"So let us then draw the logical conclusions about current Israeli policy. Israel wants to eliminate Hamas at all costs, even if the loser is Israel.. This is required to get the Palestinians to give up and accept a severely truncated West Bank as a "state" with no sovereign control over its land or people or water." - Thomas J. This is not the plan Danny Rubinstein is discussing. I think you are being misled by the expectation of some sense of a large strategy by Israel. Likudniks, and former Likudniks such as Olmert, do not have a large vision. They only see part of the picture and act accordingly. Rubinstein is talking about Fatah expecting to eliminate Hamas by a siege or by force. In reality, Israel is not interested in invading Gaza because of the many casualties expected there. Israel hopes that a siege will convince the Palestinians that the Fatah way of accommodating Israel is the better way. And when the Gazans are convinced that Abbas' way is better, they will choose him over Hamas. In other words, in this plan Israel sees Gaza reuniting with the West Bank under the banner of Abbas. It is not a Greater Israel plan. If you find that there is a problem with this beautiful dream, the fault is with the lack of consistent and thorough planning by Israel. 1. In order for the Pals to be impressed by Abbas, he has to deliver something. However, Israel only throws some crumbs in his direction. Nobody is even talking about a cease fire in the West Bank. 2. Hamas is a better ruler than Fatah, normally. They are careful with public funds, they are not corrupt, and they will have money provided by Iran and other trouble makers. 3. Elections in Gaza can only be held with Hamas' cooperation. How would the Palestinians there show that they prefer Fatah? 4. Since Israel's plan is likely to fail, the end result will be Hamastan, exactly what Israel is trying to avoid. Thomas, if you want to figure out how the present Israeli government thinks, better try to think like a bully. Better not be too logical or too clever.
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Initial report: Man lightly wounded in stabbing attack at Gush Etzion junction in W. Bank. (Haaretz)
from the article: Fatah is waiting for Israel