Hamas can’t be defeated ‘as an ideology’: Israel army | World News

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Israel’s top army spokesman said Wednesday that Hamas cannot be defeated as an ideology, prompting the government to quickly re-assert that it remains committed to the Palestinian militant group’s destruction.

A smoke plume billows during Israeli bombardment(AFP)
A smoke plume billows during Israeli bombardment(AFP)

More than eight months of war, sparked by Hamas’s unprecedented October 7 attack on Israel, have failed to oust the Islamist militants from the Palestinian territory but have brought widespread devastation.

“Hamas is an ideology, we cannot eliminate an ideology,” Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari told Israel’s Channel 13 broadcaster.

“To say that we are going to make Hamas disappear is to throw sand in people’s eyes. If we don’t provide an alternative, in the end, we will have Hamas.”

His comments were quickly rebuffed by the office of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose cabinet has stated its Gaza offensive will not end until Hamas is defeated.

“The political and security cabinet headed by Prime Minister Netanyahu defined as one of the goals of the war the destruction of Hamas’ military and governmental capabilities,” his office said in a statement.

“The IDF is of course committed to this.”

The October 7 attack that triggered the war resulted in the deaths of 1,194 people in Israel, mostly civilians, according to an AFP tally based on Israeli official figures.

The militants also seized 251 hostages. Of these, 116 remain in Gaza, although the army says 41 are dead.

Israel’s retaliatory offensive aimed at eliminating Hamas has killed at least 37,396 people in Gaza, also mostly civilians, according to the Hamas-run territory’s health ministry.

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