Netanyahu: Get ready for a long campaign in Gaza

posted at 9:21 am on July 29, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Yesterday it appeared that the fighting in Gaza had begun to dwindle down, as Israel focused on the tunnels and Hamas’ rockets slowed down. Late in the day, though, Hamas began shooting medium- and long-range missiles that went as far as Haifa and sent another infiltration squad through the tunnels into southern Israel, and the IDF shifted into high gear:

The Israeli military said five Israeli soldiers were killed in a battle Monday evening when militants from Gaza infiltrated into southern Israel via a tunnel from Gaza. A gunfight broke out, leaving at least one militant dead. The deaths of the five soldiers brought the total number of Israeli troops killed in the three-week-old conflict to 53, the largest toll since Israel’s 2006 war with Lebanon. Hamas mortar and rocket attacks from Gaza have also killed two Israeli civilians and a Thai worker.

Multiple rocket barrages from Gaza overnight sent people scurrying to shelters in Tel Aviv, Israel’s commercial capital, in the dead of night. …

Israeli airstrikes struck a fuel tank off Gaza’s only electricity plant early Tuesday, forcing it to shut down, according to Palestinian officials. The attack threatens to cut off power to the more than 1.8 million residents of Gaza, who were getting electricity only a few hours a day.

Israeli airstrikes also struck the home of one of the top leaders of Hamas, the Islamist militant group that runs Gaza, as well as Hamas’s al-Aqsa TV broadcast center, a finance building and the homes of local mayors. Along the coast of the tiny seaside enclave, Israel struck at least four times, hitting the sea port and shaking hotels where scores of international journalists are staying.

CNN reported on the aftermath of the overnight fighting, although they mostly focused on the Israeli actions, skipping entirely what set off this latest exchange:

Benjamin Netanyahu warned Israelis to prepare themselves for a long fight against Hamas in Gaza:

Signaling an escalation of Israel’s Gaza operation, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told Israelis Monday to be ready for a “prolonged” war, and the military warned Palestinians in three large neighborhoods to leave their homes and head immediately for Gaza City. …

Israel says its troops will not leave Gaza until they have demolished scores of Hamas military tunnels under the Gaza-Israel border that militants use to infiltrate Israel and smuggle weapons. Hamas says it will not cease fire until it receives international guarantees Gaza’s 7-year-old border blockade by Egypt and Israel will be lifted.

Netanyahu defended the Gaza air and ground offensive, saying in a televised speech Monday that “there is no war more just than this.”

The US and Israel traded barbs yesterday over John Kerry’s attempts to negotiate with Hamas for a truce. Israeli officials made it known that they felt Kerry had betrayed them, while the State Department accused the unnamed Israeli officials of a “misinformation campaign.”  “It’s simply not the way partners and allies treat each other,” Jen Psaki complained in a statement that either or both countries might have said. As noted in the CNN report above, by last night Kerry was backing away from that fight, acknowledging that “miscommunications” had occurred in his attempts to negotiate a cease fire.

This morning, Kerry might find himself out of the loop again. The leadership of Fatah claims to have gotten Hamas and Islamic Jihad to agree to a 72-hour cease-fire proposal, and and may enact it unilaterally:

PLO official Yasser Abd Rabbo on Tuesday said all Palestinian factions were prepared to announce on a unilateral 72-hour cease-fire in fighting between Israeli and terrorists in the Gaza Strip.

According to Rabbo, the announcement was reportedly made with the consent of Hamas.

Speaking at a press conference in Ramallah, Rabbo said the initiative for a three-day halt in fighting was based on a proposal by the UN’s special envoy to the Middle East, Robert Serry.

Earlier on Tuesday, Al-Arabia reported that a delegation comprised of various Palestinian factions reportedly arrived Tuesday in Cairo for talks on an Egyptian cease-fire initiative proposed two weeks ago to quell the fighting between Hamas and Israel.

The delegation – including representatives from the Palestinian Authority, Hamas and the Islamic Jihad – was slated to meet with Egyptian officials to discuss the draft truce, which Hamas and Islamic Jihad previous rejected and Israel accepted.

