Get PJ Media on your Apple

Why Israel Defeated—But Didn’t Crush—Hamas

Netanyahu has more than Gaza on his plate.

by
P. David Hornik

Bio

August 29, 2014 - 11:43 pm
Page 1 of 4  Next ->   View as Single Page
YouTube Preview Image

Soon after an open-ended Israel-Hamas ceasefire came into effect at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, some still-living Hamas leaders rose out of the bunkers where they had been hiding out for weeks and led some Gazans in “victory celebrations.”

Here in Israel, we pray that we will never hold such victory celebrations.

Some of the figures from the seven weeks of war—so far, if the ceasefire holds—include:

On the side of Hamas and Gaza: about 2000 dead (about half of them fighters including members of the top Hamas command), a few hundred thousand people displaced or homeless, about 11,000 homes, schools, and mosques destroyed, 32 attack tunnels costing millions of dollars and years of labor destroyed, and about 2500 mostly shorter-range rockets remaining out of what had been 10,000.

On Israel’s side: 70 dead (64 of them soldiers), some mild, passing economic damage, vastly smaller totals of property damage, and vastly smaller numbers of Gaza-area Israelis leaving their homes temporarily or, in some cases, moving to other parts of the country.

Added to all that is the fact that the ceasefire deal reached on Tuesday is the same one Hamas could have had in early July before most of the destruction was wreaked, and that it grants none of Hamas’s major demands: an airport, a seaport, and prisoner releases. Instead Israel agreed to reopen Gaza border crossings—something it would have done in any case, since it does not want to deny Gazans basic goods and cause severe crises—and to a slight expansion of the fishing zone off Gaza’s coast.

A hands-down win for Israel, then?

Not if you ask a lot of Israelis—particularly right-wing cabinet ministers and other right-wing critics of the government, and embittered residents of the Gaza-bordering towns and villages.

These critics say that the government passed up a big chance to allow the army to finish off Hamas once and for all, and that Hamas’s rearmament and a further round of fighting—probably sooner rather than later—are inevitable. Gaza-area residents say that, after 14 years of enduring rocket and mortar fire from Gaza, they are not prepared to tolerate any more “drizzles” from Gaza leading up to major bombardments.

Why, then, did Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon not order the IDF to simply eliminate Hamas, which no one doubts it is capable of doing? 

Top Rated Comments   
There is a lot of what we don't see that would explain Israel's actions or lack of action. Whether Israel wants to admit it or not, it is dependent on the USA for support. Obama, the Islamist, jerked the Hellfire missiles from the Israeli's. I'm sure there were other things done that haven't been exposed to the public.
It is now a question of how well Israel will rearm. Will it continue to be dependent on American aid or make itself completely independent. Israel will probably start to manufacture its own version of the Hellfire and probably build its own aircraft (it does have stealth technology). It has to ready itself to be completely independent because there is a strong likelihood that the next US administration will also be hostile to it.
That said, there is another storm brewing on the horizon and that is ISIS.
They have already secured themselves on Israel's northern border and are kicking out the UN forces there. The nature of that upcoming battle will give nor take any quarter. It will be purely existential.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
I would like to congratulate Hamas on their victory and wish them many more similar victories in the future!
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Oh, you may want to be left out of it, but the terrorists are not leaving you out of it. That's not your decision to make. If you want them to "leave you out of it", you're going to have to do something. See how that works?
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (34)
All Comments   (34)
Sort: Newest Oldest Top Rated
online jobs at home ..!!
My neighbor's aunt makes $86 /hour on the computer . She has been without a job for 7 months but last month her check was $21313 just working on the computer for a few hours. look at this website ...............
http:www.swipecoins.com
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Netanyahu played very well its military cards during the operation. But Obama-Kerry and their arab minions are relentless to fight Israel survival through diplomacy. Since the bogus peace process talks in Washington failed between Israel ( Tsippy Livni) and the palestinian now Obama-Kerry will use their European Union deep antisemitic minions to strangle israel economically and to force a total surrender without any serious palestinians concessions. We already saw yesterday that Netanyahu plan to turn state lands of Givaot near Kfar Etzion into a building project was withdrawn under Obama-Kerry pressure. It shows how badly intended is the current US administration against Israel.Actually such a move would have been much better executed in the midst of the fighting in Gaza. The state lands are former jordanian state lands which have fallen in " res nullus " after the jordanian defeat of 1967.They can legally be turn into building by Israel since they are located in area A fully under Israel' s administrative and security control according to the 1993 Oslo agreements.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Exactly right on all points. This is the most comprehensive and well argued answer to any criticism of Obama's conduct of the war. Much more could be said of how adeptly and surely Netanyahu handled the many pitfalls and opportunities that presented themselves during the war, and just how brilliant his performance was. Netanyahu is a leader without peer in the wetern world.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Big mistake not to destroy Hamas now. The O is going to turn on Israel like never before starting after mid-term elections. He's been waiting for his opportunity.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
He was going to do it anyway.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Israel needs to isolate its leftist internal enemy, the socialist Jewish cabal who hates Israel 'per se'. The country itself has to recognize this 5th columnist in its midst and don't elect these snakes to anything. Deny them Tenure in its Universities, since the majority of these traitors labor in the "Social Sciences" and pander to the international cabal of "Social Scientist". Emphasize Socialism here. After they have diminished the internal threat, Israelis can deal with Iran as needed. The hamas should be an afterthought.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Don't forget the NGOs, Peace Now and all their ilk. European paid, traitors all.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
I like how you think.

Good luck with getting the termites out without burning down the whole house, though.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
IF A COUNTRY CAN'T FEED ITSELF OR SUPPLY ITS PEOPLE WITH WATER, MAYBE IT SHOULDN'T BE A COUNTRY.
Maybe it should just be left to wither and die.
[The people, though, need not die. They can move away.]
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
"...the current regime of Abdel Fattah el-Sisi is about as pro-Hamas as Israel."
The operative word is 'current'. Who can say how long Sisi will remain in power?
Certainly, for Netanyahu and Ya'alon to claim Egypt is on Israel's side against Hamas, it doesn't bode well for Sisi's lifespan.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
The Egyptian people have had their encounter with Muslem Brotherhood. El-Sisi his succosers are here to stay for at least a generation. Netanyahu never says Egypt is on Israel's side against Hamas, and Hamas, being an offshoot of the Brotherhood, who worked with Morsi, is none too popular in Egypt, in any event.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Because Obama protected them.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
If the problem is that there are too many Arabs in Gaza to make it governable then a way out of this quandary immediately presents itself.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
I had the same thought. The author offers a false line of reasoning. It's a shame that Israel cannot be as ruthless as Joshua. Hamas certainly is.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
Sir,
G-d gave you this land.

Don't you want it? Please, be straight and answer the question.
11 weeks ago
11 weeks ago Link To Comment
1 2 Next View All