The Great March of Return protests have sent an “important message” to Israel that Palestinians in Gaza stand with Hamas and against Israel’s efforts to force them to oust it, Israeli Arab affairs analyst at the leading newspaper Haaretz, Zvi Bar’el, said yesterday.
Israel’s strategies against Hamas, including the siege and punitive measures, are no longer effective.
Bar’el recognised that Israel had imposed the siege and sanctions on Gaza in order to push Gaza residents to revolt against Hamas, which took over governance of the Strip in 2007 after winning the 2006 elections.
Israel failed in its ambition and has not achieved any of its aims including toppling Hamas.
Palestinians in Gaza managed to bring Israel to discuss a truce with Hamas instead of ousting it.
This truce, Bar’el said, aims to end the siege on Gaza, open crossings and create work opportunities for thousands of Palestinians in Gaza.
He concluded, saying that the conflict is no longer between Israel and Hamas alone, but between Israel and a large population on the ground.