Israeli Ground Offensive Underway

What comes next is anyone's guess.

The reporting is, to say the least, disjointed.

Reuters (“Gaza under blackout as Israel reports ‘good progress’ in war against Hamas“):

Gaza was largely cut off from the outside world on Saturday after Israel expanded air and ground operations and suggested its long-promised ground offensive against the Hamas militants controlling the Palestinian enclave had begun.

Israel said on Saturday morning its troops, sent in on Friday night, were still in the field, without elaborating. The country had earlier made only brief sorties into Gaza during three weeks of bombardment to root out Hamas militants, who it said had killed 1,400 Israelis, mostly civilians, on Oct. 7.

“The forces are still in the field and continuing the war,” Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari told a news briefing on Saturday morning.

Gaza was under an almost complete communications blackout, with internet and phone services cut for more than 12 hours by Saturday morning. The Palestinian Red Crescent said Israel had cut the communications.

Hagari also said Israel would allow trucks carrying food, water and medicine to enter Gaza on Saturday, indicating that bombing might pause, at least in the area of its border with Egypt where small amounts of aid have been arriving.

Aid agencies have said a humanitarian catastrophe is unfolding in Gaza, whose 2.3 million people are under a total Israeli blockade. Health authorities in the Hamas-run enclave have said more than 7,000 Palestinians have been killed since Israel’s bombardment began.

The head of the World Health Organisation (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said the blackout was “making it impossible” for ambulances to reach the injured in Gaza.

“Evacuation of patients is not possible under such circumstances, nor to find safe shelter,” he said on X.

He, the Red Crescent and the U.N. children’s fund UNICEF said they were unable to contact their staff and facilities.

Al Jazeera, which broadcast live satellite TV footage overnight showing frequent blasts in Gaza, said Israeli air strikes had hit areas around the enclave’s main hospital, Al Shifa, in Gaza City in the north.

Israel’s military accused Hamas on Friday of using the hospital as a shield for its tunnels and operational centres, an allegation the group denied.

Reuters could not verify reports of strikes near the hospital. Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) said it was particularly worried for patients, medical staff and thousands of families taking shelter there and at other health facilities.

An Al Jazeera correspondent, reporting live on Saturday morning, described the cut in internet and phone communications as “catastrophic” for rescue efforts following a night of heavy Israeli bombardment.

Unable to reach ambulance services, Palestinians were transporting the dead and injured to hospital in their cars, the correspondent said. The Hamas-run government said rescue crews were unable to receive emergency calls.


Some of the relatives of people captured in Israel during the Oct. 7 Hamas assault demanded an urgent meeting with the Israeli government after what they called “the most terrible of all nights“.

“None of the war cabinet bothered to meet with the families of the hostages to explain one thing – whether the ground operation endangers the well-being of the 229 hostages in Gaza,” the Hostages and Missing Persons Families Forum headquarters said.

Defence Minister Yoav Gallant said he would meet with family representatives of the hostages on Sunday. The hostages include children and the elderly and many people with foreign passports. Four women have been released so far.

NPR (“Israeli troops remain in Gaza, marking a significant escalation of the conflict“):

 Israeli troops remained on the ground in the Gaza Strip Saturday as part of what military officials have described as an “expansion” of ground operations, marking a significant escalation in Israel’s war with the militant group Hamas that began earlier this month.

For the last several days, the Israel Defense Forces had mounted a series of limited incursions into Gaza, in which soldiers left soon after entering. But Saturday’s announcement was the first extended presence of Israeli troops in the territory.

“Expanding the operation serves all the war’s goals,” said Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari at a press briefing Saturday morning.

Israeli troops entered from northern Gaza, Hagari said, among them ground troops, armor and artillery. Footage released by the Israeli military appeared to show tanks entering along the beach on Gaza’s north end. The ground operation was supported by “very significant, massive attacks from the sea” and heavy air bombardment, Hagari said.

“The impending IDF operation is set to neutralize the threats of Hamas with precision and intensity,” Hagari said in a video message posted to social media Saturday afternoon local time.


IDF fighter jets struck 150 underground targets across the northern Gaza Strip, officials said, killing a number of Hamas operatives. Among those killed was Asem Abu Rakaba, the IDF said, describing him as an official who had helped to plan the Oct. 7 attack in which hundreds of Hamas fighters flooded across Gaza’s border and killed more than 1,400 Israeli soldiers and civilians. Abu Rakaba was responsible for the drones and paragliders used by Hamas that day, an IDF statement said.

