It's time to put ego aside and prevail

Opinion: Statements of intent like 'wiping off Gaza' can be dispensed with, all the military’s might should focus on the mission at hand; We will carry the pain with us for a long time; at this stage, victory photos and pompous declarations are not of interest

Nir Cohen|
While the numbers are climbing, the names are beginning to be collected, and the dust starts to settle, the enormity of the horror and the mighty blow that terrorist organization Hamas dealt to the strongest army in the Middle East are still hard to comprehend and digest.
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Unfortunately, the IDF was caught off guard on the Sabbath of the Sukkot holiday, unprepared, sluggish, numerically disadvantaged, without intelligence and without any warning. Even more seriously, as time passes, it's becoming clear that hundreds, perhaps thousands of Hamas fighters and collaborators, who trained for a year under the noses of the Military Intelligence Directorate and Shin Bet, were involved in the incident.
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טיילת אשקלון כוחות צה"ל
טיילת אשקלון כוחות צה"ל
IDF forces in Ashkelon
(Photo: Reuters /Ronen Zvulun)
From the videos that Hamas has released of the raid on the bases, it's already evident that a significant part of the soldiers were slaughtered in their sleep, some didn’t even have time to dress or grab a weapon before they were brutally murdered. It's a masterstroke in war terms. If we have sought a victory photo in every round in recent years, Hamas, regrettably, has enough for an album after Saturday.
High-ranking officers fell on the battlefield, entire units were severely damaged, dozens of soldiers and civilians were abducted, Israeli control was lost in settlements for many hours and all under rocket fire—these are almost all of the nightmare scenarios for the IDF in one day of combat. This is exactly how Mohammed Deif dreamed it would look, just like he planned, only better.
Now, the IDF will want to respond, to wage war and regain the lost honor, which has dissipated since Saturday morning. However, this is also the greatest danger: in moments like these, one must not let a wounded ego manage the campaign. Even the head of Mohammed Deif on a pike will not erase the images of horror and the dozens of abducted Israelis—soldiers, children, women and elders—who are now in Gaza.
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כוחות צה"ל ליד שדרות
כוחות צה"ל ליד שדרות
Israeli forces near Sderot
Cabinet members and senior defense and army officials are required to act with humility at this hour, set aside their egos for the time being and deliver a professional and creative response, assuming that Hamas has prepared for this too, that they know the IDF well enough from previous rounds and are waiting for us in the next.
Israel should not fear Hamas, but it must respect it. Statements of intent like “wiping off Gaza” or “sending Lebanon back to the Middle Ages” can be dispensed with. The IDF has an ethical, qualitative, technological and professional advantage, and despite the blow we've absorbed, we have demonstrated remarkable recovery capabilities in the past.
Now, all the military’s might should focus on the mission at hand. We will carry the pain with us for a long time; at this stage, victory photos and pompous declarations are not of interest.
חדשות טובות קורונה ניר שוקו כהןNir Cohen
Now is the time to decide and win, to dismantle Hamas once and for all, to determine that this is the challenge and to definitively target the objective. Because there is no choice. We will leave the soul-searching for later.
Security sources told our correspondent Yoav Zitun Sunday that in the northern sector, Nasrallah is deterred and does not want a confrontation. A similar assessment was received just a week ago from a senior security source about another organization, Hamas.
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