123 Comments

Well said! It’s the only avenue to reach.a

long term solution. Any other “solution” will

necessarily be a straight path to more war.

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Gaza must NOT be internationalized. They already were, and what Jews got is a post Holocaust Holocaust. The World looked the other way. After WW2, USA occupied Germany, though there was a post-Nazi rebellion against the Allies. Root out ALL Hamas' agents and surrogates of a high order. Jews must be able to live in Gaza, as they do in the West Bank. Israel gets its settlements back. No to PA control.

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And Greta Thunberg should be moved to Gaza as well...

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I have a better idea.

Gaza should be reduced to the status of Carthage.

People in the year 3023 can whine about it and read histories about a "noble" struggle of people who fought against terrible odds and ultimately lost their territory but gained their "honor"... or whatever.

But either way, Gaza should NOT be the problem of the United States or the "international community" especially since no such community exists.

Gaza can be flattened and the United Nations can be moved to the site. Let those assholes figure out what to do with the place...

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What a lovely dream...

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While the avoidance of unnecessary civilian casualties may be a strong consideration, no country, having engaged itself in mortal conflict with another, will hold itself to ‘proportionality’, in the sense of ‘one of yours for one of ours’. The means of a country to the ends of war will be the defeat of the enemy’s will and ability to carry on the fight by the application of overwhelming force at the least cost in terms of its own personnel and materials, and the least exposure of its own civilian population: to maximize its advantage, and the strategic ends of war a fundamentally disproportionate outcome. War by definition entails an abridgement of the moral balance and hierarchy that define peace: the operational abeyance of moral absolutes where they conflict with the perceived demands of existential necessity; which is not to absolve combatants from the responsibility for the protection of innocents and the avoidance of causing unnecessary suffering or for acts of retribution beyond the legitimate ends of war. However, war will, even under the guidance of best practices, remain, as Sherman succinctly described it, “hell”.

For those on the ground, for Israelis and Palestinians, the current conflict is very much a war, rather than, as the international community would prefer to have it, yet another disruptive flareup in a long series to be ameliorated by moral suasion, the status quo ante to be restored while cooler heads continue the ongoing search for the holy grail of a just and sustainable peace. As Russell Walter Mead commented, the ‘peace process’ has gone on for longer than the Thirty Years War. . Those on the ground, those within the circle of the conflict, however, may see the struggle in terms of mutually exclusive existentialities. Others may afford the perspective of one as witness to a spectator sport, keeping score in terms of moral equivalencies. All acts are subject to moral judgement, and crimes are crimes irrespective of justifiable ends, yet ultimately events regarding perceived national interest, while they may be strongly flavored by moral considerations, are shaped in large part by perceptions of necessity.

Israeli estimates claim 30% of those killed to be belligerents, those of an enemy employing a strategy of shielding within civilian populations in a densely urban theatre. While Israel should be pressured to do everything reasonably possible to spare civilians, the U.S. should take pains not to be drawn into the role of giving support to Hamas, by way of irresolute support in response to political pressures from the progressive left or popular outcry in the international swell of pro Hamas propaganda, but to be bold enough to acknowledge the nature of war and to resist popular pressure to stay the gun hand of an ally engaged in mortal combat with a common enemy.

There is no moral equivalency between the intentional savagery of October 7th and the horrific disaster to Palestinian noncombatants resulting from Israel’s reaction to being attacked and its realization that the continued existence of Hamas constitutes an intolerable threat, given that entities history and the proximate illustration of its will and capacity in pursuit of its plain and oft stated policy of continued violence toward the end of Israel’s elimination and the death of Jews The act of Hamas was a deliberate assault on civilians, on the Jewish people qua Jews, as well as in their capacity as citizens of Israel, savage by intent to generate the maximum reaction of outrage whereby to burnish its credentials as the face of the resistance, defender of the faith, the righteous arm of God. By contrast Israel’s launch of an all-out war was directed against Hamas, not against the Palestinian population, though for one on the ground in Gaza that distinction may seem too fine a point. But especially in urban warfare, and where the enemy shields itself within the densest and most sensitive domestic concentrations, and where the suffering of its own people can be used to maximum propaganda advantage, civilian casualties will be an inevitable byproduct of war. Given the nature of the enemy and the actualities of the theatre, and if Israeli estimates of a 2:1 ratio of civilian deaths to those of enemy combatants is taken as approximately accurate, the number of dead may not seem exceptional as compared to historical and contemporary examples of urban conflict. The death toll and the general suffering and destruction is, despite pressure from the U.S. and the international community and Israeli efforts to ameliorate collateral damage, likely to remain high for the duration of the war.

