Real Reason For Israel’s Attacks – It’s All About Energy

Oil fields; image@BlessOilfield

Oil fields; image@BlessOilfield

The cause of the current conflict within Israel has been long debated. Was it over tunnels from Gaza into Israel? Was it over the murder of three teenagers?

With last years signing of drilling rights to the disputed Golan Heights region to Rupert Murdoch owned Genie Energy, Israel gave its first indication that it would ignore international pressure in the pursuit of fossil fuels. Then, when negotiations broke down over Gaza’s natural gas reserves, Israel began its limited military operations which quickly spiraled out of control.

Israeli Defence Force (IDF) chief of staff Moshe Ya’alon brought up concerns over the Palestinian gas field earlier this month, stating,

Proceeds of a Palestinian gas sale to Israel would likely not trickle down to help an impoverished Palestinian public. Rather, based on Israel’s past experience, the proceeds will likely serve to fund further terror attacks against Israel…

A gas transaction with the Palestinian Authority [PA] will, by definition, involve Hamas. Hamas will either benefit from the royalties or it will sabotage the project and launch attacks against Fatah, the gas installations, Israel – or all three… It is clear that without an overall military operation to uproot Hamas control of Gaza, no drilling work can take place without the consent of the radical Islamic movement.

This rings a bit hollow after the handing out of oil leases on the occupied Golan Heights. It is not hard to imagine a scenario now where Israel will seize the gas fields for themselves, in order to exploit them directly. This is indeed the very strategy which was theorized by the University of California’s Journal of Palestine Studies, which found that the Israeli strategy was one of,

…. separating the Palestinians from their land and natural resources in order to exploit them, and, as a consequence, blocking Palestinian economic development. Despite all formal agreements to the contrary, Israel continues to manage all the natural resources nominally under the jurisdiction of the PA, from land and water to maritime and hydrocarbon resources.

While it is clear that the entire operation is not about resource exploitation, it is clearly one of the big reasons on the table in Tel Aviv’s strategy room. One cannot ignore the ramifications and implications of Natural Gas in the region. After the shameful sell-off of the Golan Heights, Israel must not be allowed to steal the resources from Gaza.