Thursday, July 24, 2014

Calls For A Demiitarized Gaza

Some of the 150 Hamas fighters who surrendered in the southern Gaza Strip

White House: Cease-Fire Should Include Demilitarization of Gaza
- Eyder Peralta    

Deputy National Security Adviser Tony Blinken said in an interview that any cease-fire agreement between Israel and Palestinians must include the demilitarization of Gaza.

"There has to be some way forward that does not involve Hamas having the ability to continue to rain down rockets on Israeli civilians," he said. "One of the results, one would hope, of a cease-fire would be some form of demilitarization."

U.S. Should Push to Disarm Hamas - Editorial

The depravity of Hamas' strategy seems lost on much of the outside world...

While Secretary of State John Kerry, the Egyptian government and other would-be brokers are right to seek a cease-fire, they should reject Hamas' agenda.

Instead, any political accord should link opening of the borders and other economic concessions to the return to Gaza of the security forces of the Palestinian Authority and the disarmament of Hamas
(Washington Post)

U.S. Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire

"Any effort to broker a cease-fire agreement that does not eliminate those threats cannot be sustained in the long run and will leave Israel vulnerable to future attacks."    


Isolation for Hamas - John R. Bradley

In the Arab world, an air of indifference reins regarding Israel's military offensive in Gaza. The dramatic rise of the jihadi outfit the Islamic State is one of the key reasons. Aside from Egypt, Saudi Arabia and Jordan are the two countries that matter geopolitically, and both are threatened by jihadi-inspired unrest on the back of the successes of the Islamic State - an outfit that Hamas has reportedly been forging links with.

The Islamist State's goal is not only the destruction of Israel, but also the overthrow of the Saudi and Jordanian monarchies.

Though they loathe to acknowledge the fact publicly, Saudi Arabia and Jordan would quietly welcome the eradication of Salafist-aligned Hamas' military capabilities
(Jewish Chronicle-UK)

The Gaza Tunnel Threat - Anshel Pfeffer

IDF officers have been astonished by the extent of Hamas' tunneling operation.

This intelligence "blind spot" is being explained by the fact that Hamas didn't use its own members to do the digging but families from Rafah in southern Gaza which made their living digging smuggling tunnels to Egypt.   

A Monster of Death Aimed at Israel - Aharon Lapidot

I was watching foreign correspondents reporting from Gaza. With their bullet-proof vests, they stand in the middle of the street against a background of the ruins left as a result of IDF strikes, as women, children, and wounded scurry around them. None of them notice that a key component of the scene is missing.

If, God forbid, any rocket were to fall in a populated area in Israel, the first ones to swamp the scene would be the uniformed rescue forces: police officers, soldiers, firefighters, paramedics. No one in uniform is seen in any of the reports from Gaza. 

Where are the Hamas soldiers and police in Gaza when an Israeli bomb falls? They are hiding underground in the immense tunnel system constructed beneath the city, in Underground Gaza.

In the clearest possible manner we have been faced with a dizzying reality. Hamas has built a monster of death and destruction aimed at us.

The billions of dollars in humanitarian aid, tens of thousands of tons of concrete and construction materials, the electricity and water that Israel has supplied to Gaza for years - have been used to build these tunnels, which are intended to kill as many Israelis as possible
(Israel Hayom)

Video: Secondary Explosions Show Hamas Turned Hospital into Rocket Site     

Hamas turned Wafa Hospital into a command center and a rocket-launching site. Hamas has fired at Israel and at IDF forces from the hospital.

As a result, the IDF repeatedly conveyed warnings to the hospital staff and urged civilians to leave the area, before targeting specific sites and terrorists within the hospital grounds. Numerous secondary explosions can be seen, confirming the storage of munitions at the site.
(Israel Defense Forces)

200 Gazan Terrorists Killed, 150 Taken Prisoner
More than 200 Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists have been killed by the IDF since the start of the ground offensive. 

The IDF took some 150 Hamas terrorist prisoner[s] after they surrendered Wednesday in the southern Gaza cities of Khan Yunis and Rafah. 
(Jerusalem Post)

30,000 Gather to Honor IDF Soldier from L.A., Killed in Gaza
- Bradley Burston

Sgt. Max Steinberg, 24, was from Los Angeles' West San Fernando Valley. After he first visited Israel on a Birthright trip in 2012, he decided to move here and join the IDF. A member of the Golani infantry brigade, he was killed last Saturday night in Gaza.

Only a handful of the some 30,000 mourners had even heard of Max Steinberg prior to his death. During the day preceding the funeral, calls were made on Facebook to attend Steinberg's funeral. "As I look around right now, I am overwhelmed by the impact you had on so many lives," Max's sister Paige said. "It is unbelievable to see how many people are here in your honor."

Desperately Seeking Relevance -Jonathan Spyer

Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood want a bloody war in Gaza, so as to reinsert themselves into popular legitimacy, relevance and diplomatic influence in the Arab world.

Hamas, previously isolated and increasingly irrelevant, is starring in a drama of its own making. Hamas banners are being carried once more by baying crowds in European cities.

Cairo is effectively allied with Israel and against Qatar/ Hamas/MB in this conflict. The obvious explanation for this is Cairo's ongoing war against the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood. The "Arab street" has failed to rally to the Qatar/Hamas banner. There are larger demonstrations in European cities for Hamas than in any Arab capital.

The Arab world is engulfed by issues of far greater historic magnitude than the question of Gaza. And in any case, from the regional perspective this conflict appears as an Israel vs Hamas war, not an all out clash between Israelis and Palestinians.

[T]he war derives from the desire of Hamas, the Muslim Brotherhood and Qatar to return to relevance and centrality in the region, and from the persistent misreading of the nature of Israel and the true balance of forces between the Jewish state and its enemies, by the Islamist rulers of Gaza.
[Jerusalem Post & Middle East Forum]


LHwrites said...

A demilitarization of Gaza would be excellent and a wonderful demand. I don't see how it would ever be possible because I don't see the US or Europe forcing the issue by cutting off all aid to the Palestinians until it happens. But it would be a worthy thing to push for, and clearly the aid hasn't been used appropriately anyway.

Bruce said...

I was hoping you were still reading this blog. Demilitarization of Gaza while practically problematic, is nonetheless a wonderful demand for the international community to make. It puts Israel's current incursion in a wonderful framework, and lays out a practical endpoint.

LHwrites said...

Sorry, I haven't been on the internet much. Feverishly spent the last two months finishing the first draft of a new novel. Trying to catch up and of course, MidEast Soundbites was one of my first destinations!!

Bruce said...

If you write a novel set in the MidEast, I'll feature it on this very blog!