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“The Day After”: The plan for the Gaza strip

Netanyahu and Biden. Wikipedia

Yesterday, Prime Minister Netanyahu presented to the Security Cabinet the “Day After” document, written by his team. This is the first time Netanyahu has presented his vision for the future of the Gaza Strip and the desired political consequences of the war, and not just the military consequences – and if accepted, it will become Israel’s official policy regarding the war. The document is very short (at least in its principles), so it probably didn’t take four months to think about, nor write; it probably has to do more with the current timing, in terms of increasing international pressure.

At the beginning of the document, it is clarified that the fighting will not stop until the military and governmental capabilities of Hamas and the PIJ in the Gaza Strip are destroyed. The document then deals with a vision for the intermediate range, on two spheres: the security and the civil. On the security level, Israel demands freedom of military action in the Gaza Strip in order to prevent a renewed consolidation of terrorism, in parallel with the establishment of the buffer zone along the entire perimeter fence. Israel will maintain a special “southern border” on the border with Egypt (the intention is a little vague – and probably intentionaly so, in order to blur intentions regarding the timing and location of an operation in Rafah) to prevent smuggling, and will completely disarm the Gaza Strip.

On the civilian level, Netanyahu hopes to hand over the administrative and public responsibility to “experienced local officials” who are not Hamas-affiliated and do not receive salaries from them. In addition, Israel will lead a plan to de-radicalize the population of the Gaza Strip, through religious, welfare and educational institutions, with the help of moderate Arab states, and not with the aid of UNRWA, which will be closed. The Gaza Strip will be restored after the demilitarization and the beginning of de-radicalization, with the help of other countries. This plan echoes the Marshall Plan that the Allies had led in Nazi Germany after its defeat in World War II, in parallel with the “de-Nazification” plan: Sterilization of radicalism and the restoration of living conditions gradually – in the hope of a better future.

At the end of the document, Netanyahu addresses the recent threats by Israel’s allies to unilaterally recognize a Palestinian state in order to force it to advance a political move: Israel rejects any international dictates on the Palestinian issue, which is a critical issue for Israel, and certainly at a time like this, when it will be a reward for terrorism and a political victory for Hamas.

To respond – rxpuyhi@gmail.com

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