That would be a big step backwards for Hamas, if true. The Egyptian proposal was a cease-fire in place with no concessions at all on Hamas’ demands, and as late as yesterday the Egyptians refused to change the terms of their proposal. The failure of the infiltration attempt might have convinced Hamas that they had nothing left in the tank, or it may be that the escalation of IDF attacks afterward surprised them. Hamas has acted as though they have been expecting international pressure to force Israel to end its responses to their attacks, but so far Israel has decided to ignore international opinion — and the world has bigger fish to fry in Syria, Iraq, and Ukraine anyway.

Will Israel abide by a unilateral cease-fire? Probably, as long as they can continue to root out the tunnels going into southern Israel. The tunnel system has proven to be a major threat to security in southern Israel, and Netanyahu won’t allow them to remain — and Israelis wouldn’t let him back away from that objective even if he was inclined to do so, which he’s not. If Hamas fights to keep its tunnels, this cease-fire proposal will be about as effective as any other truce attempt over the last few weeks. Perhaps everyone should prepare themselves for a long fight.

If anyone wonders why Netanyahu is so adamant about the tunnels, Jake Tapper provides an in-depth look at their use — and their construction. Remember when Gazans complained that Israel was blocking shipments of concrete they needed to build homes, schools, and hospitals? Take a look at the interior of these tunnels, built in part by child labor:


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Europe needs to prepare.

abobo on July 29, 2014 at 9:29 AM

It makes no sense to kill half of your roaches.

Akzed on July 29, 2014 at 9:30 AM

The WH declared: “We’re trying to broker a deal which offers Israel a cease-fire as long as they agree to be wiped off the map, and they’re being hesitant, this is not how friends behave.”

Bishop on July 29, 2014 at 9:32 AM

https://twitter.com/AP

The Associated Press @AP · 53s

MORE: A spokesman brushed aside the offer, saying until Israel hears from Hamas directly, ‘it’s not serious.’ http://apne.ws/UzmyJn

Replied to 0 times

The Associated Press @AP · 1m

BREAKING: Senior Palestinian official offers 24 hour truce in Gaza, says he’s also speaking for Hamas.

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 9:33 AM

Ka-Blewy:

The Associated Press @AP · 2h

VIDEO: Israeli aircraft, tanks and navy gunboats target symbols of Hamas control in Gaza City: http://apne.ws/UyZZEB
=================================================

Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LmfuZOk8_EY

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 6:09 AM

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 9:34 AM

The Associated Press @AP · 19s

VIDEO: Spokesman at Gaza’s electricity company says Israeli tank shells hit fuel tank at power plant: http://apne.ws/1k5h19g

Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RYjYAJ3ja7M

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 7:07 AM

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 9:35 AM

Le Flattened:

Jon Williams @WilliamsJon · 49s

WATCH: In less than hour, entire neighborhood of #Gaza flattened by #Israel. Time-lapse shows scale of destruction. http://youtu.be/fdoYZ1-9XsM

اسرائيل تدمر حي خلال ساعه في غزة

Israel destroys neighborhood within an hour in Gaza

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fdoYZ1-9XsM&feature=youtu.be

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 7:11 AM

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 9:36 AM

Can someone explain to me why IDF isn’t using thermobaric weapons inside the tunnels? Seems those would do the trick quite nicely…

Wanderlust on July 29, 2014 at 9:37 AM

NY Dem Blasts Obama Regime: “Out Of Control”, “Amateur Hour In America”

New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Borough Park) joined Neil Cavuto on Your World to discuss the Obama administration’s response to the conflict in Israel.

Hikind criticized Obama, calling his administration “out of control” and their response that of “amateur hour in America”.

“The United States says ‘Israel, you may defend yourself,’ then ties Israel’s hands” he said.

The Brooklyn Jewish leader also compared Israel’s response to rocket and tunnel-based attacks from Hamas to what America would do, should similar danger arise in the New York/New Jersey area.

