Photo Credit: Edi Israel/Flash90
IDF soldiers enter the Gaza Strip, 18 July 2014.

A famous verse in Ecclesiastes says, “There is a time for everything.”

Perhaps, this is a time for an Israeli victory to finally end the over 100 years of violent rejectionism against Jewish sovereignty. A war started with one singular purpose: to prevent and then destroy the legitimate national aspirations of the Jewish people to statehood in their ancestral and indigenous homeland.


A war that has seen many facets, whether through conventional warfare, terror, boycott, incitement or delegitimization.

A war that has never ceased, yet merely morphs into new strategies and tactics meant to bring an end to Israel by any means necessary.

While Israel has bravely defended itself and won many battles, it has yet to win the war.

Arguably, since the Oslo Accords, Israeli governments, both Left and Right, have been stuck in a paradigm of looking for a solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict through negotiations, compromise and concession.

Whether it was making offers to Yasser Arafat or Mahmoud Abbas of a Palestinian state, freezing building in Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria, or economically propping up the Palestinian Authority, it was felt that the spirit of Oslo could not be abrogated.

Unfortunately, there hadn’t been much of an alternative provided, so governments who differed on so much did not markedly diverge in their approach to the conflict. Primarily, perhaps, as a result of a misunderstanding of the root of the Palestinian’s true goal or an unwillingness to address it.

Is it too late to change?

It is not too late to change that. Firstly, it is clear that the people are fed up with the ongoing Palestinian terrorist attacks, incitement and continued rejectionism of Palestinian leaders to accept Israel’s core legitimacy. Barely a day goes past without a Palestinian leader saying in Arabic to their people that Israel is temporary and will eventually be defeated.

Secondly, people are increasingly aware of the Palestinian leadership’s unwavering agenda, whether Hamas or the Palestinian Authority. The conflict is not about borders, recognition, or finances, it is about the very existence of Israel and that hasn’t changed. Thirdly, the understanding that until the Palestinians are forced to change their destructive and unbendable goal, the violence will never end.

ALL OF the polls undertaken by the Israel Victory Project show growing support for the idea that peace will only become possible when the Palestinian leadership recognizes that it has lost its fight against Israel, and that Israel is here to stay.

This is reflected in a growing acceptance among politicians and even senior IDF officials that Israel has to return to winning wars and not be continually stuck in a cycle of violence with no way to escape the loss of life and bloodshed.

It is not a simple task to defeat Palestinian violent rejectionism as it has been allowed to fester for generations but as with all wars throughout history, once the will of the antagonist to continue fighting has been broken and that their war aims will not be reached are accepted, the war can finally end.

This is the strategic solution that the government must reach now.

It might be painful and difficult but it is the only one that will finally end the conflict for the good of both Israelis and Palestinians.

It will be good for Israelis because the country will finally see peace without the threat of endless military operations and can focus on potentially greater threats like those posed by a nuclear Iran. It will allow Israel to dictate the terms for peace that will ensure its permanent security needs.

For the Palestinians, it will free them of hate that unrelentingly permeates so much of their lives, whether in the media, the education system or in the mosques. It will free up the budget of violent rejectionism that incites and pays for mass murder which can then be freed up for social welfare, education, health and public services. This will mean a better future for Palestinian society which is being crushed by its own crucible of hate and rejectionism. It will ensure that Palestinians elect leaders who do not distract and deflect from allowing greater progress, development and democracy for their people by constantly blaming Israel for all of their ills. It is a win-win for all.

Just as importantly, the international community is starting to understand that wars are still simply won and lost, and diplomacy, unfortunately, isn’t enough when one party insists on playing a zero-sum game.

Beefing up the police force or arresting some terrorists will simply not work, a solution must be viewed in a holistic manner. Only by adopting the strategy of victory can this or any government deliver true and enduring security.

Any Israeli policy must derive from the understanding that this conflict will end only when the Palestinians will be forced to accept that the battle to destroy Israel is over, that they lost it and it is pointless to continue fighting.

It is time for them to have a new goal, living side by side in peace. The details of any possible agreement are irrelevant at this point.

{Written by Yifa Segal is a former chief of staff to Israel’s ambassador to the US, and reposted from MEF}

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