Bring in NATO Forces: Ehud Olmert on the ‘day after’ in Gaza

Bring in NATO Forces: Ehud Olmert on the ‘day after’ in Gaza

Israel doesn’t want to rule Gaza. It should ask for a NATO intervention force and restart two-state negotiations, writes the former Israel PM.

Israel has no intention, desire, or ability to remain in Gaza, and at the end of the campaign it must withdraw to the border. Meanwhile, together with the military steps, it must reach an agreement with the United States and its other friends about the entry of an international intervention force to Gaza, based on soldiers from NATO countries, which would replace the Israeli army.

There’s no chance that an army connected to the Palestinian Authority will enter Gaza with the assistance of the Israeli army or in its stead. Neither Palestinian forces nor the forces of any Arab country will agree to enter Gaza after the departure of the Israeli army.

Egypt, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia – all fervently desire the destruction of Hamas, which constitutes a threat to their domestic stability, but none of them wants to be identified with Israel’s military activity.

Therefore, if the United States and Israel’s other allies don’t support Israel remaining in Gaza, there’s no choice but to send a military intervention force of NATO countries, sponsored by the United Nations Security Council.

This would rehabilitate the civil administration and the government mechanisms in the Gaza Strip for a period of about a year and a half, as we did at the end of the Second Lebanon War in 2006 under the sponsorship of Security Council Resolution 1701, which in effect distanced Hezbollah from the border with Israel and laid the foundation for the quiet that prevailed on this front for 17 years.

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