The US Perspective

The war between Israel and Hamas is likely far from over; still, the future governance of the Gaza Strip has ignited a complex debate among global powers, notably between Israel and the United States. The Biden administration, through the voice of US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby, has voiced a clear stance on the post-war scenario in Gaza, emphasizing the importance of Palestinian self-determination and opposition to any reduction in Gaza’s territory or the displacement of its residents. Kirby’s statements reflect a vision for the Palestinian people to express their will through a revitalized Palestinian Authority (PA), starkly contrasting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s proposals.

What Israel Has in Mind

Netanyahu’s plan, which has been met with skepticism in Washington, outlines a vision for Gaza that diverges significantly from that of the US. The Israeli proposal imagines a governance model that excludes the PA, citing its failure to condemn the October 7 Hamas-led attacks on Israel. This plan includes indefinite Israeli military operations in Gaza to prevent future terror activity, the establishment of a security buffer zone, and the appointment of local officials unconnected to terrorism to manage civil services. Furthermore, it calls for international cooperation to curb smuggling into Gaza, financial support from Arab countries for reconstruction, and efforts toward the demilitarization and de-radicalization of Gaza’s population.

While in Argentina, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken remarked on the Israeli plan, stating his intention to “reserve judgment” until he could review all the details. However, he reiterated the US’s opposition to any form of reoccupation of Gaza or reduction of its territory, emphasizing that Gaza must not serve as a base for terrorism.