Hamas Is Losing in Gaza, and Winning in the West

Contrary to Hamas’s hopes that it could follow October 7 with further attacks, or inflict massive casualties on the IDF within Gaza, its atrocities have only strengthened Israeli resolve and led to a so-far remarkably effective Israeli counterattack. Yet Hamas has succeeded at galvanizing massive anti-Israel demonstrations in the U.S., Australia, and Western Europe, along with the harassment of Jews in these countries. Asaf Romirowsky and Alex Joffe examine how a “red-green alliance” between the far left and Islamists has enabled this victory:

The fruits of decades of Muslim immigration, legal and illegal, into Europe are now fully revealed. This brought the establishment of parallel societies beyond the reach of governments.

In the United States, similar successes have long been underway at somewhat smaller scales, guided by Muslim Brotherhood figures linked directly to Hamas in some cases. The linkages among the Council on American-Islamic Relations, American Muslims for Palestine, Students for Justice in Palestine, the Muslim Students Association, and the Palestinian Youth Movement point to domestic elements implacably opposed to Israel that take advantage of American tolerance, albeit crying “Islamophobia” at every opportunity.

The red components, the dizzying array of seemingly disparate entities from the Democratic Socialists of America, Just Stop Oil, Black Lives Matter, the Palestinian Youth Movement, IfNotNow, Jewish Voice for Peace, and more, have been responsible for putting bodies into American streets. All are funded by the same array of far-left foundations and dark-money bundlers with the support of “human rights” nongovernmental organizations. . . . All act as foot soldiers, increasingly for one another’s causes, and all are increasingly unhinged and violent. They are all part of the same broad movement, anti-American, anti-Israel, and anti-Western.

Read more at Washington Examiner

More about: Anti-Semitism, Gaza War 2023, Hamas, Islamism


What Israel Can Achieve in Gaza, the Fate of the Hostages, and Planning for the Day After

In a comprehensive analysis, Azar Gat concludes that Israel’s prosecution of the war has so far been successful, and preferable to the alternatives proposed by some knowledgeable critics. (For a different view, see this article by Lazar Berman.) But even if the IDF is coming closer to destroying Hamas, is it any closer to freeing the remaining hostages? Gat writes:

Hamas’s basic demand in return for the release of all the hostages—made clear well before it was declared publicly—is an end to the war and not a ceasefire. This includes the withdrawal of the IDF from the Gaza Strip, restoration of Hamas’s control over it (including international guarantees), and a prisoner exchange on the basis of “all for all.”

Some will say that there must be a middle ground between Hamas’s demands and what Israel can accept. However, Hamas’s main interest is to ensure its survival and continued rule, and it will not let go of its key bargaining chip. Some say that without the return of the hostages—“at any price”—no victory is possible. While this sentiment is understandable, the alternative would be a resounding national defeat. The utmost efforts must be made to rescue as many hostages as possible, and Israel should be ready to pay a heavy price for this goal; but Israel’s capitulation is not an option.

Beyond the great cost in human life that Israel will pay over time for such a deal, Hamas will return to rule the Gaza Strip, repairing its infrastructure of tunnels and rockets, filling its ranks with new recruits, and restoring its defensive and offensive arrays. This poses a critical question for those suggesting that it will be possible to restart the war at a later stage: have they fully considered the human toll should the IDF attempt to reoccupy the areas it would have vacated in the Gaza Strip?

Although Gat is sanguine about the prospects of the current campaign, he throws some cold water on those who hope for an absolute victory:

Militarily, it is possible to destroy Hamas’s command, military units, and infrastructure as a semi-regular military organization. . . . After their destruction in high-intensity fighting, the IDF must prevent Hamas from reviving by continuous action on the ground. As in the West Bank, this project will take years. . . . What the IDF is unlikely to achieve is the elimination of Hamas as a guerrilla force.

Lastly, Gat has some wise words about what will happen to Gaza after the war ends, a subject that has been getting renewed attention since Benjamin Netanyahu presented an outline of a plan to the war cabinet on Thursday. Gat argues that, contrary to the view of the American and European foreign-policy elite, there is no political solution for Gaza. After all, Gaza is in the Middle East, where “there are no solutions, . . . only bad options and options that are much worse.”

Read more at Institute for National Security Studies

More about: Gaza Strip, Gaza War 2023, Israeli Security