Will Israel have indefinite control of Gaza?

Netanyahu's newly unveiled plan for the 'day after' the war with Hamas raises the prospect of a permanent military presence in the Palestinian territory

Photo collage of Benjamin Netanyahu's eyes with a vintage map of the Gaza Strip area in the background. Overlaid on top, there is a photo of USA-supplied munitions, including white phosphorus, being handled by the Israeli army. The photo is cut out in the shape of the Gaza strip.
What will happen the day after fighting stops?
(Image credit: Illustration by Julia Wytrazek / Getty Images)

It's been more than four months since Hamas militants launched an unprecedented attack on southern Israel, killing more than a thousand people before retreating into the adjoining Gaza Strip with hundreds of Israeli hostages in tow. In response, Israel has embarked on a massive military operation across the neighboring territory, killing tens of thousands of Palestinians and razing much of the densely packed territory to the point of uninhabitability. 

As the violence has threatened not only to engulf the broader region in warfare but to affect even the upcoming presidential elections in the U.S., one overarching question has been left largely unanswered by all sides of the conflict: What will happen the day after fighting stops? 

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