, 12.23.2023 02:18 PM

My latest: ten predictions for Israel/Gaza in 2024

It’s that time of year – when columnists make predictions about the year ahead.

The ones found below were written before this writer, and this newspaper, were targeted by an army of trolls – and some we considered friends – accusing us of anti-Semitism. Us, arguably the most pro-Israel newspaper on the continent. Friendly fire does not begin to describe it. It left a sour taste.

I may come back to the Israel-Gaza subject, but I am taking a break from it on social media for the next while. In the meantime, here are ten predictions about Israel, Gaza and the Middle East.

1. Benjamin Netanyahu is toast. He was in trouble before October 7. He’s in more trouble now, for failing to prevent October 7. He promised to keep Israel secure. He didn’t deliver.

2. Netanyahu still faces three corruption prosecutions, which he has so far been unsuccessful in getting dismissed. Unlike Donald Trump – who is just one or two indictments away from winning the Republican presidential nomination – Netanyahu has not been helped by the prosecutions.

3. Netanyahu has also been revealed – by a huge, multi-part New York Times investigation- to have known Qatar was funding Hamas, to the tune of millions. He didn’t just do nothing about it – he encouraged it. In Israel, that too is unlikely to be forgiven anytime soon.

4. Israel cannot run post-war Gaza and doesn’t want to. Neither does the US or any of the surrounding Arab states. That leaves just one candidate for the job – the (corrupt, inefficient) Palestinian Authority. As imperfect as they are, no one else can be found to do the job.

5. Thousands of Gazans worked in Israel before October 7. After October 7, that’s unlikely to ever happen again. Some of them, it is clear, gave Hamas intel on Israeli military, communications and civilian weaknesses – and that’ll never be forgiven. So they’ll need massive foreign aid for infrastructure and to survive, because they’re not going to be working in Israel (or any neighboring Arab country) anytime soon.

6. Hamas will be destroyed, much in the way that ISIS was. But there’ll be some new monster to take their place, soon enough. Islamic terror organizations come and go. But their hatred for Israel and the West never seems to go away. We need to stop believing that it will, and prepare accordingly.

7. Western politics is going to swing dramatically to the Right. It’s already started. “Pro-Palestine” extremism will fuel anti-immigrant sentiment – and result in some limits being placed on some liberties. Few will object, initially.

8. Universities and colleges – the publicly-funded ones, at least – will pay a steep price for permitting anti-Semitism and violence to flourish on their campuses. It’ll take a decade or more to fix. It has become an institutional problem, and is deep-rooted.

9. There has been a yawning demographic divide – generational, racial – on Israel/Gaza. Social consensus has seemingly fractured, and former allies now seem to deeply hate each other. We ignore that divide at our peril.

10. A military solution cannot be imposed on Israelis and Gazans. There are millions of them, and they all live side-by-side. Once Hamas is eliminated – and it must be – the people of Israel and Gaza must find a way to live in peace. Themselves. No one else can do it for them.

Those predictions aren’t particularly sunny, but neither is the post-October 7 world in which we all now live.

Here’s hoping that peace – and an elimination of terror – awaits Israel and Gazans in the new year.


  1. Maureen says:

    Thank you, Warren. Keep up the good fight and thank you for using your voice for good! Merry Christmas & all the very best in the New Year!

    • Douglas W says:

      Netanyahu, up on corruption charges, needed a major distraction.
      It was Gaza.
      Israel was warned by Egypt, in the days leading up to October 7th, that “something big was going to happen.”

      Netanyahu shrugged.

      What seldom has been discussed: the massive oil and natural gas reserves, below Gaza and offshore.

      Value: about $430-billion. Someone wants full control.

      It’s game on.

  2. Robert Macdonold says:

    It strikes me there will be extreme reluctance for any western countries to advance rebuilding funds for Gaza. Perhaps Iran, Quatwr, Russia and China can do that . There are huge stretches of empty sand across the border in Egypt. Or in Saudi Arabis. If those countries could convinced the Palestinians could be contained in a nice new country of their own, then Gaza could be turned into.a parking lot.
    The more important issue is Putin, Russia an Ukraine. Ukraine must win . If it loses there is a real chance a wider war breaks out in Europe. We better hope that whoever runs the USA gets sound advice. European countries are rearming fast but may not be strong enough to stop.Putin who.is quite mad in my opinion.
    With respect to Canada, we desperately need a Govt that can count( simple math) who will refocus on the economy and who won’t be in our face everyday upsetting us.If Trudeau wins I believe the country will come apart or morph into a different structure.

    • Peter Williams says:

      Trudeau et al will line up to give money to Gaza. After all it’s not Trudeau’s money.

      Possibly China. Although China’s motives are to foment trouble in western countries; and mid-east strife is useful in this regard.

  3. Michael Konviser says:

    I’m very sorry to hear you were accused of antisemitism. You have been one of the greatest advocates for Israel, in an otherwise horrific sea of hate and lies. Please keep up your incredible writing on the issue, your voice needs to be heard.

  4. Warren,

    1. Ah, we differ on this one. Coalition is the name of the game in Israeli politics. Partners must be highly attuned to the public and especially the views of their own supporters. I find it more than striking that none of the government coalition has changed any of their fundamental view of the world, nor have they put internal pressure on Likud. IMHO, that says it all. I expect Netanyahu to survive unless early elections come to pass. I would say the chances of that are 5-10%.

  5. Warren,

    Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays to you and yours, especially to your gem, E.!

    In addition, compliments of the season to all commenters and readers of this website.

    My God, 2024 can’t possibly be any worse than this year was.