“Their death and assassination leads to a good advancement in the war’s stages and allows the forces on the ground to battle a weaker enemy,” Hagari added.

Snippets from the BBC live blog (“Israel pounds Gaza with non-stop strikes after overnight bombing causes ‘total chaos’“):

As we’ve been reporting, a communications blackout across Gaza has made it difficult for civilians, aid agencies and journalists to contact the outside world, with some reports attributing the outage to Israeli authorities.

The BBC’s Today programme asked Mark Regev, senior advisor to Benjamin Netanyahu, if cutting the lines was an acceptable practice.

“In military operations conducted by the British army, the American army often it is standard behaviour to disrupt the communications of your enemy,” Regev said.

Asked directly by the BBC if Israel had deliberately cut the communications to Gaza, Regev replied: “I didn’t say that. I just said that it is normal practise for Western, democratic armies to do”.

He added that he was waiting for a “full briefing” from the IDF to be able to answer why lines were down.


Israel’s defence minister Yoav Gallant says the country’s military has “shifted phases in the war” and that its operation will continue “until further notice”.

“Tonight the earth in Gaza shook,” he told Israeli television channel Kan 11.

“We attacked above the ground and under it. We attacked terrorist operatives from all levels everywhere. The directives to the forces are clear: the operation will continue until further notice.”


The IDF has told the BBC a variety of methods has been used to relay its latest warning to the people of Gaza, including dropping leaflets from the air, radio, the internet and what are described as “additional methods we cannot elaborate about.”


Israeli army spokesperson Daniel Hagari has issued an “urgent plea” to the citizens of northern Gaza and Gaza city to move south “immediately”.

In a post on X, Hagari says they will be able to return to their homes when once the “intense hostilities end”.

He adds that Hamas puts their lives in danger by placing weapons in civilian areas, and that Israel will not forget the group’s brutal 7 October attacks.

“Your window to act is closing,” Hagari warns. “Move south for your own safety.”

The carnage and destruction from this will be awful, quite probably with no resolution of the underlying conflict on the other side. That’s tragic and frustrating but it’s not at all obvious what the alternatives are.

The idea that any democratic government would refrain from a ground invasion under these circumstances is a pipe dream. Similarly, the idea that they would postpone such an attack—which they have already done for three weeks—indefinitely while somebody negotiates with terrorists to release hostages makes no sense.

The notion that the IDF is going to constantly give up the advantage they gain from an offensive to allow supply vehicles to enter is equally absurd. That’s just not how wars work.

That they cut communications ahead of the invasion is simply standard practice. They have their own comms and the ability to fight at night, so they’re naturally going to use that to their advantage.

That journalists, aid workers, and the like are getting killed, in danger of getting killed, and unable to communicate with their loved ones is, of course, awful. It is, alas, the nature of the enterprise: if you intentionally put yourself in a war zone, you’re assuming that risk.

All in all, while the “human animals” language used by senior Israeli officials in the early going, along with cutting off food, water, and electricity were own-goals that played into Hamas’ hands, it’s not all that obvious what more the IDF is supposed to do under the circumstances. By warning non-combatants of attacks, they’re denying themselves the element of surprise and yet they’re continually doing that. While the options to flee to modestly safe zones are decidedly less than ideal, it’s certainly much more than Hamas afforded Israeli civilians while they murdered, mutilated, and kidnapped.

Again, I have no idea what the end game here is. It’s an emotionally driven reckoning, to be sure. But they’re making clear that they expect Palestinians to be living in Gaza once the fighting ends; this isn’t an attempt at ethnic cleansing. But that also means that there is going to be a Hamas or some other militant Palestinian group arising from the ashes of the conflict.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Tony W says:

    Gotta give ’em credit – they know how to manage the 24-hour news cycles.

    Attack on a Saturday morning when fewer people are paying attention. Black out all communication mechanisms beforehand to shut down live, first-hand accounts.

    By Monday morning this will be two-day old news and the world will have moved on to whatever crisis or interesting thing pops up over the next 48 hours.

    The whole thing is sickening – the entire thing.

  2. James Joyner says:

    @Tony W: In fairness, Friday night and early Saturday morning is probably the ideal time to launch a ground invasion while minimizing civilian casualties vice doing it in the middle of a workday. And, again, of course they cut off communications. Hamas uses them, too.

