It is absurd for Israel to procure $60–250 million planes. They are mostly vulnerable to inexpensive TOR-1M SAM and certainly to S-300; the fifth generation jets can reliably be targeted with S-400, which is already available on Russian ships in Syria and will soon be available in Saudi Arabia. The history of aerial warfare shows that wars are won with cheap, massive air fleets. In the age of cavalry, armies amassed tens of thousands of mediocre horses rather than a few hundred excellent ones. Instead of procuring ultra-expensive US planes by the dozens, Israel can manufacture her own analogues of F-15s by the thousands. They are good enough to counter inexperienced Arab pilots.

Generals always prepare for the last war. $10 million tanks can be destroyed with a $2,000 RPG-29 rocket. $60 million planes can be shot down with a $100,000 rocket. One would think that this is the age of rockets, but a million-dollar ballistic missile can be intercepted with a shot from laser cannon―which now costs $200 million dollars, but the cost could quickly be brought down to around $30 million. Commandos can find and destroy the expensive lasers before a missile strike, but cheap lasers would be too numerous to be targeted by commandos.

A war too expensive to fight

Losses to Israel’s GDP from conscription exceed $10 billion annually. People of the most productive age spend three senseless years chasing Jewish villagers and Arab criminals. Large armies are no longer useful when a nuclear bomb can evaporate the masses and nerve gases act through the tiniest holes in protective cover. Every weapon made has been used on a grand scale, and nuclear and chemical weapons will be no exception. It is wrong to keep a large standing army; buy weapons instead. Massive armies are immoral: they only exist because generals do not factor in the value of life. If soldiers were officially valued at $10 million a head, a typical life insurance amount, infantry combat would become prohibitively expensive. In mass warfare Israel is doomed, anyway: how many soldiers can we put up against seven-million-strong Egyptian and Syrian forces? Conscription won’t help us against thousands of Syrian SCAD missiles―and neither would Patriots at a million dollars apiece. We need our own lasers and inexpensive Russian S-400. Yes, the Arabs would then receive them, too, but a few ABMs we can always neutralize with commando operations. The Arabs have reasoned, wisely enough, that they can neutralize our expensive planes with cheap missiles; a cheap ABM levels the field. Israel must not play the Arab game of numbers: we cannot amass more infantry, planes, or rockets than they do.

The world is coming back to low-level combat, a sort of terrorist warfare―but this time terrorists have nukes.