Reshaping after the war: Netanyahu: “De-radicalize” Gaza like Nazi Germany

Transformation after the war
Netanyahu: “De-radicalize” Gaza like Nazi Germany

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It is well known that Israel wants to completely defeat and destroy Hamas. But what comes next? Prime Minister Netanyahu’s statements about a “de-radicalization” of the Gaza Strip could indicate a long-term approach to the Palestinian territory after the war.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is planning a radical transformation of the Gaza Strip after a victory over the Islamist Hamas, drawing comparisons to denazification in Germany after 1945. “After the victory over Hamas,” two things are necessary, Netanyahu said in a published interview with the newspapers “Bild” and “Welt” as well as “Politico”.

“First, we demilitarize Gaza and second, we de-radicalize Gaza. And that’s exactly what has been done in Germany, Japan and elsewhere,” Netanyahu said. He referred to the denazification of Germany, which is a completely different country today than it was in the 1930s. “This was achieved through total military victory and changing culture, education and learning about the mistakes of the past.”

After the victory in 1945, the USA, France, Great Britain and the Soviet Union occupied Germany in four zones and pushed forward denazification. In 1949 the Federal Republic and the GDR were founded. Even in the decades that followed, troops from the victorious powers remained stationed in both countries.

Fights will resume after a break

With regard to the situation in the Gaza Strip, Netanyahu asked: “What is the point of winning this war, eradicating Hamas and not working towards the de-radicalization of Gaza?” In October, US President Joe Biden called Israel’s possible plans to occupy the Gaza Strip a “big mistake”.

In an interview with the CBS news show “60 Minutes,” Biden responded to a question about whether he would support an ally’s occupation of Gaza by saying, “I think that would be a big mistake.” Israel occupied the Gaza Strip from 1967 to 2005. After the withdrawal, Hamas seized power in 2007.

The Israeli Prime Minister also emphasized that Israel would resume operations against Hamas after the end of the currently agreed ceasefire. Because Hamas representatives said “that they will repeat the massacre they committed against us (…).”

Netanyahu counters Macron

Netanyahu rejected criticism from French President Emmanuel Macron and Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez of Israel’s conduct of the war as “completely unacceptable.” Israel adheres to the laws of war and “does not target civilians.” Every death of a civilian is a “tragedy.”

Anyone who is unable to distinguish between a targeted attack on civilians and “Israel’s legitimate military actions” has “lost all moral compass,” said Netanyahu. Israel has “no choice but to destroy Hamas.” But even after that, Israel will, in his words, continue to have “primary military responsibility” in the Gaza Strip.

The Israeli head of government also warned of the danger posed by Islamists. Hamas is “part of the terror axis of Iran, Hezbollah, the Houthis and others.” Their goal is to “lead first the Middle East and then the world into an age of barbarism.”

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