Rabbi Shmuel Eliyahu, chief rabbi of the northern city of Tzfat, published an op-ed offering a long-term solution for the residents of Gaza.
Quoting a suggestion from former US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, Rabbi Eliyahu said that Haley "sees how hundreds of thousands left Gaza in recent years. Not everyone, because Hamas stopped the emigration. It demands a lot of money for emigration - money that they don't have. And so she suggested helping them to fulfill their desire to leave Gaza."
Rabbi Eliyahu also noted that all of the polls published in recent years prove that most Gazans would like to emigrate to Europe or other countries.
"It's not just residents of Gaza," he wrote. "Millions of Muslims are emigrating from Syria and Lebanon and all Arab countries, to Europe. For residents of Gaza this desire is is even more powerful. They are suffering under Hamas' rule, which uses them and endangers their lives. Hamas is not developing Gaza, and half of them are unemployed, and those happy ones who are employed in Gaza receive pennies as their salary."
"In Europe, they will receive a salary ten times higher than in Gaza. Their lives will not be in constant danger. Their children will not be drawn into terror. In Europe they will have a future. Therefore, they wish to emigrate, but Hamas makes it very hard for them. It demands a high price for every person emigrating, and the cost of emigration is too high for them. This price is not too high for us and for the world. The price of this war in money is tens of billions of shekels. For a quarter or a third of this price, we could give all the residents of Gaza good lives in other places in the world."
He added, "Canada is not the only one willing to absorb them. There are many countries in Europe which do not have sufficient birthrates and which need manpower. In Gaza there are hundreds of thousands unemployed; in Europe there is a lack of manpower. The most humanitarian and considerate solution is emigration."
"This is both a humane solution and an economic solution. It is a solution which will prevent a lot of bloodshed. This solution is a disaster for Hamas. The leaders of Hamas are making a living off this ongoing war. Each of them is sitting on billions of dollars. Why should they end the war? Their children are in Qatar or Turkey, they have no interest in ending the war. But we definitely have an interest in ending this war, and the next wars after it.
"This is the most true end of the war," Rabbi Eliyahu stressed. "This is the most humanitarian proposal there is. And most of all, this is what the Torah teaches us. All the other solutions are proposals for a solution which will invite the next war. We don't have excess children for unnecessary wars. Let's promote the solution which will protect lives."