A couple of hours ago Israel killed the military commander of Hamas, Ahmed al-Jabari. This was the opening move of operation
”Cast Lead 2” “Cloud Pillar” in Gaza.
There is still no official statement from the Israeli government (and the duo Bibi-Barak) about the goals of this operation. It is safe to assume we will hear about it in an hour or so, on prime time TV.
Allow me to preempt our esteemed Prime Minister and Defence Minister and tell you about the real goals of this operation:
1. The social and economic issues threaten to dominate the upcoming elections, which is only two months away. With the Iran issue losing steam due to Obama’s reelection (much to Bibi’s chagrin), it is time to put the “security” issue firmly back in the centre. What better way to do so than by sending our soldiers back into Gaza?
2. Barak is in a conundrum. He missed the opportunity to join the Likud in time and his miniscule “Independence” party will not get enough votes to put him back in the Knesset. He has to ensure his continued employment in the next Bibi government, so he needs as much TV time as possible between now and the elections. What better way to achieve this than by appearing as the saviour of Israel in this “mini war”?
So, for the next few hours, let us all bask in the momentary glory of the liquidation of al-Jabari. Let us make the most of it while we can. Because the next days, perhaps weeks, are certain to bring with them a reckoning that will pour cold water on our heads.
P.S. (16 Nov.)
There is one more goal that the duo Bibi-Barak have achieved (knowingly or “by the way”) with the timing of this operation. Ehud Olmert, the former Prime Minister and the only politician who comes close to threatening Bibi’s re-election, was due to announce in the coming days if he was running in this election. What better way to preempt a possible return of their nemesis than by stoking the flames with Hamas?