A couple of days ago Bibi conducted a press conference, together with the Defense Minister, Bugi Ya'alon, and the Chief of Staff, Benny Ganz. I watched it live on the net. When it was over I mentioned to my wife that nothing of any real substance was said, or added to what we all know. Why did they spend their precious time repeating themselves.
My answer to my own question was: Bibi wasn't speaking to us; he was speaking to the United States. He again declared that any end to the fighting was conditional on finishing off the remaining terror tunnels, and the disarming of Gaza.
Last night, it seems that I was proven right. Oren Nahari, of Channel One TV news, broadcast quotes from a transcript of a phone conversation between Obama and Netanyahu last Sunday. The translation of the text was provided by 'The Times of Israel.'
Barack Obama: "I demand that Israel agrees to an immediate, unilateral ceasefire and halt all offensive activities, in particular airstrikes."
Benjamin Netanyahu: "And what will Israel receive in exchange for a ceasefire?"
BO: "I believe that Hamas will cease its rocket fire — silence will be met with silence."
BN: "Hamas broke all five previous ceasefires. It’s a terrorist organization dedicated to the destruction of Israel."
BO: "I repeat and expect Israel to stop all its military activities unilaterally. The pictures of destruction in Gaza distance the world from Israel’s position."
BN: "Kerry’s proposal was completely unrealistic and gives Hamas military and diplomatic advantages."
BO: "Within a week of the end of Israel’s military activities, Qatar and Turkey will begin negotiations with Hamas based on the 2012 understandings, including Israel’s commitment to removing the siege and restrictions on Gaza."
BN: "Qatar and Turkey are the biggest supporters of Hamas. It’s impossible to rely on them to be fair mediators."
BO: "I trust Qatar and Turkey. Israel is not in the position that it can choose its mediators."
BN: "I protest because Hamas can continue to launch rockets and use tunnels for terror attacks –"
BO: (interrupting Netanyahu) "The ball’s in Israel’s court, and it must end all its military activities."
Of course, inevitably and not surprisingly, both sides, the White House and the Prime Minister's office immediately denied the contents of the conversation. I don't believe either of them.
Channel One News would not have broadcast such a document without first confirming its authenticity. The correspondent described the conversation as "very tense, very unfriendly, harsh, Obama spoke condescendingly and severely, he was not open to hear any Israeli response, and his manner towards the Prime Miinister was hostile." This,as related to Nahari by a senior American government source, who leaked the transcript to him. (If you understand Hebrew, you can hear this here. There are already over 46,000 views on this Youtube video, which aired last night.)
Let's not forget the illustrious Secretary of State, John Kerry. A Kol Yisrael correspondent, Gideon Kuds, broadcasting from France, reported on the six o'clock news that Kerry, during a meeting on Saturday in France, said that 'Netanyahu is relentless, doesn't want to understand anything and may hurt American efforts dealing with the Iranian nuclear threat and the battles between the Sunnis and Shiites in Iraq."
These words speak for themselves.
There are several different ways to approach the continuation of the Gaza War. One way, is that of past President Shimon Peres, who today announced that 'the war has exhausted itself. Now we must seek a diplomatic solution, give back Gaza to Abu Mazen, and conclude the operation.'
Another approach is that of veteran media correspondent, Haim Hecht, who said, "…Now the IDF must scatter notes in all of Gaza, Sagaiya, Rafiach, Azza hospital, and thus to say: From tonight, the rules of the game are changing. What was, is over. Why? Because now, only now, the Jews are going crazy. From eight o'clock tonight, all residents of Gaza, listen up. Every place from which a rocket is launched, every place, be it a house, school, hospital, a UNRWA camp, every such place will be bombed and erased. From tonight, there won't be any consideration if that bomb will hit women, children, the elderly, or terrorists.
You hear? You have eight hours, from now, now, the clock is starting to wind down. For you to get up and leave from every place where there are rocket launchers. Eight hours. Whoever does not pay attention to this warning, takes his life in his hands… I said, and I repeated and I said, there isn't any possibility to be victorious over a psychopathic enemy, whose total goal is the killing of its own women and children, and handicapped, and elderly, as many as possible.
We tried. G-d and man are witness that we tried to win in our own language. With our gorgeous values, with our Jewish principles and ethics, shmethics, and our pinpoint war.
Now, when the blood of our children is being spilled in vain, this is the end of the pinpoint operations; now we are forced to move to trauma and pathology." (See entire commentary here).
By the way, Hecht's political ideologies are mixed. In a 2012 interview he said "I would give back Hebron in 30 seconds. Ramat HaGolan, never."
I've already written this, but will run the risk of redundancy.
1) Capitulation and land acquiescence, i.e., abandonment and expulsion, such as Gush Katif and Homesh, are now proven failures. How many rockets and missiles have been fired the land we gave them ? Three thousand, over the past few weeks. Fifteen thousand over the past nine years. Over 50 soldiers have been lost in the past two weeks, fighting terrorists whose goal is the deletion of Israel from the world map, on land that we 'gave them.' Those men should all be alive, and would be, if Gush Katif was still part of Israel.
2) The idea, if anyone really ever took it seriously, of a 'palestinian state' is dead. Totally off the table. Missiles launched from Ramallah, Tul-Karem and Kalkillya could hit anywhere in Israel, just as those shot from Gaza have caused air-raid sirens to blast in Hadera. It's a no-brainer.
3) The answer, the only answer, is continued growth, building new communities, industrial areas, national parks, throughout Judea and Samaria. We must fill up our beautiful land with more and more people, more and more places. Not staking a claim, because you don't need to claim what already rightfully belongs to you. But the best way to prove to ourselves, and to the rest of the world that this is our land, is by utilizing it, to its fullest. When we have another million Jews living throughout Judea and Samaria, no one will be able to raise any questions.
This is the answer to those seeking our annihilation, this is the preeminent way to remember and express our gratitude to all those who have made the supreme sacrifice, that their lives should not have been lost in vain. This is true, eternal victory.