The tone and pace of attacking the Gaza Strip has increased either by military operations or air bombardment, along with the threat of Israeli army chief of staff, from a week ago. Today comes the threat of the Israeli Minister of Defense, Gaza war of 2008-2009, at a conference with military officials.
Barak said: "If the security cabinet deems it needed, the Israeli army can conquer and rule Gaza," Ynet news reported.
Elaborating on the previous military war against Gaza, Barak noted that there was no need to drag the fighting for 22 days. That lesson is true for other things as well.
In addition, Barak also noted that the Israeli forces withdrawal from the Strip was late. "We could have pulled out 10 days earlier."
Speaking at the same conference, former Israeli army chief of staff Lt.-Gen. (res.) said the political leadership must involve the military leadership in decision making over possible future wars.
"Strategic decisions must be taken into consideration, in the dialogue between the political and military echelons before a war," he said, stressing that this discourse ultimately shapes goals of a war and whether or not they are realistic.
Last month, Israeli media claimed Israeli army officials have set a plan to re-occupy the Gaza Strip, adding a military governor would be named to regulate the affairs of the Strip's residents when Israel assumes control of the territory.
In response to Israeli threats, one official in Gaza, Salah Bardawil, does not expect Israel to launch a major attack on Gaza Strip but to continue "show off" moves such as assassinating resistance leaders.
“If Israeli occupation forces enter Gaza Strip, they will be faced with Palestinian resistance and Egyptian opposition," Bardawil said.
“Is Barak really confident he can occupy Gaza? Israel’s disengagement from Gaza was considered a strategic decision, and the Israelis have failed to achieve their goals in the last war against Gaza,” Bardawil added.
He stressed that, Israel is sending a message to Egypt, to feel the pulse, and to check how Egypt and the Palestinian factions will react if they attack Gaza.
It is worth mentioning that on Dec. 27, 2008, Israel launched a three-week war on Gaza Strip to stop militants from firing home-made Palestinian rockets on Israeli towns and settlements. The Israeli offensive killed 1,400 Palestinians and injured 5, 400 others, leaving thousands of people homeless after having their houses totally or partially destroyed. The offensive also inflicted $1.6 billion in damages to the Gazan economy.
However, since the end of Gaza war on January 2009, Gaza has been blockaded, which is a situation that has caused a decline in the standard of living, unemployment, and poverty. In large parts of Gaza nowadays, there is no electricity. More than ever, Gaza is also like a prison, it is poorer and hungrier. In other words Israel is returning Gaza Strip to the Middle Ages.
Of course, people of Gaza know that Israeli army can repeat the war. They are taking these threats seriously. It is no secret that every house in Gaza is trying to secure his requirements of food, water and fuel for the generator. Perhaps some retains some money for emergencies, but the question is does Barak think that the resistance will not respond? Gaza residents today own many weapons, in addition to missiles that are manufactured locally. Furthermore, there are also weapons that were smuggled from Libya to Gaza Strip through the tunnels.
I think that in the next war the number of victims and damages will be equal in Gaza and Israeli cities, not cities and settlements near Gaza only, but the cities of perhaps 100 kilometers or less, far from Gaza.
In Gaza, we got used to the sound of planes and explosions, and even the smell of death. Are the Israelis ready to hear the sound of explosions?
I'm from Gaza and I survived the past war with all its bloody details, together with my family. For this, I can say that the armed resistance with all its factions learned lessons from the previous war and Israelis will be astonished with the military techniques that the resistance probably learned from Hezbollah.
War is awful, we strongly hate it and refuse it, but if it was imposed on us, then Israeli forces will face unexpected reaction. That's what all resistance factions are saying in Gaza.