What Netanyahu’s declaration of indefinite control over Gaza means


Return to the regime that prevailed in the Gaza Strip before 2005the year in which Israeli forces withdrew from the Palestinian enclave, where they had been stationed for 38 consecutive years, could signal a statement by Benjamin Netanyahu.

Israel will take over “overall responsibility for safety” indefinitely in post-war Gaza, as he declared.

This is the first public reference of the Israeli prime minister as to how he “sees” the next day after the start of the Israel-Hamas conflict, of which today Tuesday marks one month.

Asked during an interview he gave to the American television network ABC News who will take over the government after the war, Netanyahu replied: “Those who do not want to continue on the path of Hamas. As we saw what happens when we don’t have it. When we don’t have responsibility for security, we see the explosion of Hamas terrorism on a scale we could not imagine,” he insisted.

Netanyahu’s post comes in the wake of his tour Anthony Blinken in the Middle East.

During his tour, the head of American diplomacy raised in discussions with the leaders and other officials of the countries he visited, among other things, the question of the governance of Gaza after the war.

While he was faced with the long-term “impasses”, which B. Netanyahu promises to solve, at least in terms of security.

The insurance

The Israeli prime minister claimed that only Israel can guarantee that Gaza will be freed from the presence of terrorists. In this context, he effectively announced the return of Israeli forces to the region.

The White House had made clear since last week that there are “no plans or intentions” to station US troops in Gaza.

However, according to the first American day-ahead scenarios that have recently come to light, the US is reportedly pursuing the development of a multinational forceas well as temporary administration under Palestinian leadership without the participation of Hamas. Considering, obviously, the strengthening of the international presence in the region as necessary.

According to Reuters, which attributed the “plans” to US officials, it also envisages assigning a temporary role to neighboring states, as well as temporary supervision of areas by the UN.

For such planning to work, Israel, according to American analysts, will have to limit it time frame of his military presence in Gaza. Otherwise, any new administration will lack legitimacy in the eyes of the Israeli people.

As for the multinational force, the Washington Institute for Near East Policy proposes that security in Gaza, immediately after Israel’s withdrawal, be overseen by five Arab states that have reached peace agreements with Israel: Egypt, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Morocco.

However, the possibilities of reaching such an agreement are in doubt, as the Arab states would hardly accept to take action that could result in the death of Palestinians, according to an analyst at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, cited by Reuters.

In Netanyahu’s statements, however, there is no reference to the role and presence of foreign forces or the Palestinian Authority in post-war Gaza.

“Pilot” the West Bank?

Although it is difficult to determine exactly what the Israeli prime minister means, it could refer to a type of authority that does not include self-government agencies.

The “responsibility for security” describes, for example, the responsibilities of the Israelis in part of the West Bank.

Based on Oslo Accordsparts of it West Bank placed under Palestinian control in terms of providing self-governing services and under Israeli administration in terms of security responsibility.

Israelis have the responsibility to enforce law and maintain order. While for daily services, such as garbage collection and the running of schools, the Palestinians are responsible.

To achieve something similar in Gaza, a Palestinian entity willing to work with the Israelis would have to be found. Something that does not seem feasible in the medium term.

The prerequisites

For the time being, from the point of view of the Arab states, as emerged from the meetings with Blinken, any discussion on security is deemed inappropriate, at a time when the Gaza Strip it is reduced to ruins and its population is bombed, while it is on the brink of humanitarian disaster, according to the UN.

The not Palestinian Authority with the limited autonomy in parts of the occupied West Bank and Hamas to rule in Gaza is weakened.

Its head, Mahmoud Abbaswith whom A. Blinken had an emergency meeting on Sunday, also set the immediate ceasefire in Gaza as a prerequisite for any discussion.

The US Secretary of State recently referred to the prospect of a “reinvigorated” Palestinian Authority, as the administration of President Abbas faces serious charges of corruption and mismanagement.

Any entity seeking to exercise power in post-war Gaza is sure to face Palestinian suspicion which they will consider to be in some way captive to Israel. While she will have to manage him “radicalization” of a part of the population.

It is becoming clear that the Arab world is not even getting into the process of discussing either the restoration of security or the next day as long as the Israeli operations continue, which leaders in the wider region have described as “genocide».

After all, the whole discussion is taking place under the weight and pressure of the ever-increasing human losses from the conflict.

The head of the UN Antonio Guterres spoke of “crisis of humanity“, as well as a “children’s cemetery” in Gaza.

More than 10,000 people have been killed, including more than 4,100 children, since the Israeli airstrikes began, which have intensified in recent days.

For his part, the Israeli prime minister, in the same interview at ABC Newsonce again rejected the idea of a ceasefire was declared in the Gaza Strip if the hostages held by Hamas since October 7, when it launched the attack that killed 1,400 and sparked the war, have not been released.

“There will be no ceasefire – general ceasefire – in Gaza, without the release of our hostages. As far as tactics are concerned, we had small breaks – an hour here, an hour there – before. I guess we will control the conditions in order to allow goods – humanitarian goods – to come in or our hostages, individual hostages, to leave,” he said, referring also to the American request conveyed by Blinken for “humanitarian pauses”.

State entity

What does Netanyahu's declaration of indefinite control over Gaza-3 mean?

As part of his tour, the US Secretary of State said that the construction of the next day in Gaza is based on lasting peaceas well as on the way to eventuality Palestinian statehood.

This is a goal to which B. Nenatiahou made no mention in his latest statements and to which he has been reacting for some time.

Besides, his plan for the next day in Gaza, as he put it, seems to further tightens the noose in the Palestinian enclave through an indefinite Israeli presence and the imposition of control by its forces in the region.

Something that the Palestinians and the Arab world as a whole, which already expresses intense anger against Israel, could interpret as an attempt to return the “occupation forces” to their lands.

And indeed without a perspective, at least determined in time, of improving the post-war regime. The new situation risks igniting new reactions and outbursts of violence from forces that support or “sympathize” with Hamas and they operate in Gaza or the wider area.

The first reactions to Netanyahu’s statements did not take long and even came from within.

THE former Prime Minister of Israel and current head of the official opposition Yair Lapid stated that the Palestinian Authority must take control of the Gaza Strip after the war, under the temporary supervision of the Israeli security forces.

With information from Reuters, AP, ABC News

The article is in Greek

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