Hamas dared. Israel has obliged. We now have a time table for war.
Get ready for an escalation and the possibility of the entire Middle East getting set on fire. The Middle East getting set on fire could bring forth a whole host of things such as retaliatory terrorist strikes on the US homeland to the collapse of economies. This is not a prediction, but a possible scenario, which hopefully will not come to pass.
As explosions terrorise both Palestinians and Israelis for a seventh day running, Israel has put plans for a ground operation in Gaza ‘on hold’ while talks to secure a truce with Hamas militants continue.
While it is understood a Thursday deadline has been set for the Egypt-brokered talks, an Egyptian intelligence source said ‘there is still no breakthrough and Egypt is working to find middle ground.’
Despite discussions there has no been let-up in the violence overnight as a fresh array of airstrikes pummeled Gaza while rockets pounded southern Israel.
The death toll in the region continues to rise steeply and more than 110 Palestinians and three Israelis have been killed since Operation Pillar of Defence began last Wednesday.
Israel and Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers have staked tough, hard-to-bridge positions, and the gaps keep fuel the threat of an Israeli ground invasion.
The content of the Egyptian plan is unknown, but both Israel and Hamas have presented conditions and Egyptian intelligence officials are meeting representives from Israel and Hamas separately.
Israel demands an end to rocket fire from Gaza and a halt to weapons smuggling into Gaza through tunnels under the border with Egypt.
It also wants international guarantees that Hamas will not rearm or use Egypt’s Sinai region, which abuts both Gaza and southern Israel, to attack Israelis.
Hamas wants Israel to halt all attacks on Gaza and lift tight restrictions on trade and movement in and out of the territory that have been in place since Hamas seized Gaza by force in 2007.
Israel has rejected such demands in the past.