  3. Slugger says:

    The quote from NPR that this a significant escalation of Israel’s war with Hamas that began earlier this month neglects to mention that Israel did not start this war. This war was started by Hamas. I don’t think Hamas wants to avoid civilian casualties in Gaza; they certainly acted in a manner that would guarantee war.

  4. James Joyner says:

    @Slugger: Well sure. Pretty much every story on the war reminds us of that—which is atypical for reporting, certainly in America. But that doesn’t mean this isn’t a significant escalation.

  5. Michael Reynolds says:

    It will be interesting to see just what Israel has in mind. Surely most Hamas fighters have gone south with the evacuated civilians. Are they sending teams down into the tunnels which certainly must be booby-trapped and ambush-ready? Not sure how tanks even move in narrow urban streets filled with rubble. I assume Hamas has drones, but I wonder how well they can be directed given the take-down of communications. Do they need an internet or cell connection for real-time observation?

  6. JKB says:

    Hamas is as legitimate administrator of Gaza as Joe Biden is of the US:

    Hamas won a majority of seats in the 2006 Palestinian Authority Legislative Council election. In its preliminary statement, the Carter Center’s observation mission found that the elections were conducted in line with international standards,….
    In the wake of the election, clashes between Fatah and Hamas escalated until June 2007, when Hamas took military control of Gaza, routing Fatah-backed security forces. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas immediately announced a new emergency government in the West Bank that excluded Hamas. The international community responded by channeling funds and support to the West Bank government and hardening its no-contact policy toward Hamas-controlled Gaza…

    –Carter Center

    Maybe the Gaza Palestinians have come to dislike their properly elected government, but it is not like Hamas is just some group that is operating without the approval of the legitimate government. They are the democratically elected government. And when you government starts a war, that means you are at war.

  7. Michael Reynolds says:

    I don’t think we can accuse Hamas of democracy because they won a single election 17 years ago.

  8. James Joyner says:

    @JKB: I initially mistook your opening line as insipid trolling but you’re actually making a point. Like @Michael Reynolds, I’m dubious that a one-time election under dubious circumstances 17 years ago constitutes “democracy,” much less a sense of where the populace—the lion’s share of whom weren’t even born in 2006—stand now.

  9. charontwo says:


    Hamas is as legitimate administrator of Gaza as Joe Biden is of the US

    Hamas was elected to a 4-year term 17 years ago. They have not risked holding any elections since.

  10. charontwo says:


    Big empires, like oak trees, out of little acorns grow. Alexander’s empire started with Macedonia, Rome stated with a city-state, the Duchy of Muscovy grew into the Russian Empire (for a while, the Soviet Union).

    Read Hamas’ charter, what they say consistently. These are religious nutters with global ambitions – namely a restored Caliphate and a world, not just the Levant judenfrei. So of course they regard Gazan lives as expendable – basically pawns to be expended in pursuit of the ultimate goal. Things like the blast and fire at the al-Ahli hospital are wonderful sources of shared hatred around the world for Hamas’ most immediate enemies.

    ETA: “From the river to the sea” is the ambition of some ordinary Palestinians. Hamas has much grander ambitions.

  11. charontwo says:


    From my Yastreblyansky newsletter:

    Also, it’s totally untrue, as a cursory Wikipedia check confirms; to the extent that Palestinians “elected” anybody in that vote of 17 years ago (for the legislature of the whole of the occupied territories, not Gaza alone), that was not at all the reason they gave Hamas a 44.45% plurality, which worked out to being a majority of 74 out of 132 parliamentary seats. Exit polls indicated an absolute rejection of Hamas policies on Israel, and a desire for a unity government in which all parties would participate:

    Support for a Peace Agreement with Israel: 79.5% in support; 15.5% in opposition

    Should Hamas change its policies regarding Israel: Yes – 75.2%; No – 24.8%

    Under Hamas corruption will decrease: Yes – 78.1%; No – 21.9%

    Under Hamas internal security will improve: Yes – 67.8%; No – 32.2%

    Support for Hamas’ impact on the national interest: Positive – 66.7&; Negative – 28.5%

    Support for a national unity government?: Yes – 81.4%; no – 18.6%

    Rejection of Fatah’s decision not to join a national unity government: Yes – 72.5%; No – 27.5%

    Satisfaction with election results: 64.2% satisfied; 35.8% dissatisfied[36]

    The plurality voted for Hamas in spite of its ferocious anti-Israel policy (presumably in the recognition that in the asymmetry of power Hamas would never be able to implement it anyhow), and in the somewhat desperate hope that they might be able to do something about corruption above all, crime, and poverty and unemployment; and it particularly did not want Hamas to rule on their own.

