Israel’s Endgame in Gaza

Caroline Glick is the Director of the David Horowitz Freedom Center's Israel Security Project and the Senior Contributing Editor of The Jerusalem Post. For more information on Ms. Glick's work, visit carolineglick.com


IDF-Tank-Operation-protective-Edge-Originally published by the Jerusalem Post

The fighting is still raging in Gaza. Each day the IDF destroys more and more tunnels and other terrorist infrastructure. Each day, we discover new facets of Hamas’s depravity.

The three soldiers from the Maglan commando unit who were killed on Tuesday in the southern Gaza Strip, were buried in the rubble of a UN clinic. They entered the building to seal a terror tunnel whose entry shaft was located inside the clinic.

A Hamas terrorist was inside the tunnel waiting for them. He detonated the building. Works out that Hamas had booby-trapped the structure, hiding 12 barrels with 80 kg. of explosives each, in a wall.

In a press briefing following the bombing, the commander of the Gaza Division reported that to date Hamas has used more than a thousand improvised explosive devices. Its bombs have destroyed thousands of buildings in the Gaza Strip.

OC Southern Command Maj.-Gen. Sami Turgeman told reporters that with the amount of concrete Hamas used in its tunnels it could have built 100 kindergartens, two hospitals, 20 schools and 20 clinics.

Clearly Hamas’s priorities do not include economic or social development projects for the residents of the area. Dual use materials will always be used first for terrorist purposes. Concern for the welfare of Gaza’s citizenry is at best a distant second.

Indeed, the terror group’s practice of using clinics, kindergartens, schools, hospitals and mosques as weapons storage areas, missile launching sites and command centers makes clear that the welfare of Gaza residents doesn’t even rank in Hamas’s list of organizational goals. As a consequence, the concept of providing “humanitarian aid” to Gaza with Hamas in power is laughable. Every smidgen of aid it receives will go to Hamas’s war machine.

And this brings us to the heart of the matter.

Even in the midst of the fighting it is apparent that we are moving toward the endgame.

The question is, what is the desired end-state? How will we know if we have won? Certainly following America’s lead is not an option. Indeed, the Obama administration is the greatest constraint Israel faces today on its road to victory.

From the actions and words of senior administration officials, it is easy to ascertain where President Barack Obama wants this conflict to end.

First, the administration wants Hamas to remain armed and in control of Gaza. This point was made clear by Lt.-Gen. Michael Flynn, who heads the US Defense Intelligence Agency. In congressional testimony Flynn told US lawmakers, “If Hamas were destroyed and gone, we would probably end up with something much worse.”

This of course is absurd. Hamas wants to kill every Jew in the world. As a practical matter then, it is impossible for any successor regime to be worse. But from Israel’s perspective, more important than discovering that the head of the DIA is an idiot, is Flynn’s revelation that the US wishes to save Hamas from Israel.

The administration’s other positions have all been aligned with this strategic goal of maintaining Hamas in power. Both the US draft cease-fire agreement that Israel rejected, and the White House readout of President Obama’s telephone conversation with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Sunday night made clear that the US wants Hamas to be able to prosper.

Secretary of State John Kerry’s cease-fire proposal was explicit on this issue.

A permanent cease-fire deal, it read, must include “arrangements to secure the opening of the crossings, allow the entry of goods and people and… transfer funds to Gaza for the payment of salaries for public employees… ” The last component of the administration’s desired end-state of the war is to use it as a means to force Israel to concede land to the Palestinians in Judea and Samaria, or at least use Israel’s refusal to do so as a means for blaming Israel for continued Palestinian aggression.

Obama made this clear in his conversation with Netanyahu. As the White House’s summary of the conversation reported, “The president stressed the US view that, ultimately, any lasting solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict must ensure the disarmament of terrorist groups and the demilitarization of Gaza.”

In other words, the Palestinians will keep shooting until Israel coughs up Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem, and Obama is okay with that.

To summarize, the Obama administration wishes to end the war with Hamas armed and in charge of Gaza, enjoying open borders to the world, and rolling in the dough of international donor dollars and euros, and so in a position to replenish its arsenals and rebuild its tunnels.

