The IDF prevented a disaster by demolishing the tunnels through which Hamas had planned surprise terror for Rosh Hashanah. The rockets, guns, IDF uniforms, handcuffs, drugs, and even motorcycles stored in the tunnels were to be used in massive attacks and kidnappings at kibbutzim and homes closest to the Gaza border.
Dozens of other tunnels and huge stockpiles of weapons were destroyed. The IDF killed many terrorists and a number of Hamas terrorist leaders. According to a poll conducted by Geocartography Institute, 61% of Israelis feel that the IDF won.
But interestingly, the question was framed in this way: “Do you agree with the statement that the IDF won while Israel lost?” That a majority agreed with this statement may be explained by another question in the same poll:
Respondents expressed frustration with the ceasefire that ended the operation with Hamas still in power in the Gaza Strip. Fifty-eight percent said the IDF should have been allowed to continue the operation in order to degrade the terrorist organization’s military abilities and called the truce a mistake that wastes the achievements of the Israeli armed forces.
Meanwhile, as in previous wars, Hamas has declared itself victorious. An excellent Gatestone Institute article explains what’s wrong with that assessment and even Mahmoud Abbas blames Hamas for the deaths and destruction in Gaza that he now says “could have been avoided.”
The photo above (why is there no dust on that white robe?) represents winning to Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas leader who has not appeared in Gaza during the war until now and is pictured here, smiling, raising his hand in a V for victory sign amid the rubble of his own house.