Ami Isseroff has written the best analysis I’ve seen of the military-political bind that Israel finds herself in vis-a-vis Hamas (and Hezbollah, for that matter). As he shows, the problem of Gaza is the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in microcosm. Israel must develop a consistent long-term strategy — and then take action. Today she simply responds to events which are choreographed by her enemies. The result is a slow, incremental defeat.
This is a must-read.
By Ami Isseroff
Those who want to learn from history can get a whole education from recent events in Gaza. The Hamas government or their allies or a splinter faction or someone, dug a tunnel into Israel in order to kidnap Israeli soldiers. By luck, Israel found out about the tunnel and destroyed it, triggering rocket and mortar fire into Sderot and Ashkelon. These were not just little Qassam rockets, but professional Grad – upgraded Katyushas, falling in Ashkelon. Israel responded by firing at the “militants” launching the rockets. Next, IDF killed four “militants” about to plant a bomb near the Kissufim crossing.
While all this show was going on, and not by coincidence, the Quartet held a meeting upholding the Annapolis “process.” At the same time, a group of European MPs landed in Gaza to show their support for the genocidal Hamas. Mr Ismail Hanniyeh, the “good cop” told them the Hamas would make a truce with Israel if Israel withdrew to the 1967 lines. Presumably the truce would look like the current lull and would be kept in the same way. Hanniyeh forgot to tell the MPs that the deal would include Right of Return for Palestinian refugees, which would destroy the state of Israel as a Jewish homeland. Moreover, the “bad cop,” Mahmoud Zahar, promptly announced that no such truce was currently on offer, a retraction that got less publicity.
Israeli PM Olmert told IDF troops that a clash in Gaza was “unavoidable”. Since the clash is ongoing that hardly required the prophetic vision of Isaiah, but it is likely that Ehud Olmert meant a more major clash might ensue.
What can we learn from this confused babel? A number of points emerge which characterize most relations with the Palestinians since 1994, and in particular those with the late Mr. Yasser Arafat‘s government and the Hamas government in Gaza.