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‘Because they Could’

In contrast to rogue players, Israel uses force only because it has to.
IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz speaking with Israeli reserve soldiers at a base outside Gaza, November 18, 2012.

IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz speaking with Israeli reserve soldiers at a base outside Gaza, November 18, 2012.
Photo Credit: IDF Spokesperson/FLASH90

While it misunderstood the nature of the Israeli public and underestimated the capabilities of the Israeli government, Hamas correctly assessed that the Palestinian people would sit quietly while they were used as human shields. An estimated 10% of Hamas rockets meant to be fired at Israelis fell back into Gaza and were responsible for deaths among Palestinians. That makes Hamas’s loopy “victory celebration” and fulsome gratitude to Iran for the means to kill disgusting, though not unanticipated.

Israel, in the meantime, took measured steps to protect its people and eliminate the next threat. It conducted an almost flawless mobilization nearly ten times greater than the troubled one during the 2006 Hezbollah war. It successfully tested the most advanced anti-missile system in the world. It showed the limitations of Egyptian and Hezbollah support for Hamas and the limitations of Iranian “help” as well. Without subjecting the IDF to a ground invasion of Gaza. Because it could.

Originally published at the Gatestone Institute.

About the Author: Shoshana Bryen is Senior Director of The Jewish Policy Center. She was previously Senior Director of JINSA and author of JINSA Reports form 1995-2011.


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