Defense Minister Gallant
Defense Minister GallantAriel Hermoni/Defense Ministry

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant this evening (Wednesday) demanded that Prime Minister Netanyahu declare that Israel will not have civilian control of the Gaza Strip after the war and that there will be a discussion on the possibilities for a governing alternative to Hamas.

Galant stated that "Hamas no longer functions as a military organization - most of its battalions have been dismantled, and it has turned to terrorist warfare, conducted by individuals and small squads."

"However, as long as Hamas retains control over civilian life in Gaza, it may rebuild and strengthen, thus requiring the IDF to return and fight, in areas where it has already operated," Gallant said. "We must dismantle Hamas’ governing capabilities in Gaza."

"The key to this goal is military action and the establishment of a governing alternative in Gaza," he said.

According to Gallant, "In the absence of such an alternative, only two negative options remain: Hamas’ rule in Gaza, or Israeli military rule in Gaza."

The Defense Minister declared: "I must reiterate - I will not agree to the establishment of Israeli military rule in Gaza. Israel must not establish civilian rule in Gaza."

"Indecision, is in essence, a decision - this leads to a dangerous course, which promotes the idea of Israeli military and civilian governance in Gaza. This is a negative and dangerous option for the State of Israel strategically, militarily, and from a security standpoint," he said.

Gallant added, "I call on Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, to make a decision and declare that Israel will not establish civilian control over the Gaza Strip, that Israel will not establish military governance in the Gaza Strip, and that a governing alternative to Hamas in the Gaza strip will be raised immediately."

National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir condemned Gallant's remarks, saying, "From Gallant's point of view, there is no difference between whether Gaza will be controlled by IDF soldiers, and whether Hamas murderers will control it. This is the essence of the 'conceptzia' of a defense minister who failed on October 7, and continues to fail even now."

"Such a defense minister must be replaced in order to achieve the goals of the war," said Ben-Gvir.