The name chosen for the new war in Gaza is ‘Operation Cloud Pillar’. A far more appropriate name would have been ‘Operation Short Memory,’ said former Knesset member Uri Avnery, Gush Shalom activist: ‘Prime Minister Netanyahu is counting on the public’s short memory. Netanyahu counts upon people forgetting that dozens and even hundreds of “liquidations” had been carried out and they did not solve any problem – always there was somebody replacing those who were killed, and more than once the new one was more capable and more radical. Netanyahu counts on people not remembering that four years ago Israel went to war in Gaza, killing 1,300 civilians in three weeks – which otherwise did not make any significant change in the situation. Netanyahu counts on people failing to remember that [this week] the media reported on people in the communities of the south heaving a sigh of relief at the complete cessation of missiles from Gaza.
‘Binyamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak have taken the decision – for the second time in a row the State of Israel will conduct general elections under the shadow of war in the Gaza Strip. The cease-fire which already started to stabilize had been broken and shattered to pieces. The inhabitants of the communities of southern Israel, who just started to breathe freely, are sent right back to air raid alarms and the running to shelters.
At the price of great suffering on both sides of the border, the government’s aim had been accomplished: the social issues, which threatened to assume prominence in these elections, have been pushed aside and removed from the agenda of the elections campaign. Forgotten, too, is the brave attempt of Mahmud Abbas to address the Israeli public opinion. In the coming weeks, the headlines will be filled with constant war and death, destruction and bloodshed. When it ends at last, it will be revealed that no goal has been achieved and that the problems remain the same, or perhaps got worse.’