Of the current conflict, and the suffering produced, proportionality cannot be measured in numbers alone where existential questions are concerned, that of civilization versus barbarity, or, for Israel, its security and claim to legitimacy. One may argue that to launch an all-out war in response to a limited incursion, however horrific that incursion, is of itself disproportionate, an overreaction that may well, in this case, have derailed the flowering of the normalization of relations with countries within the Arab block, may embroil the region in a wider conflict, further Israel’s pariah status within the U.N. General Assembly, weaken U.S. public and Congressional support, and inure to the advantage of its enemies, especially to that of Iran, and in general work to the strategic detriment of Israel. The dilemma presented to Israel policy makers presents these risks and consequences, both real and hypothetical, against the unignorable outrage of the incursion, which ripped away any pretense of a manageable situation in which, between using Hamas as a foil against the P.L.O. while expanding settlements so as to reduce the viability of a standalone Palestinian state, any meaningful Palestinian political consensus, such that might lead to serious negotiations toward a two state solution, could, with an occasional ‘mowing of the grass’ be put off indefinitely. Hamas’s incursion of October 7th presented such a stark proclamation of intent, demonstration of destructive capability, and expression of pure evil, providing such a shock to the Israeli consciousness as to make very difficult or to preclude a reaction that might be described as a measured or ‘proportional’ response.

Calls for a cease fire in order to relieve civilian suffering and calls for the prioritization of recovery of the hostages would seem of laudable intent. Israel has a responsibility of discrimination between military and civilian targets and to minimize collateral damage. The thin reed of public support may not long survive the nightly news, which, as with the war in Vietnam, brings the human cost of war into sharp and memorable focus. Nonetheless, any cessation of hostilities would benefit Hamas, giving a wounded adversary time to regroup while the deluge of anti-Israeli propaganda would continue, if only in the form of re-runs, a BBC parade of greatest carnage hits, complete with up close and personal accounts of real suffering by real people. It is in the interest of the Israelis, if not even that of the Palestinian people, who, while at risk of violent death, suffer as much or more from displacement, from the collapse of infrastructure, the dearth of sustenance and threat of disease, that the conflict be concluded as soon as possible. From the Israeli perspective that conclusion must involve the effective dismantlement of Hamas. Other considerations impacting Israeli interest in avoiding a stop and start war, of negotiations which have no prospect of success, is the growing pressure from the Arab street for their governments to stand up for the Palestinians. Iranian catspaws as well, especially Hezbollah, reluctant as it may be to become further embroiled in a war it cannot currently afford, will be best checked by a timely conclusion of the conflict. For Israel it may be better that the wound bleed than that it fester.

As of December 12, 425 Israeli soldiers were reported by the Israeli army to have died in the conflict and another 1,573 wounded. Presuming the Israeli army to be making progress in its campaign to eliminate Hamas, one may ask how many additional soldiers may die or be wounded if release of hostages is be prioritized over the strategic aims of the war effort, if concerns for hostages leads to relieving pressure on a wounded Hamas such that they are able to regain their footing? In war, nations are called upon to make great sacrifices, and considerations for the wellbeing of individuals may be sacrificed in the interest of strategic necessity. A soldier’s courage begins with the acceptance of the concept of his own death, and the patriotic citizenry will, should circumstance require, expect no less of themselves. In a national cause, such that would invoke a universal commitment to its successful outcome, the civilian as well as the soldier would see his life or those of his loved ones as forfeit, if necessary, to the larger cause, as the first Brutus of note, Lucius Junius Brutus, founder of the Roman Republic, presided over the execution of his sons for the crime of treason, though by his office he might have spared them. The hostages are for Hamas a powerful weapon, that weapon negated when discounted by sacrifice. Which is not to suggest devaluation of one’s own, or that every reasonable effort not be made for their return, but that where individuals become involved in matters of national interest the undefinable value of a life may be subject to triage.

