Going ‘for the head’ of the octopus | The Times of Israel   ’44 days on, what is Israel’s policy for Gaza and how much war will suffice to achieve it?’

It looks very much like things have reached that awkward stage where neither side here can easily back away from the fight. Nor can they swear off the temptation to hit out at the enemy and in what now seems like an almost signature style of combat. Rockets on one side, missiles on the other and with tank and anti-tank ordnance thrown in for some measure of contrast.

With this state of affairs likely to continue for some time, this might seem a somewhat inopportune comment to make. To those of us in the outside world, the spectacle has become, dare I say it, a trifle monotonous. Hamas and their associates try to blow up Israeli territory while Israel returns the favour and with, it must be said, much more devastating results. This was quite riveting stuff at the start but hasn’t the whole business been taking far too long getting to its final phase?

What’s that? There may be no final phase? Really? You mean it could just go on and on, everything gets demolished and nothing can be salvaged, nothing whatsoever? But, without a proper finale here, then just what is the point of it? Guys, you should find some way to wrap this business up once and for all because, quite frankly, after 66 years, it is beginning to drag a little. And you surely must be feeling that way also.

Can it be that you don’t know how to end it? Has no one written out that part of the script for you? What? No happy ending? Not even a fierce and final Gotterdammerung? How very remiss of someone.

Of course, there is one very straightforward way to close down the entire performance and let all the players and the audience go home. It does mean going for broke, however, betting everything on a few rolls of the dice. Not the ideal solution for some but, at this stage of the game, options for any sort of closure would appear to be few and far between.

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