    None of which they got, of course. Israeli interference and Fatah-Hamas conflict stopped any possibility. The Fatah-dominated Palestinian Authority ended up disregarding the election and retaining power in the West Bank, Hamas ruled alone in Gaza, and Israel and Egypt would soon blockade the tiny strip, making its economic and other problems worse than before.

    The thing seems more relevant than ever in the light of the publication of a survey of the occupied territories conducted by the Arab Barometer just before the Hamas-inflicted massacre of Israelis on October 7, reported just today at Daniel Drezner’s Substack, showing that Gazans thought still less of Hamas at that point than they did in 2006:

  12. Michael Cain says:

    One of the stated Israeli goals is to destroy hundreds of kilometers of Hamas tunnels under Gaza. That’s almost certainly going to involve collapsing a lot of buildings.

  13. charontwo says:

    @Michael Cain:

    How much work and resources does it take to create hundreds of kilometers of tunnels?

    What could have been done instead with that much effort and resources?

  14. Kazzy says:

    “The notion that the IDF is going to constantly give up the advantage they gain from an offensive to allow supply vehicles to enter is equally absurd. That’s just not how wars work.”

    Well, how DO wars work exactly?

    The tactics employed tell us something about the goals. Thus far, it seems that Israel’s goals extend beyond rooting out Hamas.

  15. BobinYoungstown says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    Do they need an internet or cell connection for real-time observation?

    IIRC , No internet or cell connection required.

  16. Kevin says:

    “The avalanche has already started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote.”

  17. Kevin says:

    @charontwo: No one is saying that Hamas has the best interests of Gazans in mind. It would be nice if someone did, or at least didn’t want to make groups like Hamas likely to keep popping up.

  18. gVOR10 says:

    @Michael Cain:

    One of the stated Israeli goals is to destroy hundreds of kilometers of Hamas tunnels under Gaza.

    A minor technical detail, but I’m surprised I’ve seen no mention of ground penetrating radar. Any idea how deep the Hamas tunnels are? The link is to a WIKI article that says dry, sandy soils are the best medium for GPR. I believe we use GPR for tunnels at the Mexican border. I wonder if there are not also active seismic methods.

    Of course accurately locating them only partially limits the damage done destroying them.

  19. gVOR10 says:


    No one is saying that Hamas has the best interests of Gazans in mind. It would be nice if someone did

    Too true. It would be good if the neighboring and regional Arab states played a positive role.

  20. Michael Reynolds says:

    At present the Arab governments are praying that Israel will exterminate Hamas and not one of them gives a single fuck about civilians in Gaza. Hamas is seen as a tool of Iran and if it is crippled MBS and El-Sisi will pop bottles of sparkling grape juice while issuing hypocritical condemnations.

  21. bobinyoungstown says:

    @Michael Reynolds:
    Local drones do not rely on internet or cellular to observe or target.

  22. Jim Brown 32 says:

    Humans have a fantastic ability to look past situations that present only horrible options…while cursing the status quo (which, btw, might very well be the least horrible option)

    Inter-societal struggles do not operate by the same rules as intra-societal struggles. We like to believe we’ve progressed beyond the laws of the animal kingdom, and, in many ways we have. In lots of ways we have. Except in the case where different groups of people lay claim to the same piece of real estate.

    This develops into either a long simmering tension interrupted by hot skirmishes…or one society consumes the other. There is no such concept as stolen lands from this lens. A people can either possess and defend their land…or they can’t. It’s sad…but so is much of the human condition.

    The only way this conflict goes away is if one of the belligerent cultures is displaced or driven off. The land claim has permeated too deep into the Palestinian and Israeli culture for an administrative settlement. Rounds of tit for tat and suffering become an insurmountable option in their collective memories.

    Geopolitically, we need our client state of Israel to thrive in the Middle East. But let’s be sober minded that both Israel and the Palestinians are engaged in a cycle of collective punishment of each other. Everyone involved will suffer. The Gazans, the soldiers going into Gaza, the families of the Israeli soldiers who will die in Gaza. The soldiers who survive will suffer psychologically until they die, etc. The collective punishment wheel keeps rotating from wherever you start the history of the conflict

    The US should publicly proclaim our support for Israel but privately acknowledge a limit beyond which Israel is on their own with their counter Hamas campaign. We must accept the status quo or work to resettle the Palestinians. No 2 state solution is possible absent a 3rd party that forces Israel to accept it. There is no 3rd party with the leverage or the willingness to impose this option.

