The Netanyahu Government and the IDF Abandon the South, Again


7 pm Israel time, Tuesday, December 30 2014

76 Days Until The Election

UPDATES

*We now have the final draft of the Palestinian proposal submitted by the Jordanians to the United Nations Security Council. The Palestinians expect a vote on the resolution by tomorrow though whether they have the requisite nine votes in favor to force a U.S. veto is anyone’s guess.

The proposal spells out the bases for its demands and then enumerates 13 specific demands. As an example, here is the 2nd demand–with israelstreet’s interpolated comments:

2. Decides that the negotiated solution will be based on the following parameters:

  • borders based on 4 June 1967 lines with mutually agreed, limited, equivalent land swaps;

ISRAELSTREET: Once again, the June 4 1967 lines are the 1949 Armistice Lines.

  • security arrangements, including through a third-party presence, that guarantee and respect the sovereignty of a State of Palestine, including through a full and phased withdrawal of the Israeli occupying forces, which will end the occupation that began in 1967 over an agreed transition period in a reasonable timeframe, not to exceed the end of 2017, and that ensure the security of both Israel and Palestine through effective border security and by preventing the resurgence of terrorism and effectively addressing security threats, including emerging and vital threats in the region;

ISRAELSTREET: Who would be the 3rd party? The United Nations? The Arab League? The United States? The European Union? A joint force from Turkey and Qatar?

  • a just and agreed solution to the Palestine refugee question on the basis of Arab Peace Initiative, international law and relevant United Nations resolutions, including resolution 194 (III);

ISRAELSTREET: The Palestinians and Arabs interpret Resolution 194 as calling for the “return” of 5,000,000+ “Palestinian refugees” to Israel.

  • a just resolution of the status of Jerusalem as the capital of the two States which fulfils the legitimate aspirations of both parties and protects freedom of worship;

ISRAELSTREET: In the preamble to the demands, we have this statement: “Reaffirming the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination and to independence in their State of Palestine, with East Jerusalem as its capital.” But notice here that “East” is not included. An earlier draft referred to the creation of a “shared capital” of Jerusalem.

– the just settlement of all other outstanding issues, including water and prisoners;

ISRAELSTREET: Israel is already providing water and electricity to the PLO free of charge (they simply ignore the bills). Israel has already released hundreds of Palestinian murderers.

While the proposal is a non-starter for the current Israel government, it would be warmly embraced by the Herzog-Livni block.

*A new report today from the Israel State Comptroller specifies that Israel’s “reserves” are woefully unprepared for the next war. With the endless cutbacks that have taken place in the Defense budget–some of which completely eliminated “reserves” training–this should come as no surprise to anyone.

TODAY’S BLOG:

As we lurch ever closer to the next war with what with renewed Hamas missile fire, attempted Hamas infiltrations (170 since the August 21 “ceasefire”), and intensified Hamas tunnel construction, the IDF has amazingly announced that it is pulling out of most of the Gaza border communties on Thursday morning.

Actually, the IDF decision is not that amazing. You may recall that within weeks of the end of the summer war with Hamas, the IDF quickly pulled up stakes and was in the process of retreating from the area until the communities raised such an outcry that the IDF General Command was forced to stop the withdrawal.

That attempted withdrawal back in August came as much of the Gaza border fence lay in ruins caused by the entry into and subsequent retreat from Gaza by IDF tank forces. In fact, the border fence remains unrepaired today, a victim of government budget cuts.

The IDF spokesman issued the following surreal statement yesterday:

[The withdrawal is being made] “after an evaluation of the security situation, under the understanding that the protection the IDF offers to residents of Gaza-border communities is optimal, and in coordination with the heads of communities.”

The sad fact is that the IDF General Command, in particular the southern command, has proved itself particularly incapable of evaluating any security situation anywhere in recent years. It was a scant six months ago that the IDF was also claiming that IDF protection of the Gaza border communities was optimal–and that was one month before nearly 5000 missiles and mortars were launched at Israel and more than 30 tunnels were discovered leading into Israeli communities. 

As for coordination with the heads of communities, the heads of the two largest regions bordering Gaza, Eshkol and Sha’ar Hanegev, issued a statement yesterday expressing shock over the IDF withdrawal and noting that there had been “no coordination and consultation” with the IDF whatsoever.

As terrible as the decision to abandon the communities in the “Gaza envelope” (Otef Gaza) is, even worse is the fact that the IDF felt compelled to make a public announcment of the fact. That announcment was incredibly specific as to what will take place on Thursday morning.

It gives Hamas a blueprint for attack. 

On Thursday, IDF forces will be removed from every site along the Gaza border except for IDF positions in Nahal Oz, Kerem Shalom, and Netiv HaAsara–all of which are within 0.621 miles of the Gaza border. For the more than 50 communities that are outside the 0.621 mile distance, “electronic fences” will be provided to monitor possible infiltrations.

In other words, electronic fences will be built “to protect” communities inside Israel even though there is no fence in many areas to stop infiltrators from entering Israel in the first place. The situation is completely absurd.

In essence, it will be up to each of those 50 communities to provide its own security and defense. Once again, as has happened so many times in recent years, the South has been abandoned.

 

 

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