He also said that he did not care whether he lost popularity among his Democratic colleagues for speaking out against the administration.

“My Democratic friends know the truth,” he said.

Resist We Much on July 29, 2014 at 9:38 AM

https://twitter.com/NYTBen

Retweeted by Ben Hubbard
Gregg Carlstrom @glcarlstrom · 17m

So proposed 24hr truce after Israel rejected 24hr truce requested by Hamas after Hamas rejected earlier 24hr truce. And that’s just in 24hrs

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 9:40 AM

Go get’em Bibi

cmsinaz on July 29, 2014 at 9:42 AM

Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LmfuZOk8_EY

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 9:34 AM

If I’m not mistaken, that’s the media center building.

Shy Guy on July 29, 2014 at 9:48 AM

Unconditional surrender…until then no cease fire.

jaywemm on July 29, 2014 at 9:48 AM

Go get’em Bibi

cmsinaz on July 29, 2014 at 9:42 AM

But he’s not. All of Gaza should have been flattened from day 1.

Shy Guy on July 29, 2014 at 9:49 AM

Will Israel abide by a unilateral cease-fire? Probably…

If so then it will be truly unilateral because the muslims surely will not.

Fenris on July 29, 2014 at 9:49 AM

“It’s simply not the way partners and allies treat each other,” Jen Psaki complained

Of course not Jen, you stupid spokeswhore. This is much more in keeping with how Obama treats Israel:

But Mr Obama was less inclined to be so conciliatory. He immediately presented Mr Netanyahu with a list of 13 demands designed both to the end the feud with his administration and to build Palestinian confidence ahead of the resumption of peace talks. Key among those demands was a previously-made call to halt all new settlement construction in east Jerusalem.

When the Israeli prime minister stalled, Mr Obama rose from his seat declaring: “I’m going to the residential wing to have dinner with Michelle and the girls.”

As he left, Mr Netanyahu was told to consider the error of his ways. “I’m still around,” Mr Obama is quoted by Israel’s Yediot Ahronot newspaper as having said. “Let me know if there is anything new.”

Happy Nomad on July 29, 2014 at 9:50 AM

Too bad the Samson Option is considered to be a last resort. I’d like to teach Hamas the meaning of “vitrification”, by turning the entire Gaza Strip into glass.

Wanderlust on July 29, 2014 at 9:50 AM

God holds Israel in the palms of His almighty hands. If God be for us who can be against us. Wake up America, repent.

crosshugger on July 29, 2014 at 9:50 AM

Can someone explain to me why IDF isn’t using thermobaric weapons inside the tunnels? Seems those would do the trick quite nicely…

Wanderlust on July 29, 2014 at 9:37 AM

One of the explosions shown on the CNN footage looked a lot like a TB munition going off, actually. Such a blast would probably have blown out the other end of the tunnel and demolished whatever was sitting over it.

Of course, if the IDF admitted using TB munitions, the “humanitarian” left would have a field day at the Hague.

clear ether

eon

eon on July 29, 2014 at 9:51 AM

Exactly what is the point of a cease fire???…

PatriotRider on July 29, 2014 at 9:51 AM

Check out the distances, of the tunnels:

https://twitter.com/IDFSpokesperson

IDF @IDFSpokesperson · 3h

Last night, terrorists infiltrated Israel through a tunnel in order to attack civilians in the community of Nahal Oz.

https://twitter.com/IDFSpokesperson/status/494005708854018051/photo/1

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 9:52 AM

Happy Nomad on July 29, 2014 at 9:50 AM

Please tell me that Bibi responded to the “Let me know if there is anything new” with the Hebrew equivalent of Go. Phuck. Yourself...?

Wanderlust on July 29, 2014 at 9:52 AM

Too bad the Samson Option is considered to be a last resort. I’d like to teach Hamas the meaning of “vitrification”, by turning the entire Gaza Strip into glass.

Wanderlust on July 29, 2014 at 9:50 AM

I’m hoping for the world’s largest self-illuminated parking lot.

