No, not the weather type of storm such as we have had in Israel for the last couple of days.
No, not the political type of storm such as we have had in Israel for the last couple of, er, decades.
The storm I am referring to is the one brewing in Gaza.
Hamas fought (in my opinion) a badly judged war. Their propaganda efforts got them some sympathy, a modest extension of their fishing zone, much publicity, and nothing more apart from promises. Many of the promises featured rebuilding Gaza. Many of those making the promises overlooked – deliberately or otherwise – the challenge of rebuilding Gaza without rebuilding terror tunnels.
Fats forward several months, and progress has been almost non-existent. If you are a resident of Gaza, what do you think Hamas got for you with the blood of your people? And the immediate prospects for improvement are not good. There’s now better recognition of the challenges of rebuilding only civilian infrastructure. There’s now an awareness – or, perhaps, more awareness now being openly stated – that Hamas is a corrupt, kleptocracy of a regime. And there are two elephants in the room.
Elephant number one is the Israeli election. Hamas know that any terrorist act by them may cause a voting swing to the right. If that’s what they want, there will be such an act or acts.
Elephant number two is the illusion of unity, and the actual stance of Fatah. According to this report, the Palestinian Authority has said there will be no reconstruction until the PA get control of Gaza… In response, Hamas claims – in a less than peaceful manner – that Palestinian unity (ahem) is being ruined by the PA. Further, they warn Abbas they ‘will not await your mercy.’
My interpretation (aka ‘guess’) is that trouble is brewing in Gaza. Militarily I hope we are prepared. Politically, we are stuck till after the election. And if Bibi gets in again, I fear we will still be stuck.
I have no sympathy for Hamas, but the people of Gaza are paying a terrible price for the real crimes of their leaders. The even more terrible aspect is that Hamas want Israel to pay a price as well.