ISRAEL BURIES ITS SONS AND DAUGHTERS… Ambassador Eli Belotsercovsky: We will not succumb to this terror

In this interview with BizNews, Ambassador Eli Belotsercovsky vows: “We will not succumb to this terror…Israel will do anything in order to defend its citizens…” The Ambassador gives an update on current Israeli military operations in the northern part of Gaza where Hamas is using civilians as human shields. He also speaks about Hezbollah’s support of the terror attack and the “very tense situation” currently on the border with Lebanon. And he reveals that Hamas has an office in South Africa. “This is, in my opinion, absolutely shocking. The Hamas was responsible for the murder of about 1,300 civilians now, and not only of Israelis, but also of people of many other nationalities. And the fact that there is a Hamas office operating freely in South Africa, in my opinion, it’s completely unacceptable.” – Chris Steyn

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Relevant timestamps from the interview

  • 00:09 – Introductions
  • 00:28 – Eli Belotsercovsky on the latest developments
  • 01:37 – Has there been any contact with Hamas
  • 02:23 – Civilians evacuating parts of Gaza
  • 03:55 – Is it possible that another country could have been involved in the planning of this attack
  • 04:46 – What is happening on the border with Lebanon at the moment
  • 05:24 – Mobilisation troops in Iraq towards Syria and Lebanon?
  • 05:46 – How far is Israel prepared to go
  • 06:36 – Why the intelligence services and the military seem to have been caught off guard
  • 07:09 – Are there any parallels with previous crises? Israel had to face
  • 08:54 – South Africa’s continued support for Hamas
  • 09:36 – Where does this leave the future of Israel
  • 11:42 – Conclusions

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Highlights from the Interview

Six days after the biggest terror attack on Israeli soil, Israel’s ambassador in South Africa, Eli Belotsercovsky gives BizNews an update on the war.

“…at the moment in Israel, they are still counting bodies. We are still trying to identify some. Some were butchered to such an extent that it was impossible to see. 

“There are thousands and thousands of people that are at the cemeteries burying their loved ones, their families.

“And people are very, very concerned about the fate of the hostages that were kidnapped, abducted, through the Gaza Strip by Hamas. Among them, most of them are civilians, old women, old people, some of them Holocaust survivors, without any drugs, any medications, and very young children. Some are younger than three years old. Young women.  Families. It’s an absolute tragedy. It’s a very, very difficult situation.”

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The death toll in the “massive, massive attack on unprecedented scale” now stands at 1 300, mostly civilians.  “…we are all with the families of the people who lost their loved ones, and with the families of the people who have family members in Gaza. It’s absolutely horrible.”

The Ambassador says Israel’s main goal now is to prevent such attacks in the future and to “dismantle the wide terrorist infrastructure” that Hamas has created in the Gaza Strip.

“…we have asked civilians to move from the northern part of Gaza, which is the focus currently of the military operations. Our war is not with the people of Gaza. We don’t target the civilian population. In fact, every day there is a dialogue between the Israeli Army and the humanitarian organisations that are operating in Gaza in order to assist the civilian population of Gaza in order to prevent any victims from the civilian population. 

“…unfortunately, as of now, Hamas is using the civilian population as human shields. And there are victims that we deeply regret, but our aim is to prevent such attacks from repeating. We just cannot take it. And I don’t think any other country would be able to accept such an attack without the duty to prevent it from happening in the future.”

Asked how far Israel is prepared to go with the war, he says: “Well, Israel will do anything in order to defend its citizens. Again, we are not trying to attack civilians. It’s not a question of retaliation. It’s not a question of destruction. It’s a question of dismantling the terrorist infrastructure of Hamas because what happened now was unprecedented. It was a great shock. We cannot, just cannot afford having such an attack again. Without dismantling the terrorist infrastructure of Hamas and Gaza, it’s only a matter of time.”

South Africa’s continued support for Hamas has enraged the Ambassador: “Well, we were very much surprised to find out that there is a Hamas office in South Africa. This is, in my opinion, absolutely shocking. Hamas was responsible for the murder of about 1,300 civilians now, and not only of Israelis, but also of people of many other nationalities. And the fact that there is a Hamas office operating freely in South Africa, in my opinion, it’s completely unacceptable.”

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Asked which country’s other than Iran could have been involved in the planning of the terror attack, the Ambassador says: “Well, I think at the moment it seems that Hezbollah, the terrorist organisation that operates from Lebanon and is supported by Iran, is supporting this attack.”

He says there is currently “a very tense situation” on the border with Lebanon. “The Israeli army is prepared for any eventuality. We had some attempts to attack us from Lebanon. There has been rocket fire, there have been attacks by infiltrators that tried to penetrate into Israeli territory. These attacks have been repelled…but we are ready for any eventuality.”

As for the apparent mobilisation of Hashed troops in Iraq towards Syria and Lebanon, he says: “We are closely following these developments, of course. Again, we are ready. If anyone tries to attack Israel, we will repel this attack. That’s absolutely certain.”

However, he does not believe there is a link between the terror attack and conflict elsewhere in the world, like the war in Ukraine. “I don’t see any connection. I think what we saw in Israel was, some people call it, and I agree with this, it was an attack with some sort of mediaeval cruelty, with the butchering of women and children and taking pride in it, recording it.

“This is something that is unprecedented in modern history. And I believe that it really requires condemnation by all free-loving people in the world. This is something that cannot be accepted, absolutely cannot be accepted.”

On what the future now holds for Israel, the Ambassador vows: “…we will continue, we will overcome. And we will continue to prosper, and we will continue to share our achievements with others, with other countries, with friendly countries and so on. And we will not succumb to this terror.”

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