Culture

Israel’s ‘defeat’

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Benjamin Netanyahu on CNN.
Benjamin Netanyahu on CNN.

This is part of Marc H. Ellis’s “Exile and the Prophetic” feature for Mondoweiss. To read the entire series visit the archive page.

John Kerry in Israel. Is he preparing to offer US troops to help enforce a ceasefire in Gaza?

I wouldn’t be surprised, though accepting an overt American military presence in or near Israel would be a first. Since Israel is an American military client state they might as well go all the way. It can only help Israel and, at least for the moment, the Palestinian Authority. Finishing off Hamas isn’t Israel’s plan anyway. Extending the PA’s power is.

The world is abuzz with moral indignation and Israel’s own losses continue to increase. But the ratio of Israeli and Palestinian deaths, not to mention those injured, is enormous – and typical. Israeli deaths are well within what Israel’s military expected. Like the civilians of Gaza, these soldiers are considered by Israel to be collateral damage.

Some pundits are calling Israel’s invasion of Gaza a defeat. Even Israel’s international airport is under assault and some airlines are refusing to land there. A blow to Israel’s pride for sure. However, this analysis rests on the assumption that Israel goes to war to win – as in defeat the enemy once and for all. This assumption is false. No Israeli military analyst thinks Israel will win the Gaza war in the traditional sense of that term. Rather Israel goes to war to buy time, to further de-develop Palestinian society and to go about its business elsewhere, say in the West Bank.

As for the ceasefire proposal by Hamas, it’s a ten year humdinger that doesn’t include real independence or even an end to occupation. Israel should accept this proposal as a gift. If Gaza is quiet, imagine what the West Bank will look like in ten years.

So it goes. Of course, the people of Gaza need a ceasefire and a loosening of the noose. They need relief. In the next days expect a move from Iron Death back to the norm, Iron Fist.

The world will gladly oblige Gaza this. Don’t expect much more.

In this time of outrage, it is important to think about what the world powers – including the United Nations – want and can deliver. Their desperate attempt to halt the bloodshed is noble. Yet sometimes the best laid plans are, in the long run, traps of unexpected dimensions.

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“If Gaza is quiet, imagine what the West Bank will look like in ten years.” ME

Israel will be able to record an even greater “Kill ” rate given all those (not killed by Israel) will be Gazans.

The West Bank will be the realization of the Greater Israel zionist dream.

But BDS will kill the steely beast eventually.Then imagine what Gaza will look like.

Israel won’t accept the Hamas conditions. Because Israel wants everything.
And that mentality is losing.
Israel is completely dependent on what the world thinks of it. And that opinion is not what it was.

”Israeli deaths are well within what Israel’s military expected. ” I’m not sure. 3o in two weeks, including 15 or more ‘elite’ soldiers in one night? A tiny fraction of the Palestinian dead, to be sure, and almost all of them soldiers. But I’m guessing this ‘war’ has already dragged on longer than what Bibi had expected, and that the suspension of flights to BG, as well as the fact that the IDF have once… Read more »

Wow, Israel, the US,GB, Canada are all united against the people of Gaza. Every day I am amazed by these brave and resilient people who just want to have their land back. Go Palestine, Go!

MARC ELLIS- “Some pundits are calling Israel’s invasion of Gaza a defeat.” Ali Abunimah and Gilad Atzmon for two. Lordy, lordy, what wishful thinking. Norman Finkelstein has an interesting perspective on this: “Abbas will negotiate an agreement with Egypt whereby the PA will staff Rafah crossing, enabling Abbas to declare that he won an end to the blockade. The quid pro quo, however, is that he will agree to prevent any arms smuggling into Gaza… Read more »