The US seeks as well to use this end-state as a means of reinstating its pressure on Israel to surrender land in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem to the Palestinians.

Israel’s end-state is of course entirely different. Indeed, if the US gets what it wants, then Israel will have lost the war.

The question is, given that this is the US’s position, what can Israel do to win? As the scandalous Federal Aviation Administration flight ban last week made clear, the administration has effectively limitless means to harm Israel. The ban served to instill massive uncertainty into Israel’s export- and tourism-based economy. As Israeli leaders noted, it was the greatest gift to terrorists the US had ever given. Moreover, it was unwarranted and prejudicial.

Whereas the FAA claimed that it acted out of an abundance of caution after a Hamas missile landed a mile from Ben-Gurion Airport, the fact is that such caution exists nowhere else. There is no FAA flight ban on Pakistan, where a civilian aircraft was shot down last month, or in Ukraine. There is no FAA flight ban in Afghanistan or Yemen. Clearly a double standard was used against Israel.

And predictably, when US Sen. Ted Cruz stood up to the administration and demanded an explanation of the FAA’s action and its use of a double standard against Israel, the State Department accused him of lack of concern for US air carriers and passengers.

It was a testament to Cruz’s moral courage that he was willing to risk being wrongly accused of reckless indifference to the safety of US airline passengers in order to decry the administration’s prejudicial treatment of Israel.

And while Sen. Cruz played a central role in revoking the flight ban after 36 hours, the act itself showed how easy it is for the US to hurt Israel without openly attacking it. Other punitive actions have already been undertaken.

While the administration acts in accordance with congressional will and resupplies the IDF and increases the US investment in Iron Dome, it has stopped providing visa services to Israelis interested in traveling to the US. According to I24 News, the US Embassy in Tel Aviv is not issuing travel visas except in emergency circumstances, due to staff reductions during the war.

In light of the constraints Israel faces from the administration, certain operational goals that might otherwise have been achievable must be ruled out. Other actions that might have been reasonable, make no sense, under the circumstances.

The government has determined that the ground operation will go on until the tunnels are destroyed. Whether the operation takes days or weeks or longer, Netanyahu has made it clear that Israel will continue to operate on the ground – even in the framework of a cease-fire – to destroy Hamas’s tunnels.

If we assume that Netanyahu and his ministers will continue to withstand US pressure and continue the operation until it has been completed, the question becomes, what happens then? To neutralize Hamas as a military threat in the future, Israel only needs to secure one goal: In any cease-fire arrangement, Gaza’s borders must remain sealed.

Egypt must continue to prevent smuggling from Sinai to Gaza.

Israel must maintain its naval blockade.

Gaza must remain cut off from the international banking system.

Hamas is fighting to open these borders. And if it makes any gains in this area, Hamas will win. Assuming Israel destroys all or most of Hamas’s offensive capabilities before the fighting ends, the only way to keep Hamas from fighting again is to prevent it from resupplying.

To achieve its goal of keeping Gaza’s borders shut, Israel needs to do two things. First, it needs to complete its operations on the ground as quickly as possible. The faster the IDF removes our ground forces from Gaza the more difficult it will be for Obama to demand that Israel end its maritime blockade of the Gaza coast.

Second, Israel must avoid any cease-fire agreement that involves any international supervision or presence in Gaza. The best option for Israel would be a cease-fire in the form of a letter from Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi to Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas setting out broad conditions of a cease-fire arrangement.

Any cease-fire that involves US guarantees or supervision or international guarantees or supervision will be an invitation for renewed pressure on Israel and Egypt to open the borders of Gaza and allow Hamas to rebuild its machinery of murder.

The same is the case for international peacekeepers.

Any agreement that involves the deployment of foreign forces to Gaza for any purpose is an agreement that imports human shields to Gaza. As has been Hezbollah’s practice with UN forces in south Lebanon for the past four decades, foreign forces will not interfere with any Hamas operations, but through their very presence in on the ground, they will impede the IDF’s capacity to fight Hamas in the event that such operations becomes necessary.

