During August 2006, Israel and Hezbollah fought a 30-day battle. The papers in the U.S. still seem to think that Israel lost. Seeing as the papers in the U.S. are so good at reporting political events, this is what they must have been referring to. On the ground, Hezbollah got its ass kicked.
Estimates of Hezbollahs’ fighting strength in August of 2006 were around 7000 to 7500. Estimated losses were around 2000 to 2500. Around 30%. Some of the best-trained combat units in the world have broken and fled the field after sustaining far fewer losses in percentage. Hezbollah is not a well-trained force. Morale MUST have been hurt as well as combat effectiveness. Note how little Hezbollah has been in the news the past 2 and ½ years.
I expect the same from the news with the current battle that is going on between Israel and HAMAS. Seeing as HAMAS is not a well-trained force and due to a number of other major factors, the mismatch will go in Israel’s favor and I would expect HAMAS to lose at a minimum of 10 or 20 to 1. I do not know what the estimates for number of combatants in HAMAS, but if this battle lasts any length of time, HAMAS will sustain substantial losses that will cripple their abilities for at least the near future.
The two situations are different in that after the shooting stops, HAMAS will probably be able to rebuild faster. The war in Iraq in 2006 and 2007 was draining substantial amounts of resources that Hezbollah needed to rebuild. Today, the war in Iraq is not so active, so resources will be more readily available. HAMAS also has access to additional resources that Hezbollah does not have. The overall point is that although HAMAS may win politically, they will lose on the ground. The news organizations will most likely fail to see this.