June 16, 2024

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The military and Benjamin Netanyahu are deeply at odds over the war in Gaza

The military and Benjamin Netanyahu are deeply at odds over the war in Gaza

After the bulk of the military operations are over, to whom can Israel hand over the ruins of Gaza? For the Army, the trial has been going on since January. For more than four months, Israeli civil servants have been pleading with the government behind closed doors to end its troop efforts. These generals are calling for the re-establishment of a Palestinian civilian government in the enclave that would relieve them of some responsibility for ensuring the survival of the two million displaced people. A total loss. On Wednesday May 15, Defense Minister Yov Gallant publicly expressed this impatience.

General Gallant puts his prime minister and the head of his party, Likut, at the wall. By refusing to make a political decision to this war, Benjamin Netanyahu is imposing an impossible choice on his country: he will ensure that Hamas restores its rule in what remains of the Gaza Strip or re-establish Israeli military rule. Like the man who managed the enclave between its conquest in 1967 and the creation of the Palestinian Authority (PA) following the Oslo Accords in 1994.

“A ‘day after Hamas’ will only be achieved if Palestinian institutions, along with international actors, control Gaza by establishing an alternative government to Hamas. This is above all in the interest of the State of Israel.”General Gallant advances without naming the only possible alternative: President Mahmoud Abbas and his party, Fatah’s PA, which no Israeli official dares mention as a partner anymore.

“Military rule in Gaza, to the detriment of other areas, will become the main security and military effort of the State of Israel in the coming years. The price to be paid is blood and casualties and a severe economic toll., Minister warns.

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Rafa’s slow success

Ignoring the initial recommendations of civil servants, Mr. Gallant regretted it. For a week, senior Israeli officials have relayed the news to Israeli journalists under the guise of anonymity.

They are putting pressure on the prime minister at a time when talks with Hamas over a ceasefire and the release of hostages have again stalled. Top brass seeks to dispel a myth “Total Victory”, purely military, since February Mr. Promised by Netanyahu. They also want to prevent the Prime Minister from taking advantage of the resumption of land operations in the enclave to further delay any decision.

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