Sunday, May 5, 2019

A 10th escalation is too much - Gadi Yarkoni

A 10th escalation is too much. It is time for the prime minister to live up to his obligation to the residents of Gaza border communities and the citizens of Israel as a whole.

Gadi Yarkoni..
Israel Hayom..
05 May '19..

The citizens of Israel are paying a bitter price for the last 18 years of an absence of a policy on the Gaza Strip and the “containment” approach to the events of the past year.

As deterrence erodes in the face of rocket fire, arson balloons, and terrorism along the border fence, Hamas is raising its head. It is expanding its rocket fire to communities far from the border and lobbing insane barrages at the Israel-Gaza frontier. All this is taking place at a sensitive time for Israel, when the country wants quiet more than anything: Remembrance Day for Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism, Independence Day, and the Eurovision song competition. Hamas knows it.

If the decision-makers had meted out an unequivocal response a year ago, or a year and a half ago, when the border incidents began, this wouldn’t be our reality now. For a year, we near the border issued repeated warnings: “Today, it’s us – tomorrow, it will be you.” And “you” doesn’t just refer to residents of Ashdod and Kiryat Gat, but to all the citizens who are now getting excited for the Eurovision.

Terrorist attacks against residents of the Gaza border communities began more than a year ago. Since then, an entire region of the country has become the victim of a terrorist organization that is extorting our entire nation. This equation has to change.

This is a region that played a historic role in the founding of the state. A part of the country whose pioneer elderly were the ones that laid down the country’s borders. This past year, they have seen their grandchildren and great-grandchildren exhausted by terrorism. This reality has gone on for 18 years straight and increased over the past year.

Israel cannot allow it to go on. We must change it. We have been patient, we trusted the decision-makers’ considerations and allow them to explore various ways of restoring quiet throughout the area. A 10th escalation is too much. It’s time to act bravely and daringly to bring about a change.

The prime minister received a mandate for another four years in office from us, the citizens of Israel. I am calling on him to honor that mandate and live up to his obligation to us.

Gadi Yarkoni is head of the Eshkol Regional Council

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