There will be numerous editorials and reported leaks all claiming the exact moment that Israel Defense Force (IDF) troops entering into Gaza. There have already been editorials predicting that Israel would be at a great disadvantage if they attempted to fight within Gaza City as Hamas would be better able to maneuver and would have traps and fortified sniper positions all staked out and manned. There was another article or maybe a talk radio show which made the case for how Israeli technology such as UAV drones and unmanned ground fighting vehicles as well as air support would rule in any situation. The truth is that we will likely never get to that point as the probability of an Israeli ground assault actually becomes more remote every day. It has nothing to do with tactical challenges or one side having an advantage or the other or anything even remotely logical. It has everything to do with political approval, world opinion, potential critical media coverage and a million other things which have no relevance to the actual theater of operations. Even if the IDF ends up being given the go ahead and begins to enter Gaza, within a couple of hours they will be recalled as frantic meetings will be pursuing peace with everything pivoting on stopping the ground invasion. If anything, the threat of an imminent ground invasion of Gaza will be used as a bargaining chip in order to force a cease fire.
The problem is that the Israeli government has lost their way. Rather than appear as the mighty ready to use the IDF and intelligently eradicate any problem they instead talk of how they have lead in a mature and sophisticated manner and have found a middle way, a path which addresses the problems and also keeps in mind the considerations of operating in a multicultural world and able to retain the approval and respect of the rest of the world. After all, the world has always loved the wise Jews of Chelm. They have become too comfortable and care far too deeply what their friends in Europe, the United States and other political realms believe and seek their acceptance and approvals otherwise they might not be included in the world confabs or invited to attend United Nations meetings which always are held in five star resorts at the best times of the year. If the political elites within Israel act in a brash and unfeeling manner and do not display the proper and approved confliction and remorse over having to resort to the brutalities of a ground offensive they may be forced to feel rejected as a punishment before being accepted back to the community of ruling elites. The leadership is more interested in showing that they are just as restrained as the foreign media claims that they must be. They are out to prove that they are really and honestly just as deeply feeling as anyone anywhere. They have grown older and become comfortable in their soft positions and the lifestyle of the politically connected which so often mixes comfortably with the lives of the rich and opulent. Why would they ever risk such an easy and often glorious life by resorting to taking steps to address the viscous terrorist fanatics who are raining rockets over the lands and people of Israel as doing so would likely make them victims of the spite and disapproval of those with whom they share a special bond, a bond that delivers more comfort and enjoyment than governing and doing the difficult which sometimes is an essential part of honest governing. After all, is it really wrong to seek to find some path to a peaceful compromise which will end the rockets without having to resort to such brutality as would accompany a ground assault of Gaza?
It is somewhat understandable that with voices coming from around the world and from every outlet and corner all on the same page demanding restraint, for Israel to use only proportional force, criticizing even the idea of a ground assault as it might cause collective punishment of the residents of Gaza or might injure a single noncombatant, that the Israeli leadership acts as if under siege and believes they must resist escalations at any cost. This was exactly what occurred in the last few conflicts in November 2012 and in December 2008 through January 2009 with Gaza which began exactly the same manner with steadily increasing barrages of rockets out of Gaza which was eventually answered with an air assault. The 2012 conflict added the debut of the miraculous performance of the Iron Dome which intercepted close to ninety percent of the rockets it attempted to intercept which allowed for the Israel attacks to be less immediate allowing for a peace to be reached without any significant ground offensive. Eventually in December 2008 and on to the end the following month there was a timid ground assault which appeared more intended to avoid casualties and risk avoidance than anything else. Soon after an agreement was found through deliberations aided by the Egyptians each time and the cycle was simply reset, Hamas decides the time had come to attack Israel and the rockets begin raining down on Israeli cities, towns and kibbutzim in ever increasing numbers. The reason this time is reputed that Hamas is having problems is they are facing a dire situation, with scant funds, Egyptian closure of the majority of the smuggling tunnels that brought in supplies from the Sinai Peninsula and also generate taxes to fund Hamas and their terrorist operations, having lost their benefactor in Iran after opposing Assad in Syria and just everything appearing like Hamas was approaching the end of their road. These problems facing Hamas could almost make one cry if they actually cared.