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The roots of this conflict are ancient and deep. Ancestral blessings and curses inform and motivate both the Israelites (Jews) and Ishmaelites (Arabs). The patriarch Abraham's inheritance blessings are clear: Isaac received the land, Ishmael was sent away to the east with gifts. Any Arab claim to the land is illegitimate. Naturally, neither claimant is willing to cede. There will be peace only when one forsakes their claim. It won't be Israel. This informs Hamas' refusal to acceptance of the existence of Jews, much less their inheritance claim. A sad mess, indeed.

The question for the West is which tribe -- which culture do you want as international neighbors? Islam or Judaism? It's that simple. If the choice is not obvious, based on observed behavior and contributions to science, culture, and benefit to civilization's progress, you are blind. Judaism, however observed, is infinitely better than Islam.

The answer to the Gaza problem is for Israel to enforce Judaism -- Torah Law upon it. Establish just courts. Teach and enforce at least the Laws of Noah. Expel anyone who will not abide by these essential, civilizing laws.

Continue to fight any necessary defensive war to maintain Israel's inheritance.

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Have you ever wondered why certain problems are never solved: Palestinians, abortion, gun control, education, poverty, etc.

These issues are perpetuated by interest groups to make money or get elected. There is no incentive to solve them.

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Just destroy it and deport them to Egypt. They lost the war and should face the consequences. Egypt is large enough that the security services can handle the trouble makers and the good people can be absorbed as they are ethnically the same.

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You have a wonderful vision, to which I can sign up.

But. ..this is going to take such a long time, I wonder whether we are in fantasy land?

However, I remember and believe the words of Walt Disney: "If you can dream it, you can do it ".

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The North Gaza must be sanitized. You have a model: Jethro and Moshe put men in charge of 50s, 100's, and the 1000's. Hamas will sneak back to the North, but these leaders will be held accountable for their block.

You can allow farmers to farm the land, but only the farmers, and their tractors must now be small and remain in no man's land.

You should also keep a 2km cordon sanitaire between the North and South Gaza, along the Gaza Wadi. There will only be one gate between the two sections. All coming and going must pass security.

And I'm not sure they can have and bulldozer or any other equipment larger than 50 horsepower.

Just some more ideas for the state after the war.

ps. Rebuilding should be based on good behavior, good schools, and certainly the corrupt UNWRA no longer has a place in Gaza, ever again.

When the North is prosperous, then the South can slowly be rebuilt.

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While I think you have provided a realistic and thoughtful path forward here, as an American I bristle a bit at the casual way you just assume that the United States owns the reconstruction burden and cost, along with the fantasy that other Middle East countries will pony up. No thank you. This is the primary burden of Israel, as it is both their conflict and their bombing that is annihilating Gaza - and they are the primary beneficiaries. The United States is hopelessly in debt and we will undoubtably get the bill for reconstructing Ukraine, after we get done financing the destruction of it.

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The Hamas leadership in Qatar must also be turned over to International authorities to try them for war crimes and crimes against humanity. They should also be charged with theft of humanitarian funds and the BILLIONS they have stolen be used for the reconstruction of Gaza.

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Why do you keep taking down the video? Truth hurts I suppose so, so Miss Weiss

Truth, confronted by you is like a crucifix confronting the devil

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Dec 8, 2023·edited Dec 8, 2023

What comes next? I have thoughts.

