Liberman: Persuade Gazans to Overthrow Hamas

YERUSHALAYIM -
Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman. (Marc Israel Sellem/Pool)

The best way for Israel to deal with Hamas is to bring the population of Gaza to the point where they are willing to overthrow the terror regime, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said Thursday. Speaking at Bar Ilan University, Liberman said that “Hamas cannot be deposed from the outside. All our efforts to impose a ‘king’ on Gazans have failed, and always will. The only way out is for Gazans to overthrow Hamas.”

And Hamas can be overthrown, Liberman said – contrary to the impression many people have. “The secret police forces of Eastern Europe, like the East German Stasi, were far more ruthless than Hamas,” he said. “Today the despots of the region – in Hungary, Germany and elsewhere – are gone. Here, too, we must set a clear goal, of bringing Gazans themselves to realize that they are better off without Hamas.”

That is going to have to happen in order for Israel and the Palestinians to achieve a peace deal, Liberman said. “We have some good allies in the moderate Sunni Arab world, but they do not have the courage to openly engage with us diplomatically, so they do it in secret. But we are getting closer to a situation where we can solve things, and I believe we need to look at the situation from a number of viewpoints – involving Arab countries, Palestinians and Israeli Arabs. All these things go together, and together they can help solve the dispute,” he added.