Justice Minister: Option to invade Gaza is on the table

After biggest mortar barrage since 2014 Operation Protective Edge, the minister said that security and political officials were considering all options, including taking control of Gaza.


Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked said Tuesday that security and political officials agreed “all options are on the table” with respect to the crisis in Gaza, including the possibility that Israel could re-occupy the coastal Strip.

Speaking to the Hebrew-Language Radio Darom, Shaked said it was a “miracle” that nobody was killed in a mortar strike on a kibbutz adjacent to Gaza Tuesday morning, adding that had the incident included Israeli fatalities, it could have led to war.

“Our reaction must be very strong,” Shaked said, “as if (Israeli) blood had been spilled. All options are on the table. We must seize the opportunity of this miracle to respond strongly.

Shaked explained that during security consultations in recent days, political leaders and military officers have “seen eye-to-eye” on the need to respond forcefully to cross-border attacks. The only consideration for the officials has been to ensure they make the “right move at the right time,” she said.

“Should we comprehensively ‘defeat’ Hamas?  When you say that, it means bringing down the Hamas government, which would mean whatever it means.”

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Asked whether that could include ordering the IDF to re-occupy the area, which Israel vacated in August 2005, Shaked said, “Yes. That includes (the possibility) that we might re-conquer the Strip. That option is definitely on the table. We have to face the truth,” she said.