EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Israeli Minister of Defense Avigdor Lieberman appears to be accepting the argument that humanitarian gestures towards Hamas will buy quiet. The evidence provided by UN agencies in an effort to advocate for humanitarian gestures ironically proves that there is in fact no correlation between such gestures and a reduction in Hamas violence.
Politicians, commentators, diplomats, citizens, international fora, the Knesset, EU institutions, and – above all – Israel’s major media sites endlessly debate Gaza’s alleged humanitarian plight and the virtue of humanitarian gestures as a means to mitigate it.
Even Israel’s hardline Minister of Defense, Avigdor Lieberman, appears to be buying into this argument. The Kerem Shalom border crossing is to be reopened after having been closed in reaction to the launching by Hamas of nearly 200 missiles over the space of two days. The fishing rights of Gaza fishermen will be widened to 12 kilometers in the hope that Hamas will stop the launches. Hamas will be free to continue sending off incendiary balloon bombs and to violently challenge Israeli troops at the security fence every Friday. Needless to say, Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar told the Egyptians brokering the deal that Hamas cannot possibly desist from these forms of “resistance.”
The hope to buy off Hamas with humanitarian gestures is in vain.