How Gaza Became a Land of Terror and Immiseration

If people in the West—including policymakers and self-styled experts—paid more attention to the videos and articles published by MEMRI, an organization that translates publications and other media from the Middle East and Russia, and collates information about anti-Semites and neo-Nazis in the West, they might find themselves less surprised by events like those of last weekend. But for a more general overview of Gaza’s history over the past 60 years, and a judicious analysis of the present situation, I recommend Dan Senor’s interview with the Mosaic contributor Jonathan Schanzer on the Call Me Back podcast.

Among much else, I learned from this conversation of a time when Israel actually occupied the Gaza Strip, commerce and movement between the territory and the rest of Israel were easy and frequent, and Jews raised in Arab lands regularly visited to experience familiar sights and smells, hear and speak their native language, and the like. Then a power struggle between Palestinian factions unleashed a wave of anti-Jewish violence, and everything changed. (Audio, 58 minutes.)


Read more at Call Me Back

More about: First intifada, Gaza Strip, Gaza War 2023, Hamas

To Save Gaza, the U.S. Needs a Strategy to Restrain Iran

Since the outbreak of war on October 7, America has given Israel much support, and also much advice. Seth Cropsey argues that some of that advice hasn’t been especially good:

American demands for “restraint” and a “lighter footprint” provide significant elements of Hamas’s command structure, including Yahya Sinwar, the architect of 10/7, a far greater chance of surviving and preserving the organization’s capabilities. Its threat will persist to some extent in any case, since it has significant assets in Lebanon and is poised to enter into a full-fledged partnership with Hizballah that would give it access to Lebanon’s Palestinian refugee camps for recruitment and to Iranian-supported ratlines into Jordan and Syria.

Turning to the aftermath of the war, Cropsey observes that it will take a different kind of involvement for the U.S. to get the outcomes it desires, namely an alternative to Israeli and to Hamas rule in Gaza that comes with buy-in from its Arab allies:

The only way that Gaza can be governed in a sustainable and stable manner is through the participation of Arab states, and in particular the Gulf Arabs, and the only power that can deliver their participation is the United States. A grand bargain is impossible unless the U.S. exerts enough leverage to induce one.

Militarily speaking, the U.S. has shown no desire seriously to curb Iranian power. It has persistently signaled a desire to avoid escalation. . . . The Gulf Arabs understand this. They have no desire to engage in serious strategic dialogue with Washington and Jerusalem over Iran strategy, since Washington does not have an Iran strategy.

Gaza’s fate is a small part of a much broader strategic struggle. Unless this is recognized, any diplomatic master plan will degenerate into a diplomatic parlor game.

Read more at National Review

More about: Gaza War 2023, Iran, U.S. Foreign policy