Tuesday, October 10, 2023

Snakes in the backyard

“You can't keep snakes in your backyard and expect them only to bite your neighbors. You know, eventually those snakes are going to turn on whoever has them in the backyard.” ― Hillary Rodham Clinton, addressing the media in a joint press conference with Pakistani Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar, October 21, 2011.

If Hamas was permitted to flourish by Netanyahu and the right-wing in Israel, as a prophylactic against a two-state solution, it is time someone had the same joint press conference with them.

There is no choice but to kill the snakes.  This is going to involve enormous losses of people.

The question is whether there is going to be a change in course, or will the cultivation of snakes  continue after this particular battle is over.


 Hamas’s attack shows Benjamin Netanyahu failed Israel - Vox


Second, a columnist at Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper (https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/2023-10-09/ty-article/.premium/another-concept-implodes-israel-cant-be-managed-by-a-criminal-defendant/0000018b-1382-d2fc-a59f-d39b5dbf0000) unearthed evidence that Netanyahu has intentionally propped up Hamas rule in Gaza — seeing Palestinian extremism as a bulwark against a two-state solution to the conflict.

Anyone who wants to thwart the establishment of a Palestinian state has to support bolstering Hamas and transferring money to Hamas,” the prime minister reportedly said at a 2019 meeting of his Likud party. “This is part of our strategy — to isolate the Palestinians in Gaza from the Palestinians in the West Bank.”

These exact comments have not yet been confirmed by other sources. But the Times of Israel’s Tal Schneider wrote on Sunday that (https://www.timesofisrael.com/for-years-netanyahu-propped-up-hamas-now-its-blown-up-in-our-faces/) Netanyahu’s reported words “are in line with the policy that he implemented,” which did little to challenge and in some ways bolstered Hamas’s control over the Gaza Strip. Moreover, Schneider notes, “the same messaging was repeated by right-wing commentators, who may have received briefings on the matter or talked to Likud higher-ups and understood the message.” Some Netanyahu confidants have [said the same thing ( https://twitter.com/DanielSeidemann/status/1711338210679304483 ), as have outside experts.

The first link above in Ha'aretz is to Gidi Weitz, who precedes the Hamas quote with: [Another Concept Implodes: Israel Can’t Be Managed by a Criminal Defendant - Israel News - Haaretz.com](https://www.haaretz.com/israel-news/2023-10-09/ty-article/.premium/another-concept-implodes-israel-cant-be-managed-by-a-criminal-defendant/0000018b-1382-d2fc-a59f-d39b5dbf0000)

His {*Netanyahu's*} life’s work was to turn the ship of state from the course steered by his predecessors, from Yitzhak Rabin to Ehud Olmert, and make the two-state solution impossible. En route to this goal, he found a partner in Hamas.

The second link, to Tal Scheider, includes: [For years, Netanyahu propped up Hamas. Now it's blown up in our faces | The Times of Israel](https://www.timesofisrael.com/for-years-netanyahu-propped-up-hamas-now-its-blown-up-in-our-faces/)

Most of the time, Israeli policy was to treat the Palestinian Authority as a burden and Hamas as an asset. Far-right MK Bezalel Smotrich, now the finance minister in the hardline government and leader of the Religious Zionism party, said so himself in 2015. 

According to various reports, Netanyahu made a similar point at a Likud faction meeting in early 2018, when he was quoted as saying that those who oppose a Palestinian state should support the transfer of funds to Gaza, because maintaining the separation between the Palestinian Authority in the West Bank and Hamas in Gaza would prevent the establishment of a Palestinian state. 

While Netanyahu does not make these kind of statements publicly or officially, his words are in line with the policy that he implemented.

The third link is to a tweet: https://twitter.com/DanielSeidemann/status/1711338210679304483

Gen.Gershon Hacohen, emphatically rightwing and confidante of [Netanyahu], said the following: "Truth be told, Netanyahu's objective is to prevent the two-state option and therefore turned Hamas into his closest ally.  Openly, Hamas is an enemy, beneath the surface, an ally".

Gen. Gershon Hacohen refers to Hamas: [After evacuating Gaza, a lonely general of faith struggles for Israel's salvation | The Times of Israel](https://www.timesofisrael.com/after-evacuating-gaza-a-lonely-general-of-faith-struggles-for-israels-salvation/)

This is also why, he added, “I prefer Hamas to Abu Mazen.” Because Hamas “helps me prevent a two-state solution” and is, covertly “an ally, because neither it nor I want a final solution and neither in my terms nor in its is there something that is everlasting.