Lessons Learned – Not: The War in Gaza

 After nearly three years, rockets have resumed flying out of Gaza into Israel once more.  It would seem that Hamas has not learned its lesson.  More importantly, it would seem that we and the IDF have not learned the lessons from the 2014 war with Hamas.  Caroline Glick discusses the war, and what lessons we should have gleaned from it.  Here are some excerpts from her 3/2/2017 opinion piece:


“From the outset of the battle between Hamas and Israel, the Obama administration supported Hamas against Israel.  John Kerry demanded that Israel accept an immediate cease-fire based entirely on Hamas’s terms.

“Hamas’s terms were impossible for Israel. They included opening the jihadist regime’s land borders with Israel and Egypt, and providing it with open access to the sea. Hamas demanded to be reconnected to the international banking system in order to enable funds to enter Gaza freely from any spot on the globe. Hamas also demanded that Israel release its terrorists from its prisons.”

“The government and the IDF were shocked by the ferocity of the administration’s hostility. But to his great credit, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu surmounted it.  Had he informed the public, the knowledge that the US was backing Hamas would have caused mass demoralization and panic.  Netanyahu had to fight the diplomatic fight of his life secretly”.   And with the help of Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia he succeeded.

“The war on the ground was first and foremost a product of the nature of Hamas...in the weeks before the war began, the then-coordinator of government activities in the territories told the security cabinet that the humanitarian situation in Gaza was at a crisis point and that hostilities were likely to break out if Israel didn’t allow humanitarian aid into the Strip”.

“There is truth to the IDF’s position. Hamas did in fact go to war against Israel in the summer of 2014 because it was short on supplies. [Sisi] he shut Egypt’s border with Gaza because Gaza was the logistical base of the insurgency against his regime. The closed border cut off Hamas’s supply train of everything from antitank missiles to cigarettes and flour.”

Also, “Hamas had diverted enough concrete to its tunnel project to build 200 kindergartens, two hospitals, 20 clinics and 20 schools. So any discussion of whether or not to allow humanitarian aid into Gaza is not a humanitarian discussion. It is a discussion about whether or not to strengthen Hamas and reinforce its control over the population of Gaza”.

“The government ordered the IDF to destroy as much of Hamas’s missile arsenal as possible and to destroy its offensive tunnels into Israel. When the goals had been achieved to the point where the cost of opposing Obama grew greater than the battle gains, Netanyahu agreed to a cease-fire”.

“Israel won the diplomatic battle because it understood the correlation of its strategic interests with those of the Sunni regimes.   It lost the military battle of attrition because it permitted Hamas to resupply".