Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman told the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee in remarks at the start of the meeting on Monday that no cease fire deal is possible with Hamas.
Liberman said Israel has exhausted all of its options on the southern front, adding that nothing short of striking the terrorist group with the “hardest blow” will change the situation in Gaza.
Thousands of Gazans arrive at the border with Israel each week on buses organized by terrorists who are paid by Hamas. According to Liberman, they each receive a fee for every person who is killed or wounded in action, depending upon the level of injury.
Hamas pays the organizers NIS 3,000 (approx. $800) for every Gazan who is killed while trying to breach the border or attacking Israeli soldiers, Liberman told the Knesset committee. The terror group pays NIS 500 for each person who is seriously wounded, and NIS 250 for those who sustain moderate or minor wounds.
The defense minister said that the main goal is to return the situation to what it was prior to March 30, when the weekly riots and violence began.
“We have exhausted all of the options, and it is now time to make decisions,” Liberman said. “My position is very clear: We need to deliver a powerful blow to Hamas. That is the only way to get the situation back to the way it was before, and to lower the level of violence to zero, or to nearly zero.
“That needs to be a decision by the cabinet,” he added. “I hope the cabinet will make the correct decisions.
“We have arrived at the point where no choice remains.”