    I think it better for future generations of Palestinians to hate Israel from other countries where they can have a life..than to hate them from inside the misery that is Gaza. All the talk of War crimes and proportionality is doing nothing but prolonging the suffering of present and future generations of Palestinians.

  23. dazedandconfused says:

    @Jim Brown 32:

    Indeed. As Sherman would’ve put it: “Ethnic cleansing is all hell, might as well get it over with.”

    There’s something of a “last great act of defiance” in this HAMAs attack, like they lost all hope and sought martyrdom. The perps filmed their actions and put them on the web to seek maximum outrage from Israel. It appears few or none of them tried to high-tail it back into Gaza, speaking of the ones in military kit. A great many of the people in the footage were unarmed, I suspect a core group broke the barriers and encouraged a “jailbreak” of looters to help confuse an immediate response. All these high ranking HAMAs officers picked off, with all those tunnels they could’ve hidden out in? They stopped caring whether or not the lived or died. The KSA cuddling up with Israel, everybody looking the other way on the settler issue…they lost hope. Despair can be toxic.

  24. Michael Reynolds says:

    The Saudis signal that they DGAF about Hamas or Gaza. I paraphrase but basically MBS still wants his Israeli deal.

    Saudi Defense Minister Khalid bin Salman (KBS) is expected to visit Washington on Monday for talks with senior Biden administration officials, three sources with knowledge of the trip told Axios.

  25. Michael Reynolds says:

    I don’t buy that. It’s not despair. Iran and Hamas and Hezbollah are part of a larger game between Iran and the Arabs. They think they’re starting down the road to the annihilation of Israel and the triumph of the Ayatollahs. Hamas did not build tunnels and stock weapons out of despair. Despairing people don’t plan and practice and execute ambitious plans. If you’re digging a mile long tunnel it’s hope and cash driving you.

  26. charontwo says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    I agree with you. I read that and thought “how the fuck is that guy so clueless!” The screen handle fits, though.

  27. JohnSF says:

    The historical irony is that Palestinian “liberation” started as the cause mainly of the secularist Nasserite/Baathist governments in the 1940’s/50’s, with the monarchist/Islamic governments following in their wake, because the secularist Arab nationalists wanted to use the Israel issue as a weapon against their political opponents.

    Later on the Ikhwanites used it against the seculars, and the Wahhabi’s against both.
    Then the Mullahs and IRG took power in Iran, and it becomes a four corner contest.

    Concern for the actual interests of Palestinians was not, and is not, that high on the agendas of any of the parties involved.

    As for Hamas, it needs to be remembered that a large number of them are “immanetize the eschaton” types: if only the “final war” can be triggered, then they shall inevitably be victorious.
    aka: idiots.

    Part of the problem has been the reluctance of US administrations since c. 2000 to push hard for a settlement.
    Which in turn relates to the problem of the US domestic/foreign policy interlinkage of the need to face down the Evangelical ultras in order to apply sufficient pressure on the Likud governments of Israel to compel Likud to negotiate on a similar basis to Labor.

    As long as a sufficient amount of the Republican Party identities with Likud, constructive US policy in the area is problematic.

    Also, and this is going to win me few fans, I suspect: the Obama administrations ME/NA was often based on wishful thinking that if only it could be ignored, it would somehow become irrelevant.
    See, in particular, Syria.
    Pontius Pilate is not a good role model for a Superpower, unfortunately..

  28. JohnSF says:


    It would be good if the neighboring and regional Arab states played a positive role.

    Oh, they do inded think that they are.
    That is, pursuing their rather short-horizon state interests, or in some cases the longer term goals of “Islamic victory”.
    Perhaps leaving the Sunni vs Shia settling of accounts for later.
    The Arab seculars and monarchists and etc seem at present to be trying to avoid involvement.
    The problem is, all such have been all too ready to use, or at best skirt around, Arab/Islamist populism for decades.
    What do you do when the leopard might be inclined to eat your face?

  29. Lounsbury says:

    @James Joyner: The work week is not the US work week mate, it is Sunday to Thursday. The timing that would be equivalent for work week logic would be Thursday night. This timing was for Euro-American news cycle.

