Publication International / Transnational - War / Peace - North Africa The long road to Gaza

A contextualization on the recent war on Gaza and the developments leading up to it. By Uri Weltmann.



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Uri Weltmann,


August 2014

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Practically everywhere around the globe, it is not possible to read the newspapers or watch the news without witnessing – either briefly or at great detail – the human tragedy in Gaza. The unjust war launched by the Israeli government of Benjamin Netanyahu, has resulted in vast destruction in one of the most densely populated areas in the world, at a great cost of lives. The people in Israel, in whose name the government has waged this military campaign, also fell victim to its policies and are expected not only to endure the hardships of war, but also to pay for its economic price, once the dust settles.

This article, since it was written as the aggression was still unfolding, does not aim to be a full reportage of the war, nor a study into its spiraling death toll. Instead, I will attempt to contextualize the recent war on Gaza, to describe some of the events that occurred in the months preceding it, and to lay out the political motivations behind the Israeli government's decision to launch it. Carl von Clausewitz's famous saying that war is a continuation of politics by other means, suggests that for a finer understanding of this war, one has to have a grasp of the developments leading up to it.

When writing history, the choice of the starting point is a highly political choice, one that might set a perspective for the whole account of events. I will choose to begin the «Long Road to Gaza» around a year before the war broke out, when after a few years of Netanyahu's refusal to sit down at the negotiating table, he nonetheless found himself doing this very thing.

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This Text was initiated by the RLS office in Israel. The author is responsible for its content, which does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the publisher.