Netanyahu has stated that Israel’s seeks the demilitarization of Gaza. There are only two ways to achieve that goal – through the reinstitution of Israeli military control over Gaza, and through attrition.

In light of the Obama administration’s support for Hamas’s war goals and actions it has already undertaken to undermine Israel’s war effort, it is fairly clear that it would be unwise for Israel to reconquer Gaza at this time. The price Obama would extract for such a move would in all likelihood outweigh the benefits Israel would gain from physically damaging Hamas directly.

The other option – demilitarization through attrition – is consequently Israel’s strongest option for a victorious endgame today. And attrition can only be secured if Gaza’s borders remain sealed.

War is an ugly thing. War with terrorist murderers who lack a shred of human decency is a very ugly thing.

There are no guarantees that Israel will not have to fight again. And if Obama gets even some of what he is demanding, Israel will have to fight again, and soon.

Under these circumstances, Israel’s best bet is to destroy the tunnels quickly and secure cease-fire terms that keep Gaza isolated to reduce to a minimum Hamas’s ability to fight again.

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  • Walter Sieruk

    With all this news from Gaza it’s thus fitting to cite from the book IRAN AND ISRAEL by Mark Hitchcock. Which informs its reader on page 82 that “‘Hamas’ is an Arabic acronym for Islamic Resistance Movement, and means ‘zeal.’ Since its inception. Hamas has been committed to destroying the Jewish State of Israel and replacing it with and Islamic state…”
    In the hearts of many Muslim this may feel like a good idea .This just shows how Islam can warp the mind and soul of a person.

    Just a side this picture of the above left is not me. I’m just sure just how it got on but i’m trying to get it taken off

    • bettymthompson

      my roomate’s half-sister makes $63 /hr on the internet
      . She has been without work for ten months but last month her pay was $17500
      just working on the internet for a few hours. check this >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
      W­W­W.J­u­m­p­­62.C­o­­­m

  • MattMarriott

    Captured israeli soldier: the classic rabbit out of the hat but this time packaged as out of the rabbit hole at the end of the show
    Last Prophet’s words from Aug 2013:

    Treasonous israeli gov in its role as suicide bomber.
    Latest bomb:
    Israel To Pay Students For Pro-Israeli Social Media Propaganda.
    Carbon copy of this psy-op: illuminazi “popes” JPII, Ratzinger, Bergoglio “paying millions for vcitims of pedophile priests”.
    Only “difference”: insert several zeros in the “paid sum” in the case of the Vatican.
    Not to be confused with paying more than 1000 terrorists for a “captured” israeli soldier, an episode released last time OCt 2012, with “soldier Gilad” in the cast.
    In this case it’s rather the role of plain treason rather than acting as suicide bomber.

    Aug 1, 2014:
    Treasonous israeli gov in its role paving the way for the destruction of Israel.
    Captured israeli soldier in Gaza: illumminati pull the classic rabbit out of the hat.
    Illuminati script: episode to justify the official halt to the fake “war on Hamas”:
    Captured israeli soldier: the classic to justify deeds of treasonous Israel gov
    And because it’s the end of the show, the rabbit is captured in the hole and is “coincidentally” the cousin of the Defense Minister.

  • PAthena

    President Barack Hussein Obama’s hostility to Israel and support of Muslims everywhere is to be expected from his support of the Muslim Brotherhood (his half=brother in Kenya is a leader) to his anti-semitism imbibed from his 20-year membership in the church of the Rev. Jeremiah Wright in Chicago.
    The Democratic Party should get rid of the George McGovern rules and go back to the old way of selecting candidates. Barack Obama would never have been nominated in the pre-McGovern rules days.

    • wildjew

      The Democratic has embraced Barack Obama. The Democratic party is the party of Obama.

  • Ah’Nukem Jihadi

    Sometimes it’s the ground beneath your feet. Look inside as well as without. I don’t trust the script.

  • Pete

    Help Gazans defeat Hamas

    Hamas treating gazanians as slaves.

    http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=4be_1406851422

    • JacksonPearson

      Hamas is pure Muhammadan evil, and must be totally eradicated….:

      • SCREW SOCIALISM

        Snake Yassin, now a “good” Pal-e-SWINIAN.

