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US Not Planning to Let Post-War Gaza Slip Out of Its Grasp

© AFP 2023 / BASHAR TALEBA Palestinian boy stands on the rubble of a destroyed house in Nuseirat following Israeli bombardment overnight on May 23, 2024, amid continuing battles between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip.
A Palestinian boy stands on the rubble of a destroyed house in Nuseirat following Israeli bombardment overnight on May 23, 2024, amid continuing battles between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip. - Sputnik International, 1920, 24.05.2024
Despite a Gaza Strip ceasefire still being in the works amid Israel's war on Hamas, a growing number of reports have been focusing on ideas for oversight of the post-war enclave involving the US and Arab nations.
The US has every intention of playing a significant role in post-war Gaza affairs, Politico reported.
To stake out its claim, the Biden administration is considering appointing a US official to serve as its top civilian adviser in the region after the latest spiral of Palestine-Israel violence ends, four US officials were cited as saying.
The adviser would ostensibly be working in close contact with the commanding officer – a Palestinian or representative of an Arab nation - of a force likely made up of mostly Palestinians.
The degree of official authority that such an adviser would have is being debated in private discussions involving the White House, Pentagon, and State Department, the report said.
It was underscored that such a potential US adviser would not enter the embattled enclave itself, purportedly to avoid “any implication that the US would be dictating the future of the territory.” Accordingly, the sources said the adviser could be based in Sinai or Jordan.
The "adviser" plan is just one of various post-war scenarios involving the US being considered by Washington, said the insiders. It comes as the Biden administration has been struggling to juggle duly “outraged” bombast about the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza with 'business as usual' weapons sales to its ally Israel. Furthermore, while the US has long prided itself on its oversized role in 'mediating' relations between Israel and Palestine, these efforts have so far fallen flat.
One other contentious issue is the makeup of a possible future peacekeeping force in the region. Washington reportedly hopes to persuade Arab states such as the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and Morocco to join the force. However, getting Israel to agree to it will be challenging, the publication acknowledged.
We have talked about a number of different formulas for some kind of interim security forces in Gaza… and we have talked to a lot of partners about how the United States could support that with all of our capabilities from outside Gaza,” one senior administration official was quoted as saying.
Furthermore, there has been talk of setting up an interim governing structure made up of Gazans. The US, Israel, and other regional players are believed to be in favor of such a "Palestinian Council."
The official recognition of Palestinian statehood by Norway, Ireland, and Spain on May 28 is seen as a sign that some US allies are pushing for a sovereign state of Palestine.
Palestinians flee from east to west of Khan Younis, Gaza Strip, during the ongoing Israeli bombardment, Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023 - Sputnik International, 1920, 04.05.2024
Israel's Plan for Postwar Gaza Ignores Will of Palestinians and Regional Players
The covert planning regarding post-war Gaza involving a civilian adviser and peacekeeping force echoes ideas floated in a classified March State Department paper seen by Politico.
In it, the Department of State proposed creating a Temporary Security Mission for Gaza (TSMG) in the form of a “hybrid model of police and Carabinieri/gendarmerie,” per the document. The document noted that the mission “should not be a US-commanded” one, as it “would likely encounter fierce resistance by the Palestinian people given US support for Israel’s military campaign in Gaza.” The force reportedly needed to be comprised of Palestinians and representatives of Arab-speaking countries, and was to be led by “an appropriately senior officer” from the Palestinian Authority, Egypt, or Israel.
It was added in the "top secret" paper that Washington would not send troops to Gaza. Instead, it would send a US civilian to take on the role of a “director-general” to manage coordination, advisory and training tasks.
As for Israel, reports indicated earlier in May that Israeli government officials have been quietly discussing a scheme to rule Gaza once the war is over.
Citing individuals familiar with the talks, The New York Times wrote that Israel appeared ready to share oversight of the strip with Arab countries such as Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, as well as with the US.
However, as talk of post-war Gaza continues, negotiations on a ceasefire and the return of hostages have stalled, while the plight of Palestinians in the enclave goes from bad to worse.

The Ministry of Health in Gaza says over 36,000 Palestinians have died in the Gaza Strip since October 7 amid Israel's war on Hamas. As a devastating humanitarian crisis rages, over 900,000 Palestinians have been displaced by fighting in just two weeks.

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