollah and Iran and therefore trumps all other considerations. In Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s eyes, all considerations are subservient to the Iranian quest for the bomb.

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