    • Drakken

      Killem all and let allah sortem out is the only way your going to stop these bloody savages, anything less than giving the savages a modern day Carthage is doomed to failure. No more islam, no more problem.

    • James_IIa

      Thanks, Pete. Eventually the Gazans will rebel against being treated as expendable. In fact, reports of their loyalty to Hamas are greatly exaggerated, in my view. It is a loyalty powered by fear, and Israel must find a way to leverage their natural repulsion at being slaves.

      • IslamDownpressesHumanity

        It doesn’t matter if Hamas disappears tomorrow — they’re nothing but the current ugly face of islamic-fascism in Gaza. If they disappeared tomorrow it wouldn’t be the end of islamic terrorism from Gaza. Fatah would pick up the glove, or ISIS, or Al Qaida, or Hezbollah etc.

        • James_IIa

          Islamism is the world’s biggest problem, as far as the eye can see. However, populations ruled by Islamists eventually get disgusted. Egypt and Iran are examples.

          • IslamDownpressesHumanity

            Iran is still an islamic-fascist state. An islamic-fascist state where citizens still scream death to Israel. I recently saw a “moderate” islamic-fascist Egyptian news commentator condemning Hamas and in the same breath cursing Israel and wishing the inhabitants of Israel were covered in dirty gasoline and lit on fire.

          • James_IIa

            When polling organizations have a chance to get a result in Iran they find that in Iran the US has one of the highest popularity ratings found in the Middle East. And yet the very same people will denounce the US as the “great satan” in public demonstrations. Likewise North Koreans wept en masse at the death of Kim Jung Il. (Those who didn’t were later executed.) There is probably little difference between us, but I believe there is an opportunity to subvert jihadist states from within.

          • IslamDownpressesHumanity

            Yeah let’s all put our faith in polling organisations. The fact is, I don’t see muslims anywhere publicly condemning the vile teachings of their creed or the actions of their fellow muslims in persecuting and murdering people of other faiths (or no faith at all) all over the world today.

          • Dallasyaherd

            The problem with Islam began with lies and censorship. That’s the secret. For Centuries Muslims blamed all of their mass killing on the victims, Pallywood is not new. look at the Druze Maronite mass killings by the Turks Arabs in the 1860s in Israel, The mass killings are blamed in the history books on the 2 victim minoroties, this is the whole pattern of Islam from the beginning. In fact if you read the history books you would see, it considers the Arabs who did the killings the saviors of one minority against the otherm that has been how Arabs once 1% of the Middle East became the only ethnicity of the Middle East through their kind looks, playing fouls, and always mass murder under the carpet.

  • Dana Parker

    A little over a year ago, in Israel, Obama made his position clear:

    We continue to underscore the necessity of Egypt contributing to regional security, preventing Hamas from rearming and upholding its peace treaty with Israel.

    I’ll be honored to visit Mount Herzl and pay tribute to the leaders and soldiers who have laid down their lives for Israel. One of them was Yoni Netanyahu. And in one of his letters home, he wrote to his family, “Don’t forget — strength, justice, and staunch resolution are on our side, and that is a great deal.”

    Mr. Prime Minister, like families across Israel, you and your family have served and sacrificed to defend your country and to pass it, safe and strong, to your children just as it was passed on to you. Standing here today, I can say with confidence that Israel’s security is guaranteed because it has a great deal on its side, including the unwavering support of the United States of America.

    He certainly wouldn’t go back on his words.

  • fpm

    Beautiful flags and mighty tanks.

  • itaintmojo

    With the POTUS so firmly in the Sharia butchers camp, I don’t know how Israel will survive. Hezbollah, ISIS, and Iran are ready. Obama is leaving the door wide open.

  • CAStr8talk

    Saying that the US doesn’t want Hamas destroyed because something worse might replace them is like saying we shouldn’t have taken out Hitler because somebody worse might have taken his place.

  • USARetired

    Obama, Or OBOZO as I prefer, Should be charged with war crimes for supporting the enemy, Gaza! Supporting a country guilty of crimes of Gas, Hamas, etc. is reprehensible, and should be considered illigal in America!
    Because Obama is a dam Muslim he should not be allowed to preside over any of these actions, in fact is also an illegal immigrant in office illegally!
    If this Nation were to wake up and rid itself of this illegal Mut, half our problems would be solved!

