Israel marches into Gaza Strip
With Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu deciding to launch and rapidly expand a ground assault into the Gaza Strip, international condemnation of Israel’s response to Hamas rocket attacks is only building. Although Israel is not deaf to the voices of protesters as officials do feel the need to rationalize Israel’s fairly indiscriminate attacks on suspected Hamas targets, it is clear outside pressure has little affect on the Israel government’s decisions. As such, the limited operation supported by the Obama Administration is likely more lip service than reality.
Netanyahu and other Israel leaders understand they cannot simply reengage Hamas every time the militant group opens fire, especially given waning international support for the Israeli government’s heavy-handed responses, their behavior in 2008-09 when they saw shifting support in Washington, and the size of their invading force, thus they likely see the need to root out the Hamas problem once and for all. Where Hamas is throwing everything it has at Israel, Israel is doing the same and the end game will be the annihilation of Hamas.
That said, Israel will still have to make peace for the Palestinian People and how it conducts itself over the next few days to weeks will determine whether or not Israel will face an even greater threat from the Palestinians as well as the rest of the Arab World. Israeli military leaders have said the deployment of ground forces can translate into many different things, including the use of Special Forces, no-go zones, hit-and-run attacks on key installations. If these tactics will prevent the number of Palestinian causalities from increasing, Israel would be wise to use them whenever and wherever possible.
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