Happy Nomad on July 29, 2014 at 9:53 AM

The US and Israel traded barbs yesterday over John Kerry’s attempts to negotiate with Hamas for a truce. Israeli officials made it known that they felt Kerry had betrayed them, while the State Department accused the unnamed Israeli officials of a “misinformation campaign.” “It’s simply not the way partners and allies treat each other,” Jen Psaki complained in a statement that either or both countries might have said.

Israel should be the one saying this, not the US. It’s pretty clear that Kerry’s Obama’s proposal was meant to help Hamas and harm Israel.

As noted in the CNN report above, by last night Kerry was backing away from that fight, acknowledging that “miscommunications” had occurred in his attempts to negotiate a cease fire.

And after Psaki called them liars, Kerry comes out and sort-of admits the truth. Great job, Obama administration.

Hamas has acted as though they have been expecting international pressure to force Israel to end its responses to their attacks, but so far Israel has decided to ignore international opinion — and the world has bigger fish to fry in Syria, Iraq, and Ukraine anyway.

Part of Obama’s problem is he’s now so weak and impotent on the world stage that Israel is more or less free to ignore him. His open hostility to Israel has also severely limited his options in dealing with them, since Israel (rightly) assumes that if they cooperate with Obama they will just be screwed anyway.

Doomberg on July 29, 2014 at 9:53 AM

Israel and Egypt should tell Fatah to expel Hamas back to Qatar.

albill on July 29, 2014 at 9:54 AM

One of the explosions shown on the CNN footage looked a lot like a TB munition going off, actually. Such a blast would probably have blown out the other end of the tunnel and demolished whatever was sitting over it.

Of course, if the IDF admitted using TB munitions, the “humanitarian” left would have a field day at the Hague.

clear ether

eon

eon on July 29, 2014 at 9:51 AM

Ok good; as the “[s]uch a blast would probably have blown out the other end of the tunnel and demolished whatever was sitting over it” was exactly what I was hoping to see as lagniappe to a very efficient way to clear tunnels.

Too bad we don’t have the M-29 in our arsenal anymore; it would have been very efficient for blowing the holy hell out of those tunnels.

Wanderlust on July 29, 2014 at 9:56 AM

Israeli airstrikes also struck the home of one of the top leaders of Hamas, the Islamist militant group that runs Gaza

At this point, why are any houses of Hamas leaders not already destroyed?

Aplombed on July 29, 2014 at 9:57 AM

How do you offer peace, have any chance of peace, with people who swear they will destroy you, state that you should not exist…you don’t.

So you either go on living and let them pick you off one at a time, or…destroy them first.

I like the Rivers analogy, how would New York feel if New Jersey begin lobbing bombs into NYC?

right2bright on July 29, 2014 at 9:57 AM

Israel, please just remove everyone from Gaza – *everyone* – let them be refugees to Jordan or Egypt or someone else (hey, libs can’t complain – they *love* the whole idea of noble refugees, right?).

Just get this over already. You know anything that results in ‘cease-fire’, or ‘truce’ is simply bullshit. Unfortunately, Israel – if you accept anything less than complete recapture of Gaza and removal of all of it’s residents, there will be more bloodshed in the future, and the blood of those future lost Israeli civilians/soldiers will be *because* you failed to finish this *now*.

Do it.

Midas on July 29, 2014 at 9:57 AM

Israel says its troops will not leave Gaza until they have demolished scores of Hamas military tunnels under the Gaza-Israel border that militants use to infiltrate Israel and smuggle weapons. Hamas says it will not cease fire until it receives international guarantees Gaza’s 7-year-old border blockade by Egypt and Israel will be l

The tunnels under the Gaza-Israel border are not used to smuggle weapons.

The arms smuggling tunnels cross from Egypt into Gaza.

They had an easy time with Morsi in power.

Heck of a job, Barry.

Ben Hur on July 29, 2014 at 9:58 AM

Exactly what is the point of a cease fire???…

PatriotRider on July 29, 2014 at 9:51 AM

For the Arabs, it’s a hudna: a strategic pause that allows them to regroup in the face of a superior foe. That’s why they ask for a cease fire that they always end up violating. A superior force never asks for a cease fire, it just gets the job done and then moves on.

