Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu stated that there is no way the Palestinian Authority would be allowed to rule the Gaza Strip in a post-Hamas world during a stormy discussion on Monday in the Knesset Foreign Affairs and Security Committee.
“Oslo was the mother of all sins. The difference between Hamas and the Palestinian Authority is only that Hamas wants to destroy us here and now, and the P.A. wants to do it in stages,” the prime minister said.
“We cooperate with them against Hamas when it serves their interest and ours up to a certain limit. We decided a few months ago that we don’t want them to collapse so that Hamas does not rise up in Judea and Samaria as well,” he added.
Netanyahu’s firm stance against a P.A.-controlled Gaza Strip is at odds with the Biden administration, which has taken the position that the P.A. is the best alternative.
According to Israel Hayom, Netanyahu defended himself against accusations that he too closely followed American dictates in the conduct of the war.
“Some of you don’t understand what it is to win a war. A war is won with armaments and international credit,” Netanyahu said. He defended letting in humanitarian aid, saying a civilian disaster would have made it impossible to continue the fighting.
Netanyahu promised that the war “will end in a knockout.”
He rejected criticism that he strengthened the rule of Hamas, saying he had weakened it over the years. He also noted that allowing in Qatari funds was necessary to avert a humanitarian crisis for which Israel would have been blamed.
He said that Israel would control the Philadelphia Corridor—the border between the Gaza Strip and Egypt—and that Israel would impose a buffer zone within the Gaza Strip between the Palestinian populations and Israeli communities.
Reconstruction of Gaza would be done by “Abraham Accords” countries, including Saudi Arabia, he said.
According to the report, Netanyahu equivocated when asked by Likud Knesset member Amit Halevi who would be in charge of civilian affairs in the Gaza Strip, saying only that the National Security Council was putting together the various options.