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Israel Is a Long Way From 'Total Victory' in Gaza

Half a year has passed since Hamas's invasion of Israel, the massacre of its people and children, the rape of its women, the abduction of its citizens and soldiers, the destruction of the south and the desertion of the north.

First of all, I want to ask, does anyone know what's this "only military pressure will bring the hostages home"? How's it going with "destroying Hamas" and with "the absolute victory?" How's Yahya Sinwar, who's "scrabbling in the tunnels like a mouse, disconnected from the world," doing?

I ask because after one torch was thrown to the pavement and a roadblock and a half were breached for a moment in Jerusalem, we got a renewed wave of populism, sanctimoniousness and cowardice against the protesting of patriotic Israelis. I don't mean lackeys like Amichai Chikli, Jewish jihadists like Itamar Ben-Gvir and Bezalel Smotrich, or the prime minister's son Yair Netanyahu from the Miami front line (who wrote "violent torch parades were the Nazis' signature mark," and shared, "the anarchist rioters, most of whom are useful idiots, were left to do the dirty work").

Benny Gantz announced: "We're brothers, one nation, in one of its difficult moments – we must not return to October 6." We're not in a "difficult moment." We're already half a year into a nightmare that Gantz is partner in perpetuating. The only one who insisted on taking us back to October 6 is Gantz, when the day after the massacre he galloped with moist eyes into Netanyahu's arms.

Gideon Sa'ar stated: "This is crossing a line. It also isn't good for any cause and doesn't advance anything." Sa'ar was always coddled by the media. He's portrayed as all-knowing, a political genius, a brilliant analyst. We're a little tired of his frosty observations about what is good for the cause. When it comes to crossing lines, he'd better show some humility. Since October 7, he crossed the line once by joining Netanyahu, twice when he declared he didn't rule out joining his government, thrice when he dismantled the National Unity Party and a fourth time when he quit the government after Ben-Gvir torpedoed his chance of getting a cabinet seat.

Chili Tropper warned, "The violent protests may tear Israel apart." He and his like have been explaining for years that protesting only makes Netanyahu stronger, deters the silent majority, prevents the rightists from joining, and is therefore strategically wrong. Meanwhile, he's led the move to join Netanyahu twice, saving his career. I really appreciate him, but Israel has been broken for a long time. And there's no chance of mending any part of it as long as he and his colleagues are loyally serving Netanyahu, Smotrich and Ben-Gvir.

On Tuesday night, Shin Bet security service head Ronen Bar abandoned a meeting about the hostages and hurried to the site of the protest. The media was told he came "to keep an eye on the events and the security arrangements." That's inaccurate, to put it delicately. Just like the night of protests over Gallant's firing last year, Bar was summoned hysterically straight from the cuckoo's nest. His involvement consisted of a statement to the media about "a concerning trend that could lead to dangerous realms we must not get to."

Strange. I don't remember a statement of his to the public since October 7. Not about the Shin Bet's role in the intelligence fiasco. Not about the jihadist right's incitement against the protesters, Arabs and journalists. Not even about the crazy police violence, which that night consisted of uniformed gangs of thugs attacking demonstrators with death blows and a group attack against young women.

I conclude that those "dangerous realms" are the toppling of Netanyahu's sick rule and saving Israel from his claws. And this, like a hostage deal and the stop to the disastrous war in Gaza, can only be achieved through protests by the masses and the families of the murdered and kidnapped. We've already seen what the silent generals and servile collaborators have to offer. You had a generous six months' grace period, you brought no real benefit and you've caused considerable harm. Sit quietly. Now it's our turn.

Uri Misgav