I have long despised Santayana’s advise: “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it”, because while there may be some superficial truth to the statement it is usually invoked by one drawing a parallel to between a historial incident and a current event despite being ignorant of the full context of both. Without understanding the facets of a historical event you can not understand the true reasons for success or failure, nor can you apply leasons learned to a current event if you do not have a fair understanding of its facets. In essence: Context Matters.
So to aide the few out there that read this, I will point you to David Bernstein’s post on the USSR’s malignant role in the Middle East. There is no grand wisdom or lesson to be applied directly to the current battles in Gaza — just an understanding of one of the key facets of the conflicts in the Middle East