Hamas terrorists on the border
Hamas terrorists on the borderAbed Rahim Khatib/Flash90

Israeli society will have to rebuild itself on almost every level, on the day after the war.

We discussed some of these challenges with Prof. Kobi Michael, a member of the Misgav Institute and an expert on strategy and national security, who also deals head-on with the foreign media and their outrageous questions.

According to him, rebuilding the Israeli society should have started the day after the terror attack and not wait until the day after the war. Prof. Michael emphasizes that the immediate reconstruction has several implications for several reasons: "The first is to prove the ability of the Israeli government and the State of Israel to deal with the situation and restore the citizens' trust in the country and its abilities. Second, there is a need to provide a support system for the residents who survived the event and allow them a quick and easy return for those who want it."

He points out that "it is not just about the surrounding communities, but also about Sderot, which has been emptied of its residents, Ofakim, Netivot and Ashkelon. The return to normality is the evidence and indication of our resilience." In addition, he states that the message that must be conveyed to Hamas and the entire violent neighborhood in which we live by returning to normalcy and rehabilitation, "that they know who they are dealing with, a strong nation and a solid society with the ability to recover as quickly as possible. The more they hit us, the more we will strike back, they will fire rockets and we will build more cities. That should be the message."

In his opinion, "the fact that this country is still in ruins and the government is unable to prove its ability is their greatest achievement. They want to collapse the resilience of Israeli society, make us despair of the state, pick up ourselves, and leave here, and we must not give them that.”

In response to our question if it makes sense to focus on the military aspect and leave the reconstruction stages for afterward, beyond the explanatory aspect which is also important when ministers and representatives from all over the world see the places where the horrific massacre was carried out, he replies and states that "there is no connection between the security actions and the civilian actions. Things should be done at the same time. The War Cabinet should give its opinion on this as well and give the direction to the reconstruction directorate who should have already met with all the contractors and construction companies and embarked on a reconstruction operation that has never been seen here before."

As for public opinion, Prof. Michael says that "the scenes have already been photographed and documented. There is an explanatory effect here, but it is nothing compared to the mental impact of continuing the existing situation. That is why we must create the right balance here."

Michael also says that he himself is present in the international media around the clock "and this is a front that is becoming more and more difficult", in his words. "The world is about to turn against us because it is very concerned about the humanitarian reality in the Gaza Strip, and I ask them why they don't show a drop of empathy and interest in the humanitarian plight in the State of Israel. There are hundreds of thousands who have been displaced from their homes and this land has been destroyed and millions of people whose lives have been disrupted and they live under this madness of running to the shelters, and their lives are saved only thanks to the fact that Israel invests its resources and money in the production of life-saving systems and not life-killing systems as is done on the other side. Why are you not interested in this? This is part of the explanatory message that we need to convey in order to expose them to this reality that Israel has never experienced."

Prof. Michael says that he hears questions in the international media that the mere raising of them is disturbing and "I tell them that when they worry about the Palestinian population, take into account that at least half of them are Hamas supporters who have allowed this new model of ISIS to thrive and flourish. I remind them of the euphoria that was in Gaza, the fireworks, and the distribution of sweets on Saturday morning when Jewish blood was spilled when they thought it was the beginning of the end of Israel, is this the population you want to care for? Is this the population you are so concerned about its future?"

"We are paying a terrible price in blood for our continued disdain for the culture of incitement that has developed in Palestinian society. We are paying a price in blood for allowing UNRWA to continue to exist and feed the narrative of hatred and demonization of Israel, the narrative of violence and murder that is taught in UNRWA schools, an organization that the UN manages. I have published extensive research on this organization, but I and others have been treated as delusional. I tell journalists from around the world, that they must ask how the psychological infrastructure that enables this abominable murder has developed? It happened thanks to their money, silence, and forgiveness."

Prof. Michael adds that he has also told the foreign media that "this war is not a war between Israel and Hamas, but the last line of defense in the war between the forces of light and the forces of darkness. We are fighting your war and your lives, and you don't understand this. If only you would listen to Hamas and understand that you are their next target. In Hamas’s eyes, Paris and Rome are the next targets, in their view there is no place for either Jews or Christians in the Islamic caliphate that will be established, and you will be condemned to either convert to Islam or be slaughtered. We cannot say this enough or loud enough."