Minister Benny Gantz
Minister Benny GantzDana Kaplan, Pool

The chairman of the National Unity party, Minister Benny Gantz, made a statement to the media this afternoon (Wednesday) regarding the continuation of the fighting in Gaza and conveyed a message to the Hamas terrorists.

"I patrol every day - in the army, in the local authorities, in businesses, among the evacuees, and among the families of the abducted and murdered - I hear about the challenges, but mostly about the abilities, about the greatness of our souls, and about the great lesson that Israeli society presents to its enemies," Gantz said.

He further elaborated on the tours he did: "In Netivot, I met Vicky, who owns a cell phone lab that restores and repairs phones for soldiers, victims, and the families of the murdered. In Kiryat Shmona, I met Irena, a seamstress who stayed in the city and repairs uniforms for the soldiers. In Yanuh-Jat Ganit turned the restaurant into a kitchen for soldiers. In Metula, under the threat of anti-tank missiles, the head of the council, David Azoulai, with the “remainers of Metula”, guard the city, the agriculture and manage the evacuees of the city from there."

He later conveyed a message to the Hamas leader in Gaza: "Sinwar thought he would shatter the Israeli society - and when he sees what is happening, he realizes that he is not only losing the battles - he and Hamas will lose the war. Whoever thought he would break the Jewish People - is breaking up Hamas. Every time we prove our strength - Sinwar And Hamas are breaking."

"In this war, the IDF and the security forces have proven how determined and ready we are. Some said that the ground forces are not trained, that this generation that did not know Lebanon, does not know how to maneuver. Our infantry fighters and armor soldiers prove completely otherwise. The cooperation between the air force, the navy, and the ground forces – is highly successful and achieving its targets. Our home defense - saves human lives despite thousands of rockets, and the multi-layered defense system works against threats near and far."

"In addition, our industries have switched to working 24/7 to provide us with breathing space, and the Tkuma Administration, which I visited this week, is building our future - because we are fighting for it. Everyone - the IDF, the Security Services, the Mossad, the police, all the emergency services and civil society - are acting with impressive strength and abilities that are yet to be learned. I would like to personally strengthen Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi - who oversees the fighting with determination and composure, and gives the soldiers, commanders, and all the people of Israel the knowledge that there is someone to trust."

Regarding the continuation of the fighting, Gantz said: "The IDF soldiers continue to operate in the depths of Gaza City against those who have turned the hospitals into military bases, from which war crimes are committed. There will be no cities of refuge, there will be no shelters. We will go wherever we need to in order to exterminate the murderers of children - above and below ground. In Gaza and around the world. We will reach the heads of government the same way we reached the centers of power. What we do effectively in the south - can work even better in the north, as needed."

Regarding the march of the hostages’ families, Gantz said: "At this moment, thousands are marching. They represent all of us in their longing for the release of the hostages. I would firstly like to strengthen them, the leadership is behind you, the entire Israeli society with you. Besides strength, I would like to emphasize that even if we are forced to cease fighting in order to return our hostages, there will be no break in the fighting until we achieve our goals. We continue with all efforts to return all the girls and boys to their borders. This is not a slogan - this is a fact."

"We are at war, but after 40 days, we have to enter the routine of war. I would like to call on all citizens from here - along with obeying the instructions, and continuing to contribute in the army and civil society organizations, to continue to maintain an economic routine as much as possible. I strengthen the heads of the authorities who are the front force of the government and show leadership.

In order to build such a routine, and at my request, the Prime Minister will convene the War Management Cabinet, together with the Minister of Finance and the finance personnel for a discussion aimed at meeting the needs of the economy during war."

"Patience, strong communities and evacuees that receive all their needs, are an integral part of our ability to win.

This routine of war will have to be turned into an emergency routine and a long battle, until we maintain a normal way of life and ensure peace.

“It will take time - but the nation of eternity is not afraid of a long journey."

גנץ: עם הנצח לא מפחד מדרך ארוכה