    @JohnSF: Unless and until an American government is willing and able to pressure for the abandonment of the Settlements in West Bank there is literally no progress to be had. Unlike you lot, I have actually been around this over the past 20 years although not over there since Covid (for financing missions) and seen in person the economics of decoupage – or rather non-economics. It’s really Bantustan policy. Of course this is a drive to explicit failure like Netanyahu & Co’s exploitation of Hamas (openly stated in past), not a ‘mistake’.
    @Michael Reynolds: The Gulfies are not synonyms for Arabs. This is no longer 1975 nor 1985 any longer. The Ibn Saoud and Al Khalifa have agendas, the “Arabs” are quite another thing.

    And of course ‘the Arabs’ do not represent an ethnic hive-mind – the entity calculations of Hezbollah and Hamas leadership are one thing – the pool of mobilisation that Hamas can draw on from a despairing population another thing.

    However it seems American understanding and discourse got frozen in 1985…

    @JohnSF: And UK too. General Islamist populist pandering died out decades ago, when the death of the Soviet power backing removed the political Divide & Conquer logic against the Left radicals and after the Algerian experience following 92.

    As if one needs to call out to that to explain a regional reaction that really does not map too differently in popular level sympathy to the Western reaction on Ukraine (you collectively can leave aside the quibbling, I reference popular reaction, not analytical position). It’s really not difficult to undertand if one has the least sense of general sympathies and sense of Underdog versus Golaith perceptual dynamics, even if Hamas itself is not very sympathetic (of course the sense that Palestinians submit to ongoing oppression leads to excuse making and justificaiton).

    What you people expect of the neighbouring states rather escapes. Jordan standing on its feet of clay remains quiet (but what on earth do you people think they could do of any effect, side with the Israelis?), Egypt excercises control of a border that is Israeli security interest more than their own. … Neither Lebanon nor Syria are functional states. The Gulf knows their normalisation demarche is dead in the water and are largely silent except for making humanitarian noises without drawing attention to their own earlier normalisation efforts, which would be like Germany vanting its normalisation policy with Putin – in their political context. And yes, I am speaking to Arabic language media which I consume unfiltered, although no great joy in this.

    Hamas has given everyone except perhaps Iran (and itself in terms of a power position) a poisoned chalice to drink from.

    Regardless, unless there is an opening in this process that changes the Bantustans policy, there is not going to be any resolution, just death and a further cycle that rather serves Hamas and maybe the Netanyahu faction (although after this maybe not).

  30. dazedandconfused says:

    @Michael Reynolds:

    I don’t think Iran was even informed. Had the goal been a general war on Iran’s orders they should’ve mobilized all their supposed puppets for the effort. It instead appears they were as surprised as everyone else.

    As the US is well aware, giving money does not a puppet state make. HAMAs was not even dependant on Iranian money, not by a damn sight. They were making big money by skimming off all the construction and everything else going in there from multiples nations. Iran wasn’t even a major player in those construction projects, Iran has been rather short of cash of late. Google up construction in Gaza and see the players.

  31. Lounsbury says:

    @dazedandconfused: Qatar subsidies approved by Israel are a major support line

  32. dazedandconfused says:


    The Egyptian and Jordanian money are probably “laundered” Saudi money, and so too may be the Qatar money, but Qatar has money to burn so…

  33. Lounsbury says:

    @dazedandconfused: If you think Qatar launders the money of the Ibn Saud, you understand literally nothing of the Gulf. The Qataris are cousin-enemies/rivials of the Al Khalifa and the Ibn Saud. Right up to blockades and Qatar despite also being a flavour of Wahhabi plays footsie with Iran. Ibn Saud money doesn’t pass through Qatar. Bahrain, Emirates etc.

    Jordan’s major budgetary support is America, the USAID is virtually a parallel government there – but they do get Emirati money – the relationship with the Ibn Saud is awkward and delicate. Shurfa.

    Egypt needs every one of the Gulf plus USA plus IMF to keep the Mamlouk state passingly solvent, see their recent IMF and currency mini crises.

  34. dazedandconfused says:


    Money gets laundered in weird ways in the ME so I can’t be that confident about the Qatar situation. However, your comment about Jordan seems to be pretty odd, considering it was only 6% of the Jordanian budget in 22, and the Saudis have long propped up Jordan and continue to do so.

    Considering the financial issues facing both Egypt and Jordan it’s a pretty fair bet they are merely acting as launderers for Saudi money on their construction projects in Gaza.