Wanderlust on July 29, 2014 at 9:58 AM

Yesterday it appeared that the fighting in Gaza

Ed loves the Left’s memes.

What about the ‘fighting’ in Israel?

faraway on July 29, 2014 at 10:00 AM

I like the Rivers analogy, how would New York feel if New Jersey begin lobbing bombs into NYC?

right2bright on July 29, 2014 at 9:57 AM

I don’t know about those living in the city but I personally have no problem with this scenario. Especially if a round or two were to find its way to the UN headquarters.

Happy Nomad on July 29, 2014 at 10:02 AM

It is pretty clear, from both their charter and the infrastructure being uncovered, the Palestinians are dedicated to the destruction of Israel.

Now- Palestinians are not happy with the total war they’ve pursued because they are…losing?

If you dedicate yourself to death- it should not be a surprised when you find it enveloping everything around you.

May Israel destroy every last threat to their existence. Don’t let anything stop you until the task is done. For now.

Marcus Traianus on July 29, 2014 at 10:03 AM

If anyone wonders why Netanyahu is so adamant about the tunnels, Jake Tapper provides an in-depth look at their use — and their construction. Remember when Gazans complained that Israel was blocking shipments of concrete they needed to build homes, schools, and hospitals? Take a look at the interior of these tunnels, built in part by child labor:
======================================

Yes, I do wonder,…what if they went farther out into Israel
and opened a larger cavern, and packed it full of ka-blewy materials!!

From WW1:

One of Our Mines is Missing!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VxG12ZYm3Q8

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 10:04 AM

Speaking of Ka-Blwey Tunnelling:

Islamic Front/FSA terrorists blow up Carlton Hotel

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhIUpWNzunA

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 10:05 AM

Demolish the whole stinking Gaza strip.

No building left standing, no electricity, no port facilities, and demolish all the tunnels.

Spread pig entrail and blood everwhere so it will be against the koran to build anything there ever again.

Bury any dead muslims in a pit with pig guts so they can’t get their virgins.

Screw all these 7th century retarded fanatics.

Bibi don’t listen to Obama and that idiot Kerry. Just do what you have to to finally finish these guys off.

txdoc on July 29, 2014 at 10:10 AM

Ukraine, Russia political crisis
LIVE
Live video: House holds hearing on flight MH17 crash, Ukraine – @NBCNews
see original on nbcnews.com

http://www.nbcnews.com/watch/live-video/watch-live-house-holds-hearing-on-flight-mh17-crash-ukraine-220371523783

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 10:24 AM

The US and Israel traded barbs yesterday over John Kerry’s attempts to negotiate with Hamas for a truce. a truce for Hamas

ReWrite™ engaged for accuracy

Dolce Far Niente on July 29, 2014 at 10:33 AM

Israel needs to do a Dresden and leave Gaza in ashes.If they don’t have the bombers put the task up for bids.Some country will do it for them if the price is right.Where is Milo Minderbinder when you need him?

docflash on July 29, 2014 at 10:37 AM

https://twitter.com/i24news_EN

i24news_EN @i24news_EN · 1m

#France hands over suspected Jewish Museum gunman to #Belgium ►►http://i24ne.ws/zHJik

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 10:41 AM

First you gotta find the tunnels.

Then you gotta put stuff in there to make sure that no one wants to be in there before you investigate them.

Then you gotta find the tunnels under the tunnels.

Once you’ve gotten down to new construction that has been stopped, then you start pouring in the concrete. Lots of concrete.

Blowing them up isn’t a good solution as they can be dug out again.

A large block of solid concrete is another matter entirely and if you were smart and placed some geophones down before you left, then you can start hearing new digging around the concrete. Over time Gaza would become walled off above and below ground, and jackhammers make a heckuva racket and you don’t want to be chipping away at concrete by hand underground…especially when you don’t know what the people doing the pouring put into it.