So, if Hamas is at the end of their rope, why not assist them by making a nice noose with the end of that rope. If one would look to Torah for the halakhic definitions and standards of war you find a completely different manner than has proven to be the Israeli strategies. Torah lays it out really straight forward instructing that evil must be destroyed if the innocent are to survive. We are instructed that the only aim of warfare is to protect our own people and as long as we are righteous and good in the eyes of the L0rd then we will prevail. But if we refuse to defend ourselves to the maximum of our capabilities using every ounce of power at our disposal as was the case under King Saul, then we will lose because of our lack of convictions and lack of the will to do that which is required to win. After the indecisiveness under King Saul, Israel found a King who would rule decisively and fight the wars like the entirety of the Children of Israel depended upon doing so, which back then, as now, was exactly the case. We, the Children of Israel, face a similar enemy today who willingly sacrifice their own children to their leaders and their deity who rewards those willing to die over those who choose to live. The date and even the calendar used by the rest of the world have changed but mankind and the rules of war are very much the same. The winners get to live on and the vanquished retreat if they are fortunate or cease if no channel of retreat exists for them. Now, as then, wars end once they have been won unilaterally and completely and seldom if ever by anything less. Has not the past conflicts with Hamas proven that nothing short of complete obliteration will ever put an end to their launching rockets, dispatching suicide bombers when possible, blowing up IEDs (improvised explosive devices) in attempts to murder IDF and civilians passing on the road, using their own civilians to protect their attacker who aim to murder our civilians, and their attempts to abduct our soldiers or youths to either hold hostage for trade for their terror masters in our jails or simply to butcher them in heinous and horrendous manners.
So, what will it take for Israel to have the kind of leaders who will do whatever it takes no matter the opposition or the wailing cries from the rest of the world who really do not have our best interests in mind and revel in seeing Israel victimized and appearing all weak and ineffectual. There are two kinds of leaders who are capable, some even revel in the acts, of taking the needful steps to resolutely end violent problems which threaten their nation. The obvious type is the young and restless leaders who have not been worn down and made impotent by the years and fights suffered along the way. The examples of such men are Yonathan Netanyahu leading the raid on Entebbe, the Commando officer and able men which included Benyamin Netanyahu following the orders from Ehud Barak, the bulldozer General Ariel Sharon, and the young men of the IDF who today stand ready to defend the Children of Israel from all evils and pestilence. The examples of the older and gentle men are obvious and can be easily discerned by even a casual observer. The other type of leader who is capable of fighting against the tides of contempt and disapproval to finish and complete the task of executing the necessary operations against the evils threatening the nation and its people is an older one who has learned the truths from history and knows that solutions are not always neat and tidy and often are opposed by those claiming to be the more civilized, civil, educated, knowing, knowledgeable, and amongst the elites of our world. This would be a leader who is capable of going the distance and suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune by taking arms against that sea of troubles and by opposing, end them, if I may murder a soliloquy from Hamlet and composed by William Shakespeare. The best example of such a man was William Churchill and his marshalling of England and standing firm against all odds and challenges of fortune to eventually defeat and destroy the evil that was Adolph Hitler and his Third Reich. For Israel to find such a leader the people will need to replace the leadership of the existing parties or form a new party which holds as its platform to face violence against the Children of Israel with greater force and make any battle forced upon Israel the final battle by whatever entity should be so foolish. Such a leader would also by definition force a resolution to the rights and ownership over the disputed lands, especially of Judea and Samaria, our ancient heart to our homelands. How any Israeli leader who has any problem with fighting to terminate the terrorist enmity that threatens the Jewish people and the Children of Israel, such as any people who have elected Hamas as their leaders, any society which gives out candy, sweets, pastries and other treats while dancing in the streets celebrating Jewish murders, shouting shrill victory shrieks and chants of “Allahu Akbar” when Jews are viscously and heinously butchered, tortured and murdered, rejoice as if it were a holiday when Jewish bodies are dragged through the streets or their blood is seen dripping off their murderers’ hands garnering great hues and cries of approval, can lead so poorly and expect the support, approval and to retain their position after the next election is beyond any known form of logic. The consequence of the choice eventually leads to one simple choice, will we or they live in this land in peace and security, there is no other final solution and it is time we realize this, our enemy has known this from the very beginning.