Israelis are in shock and despair at the Hamas attack on their land, people and security. The relative ease with which armed terrorists were able to penetrate controlled borders and the obvious lack of intelligence that should have prevented the ferocity of the incursions will be the subject of future, intense debate and will undoubtedly have negative repercussions for the Netanyahu administration. That’s in the weeks or months to come. For now, Israel will attempt to inflict as much damage on Hamas’s ability to remain in power and that necessitates a longer conflict than Israel would have previously contemplated.
Hamas with Iranian support analyzed the short-term advantages which she has miscalculated and that will cost them dearly. Before the attacks Israeli society was divided and conflicted. Anti-government protests were regular and exceptionally well attended, reservists were threatening call up duties and families split politically. Hamas viewed weakness within the Netanyahu administration and decided such weakness could be exploited. They achieved this with devastating consequences which served further to expose their own moral indecency as they committed atrocity after atrocity on unarmed men women and children, the weak, the old, the most vulnerable and disabled.
Anyone who has researched Palestinian terrorism will be aware of similar historical atrocities not only perpetrated on Jews but also on Lebanese Christians, the LGBT community, to Jordanian supporters of the Hashemite monarchy and to their own Palestinian voices of opposition and their orphaned children. Moral indecency, sadism and child cruelty is within the DNA of Hamas and their supporters.
So why do I suggest that Hamas have miscalculated? In less than twenty-four hours the whole of Israeli society united and Hamas is responsible for ending the division. The price of coming together will be emotionally shocking to many but the cost of division would have been eternally disastrous for the overwhelming majority.
The number of Israeli deaths, casualties and hostages is unprecedented and this is Israel’s 9/11. As at the time of writing the condemnation of Hamas and support for Israel from the EU, the USA, India, Ukraine and her global support has been deafening. This in itself is a volte face. More surprising is the total lack of support for the Palestinians from those who previously would have rushed to their defense. The several Arab countries party to the Abraham Accords have maintained a very neutral balance as has Saudi Arabia which is near to being a signatory of the Accords. The attack by Hamas with Iranian influence was designed to prevent the Saudi signing which seems unlikely albeit potentially delayed. Egypt and Jordan too are silent. Zelensky’s support for Israel certainly shores up the pro Ukrainian UN bloc.
Furthermore, the short-term military successes of Hamas have been reversed and Gazans are suffering as are Hamas terrorists who have been forced into surrendering the southern parts of Israel, they controlled on Saturday with the deaths of some 1500 plus Hamas operatives.
The situation is still ongoing and too fluid to calculate conclusions but my estimation is that Israel now has the opportunity to totally defeat for time immemorial the Hamas entity and this they will undoubtedly achieve. Then and only then will Egypt enter Gaza and take full military and political control. This is not only my hope but also my expectation and from that moment Israel and those living in Gaza will attain peace.