Pollak’s take is quite similar to mine, though more detailed and probably better informed. He concludes that “for Hamas, the war was a major setback, but not a devastating one.” it was not a devastating setback “only because Israel decided not to make it so.” That is, “the political leadership did not allow the IDF to continue advancing until Hamas’s leadership, ensconced in bunkers underneath hospitals, could be eliminated.” For this reason, Pollak concludes, Israel did not win.
Because I view the Hamas-Israel clash as a zero-sum game, I believe that any “major setback” for Hamas is a “win” for Israel. But, as I said in my post-mortem, the victory will probably prove to be a limited one.
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