Benny Gantz threatens war against Hamas during tour of Gaza border
Blue and White co-chair Benny Gantz delivers a speech, March 18th, 2019
(photo credit: AVSHALOM SASSONI/MAARIV)
"We will not permit our deterrent to be eroded, and for rounds of firing to continue," Gantz said.
Blue and White leader Benny Gantz vowed to take a stronger approach against Hamas than Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has. “We will not allow our deterrence to be eroded, and for rounds of rocket attacks to continue,” Gantz said. “Next time we are attacked, I will make sure it will be the last time. We will not make agreements with Hamas. We will defeat Hamas militarily.”
Gantz made the remarks while on tour of the Gaza periphery on Tuesday with Blue and White candidates Yair Lapid, Moshe Ya’alon and Gabi Ashkenazi. Gantz also threatened to resume targeted killings of Hamas leaders.
“If they do not ensure complete quiet and restore our boys [kidnapped soldiers Oron Shaul and Hadar Goldin], we will begin a fullscale operation,” he said. “The IDF has the capacity and we will have the courage to execute.” Lapid, who is a member of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee, said “the public needs to decide which security cabinet it wants the next time 700 rockets are fired from Gaza at Sderot – former chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi or [Transportation Minister Bezalel] Smotrich, former chief of staff [Moshe] Bogie Ya’alon or [Culture Minister] Miri Regev, former chief of staff Gantz and myself or no one, because Netanyahu disappears every time they fire from Gaza.” He added that the purpose of the visit was to send Hamas a message that “next time they fire rockets at Israeli citizens, the heads of Hamas won’t get suitcases with millions of dollars, they’ll get a guided missile fired at their house.”
Responding to reports of tension among the Blue and White leadership, Lapid said “We won’t give Bibi [Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu] the joy of seeing us break up.” Gantz added that “not every disagreement leads to a break up” and that Blue and White MKs, unlike MKs in Likud, “are not little midgets” who give into the whims of their party leader.