Conditions in the Hamas-controlled territory remain dire and unfavorable to political reunification with the Palestinian Authority. Substantial humanitarian and civil-economic relief for Gazans is necessary to foster hope for a better future, help push off or avert the next round of violence, and weaken Hamas.

EXPERT: MK TZIPI LIVNI


Tzipi Livni is leader of the Hatnuah party and co-leader of the Zionist Camp Party, the second largest party in the Knesset. A lawyer by training, Livni was first elected to the Knesset in 1999. Livni was a member of the Likud Party until the end of 2005, when she, together with other prominent political figures in Israel, formed the Kadima Party.

In May 2006 Tzipi Livni was appointed Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs in the 31st Government of Israel, serving until March 2009. She also served as Minister of Justice from November 2006 until February 2007. With the establishment of the Netanyahu government on March 31, 2009, Livni became the head of the opposition, until her resignation from the Knesset in May 2012.

Given the fact that aid to Gaza will bolster Hamas' reputation, hurt the Palestinian Authority, and suggest that Israel yields to the use of force, Israel must come up with creative solutions to limit this damage. Thus, relief to Gaza should be packaged wit far-reaching measures to improve conditions in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.

From “Security First”, Commanders for Israel’s Security (2016)


Civil-Economic Measures


INCREASE WORK PERMITS

Issue more exit permits for Gazans to work in Israel, subject to General Security Service vetting and approval.


FACILITATE ADDITIONAL AID

Increase the number of delivery trucks entering Gaza daily to 1,200.


EXPAND FISHING ZONES

Expand the fishing zone off the Gaza coast to either six or twelve miles and begin steps toward constructing a maritime port.

IMPROVE ELECTRICITY INFRASTRUCTURE

Improve the grid’s efficiency with new and upgraded transmission lines and increase the amount of power supplied by Israel by 30 megawatts immediately and 100 megawatts within one year.


PROMOTE DESALINATION EFFORTS

Build a central water desalination facility and allow the Palestinians to complete water treatment plants in northern and central Gaza.


EXPAND GAS INFRASTRUCTURE

Expand the Gaza station’s capacity, refit it for natural gas, and connect the Strip to Israel’s gas transmission network.


COMMIT TO IMPROVING THE SITUATION

Commit to any Palestinian, regional, or international initiative to improve the situation in Gaza that is compatible with Israeli security interests.


DISTINGUISH BETWEEN HAMAS AND GAZAN CIVILIANS

Distinguish between an uncompromising war against Hamas-sponsored terrorism and facilitating assistance to the Gazan populace.

Political Measures

DECLARE SINGLE ENTITY

Declare that Israel considers Gaza and the West Bank a single political entity for the purposes of resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and a final status agreement.

An Insider's Perspective - Col. (res.) Grisha Yakubovich:(click for link)


Col. (res.) Grisha Yakubovich spent the majority of his 30 years in the IDF in the office of the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), which promotes and implements the policy of the Israeli government in civilian matters in the West Bank and Gaza. The following are excerpts from his interview with Fathom Journal's Calev Ben-Dor.

Many Israeli decision makers do not want Gaza to be connected to Israel but bearing in mind it won’t be connected to Egypt, why not help build infrastructure between Gaza and the West Bank in the framework of supporting a two state solution?

Thinking pragmatically, Israel, the PA, the international community and Egypt need to work together urgently to create the necessary security conditions for any progress on Gaza – and it’s possible immediately.

If Israel authorises and extends a gas pipeline from its own gas network to Gaza, this would facilitate the donor-funded construction of a desalination plant. But time is against us, because the entire project will take four to five years and, by my estimate, a crisis in Gaza will have already begun by 2018/19.