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Sunday, May 19, 2024
Netanyahu's Missing Monologue To The Public

Netanyahu's Missing Monologue To The Public
Dr. Aaron Lerner, 19 May, 2024

The following is my best approximation of what Prime Minister Binyamin
Netanyahu would tell the public if he opted to share the truth:

The North:

We have no solution to intercept "line-of-sight" attacks. Anything we
rebuild within line-of-sight is a waste of money. The only effective
solution is an arrangement which moves Hezbollah far enough that our border
communities are not within their line of sight. That's not moving them for a
day, a week, or a month; it's permanently moving them. So far, no one has
come up with a serious alternative to re-occupying the relevant southern
portion of Lebanon.

If we launch an operation to occupy part of Lebanon so that the Israeli
border communities can return home, Hezbollah will launch hundreds of
thousands of long-range and mid-range rockets and guided missiles. The
damage to Israel's infrastructure and other strategic locations, until we
complete our operation to destroy these rockets and missiles, is expected to
be worse than any damage we have suffered since the founding of the Jewish

That's not to say we shouldn't do what we must do if we want to make it
possible for the Israeli border communities to return home.

It's even more complicated: Hezbollah, as the side which picks the time and
place for each "tit for tat" round, has "home court advantage" as we race
each other up the learning curve, so time isn't on our side.


One day, a practical local leadership may be able to take full
responsibility for the provision of municipal and other civilian services in
the Gaza Strip. But this will take years. We tried a "shortcut" in
developing an alternative to Hamas, and many of them were slaughtered.

For the foreseeable future, any third party controlling Gaza will either
completely deny or make light of terrorist preparations and operations, and
are very likely to serve as human shields.

No third party arrangement will, in practice, allow the IDF a free hand to
operate in the Gaza Strip.

Terrorist attacks are typically framed as a response to Israeli activity, be
it in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, or elsewhere. In the instance of a
third-party arrangement, we can expect supporters of the arrangement,
including the United States, to essentially attribute the attacks to Israeli
"incitements" and call for "moderation" on the part of the Jewish State.

In the meantime, we need to take responsibility, and that means COGAT. The
taxes collected will go to COGAT - and that includes the duty and VAT
collected on everything imported.

The Saudis:

All the mental and verbal gymnastics in the world cannot negate the
fundamental truth that a sovereign state remains a sovereign state even if
it openly renounces the commitments it made in order to gain sovereignty.

So, a sovereign Palestinian state is off the table.

The Biden team is determined to compel Israel to enter a process that
guarantees the creation of a sovereign Palestinian state. A repeat of
Netanyahu's 2009 Bar-Ilan Speech won't do the trick.

If the "two-state solution" has been injected by the Americans into the
Saudi normalization demands, then it may be possible to negotiate it out of
a deal.

Otherwise, we are going to have to pass on full normalization for the time

The Haredis:

Unfortunately, contrary to expectations immediately after October 7th, the
Haredi community has not budged on its position regarding participation in
the defense of the State. If anything, their position has hardened, with the
leadership opposing army service even for Haredis who are not attending

At the same time, the Haredi leadership has doubled down on their rejection
of any effective oversight of government funding to the entire spectrum of
Haredi educational institutions.

It is hardly clear that at this juncture we have the resources available
today to literally force Haredis, at least initially, to serve in the army
against their will.

The law Gantz proposed when the Likud wasn't in power and now opposes
doesn't seriously increase the number of Haredis serving in the IDF. It did,
however, allow for yeshiva students to spend half their time taking
vocational training and reduced the number of years they needed to stay in
yeshiva to avoid army service. Resuscitating this law was a very short-term
move since Gantz now rejects it along with the Haredis in the ruling

Ironically, the best outcome for the time being may be the absence of

Treasury Minister Smotrich's team has been laying the groundwork to slash
all the financial support which yeshiva students who don't serve in the IDF
now enjoy by, among other things, not treating yeshiva study as a form of

Another group in the Treasury Ministry is close to pulling the plug on the
Haredi educational institutions which defy oversight requirements.

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