The Ghettoization of Gaza: Civilian ‘Bubbles’ and Plans for Post War Administration

Join former US Special Forces Soldier Greg Stoker on State of Play to explore how Israel plans to maintain its grip on Gaza while facing rising resistance and global condemnation.

The Israeli propaganda apparatus is priming the public to accept a declaration of victory over Hamas and assorted resistance groups in Rafah as the military begins to shift the bulk of its operational and combat capacity to the northern front against Hezbollah. However, withdrawing from Gaza entirely in light of the IDF’s failure to achieve any of its mission objectives is not politically tenable for myriad reasons – foremost of which is that Hamas would still exist as both a military and political entity with a swelling level of popularity among Palestinians, according to a recent poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research.

How are Israeli and U.S. Departments of State and their associated advisory think tanks proposing to solve this dilemma? How does one continue the fighting in Gaza indefinitely, work towards a viable ceasefire, and create the framework and conditions for a future Palestinian state when visible, high-profile Israeli ministers are calling not just for the ethnic cleansing of Gaza but also for the annexation and settlement of the West Bank?

Tonight on “State of Play,” we examine a number of these plans—all hopelessly unworkable to varying degrees—from creating humanitarian “pockets” within military cordons to bringing to Gaza an Arab Coalition from as yet unspecified states for the purposes of security and governance. One of the most significant brakes in all of these proposals is the inescapable fact that Hamas will still exist, and armed resistance will not stop and will not accept a foreign administrator.

The far-right think tank Misgav, therefore, calls for a long-term military occupation of Gaza, at least until roughly three-quarters of Hamas and PIJ are destroyed. Only then can a civil authority be put in place.

However, even if they are degraded by 75%, resistance forces will simply transition to lower-intensity operations involving traps, improvised explosive devices (which we are already seeing), and the potential targeted assassinations of collaborators from whatever vague civil authorities these proposals envision.

In a surprising and rare comment last week, Netanyahu said the government would soon begin a plan to create a civil administration in the north of Gaza, run by local Palestinians, preferably with security assistance from Arab states. Again, there are no details or verifiable structure to this plan, which is in keeping with the Prime Minister’s talent for prevarication, but officials close to the matter said Netanyahu was likely referring to the “bubbles plan,” according to a report by the Wall Street Journal.

The Israeli establishment does not like to vary its methods. Thus, the creation of isolated enclaves where registered Palestinians who have denounced Hamas is appealing. Like in the West Bank, freedom of movement between these geographic islands will be difficult, if not impossible. All the while, Israel will continue to be isolated in the global community by what will inevitably be roundly condemned as another escalation of apartheid practices.

Join us on State of Play at MintPress News for an in-depth examination of this topic—on Monday, July 1st, at 7 pm EST.

Greg Stoker is a former US Army Ranger with a background in human intelligence collection and analysis. After serving four combat deployments in Afghanistan, he studied anthropology and International Relations at Columbia University. He is currently a military and geopolitical analyst and a social media “influencer,” though he hates the term.

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