Nevertheless, Israel was able to achieve its more limited aims against Hamas in the 2008-2009 campaign for four years. With Hezbollah, the goal has now held for six years. That’s not bad given the reality of contemporary international politics and the Middle Eastern situation, both of which keep Israel from gaining a “total victory.”

Ideally, of course, there is no good reason that the world should ensure the survival of a terrorist, totalitarian, illegal and genocide-oriented regime in the Gaza Strip. Nevertheless, that is the reality. If the idea of Israel going in on the ground into the Gaza Strip provoked so much international horror, imagine the reaction to Israel overthrowing Hamas altogether.

For Israel to overthrow Hamas it would either have to govern the Gaza Strip itself, restarting the whole post- 1967 process and facing daily gun battles there, or turn over the territory to someone else. Since the Palestinian Authority isn’t interested in such an arrangement and is incapable of even making a serious effort to overthrow Hamas, nobody else is going to do so.