As part of the IDF's efforts to defend its military operation in Gaza against international criticism citing the harm inflicted on the civilian population there, Gaza Division Commander Brigadier-General Eyal Eisenberg said Israel had achieved its objectives in the fighting, and that this would become clear in time.
Eisenberg, who commanded the ground incursion into Gaza, said Thursday that "Hamas has been seriously deterred and realizes that the IDF was only using a small portion of its abilities."
He said the army maintained its integrity and morality during the fighting in Gaza. "IDF soldiers embarked on a just war, a no-choice war. The country is supposed to provide safety for its citizens and that's what we did," Eisenberg said.
He added that Hamas had no right to broach the subject of morality, as they had chosen a civilian battlefield. "When out of the brickwork a terrorist jumps out and starts shooting, or when an explosive device is planted in a satellite dish, we have no choice but to act accordingly," he said.
"Sometimes it's incomprehensible just how monstrously and inhumanely Hamas operatives behave, whether it's to send a woman out with a Koran in one hand and a grenade in the other, or to give a child weapons to transfer from place to place."
Eisenberg claims Hamas made use of civilians' homes without their knowledge. "Entire families in Gaza were living above packages of explosives without knowing it, for months and even years," he said.
The commander added that Hamas was currently trying to take control of Gaza once more, a difficult task due to the civilians angered at its conduct. "Hamas knows that the civilians are enraged," he said, and added that many Gazans were now so terrified of the organization that after the ceasefire was declared they ran towards the border fence in an attempt to escape.