Daily Israel Report

Bennett: Time to Turn 'Iron Dome' into 'Iron Fist'

Economics Minister slams Hamas 'cynicism' and 'cowardice,' says its time has run out as Israel prepares a ground offensive.
By Ido Ben-Porat, Tova Dvorin
First Publish: 7/17/2014, 7:03 PM

Naftali Bennett
Naftali Bennett
Flash 90

Economics Minister and Jewish Home Chairman Naftali Bennett toured communities and factories in the south on Thursday, in a show of solidarity with communities barraged by rocket fire.

"In recent days, Israeli citizens have been subject to deliberate and sustained attacks, as Hamas intends to kill as many Jews as possible in as many ways as possible," Bennett said. "[They attack] with missiles by air, infiltration [attempts] by sea, bombs on the ground and tunnels underground."

Bennett noted that Hamas is even crueler to the Arabs it claims to protect and defend.

"Hamas operates in a cynical and cowardly way," he said. "Israel fights to protect its children and Hamas fights at the expense of the children of Gaza."

"In light of the prolonged nature of this attack, Hamas's time has run out," he continued. "It's time to change the Iron Dome, a weapon of defense, to an Iron Fist - a weapon of offense."

Bennett added that he had high hopes for a ground offensive. So far, 48,000 soldiers have been approved to be called up to the front lines; at least 35,000 have been known to have been called up as of earlier this week. 

"Tens of thousands of IDF combat soldiers, regular and reserve, have been working day and night," he said. "The citizens of Israel, the Israeli government, and the Security Cabinet - all are united behind the Prime Minister of Israel." 

"We will win," he assured. 

Bennett's remarks surface as ministers weigh the possibility of a ground offensive in Gaza. 

As Operation Protective Edge ends its tenth day, an estimated 1,400 rockets have been fired on Israeli civilians.