No More Band-Aid Solutions For Gaza
Israeli Children Run For Shelter by Israel Defense Forces [CC BY-SA 2.0] via Flickr
Sirens wailing in the middle of the night. Terrifying explosions outside the door. People in panic, rushing their children to a "safe place." Homes destroyed. Blood all over.
The London Blitz, 1940? No — Israel, 2019. Where in Israel? It could be anywhere.
Two weeks ago two huge missiles honed in on Tel Aviv in the coastal center of the country, slamming into empty ground. The target was not in the "territories,” where an Arab population was armed by then Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in order for the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) to work with us to “protect us” in the 1993 Oslo Accords.
It was not on the Lebanon border, near where we retreated and handed Hezbollah their base of operation against us, under Prime Minister Ehud Barak in June 2000. It is not near Gaza, where Hamas uses the land we gave them under Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in August 2005 to attack us around the clock.
No. This part of the country was supposed to be protected from "the price of peace" of the Oslo and expulsion geniuses. But alas, it too is not safe.
And again this week, a missile directly hit a home in a moshav in central Israel, wounding seven.
There is not a single corner of Israel that is safe from those who were supposed to appreciate our concessions and be our "peace partners" in the "New Middle East," as was promised to us.
And what are the questions asked today by the media? “What happened to the missile defense system! Was the attack perhaps a mistake? Which terror group is responsible?”
Truth be told, very few in the media or in politics are willing or capable of offering a solution. We have spent a huge treasure on sophisticated anti-missile technology. We have invested even greater treasure in physical barriers and hardened "safe spots" to run to and hide behind from the missiles.
Still, Israel's population sleeps furtively with a sword constantly poised over its head. The panic and dread of three missiles that fell in the center of the country in recent weeks is the constant experience of Israel's population living near Gaza for years — especially since Israel forfeited Gaza to the terrorists for “peace.”
The missiles today are more sophisticated than when we fled Gaza and Lebanon. The terrorists are bolder. As Israel supplies the terror government in Gaza with water, electricity, and lots of cash, they build a sophisticated war machine to be used against us. And we wonder: How to deal with the next missile? Where will it possibly fall? How do we hide?
You would think that Israel's enemy is the missile. Were the Luftwaffe’s bombs the enemy of Britain in 1940, or was it the regime that sent them to kill Britons? Was Britain's aim to clear the sky of enemy bombs or to bring down the evil regime that threatened it with destruction?
The political and media establishment in Israel is numbed by fear at the very thought of destroying the Hamas terror regime, which was democratically voted into power by a majority of Gazans. Whom would Israel "talk" to if they were eliminated? To whom would we give millions in cash?
Who would take responsibility for the “innocent” population of Gaza? Do we really want to return to the pre-missile days and to control of Gaza?
I know of only very few politicians in Israel who advocate the only realistic solution: take over Gaza and thus stop the terror attacks on Israel. Use all the massive military might and sophistication that we have to destroy the leadership of Hamas and their entire military and supportive infrastructure.
Make clear that U.N. schools, hospitals, and the like that protect terrorists must be evacuated immediately as they will be targeted. Do it by air and special operations; do not send in large ground forces. Make it clear to the Gaza population that anyone acting as a Hamas collaborator will be dealt with in the same way as the Hamas leadership.
Only when it is fairly certain that the Hamas leadership and military are severely weakened send in ground forces to secure the area. Once it is secured, allow civilian life to resume under Israeli direction. Then eliminate all pockets of Hamas support.
Tell the civilian population that Israel will aid them in emigrating — an option that polls repeatedly show well over half the population want. Today those who can do leave Gaza, and even bribe Hamas to make it possible. Help them along their way, they will be very appreciative.
Where will they go? With cash in their pockets — supplied by an Israel that understands that instead of spending money on walls and secure rooms, it is better to spend it on finally solving the problem and not continually hiding from its symptoms — they will go to the front of any line waiting to enter another country in the West or the Gulf oil countries. Many have relatives in these places who are waiting for them.
Those who want to remain will have full human rights as long as they are peaceful. One wrong move, and they are out. Israel does not owe them citizenship. They are free to go wherever they wish.
Bring back the brave, productive Jewish residents to the area and encourage others to join them in making this part of our land great again — and forever Israel.
The alternative? Yet "another round" of putting our wonderful soldiers in harm's way.
Contact Shalom Pollack, veteran licensed tour guide, for upcoming tours at Shalom Pollack Tours: Personalized Tours in Israel. Click here to read more of this writer’s work in The Jerusalem Herald.