Speaking today during the Israeli Army’s “annual telethon” on Army Radio, military Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz pushed for a new invasion of the Gaza Strip saying that it was “not a matter of choice.”
Gantz went on to praise the 2008-09 invasion of the strip, which killed 1,417 Palestinians, the vast majority of them civilians, saying it was an “excellent operation that achieved deterrence.”
That “deterrence” however, Gantz saw as running out “over time,” even though its been less than three years since then and Israel has been bombing the strip regularly throughout that period. He insisted the timing of the new invasion would be dictated by conditions on the ground, and that the military would act “when the conditions are right.”
The comments come as Israeli officials are slamming the idea of the Hamas government in the Gaza Strip joining the Palestinian Liberation Organization, but it does not seem that there is any particular increase in tensions from the strip itself that Israeli diplomats could use to justify what Gantz promised would be a particularly “painful” incursion.