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Netanyahu Demands Hamas Fighters Surrender While Promising That War Will Continue

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Dec. 10 called on Hamas “terrorists” to surrender to Israeli troops, urging them not to sacrifice their lives for Hamas chief in Gaza Yahya Sinwar. “In the past few days, dozens of Hamas terrorists have surrendered before our forces. They put down their weapons and turn themselves over to our brave fighters,” Netanyahu said in a video statement, reported the Times of Israel. “It will take more time, the war is still in full force, but this is the beginning of the end of Hamas. I say to the terrorists of Hamas: It’s over. Don’t die for Sinwar. Surrender now,” he dictated.

National Security Adviser Tzachi Hanegbi also promised a long war, telling Israel’s Channel 12 TV that the U.S. has set no deadline for Israel to achieve its goals. “The evaluation that this can’t be measured in weeks is correct, and I’m not sure it can be measured in months,” he said.

Netanyahu’s statement came as Israel has been using the imagery that began to appear last week, of IDF troops detaining Palestinian men, stripped down to their underwear and forced to sit outside, on the ground in the cold weather, for psywar against both Palestinians and Israelis. Amos Yadlin, former head of Israeli military intelligence, told the Wall Street Journal that “a modern war is not only a war with guns and airplanes. It’s also a psychological war.” For Gazans, the photos are meant to counter the Hamas narrative that it is successfully fighting against Israel. To the Israeli public, the photos send the message that it is winning, he said.

A senior IDF officer also claimed on Dec. 10 that in recent days the military has identified “signs of Hamas breaking” in the Gaza Strip, as the IDF continued its offensive against the terror group. The officer said: “The extent of the destruction and damage creates command and control problems [for Hamas]. There are areas in the Gaza Strip that Hamas no longer controls militarily. Despite the achievements, we are not close to the end of the fighting. We continue to operate with great intensity, and work to dismantle entire battalions of Hamas,” he stated, clearly indicating that the war will go on.

The Palestinians in Gaza are not the only target. Palestinian-Israeli Member of the Knesset, Ahmad Tibi re-posted a photo on X that has previously been posted by Yair Netanyahu, the prime minister’s son, showing a map of Jordan, with the writing “Jordan is Palestine and Palestine is Jordan.” The Middle East Monitor notes that many within the occupation echo similar slogans, calling for Palestinians to be displaced and ethnically cleansed to Jordan. Some go even further and call for Israeli control over all of Jordan to create “Greater Israel.”