November 30, 2023

Ever since the tragedy that occurred on October 7, there has been a lot of discussion about the collapse of Israel’s prior assumptions regarding Hamas and the containment of its threats. The prevailing sentiment is that the “concept” has failed, but has it really? The term “conceptzia” in Hebrew refers to Israel’s failure to understand Egypt’s intentions in 1973. When we consider whether a “concept” has collapsed, we should also consider whether there has been any shift in policy. The current “concept” guiding Israeli policy has not collapsed, and this has been demonstrated by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s actions, revealing his assumption that Hamas could be deterred and contained.

Netanyahu’s strategic concept has been to foster division among Palestinians and weaken the Palestinian Authority to avoid a peace agreement that might limit Israel’s territory. An inquiry commission will likely refute the notion that the “concept” has failed, arguing instead that it was the management of the concept that was flawed. The greater cause of failure lies in maintaining the occupation and its futile implications. If Israel continues in this manner, the violent Palestinian resistance and the risk of a binational reality will persist.

Instead of focusing solely on the failure of containing Hamas, we should consider the outdated concept that Israel can maintain the occupation indefinitely. A political settlement is necessary, and a Palestinian camp willing to compromise with Israel should be engaged in dialogue. This could lead to a two-state solution and normalization of relations with the Arab world. However, the opposition parties to the Left of the Likud have been reluctant to support a political settlement, aiding in the expansion of the occupation.

In conclusion, the collapse of the “concept” is not solely about containing Hamas, but also about continuing the occupation. Opposition leaders need to take the initiative in presenting a political solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. If this strategic shift occurs, it could lead to the restoration of the Palestinian camp and the onset of a peace process that could bring about a significant change in the region.