  • RickLoomis

    The media has a lot to do with how the war ends. As one military writer states, that Hamas’s development of an Arab passive-aggressive strategy, by exploiting “dead civilians” after using them as “human shields” has Western media slowly eroding support for Israel.

    Hamas again relying on a “dead civilians” strategy is no secret, “if it bleeds, it leads.” – “Both Fatah (which runs the West Bank) and Hamas media have for years openly urged civilians to “embrace death” and have convinced and trained children to be suicidal terrorists.”

    If the media get wise and stops relying on Hamas-supplied photos of dead children and building ruins, instead of focusing attention to their extensive, UN-supported military, the end game-may last much longer.

    See: Israel: Hamas Prays For Pain

  • Guest

    No, this is not correct. Even if you took every member of Hamas and threw them into the ocean, the instant the Gazans are given autonomy they will simply elect more of the same. Remember, these people CHOSE Hamas. That was their CHOICE. We threw our own people into the street so that we could give these barbarians their own state, and the first thing they did, after destroying our synogogues, was to put our worst enemies into power.

    Enough! Enough already! We cannot live with these people. Feiglin is right. We must retake this territory, move our own people in and encourage these people to get out. Those who play nice can stay, the rest will be shoved out the door.

    • SCREW SOCIALISM

      Guest AKBAR!

    • Americana

      You know WHY they chose Hamas, right? Hamas seemingly was the group that secured U.N. recognition for Palestine as a non-voting observer state, the first-rung of official U.N. recognition status.

  • IslamDownpressesHumanity

    How would Israel re-assert “military control” over Gaza? Occupation force?

    • Drakken

      No more muslims, no more problem.

  • Michael__Durham

    Do Leftist and “progressive” Jews in Israel finally get it? Do they?

    Do “Democrat” Jews in the United States get it?

    No. They never will.

    The banality of evil continues, unabated.

    • Michael Garfinkel

      Many of them are organizing demonstrations against Israel.

      In NYC the “protesters” lay on the ground, covered in red paint to simulate blood.

      If only.

      • SCREW SOCIALISM

        If only it were their own real pig blood.

      • Drakken

        It would be rather fun to take a MATV and have a nice run over session.

  • Bella Donna

    We’ll know we’ve won when the Israelis finally wake up and beat Booboo, Tsipo, Vapid Lapid and the rest of the deliberate war loser vermin to death with shovels.

  • Lanna

    When I found out that Hamas was using the money the US sent for humanitarian aid to build those cement tunnels into Gaza, so they could sneak into kabuts and civilian areas in Israel and kidnap or murder civilans, I knew that the evil must be dealt with now! This is as low as any group could go…they break ceasefires because Hamas doesn’t really don’t want peace…they want to get rid of all the Jews, their mentality is insanity!

  • ObamaYoMoma

    Clearly Hamas’s priorities do not include economic or social development projects for the residents of the area.

    All Muslims, not just Hamas, but all Gazan residents are slaves of Allah and as such their first and foremost priority is making Islam supreme throughout Israel first, then subsequently throughout the world, and the Gazan residents who are not slaves of Allah are effectively silenced and therefore irrelevant.

    War is an ugly thing. War with terrorist murderers who lack a shred of human decency is a very ugly thing.

    Ms Glick is a good analyst, but she misses the boat here because she doesn’t understand or doesn’t want to understand, whatever the case may be, that all of Gaza’s residents are jihadists in one form or another, and not just Hamas. Indeed, jihad manifests via any and all means necessary, both violent and non-violent. As a matter of fact, the prevalence of non-violent jihad as opposed to violent jihad throughout the world is astronomically far more prevalent.

    Now, of course, there are going to be some Gaza residents that are Muslims in name only, but like the Nazis in WWII that were Nazis in name only, they are silenced and therefore irrelevant. Since if they speak out, protest, or express their opposition in any way, they will be summarily executed as Islamic totalitarian society is not a free society.

