Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed his nation on Saturday evening, telling them that the war against Palestinian terrorists from Hamas was the country’s “Second War of Independence.”
Netanyahu appeared at the Kirya, the central military headquarters in Tel Aviv, alongside defense minister Yoav Gallant, and minister Benny Gantz, the leader of the opposition Blue and White Party, which joined Netanyahu in an emergency unity government.
“It’s our Second War of Independence,” Netanayhu said. We will fight for the defense of the homeland. We will fight, and we will not retreat. We will fight on the sea, on the land, and in the sky. We will destroy the enemy on the ground, and under the ground. We will fight and we will win. And it will be a victory of the good over the evil, of light over darkness, of life over death.”
Netanyahu began by announcing that Israel had begun its operations inside the Gaza Strip, and thus the second phase of the war, with the ultimate aim of destroying Hamas’s military and administrative capacities, and bringing the 230 hostages home.
He praised the soldiers of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), noting he had meet with them from north to south. “We have a magnificent army,” he said, noting it was composed of Jews and non-Jews, religious and secular Jews, left- and right-wing people. “All are united, all are charged with a spirit of battle that I have never seen,” he said, noting that they were committed to defeating the enemy that had attacked Israeli children and other civilians.
“Remember what Amalek did to you,” Netanyahu said, citing Deuteronomy 25:17, and the injunction to fight an enemy that had waged war by attacking the most vulnerable people.
He said the IDF was following in the footsteps of the heroes of Jewish history — Joshua, Judah Maccabee, Simon bar Kochba — as well as those who fought Israel’s past wars.
“We always said, ‘Never again.,” Netanyahu said. “‘Never again’ is now.”
He described meeting the families of the 230 hostages that Hamas kidnapped from Israel, describing it as a “heartbreaking” experience and vowing to do everything possible to bring them home safely. He called their captivity a “crime against humanity.”
He said the IDF was the most compassionate army in the world, and that it was doing everything possible to avoid civilian casualties — unlike Hamas, which used civilians as human shields, and hid underneath hospitals
Many around the world now understand well what we have been warning for years: Israel is not just fighting its own wars, but the wars of humanity itself — wars of humanity against barbarism.
He said that many in the Arab world understood that if Israel did not defeat Hamas, they would be next in line.
He said that Israel was facing an existential battle. “We will live, and we will win.”
“We are only at the start of the journey,” he warned. “The war in the Strip will be difficult and long. But we are ready for it.”
“This is our second War of Independence.”
He prayed for the welfare and success of the Israeli soldiers to come home crowned in victory.
“Together we will fight, and together we will win.”
"Those who chant, 'Death to Israel' also chant always, 'Death to America'." -President Donald J. Trump pic.twitter.com/oU0Mol9wC3
— I'LL BE BACK!!! (@DavidYeshua4) October 28, 2023
The nation of Israel was founded to ensure that the Jewish people had a homeland. Its existence and necessity is apparent when we see mass protests against their right to exist in western cities around the world.
— Libby Emmons (@libbyemmons) October 28, 2023