Shlomo Alegra

What the IDF should do in Gaza

After almost two weeks of conflict between the terror organization Hamas and Israel resulted in the death of 160 terrorists.

Ever since the terrorist organization Hamas took control of the Gaza Strip in 2006 there has been constant skirmishes for over a decade.

Israel has suffered several casualties on both the civilian and military population.

Israeli residents living in communities along the border with the Gaza Strip have been living under rocket fire for years.

Many of the residents have accused the Israeli Government of considering them second-class citizens because they argue that only when Tel Aviv and Jerusalem are attacked is there a military response.

The expulsion of Israeli citizens from the Gaza Strip in 2005 resulted with Hamas taking power because there was no Israeli military to arrest terrorists.

The reason for West Bank Palestinian cities not turning into hotbeds for terrorism was that the Israeli military monitored and arrested suspects at will.

The absence of the Israeli military in Gaza allowed Hamas to import weapons from Egypt using underground smuggling tunnels.

Financial support from countries like Qatar, Iran and Sudan further helped Hamas financially to grow its military capabilities.

Today Hamas is no longer a simple terrorist organization strapping bombs to terrorists to inflict damage on civilians in a nightclub.

Hamas is a terrorist state by itself with different military divisions like the rocket brigade, cyber warfare, tunnel division, intelligence and public relations just to name a few.

Hamas’ capabilities have been built up to such a degree that if Hezbollah were to get involved it could create an existential threat to Israel.

IDF’s response to Hamas since 2008 has been to “cut the grass” since it only did operations to ensure a level of quiet for a few years until the next round of fighting.

Previous Israeli Government administrations have not wanted to deal with the possible casualties or soldiers being kidnapped by Hamas.

Policies done by Israeli administrations who have negotiated with Hamas ceasefires have only acted to strengthen the terrorist organization over time.

Recent history with other conflicts have shown terrorist organizations can never really be eradicated, but it is possible to destroy their abilities to inflict serious damage.

Al Qaeda, Al Shabab and ISIS are terrorist organizations that western powers have been fighting since 2001.

Even though all these terrorist organizations still exist, the ability for them to inflict damage among western interests have been diminished greatly that they barely make the news.

Elimination of Hamas as an organization is an unrealistic goal because Hamas is an ideology of radical Islam that can only people replaced if all the people in Gaza become atheists.

Israel will have to continue to destroy all kinds of Hamas’ military infrastructure within Gaza through airstrikes.

After Israel eliminates all their long-distance capabilities and elimination of all top Hamas commanders including Mohammed Deif.

IDF will have to move into a phase two to prevent any further escalations in the future to protect the lives of their citizens.

Hamas’ inability to fire Katusha and Fajr 4 rockets will not be an end to their ability to inflict damage among Israel’s civilian population.

Hamas has Russian-made Kornet anti-tank missiles with a four-kilometer range, the use of incendiary balloons destroying agricultural lands, and underground tunnels used by Hamas terrorists to abduct and murder Israelis.

IDF will have to take land from Gaza to create a buffer zone between Israeli civilians and possible attacks which will require infantry forces.

Gaza is 41 kilometers long and 6 to 12 kilometers in width.

Destruction of Hamas’ military assets including their top commanders, missiles, and anti-tank division.

Israel will have to bring in their infantry troops and create a four-kilometer buffer zone between the Israeli border and Gaza.

Four-kilometer buffer zone (closed military zone) would cover all Northern and Eastern Gaza.

The buffer zone would prevent the ability for Hamas to shoot Kornet rockets on Israeli civilian vehicles and the military will be able to stop incendiary balloons from reaching farmland.

From the buffer zone, regular and special forces soldiers will be able to enter Gaza and make arrests as needed.

The buffer zone would act essentially as a forward operating base from where troops can be stationed and eliminate threats as they appear.

The key to preventing future conflict with the Gaza Strip will be to collect an adequate amount of information of what happens in the area and the ability to deploy a small number of troops for a quick operation to eliminate threats.

About the Author
Shlomo was born in Miami, Florida in 1989 and moved to Israel in 2012. He holds a degree from Florida Atlantic University in Political Science and served in the IDF as a combat soldier in the Netzach Yehuda Battalion. After serving in the military Shlomo studied in Yeshivat Shavie Hevron where he lived in Hebron. He now lives in Kiryat Arba, is a proud reservist in the Golani Brigade, and is a blogger for the Times of Israel.
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