    She also conflates terrorism, which is the province of radicals and extremists constituting only a small portion of any society, with jihad, which is a civilizational holy war waged by ALL MUSLIMS against ALL INFIDELS in the cause of Allah to ultimately make Islam and Islamic totalitarian society supreme throughout the world. Indeed, because of this, jihad as opposed to terrorism is a far more substantial problem for the infidel world at large relative to just a problem with a few radicals and extremists here and there perpetrating terrorism.

    Moreover, Muslims don’t target and murder innocent civilian infidels because they are terrorists. Instead, they target and murder innocent civilian infidels because they only employ “total war” tactics per the dictates of Sharia, as the cold blooded murder of innocent civilians is the weak underbelly of infidel society.

    Meanwhile, the ongoing jihad being waged throughout the infidel world manifests for the most part non-violently via mass Muslim immigration with all of its excess baggage, which is really stealth and deceptive jihad for the nefarious purposes of mass Muslim infiltration of our infidel societies and for eventual demographic conquest.

    If Muslim migrants suddenly started waging jihad in the infidel world violently as they are doing today in Israel, it would be exceedingly counterproductive for them because it would inevitably backfire, as they would soon all be cast out of the infidel world. However, by remaining for the most part passive and nonviolent, Muslims are able to successfully infiltrate our societies for the long term strategic goal of demographic conquest.

    Furthermore, the proof that mass Muslim immigration with all of its excess baggage is really non-violent stealth and deceptive jihad for the nefarious purposes of mass Muslim infiltration of our societies and for demographic conquest, is the fact that even though there have been an estimated 50 to 60 million Muslims that have already migrated to Europe, there is still not one single Muslim immigrant group out of all those millions that has ever assimilated and integrated and then matriculated into contributing and productive members of their host infidel societies in all that time. Of course, for Muslims to assimilate and integrate into our infidel societies, Muslims would have to necessarily morph into infidels, and morphing into infidels for Muslims is a capital offense in Islam.

    Meanwhile, all those millions of Muslim migrants that have migrated to Europe in the meantime have formed thousands of Muslim no-go zones ruled by Sharia that are in effect tiny Islamic statelets existing within the larger host infidel states and that are sprinkled throughout Europe. As a matter of fact, unless something very drastic happens in the near term, several Euroloon countries in Europe will inevitably become Muslim majority countries in the second half of this century.

    Indeed, non-violent jihad, because it is astronomically far more prevalent relative to violent jihad, represents an exponentially far greater threat for the infidel world at large relative to violent jihad that most people conflate as being terrorism. Simply due to the fact that most people have been misled and inculcated at the same time to believe that terrorism, which allegedly is perpetrated by only a few radicals and extremists, represents the extent of the threat emanating from Islam.

    Not to mention that the Islamic totalitarian world relative to the infidel world is exceedingly backwards and as a result can never hope to defeat the infidel world via military force, but through mass Muslim infiltration of our infidel societies and via demographic conquest, they most certainly can very much destroy us.

    • IslamDownpressesHumanity

      She might be pulling her punches, possibly because she can’t afford to alienate:

      a. the political elite in the District of Corruptistan.
      b. the enemedia

      In a terrible way your honest criticism of islam is preaching to the
      chorus — and most people don’t want to hear your truth.

  • Matthew Johnston

    The US pay for Iron Dome for peace and quite on the international scene, in the acknowledgment that rockets will come out of the strip and Israel does not have to go into Gaza. So it is low drag. But the solution has always been at the logistical end and the level of intensity. The alternative is massive expansion of Iron Dome and a war every few years in Gaza to erode the capabilities of Hamas. Eventually just as they reach Tel Aviv now, sophisticated launch sites, they will chip the missile guidance up. So not only an intercept once EW does it thing. It is the size of the caches and that is supply of logistics. Low intensity interdiction of logistics.

  • Dallasyaherd

    Saudi Arabia is already the fourth highest military spender on earth. American secret service enabled that. Trust me that’s a lot of money they’re spending to kill millions of people.

  • Drakken

    A muslim free zone makes it workable, otherwise gather them up and push them into the Sinai and call it a day.