  6. Steve says:

    Can’t say I disagree with any of your points.

  7. Gilbert says:

    I don’t like PM Netanyahu. Maybe he thought war with Hamas would save him, but I doubt it. When he spoke about the Ben Gurion Canal at the UN, he showed a map of the Middle East that had no mention of Palestine. I think that was intentional.

    • Jason says:

      If you thought it was ridiculous how many Americans blamed Dubya for 9/11, wait til you see how many Israelis ultimately blame Netanyahu for directly causing all this. George Bush II had the plausible deniability of being too big a buffoon to do something so calculated. Netanyahu is not.

  8. The PA can’t rule Gaza; most residents of the west bank would prefer Hamas to the PA, if offered an election.

    I still have hope for the Abraham Accords; I hope that once Israel elects a new PM that these efforts will be rebooted with a solutions none of us has yet conceived. Maybe a new government for Gaza, the West bank and East Jerusalem, one willing to compromise.

    I can hope. Merry Christmas.

    • Jason says:

      This is true – NOW. It was not 3 months ago.

      Fatah was corrupt as hell, but they were at the negotiating table. Internal corruption is what made a very slight plurality of Palestinians turn to Hamas in desperation. The people of Gaza by and large wanted order. Hamas promised it – and took away things the people held dear once they got power (much like every far-right politician here aims to, though perhaps more subversively). It was a mess, but the people weren’t largelt on board.

      Now, those same people have had absolute carnage wrought upon them, with no escape, no food, no hope, and no mercy.
      They’ve also seen rather clearly that nobody is coming to save them. Under those circumstances – most people, upon seeing that “flight” will not help them, will turn to “fight.”

  9. Robert White says:

    If any Canadian Journalist deserves a rest from this
    outrageous attack on Israel it’s you, Warren. If so-called
    ‘friends’ turned on you during this fight they were never friends to begin with. I think your opposition to the Hamas terrorist organization is highly commendable.

    Have a great Christmas & super excellent New Year.
    Cheer up, too. You are the best fighter around bar none.

    Sincerely, Robert

  10. western view says:

    Re: #9, demographic and racial divisions that can’t be ignored.

    This is particularly depressing for someone like me, so I can’t even begin to imagine how Jews feel about young people’s ignorance of the Holocaust and the establishment of Israel. The TikTok generation is trying too hard to be hip and please don’t let facts get in the way of a progressive Crusade.
    How did society get this so wrong? How did we fail to educate young people about the oppression of Jews for centuries? Where were we when the constructs of Critical Theory inverted the Israeli struggle for security against all odds into Jews being oppressors? It’s shameful to see young adults who jump on every progressive bandwagon join a movement that wants to annihilate Jews, as well as the LGTBQ community. A movement that treats women as second class citizens.

    The only answer is to declare our own war against the propaganda being peddled by the DEI industry. It will be a nasty but necessary fight.

  11. Ryan says:

    Ukraine won’t win, Ukranian victory was always a fantasy. They are down to using ambulances to kidnap men for military recruitment, including old men and mentally disabled.

    A generation of Ukranian men wasted.

    • Peter Williams says:

      The experts said the same thing about Britain in 1940.

      Also Afghanistan after the Russians took over.

      Many Ukrainians remember life under Stalin. I don’t blame them for fighting.

  12. Curious V says:

    Netanyahu is an idiot. The aftermath will be a mess, that being when Hamas is eliminated. We’ll have to start screening newcomers – wish we could screen the old stock too (they’re left to be dealt with by our school system) – but we’ll have to screen for intolerance. I sound like a parrot – good points.

  13. Warren,

    From The National Post:

    “Pro-Palestinians ‘attack’ counter-demonstrator, Canadian flag at Toronto protest

    An Iranian-Canadian activist says violent pro-Palestinian demonstrators dislocated his shoulder and ripped away a flag at a protest in downtown Toronto on Saturday.

    Video on social media shows Salman Sima, who has counter-protested at recent pro-Palestinian demonstrations in Toronto, struggling with protesters to keep his “lion and sun” version of the Iranian flag, used by opponents of the Islamic regime of Iran. Goldie Ghamari, an Ontario MPP, said the flag represents “freedom and democracy.”’

    It’s time to use the Immigration Act to put a stop to this for those who aren’t citizens. Enough, already.

  14. RKJ says:

    I am conflicted. On the one hand, I strongly support Israel as a nation. On the other hand, I do not support all of Israel’s actions. Their support of the settler movement on Palestinian land is very troubling. Recently, Bernie Sanders published in the New York Times a very good article regarding this matter. I recall some years ago General Ariel Sharon, then President, began taking steps to establish peace. Somehow, he went into a coma and passed away.

    Sadly, I think the conversation has become so inflexible that none seem ready to make the compromises necessary to live together. Hardliners, on both sides, control the agenda.

  15. Dan McCarthy says:

    #s 6&7 are especially concerning and I expect your thoughts will be seen as prescient a year or so from now. The Canadian immigration consensus is broken – perhaps irretrievably. I would love to see polling on the decision to admit Gazan family members. I’ll bet there isn’t more than 15% support. The hate filled rallies have hardened hearts not just against the Palestinian cause, but Islam in general. This is not the ‘Islamophobia’ government-speak we hear but is more rooted in growing concern that the values Canadians see expressed in these rallies, are not compatible with tolerance, respect for others, respect for the rule of law, public order, civil behaviour etc. I don’t know what the road back is. But voices like yours are needed. I hope you have a restful Christmas with your family, and find the energy and motivation to pick up the pen and keyboard in the new year. Your perspective is much appreciated in this quarter. Merry Christmas. All the best.

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