Not that I’m offering that as a solution, mind you. Heaven forbid!

ajacksonian on July 29, 2014 at 10:43 AM

First Bull Run without the bull.

This one is for the long haul, but I guess Netanyahu figures he has nothing to lose by going full Marching Through Georgia on them.

formwiz on July 29, 2014 at 10:44 AM

https://twitter.com/AP

The Associated Press @AP · 1m

Many U.S. lawmakers strongly back Israel in Gaza war (revises wording in this @AP tweet: http://apne.ws/Uzxs1v ): http://apne.ws/1uDxciL

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 10:44 AM

https://twitter.com/APDiploWriter

Matt Lee @APDiploWriter · 13s

When “sincerely yours” is not sincere. “#Turkey PM Erdogan returning Jewish American award” http://m.apnews.com/ap/db_268743/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=Gy5vfJVQ

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 10:45 AM

Not that I’m offering that as a solution, mind you. Heaven forbid!

ajacksonian on July 29, 2014 at 10:43 AM

Just daydreaming……….Random thoughts………..

I like it!

VegasRick on July 29, 2014 at 10:48 AM

https://twitter.com/mozgovaya

Israeli-Palestinian conflict
4m
Rep. Ed Royce, R-Calif.: ‘We are pushing resolution this week to condemn the use of human shields by Hamas’ – @mozgovaya

Natasha Mozgovaya @mozgovaya · 15s

.@RepEdRoyce: #UNHR Council again passed 1sided resolution that holds #Israel to a different standards than the rest of the world.

Replied to 0 times

Natasha Mozgovaya @mozgovaya · 56s

.@RepEdRoyce: rockets in @UNRWA schools – raises serious question of oversight by the UN.

Replied to 0 times

Natasha Mozgovaya @mozgovaya · 2m

.@RepEdRoyce: “it was a blunder 4 @johnkerry not 2 work off #Egyptian #ceasefire plan – it undercut #Egyptians, #Israel.” #Gaza

Replied to 0 times

Natasha Mozgovaya @mozgovaya · 4m

.@RepEdRoyce: “vexing that underground system built by #Hamas serves 2 hide their spokesman etc while they encourage ppl 2 go 2 rooftops”

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 10:50 AM

IDF @IDFSpokesperson · 40s

Hamas sermon in Gaza on July 25: “Our doctrine in fighting you [the Jews] is that we will totally exterminate you.” http://youtu.be/R7WAoczRV_k

Hamas Sermon from the Gaza Strip: Our Doctrine Entails Exterminating the Jews

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R7WAoczRV_k&feature=youtu.be

canopfor on July 29, 2014 at 11:06 AM

Exactly what is the point of a cease fire???…

PatriotRider on July 29, 2014 at 9:51 AM

To Give Hamas a chance to re-load and re-build before attacking civilians. Again

Hucklebuck on July 29, 2014 at 12:05 PM

Where is Milo Minderbinder when you need him?

Will strafing be in the contract?

Hucklebuck on July 29, 2014 at 12:09 PM

it is a grim business, but Israel must finish the job. If only Kerry and Obama will stop providing illegal blocks for Hamas. Notice Egypt is not protesting much. They want Hamas gone as well as. Somebody throw a flag.

warmairfan on July 29, 2014 at 12:28 PM

But he’s not. All of Gaza should have been flattened from day 1.

Shy Guy on July 29, 2014 at 9:49 AM

I understand the sentiment – but he seems to be making a good start on it.

Zomcon JEM on July 29, 2014 at 12:39 PM

And…this

Schadenfreude on July 29, 2014 at 12:50 PM

Bad link…try again

Schadenfreude on July 29, 2014 at 12:50 PM

classy

corona79 on July 29, 2014 at 1:41 PM

so, what happened to the “Hamas is desperate because its running out of rockets” line, Ed?

corona79 on July 29, 2014 at 1:44 PM

All we are saying…
Is give war a chance

All we are saying…
Is give war a chance

All we are saying…
Is give war a chance

307wolverine on July 29, 2014 at 5:38 PM