I published an essay in the Times of Israel last year offering a solution that reached the outer limits of possible, but since half-measures weren't working, why not try? ("Make no little plans, for they have not magic to stir men's souls," as Daniel Burnham put it so elegantly.) Things are far worse now, so it's time to go for broke. This is how I'd do it:

1. Give Eastern Palestine--aka Jordan--back to the Arab Palestinians from whom Britain stole it. The Mandate for Palestine after WWI, into which the Jewish state was to be inserted, originally consisted of Jordan, Israel, Gaza, and West Bank. Tons of land for two peoples to share! Then out of the blue, the Brits gave the eastern two-thirds to a foreign tribe--the Hashemites of Arabia--as war booty. That original sin by a drunken Winston Churchill, the foreign secretary, is what really caused this century of war and calamity, because the leftover land was too small to hold two peoples. Fix this sin now.

2. Jordan IS Palestine by another name. More than 80 percent of its residents are ancestrally Palestinian--makes sense; it was called East Palestine for a reason--who have been ruled since WWI by Hashemites, who'd never set foot in Palestine till the Brits gave it to them. Jews and Muslim Arabs (the latter now called Palestinians) are the two peoples indigenous to Palestine, both having roots back to Canaan according to DNA analysis. Hashemites are not indigenous, hailing from Arabia. Move out the foreign invaders and rename this huge chunk of land what it is: Palestine.

3. Israel pays a bundle, and the world kicks in more, for Egypt to give the Sinai Peninsula to the Hashemites. The royal family does a buildout and turns Sinai into Jordan--or call it Inshallah or the Hashemite Kingdom, I don't care, whatever they want. Shorn of their need to rule a boiling pot of Palestinians, Hashemites will be good neighbors to Egypt and Israel. Being on the Med gives Hashemites sea access they didn't have in landlocked Old Jordan.

4. Israel makes Gaza and West Bank part of sovereign Israel, and offers non-citizen Palestinians a choice: become Israeli citizens or move to Palestine. No third choice. Israel pays moving expenses. Those who choose "neither" get moved to Palestine. The UN transferred millions of people to create Pakistan out of India, and nobody squawked.

5. All other bullshit from 1948 is settled: No right of return to Israel or Palestine, since everyone now has a large, contiguous land in which to work, play, and live. No financial reparations for Jews or Arabs; since each suffered a "Nakba" at the hands of the other in 1948-49, it's a wash. Borders are fixed and final. Palestine is now three times the size of Israel, and a sovereign power that will be treated as a partner by Israel if it chooses, or an enemy if it chooses otherwise. But Palis are on their own now--they wanted sovereignty, they got it.

6. Jerusalem. It is exclusively Israeli with the assurance that Muslims can visit their holy sites whenever they wish. If New Palestine wants to rename Amman to Jordan or build a new capital and call it Jerusalem, fine, their nation, their decision. If they want to take physical possession of Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa Mosque, fine also, they can call in a moving company, dismantle, truck, and reassemble in New Jerusalem, becoming the guardians of the third-most-important city in Islam. Sorry, Palestinians, Jerusalem is the price you pay for trying and failing to conquer Israel three times instead of accepting half the land in 1948 for your own state. Build your own Jerusalem, it'll be cooler anyway.

6a. "Why do Palestinians have to relocate? Why not make the Jews leave?" Because Israel won the three wars waged against it by Palestinians, that's why. If Israel had lost even one war, you wouldn't be weeping about the late lamented Jews. Don't pretend you care now. Losing wars you start carries penalties, and Palestinians' penalty is Jerusalem. But their gain is everything else they wanted, in a land three times the size of Israel. They can suck it up for peace. And Israel went half-bankrupt paying Egypt to make this plan work. Palis didn't pay anybody for anything, they got it all for free.

7. METO. Israel, Palestine, Hashemite, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and other willing nations form a Middle East Treaty Organization along the lines of NATO to provide common defense against Iran and its paid assassins: Hamas, Hezbollah, Islamic Jihad, and everybody's nightmare, Daesh/Islamic State/ISIS. The United States and Europe work closely with METO to ensure Daesh in particular stays squashed, because the jihadists will go after everybody now.

What could wrong?

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