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(LifeSiteNews) — According to an assessment by retired U.S. Colonel Douglas Macgregor, the continued Israeli bombardment of Gaza does not have as its primary aim the rescue of hostages or the destruction of Hamas, but achieving the small strip’s complete destruction and the expelling of the entire civilian population of 2.4 million people.

“Making Gaza unlivable is the top priority,” the decorated combat veteran and author told Andrew Napolitano in a Monday interview. “Gaza is going to be flattened.”

Israel’s continued bombardment and incursion into the enclave is in response to an unprecedented October 7 attack by the militant Islamist group Hamas, which governs the Israeli occupied strip. As a result of clashes that day, Israel has reported around 1,200 fatalities (including 31 children) and approximately 5,400 injured, though it remains unclear how many of these deaths and injuries were caused by friendly fire from the Israeli military themselves.

Due to breakdowns in communication networks in the besieged strip, the following figures only represent what is reported through November 16. These include 12,012 Palestinians killed (4,900 children, 3,027 women, 678 elderly), 215 killed in the occupied West Bank, with wounded including 32,300 in Gaza and 2,811 in the West Bank.

Additionally, 6,500 Palestinians, including 4,400 children are reported missing with suspicion they may be buried or trapped under the rubble, with approximately 1.7 million people in Gaza having been displaced.

As a matter of scale, Israel has killed more Palestinians since October 7 than they have in the previous 22 years combined. Additionally, they have killed significantly more civilians in 45 days than died in 20 months due to the Russia-Ukraine war, on both sides of that conflict (9,701).

Further, when asked about recent attacks by Israeli forces on Palestinian hospitals, Macgregor said the destruction of such facilities are “a precursor for what’s coming across the board. The idea is to now make it impossible for anyone to come back to Gaza who formerly lived there. I think that’s the operation, and I think that mission is probably going to be accomplished.”

However, as the West underestimated Russia’s resolve to actually invade Ukraine early last year, the retired colonel also believes Israel may be acting with temerity on the question of whether or not regional powers such as Turkey, Jordan and Hezbollah in Lebanon will actually retaliate to stop the bloodshed.

“They’re betting very heavily on us [the U.S.], obviously, that we are their backstop and that our presence offshore and in the region with air and naval power will be enough to persuade the various actors in the region to do nothing, to stand by and watch the [2.4M] population of Gaza [be] either killed or driven out of Gaza,” he said.

READ: UN national delegations vote 121 to 14 in favor of immediate ceasefire in Gaza, isolating Israel and US

While it is true these nations are not interested in war, Macgregor says, “they are not fools” and certainly recognize “that this is the first stage in a multistage operation designed to create ‘greater Israel’ from the Jordan River all the way to the Mediterranean. They know this. The Israelis have made that abundantly clear off and on for many years. This is not a secret. Now it’s happening.”

According to Israeli historian Benny Morris, the notion of expelling all Arabs from the land “is as old as modern Zionism and has accompanied its evolution and praxis during the past century.”  Indeed, in the late 1930’s, David Ben-Gurion, who became Israel’s first prime minister, stated, “After the formation of a large army in the wake of the establishment of the state, we shall abolish partition and expand to the whole of Palestine.” He later projected in 1941, “it is impossible to imagine general evacuation [of the Arab population] without compulsion, and brutal compulsion.”

In 1947-48, this project began in earnest when Jewish forces compelled more than 700,000 Palestinians to flee for their lives abandoning their homes, lands and livelihoods. The Zionist army then barred them from returning. These people, with their descendants, now make up more than 5.9 million refugees distributed in Gaza (70 percent of the overall population), Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and the West Bank, with the right to return to their homeland recognized under international law.

From all appearances, Macgregor surmised that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is in full control of this operation and is convinced that now is the time to destroy Gaza with the Biden administration providing no concrete opposition to what groups such as Jewish Voice for Peace are identifying as the crime of genocide against the Palestinian people.

READ: Christian bishops in Holy Land say ‘fringe radical groups’ are trying to drive them out of Jerusalem

While Macgregor believes the Biden administration should put a “stop to the slaughter” by withdrawing American support, he believes “they are going to stay the course and try to give the Israelis the time to wipe out Gaza as a living space for the people that were there and try to herd whoever survives into Egypt or somewhere else.”

But in response, the combat veteran expects regional powers to enter the fray to defend the helpless civilians in Gaza, and at this point the Israelis have burned “all of their bridges behind them in the region [and] whenever they decide they’ve done enough, there will be no return to the former set of conditions that they lived under.”

After the destruction of Gaza, “there is no way forward after that. And at some point, and I can’t predict when, the region will rise up and they [Israel] are going to have a tough time surviving it.”

“Someone said, ‘if you’re going to embark on revenge, you’d better dig two graves.’ And I think this is the problem for the Israelis,” the colonel said. “I am afraid that they’re killing the two state solution and they’re trying to dig one grave. They don’t realize they’re digging another one, and that’s for them.”

Last month Macgregor warned Tucker Carlson that the Israeli “campaign to eradicate Hamas has rapidly turned into a campaign to effectively eradicate the whole Gaza population and that’s not going down well in the rest of the region … so whatever moral ground the Israelis have is eroding quickly.”

READ: Col. Macgregor to Tucker: Biden admin is driving the US into an ‘Armageddon’ war in Middle East

He went on to encourage all Americans to watch a speech by King Abdullah of Jordan where the monarch condemns the violence against all civilians in Gaza, the West Bank and Israel, while going on “to point out that collective punishment meted out to 2 million people is unacceptable, both under international law and for humanitarian reasons. That’s the problem.”

On Tuesday, Napolitano interviewed former U.S. Marine Corps Captain Matthew Hoh who serves as Associate Director of the Eisenhower Media Network. Hoh, who is also a former U.S. State Department Officer, emphasized that currently in Gaza the world is “witnessing ethnic cleansing” with “genocidal policies being put into place.”

This includes “the deliberate eradication of a people… [and] of any infrastructure that would allow for people to live,” amounting to “forced displacement” and “war crimes on top of war crimes” which is “bolstered by genocidal rhetoric” emanating from prominent Israelis plainly demonstrating “genocidal intent.”

READ: Foreign policy experts argue Israel has endangered itself by maltreating Palestinians for decades

“It’s clear what they are saying and it’s matched-up with what Israel is doing in Gaza in terms of its deliberate campaign of massacres, of destruction of infrastructure and of forced migration,” he said.

Journalist Max Blumenthal recently agreed affirming in a November 17 interview that what is happening in Israel is “a fundamentally genocidal political movement, and a genocidal society. This Israeli society is primed for genocide,” he said. “I don’t think Israel will stop before it believes that it has finished the job that it began in 1948.”

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