Israel and leaders of the Gaza Strip reached a ceasefire agreement this morning following three days of massive rocket attacks into Israel and retaliatory air and gunboat strikes in Gaza. 27 Palestinians and four Israelis died from the attacks.
— The Jerusalem Post (@Jerusalem_Post) May 6, 2019
Not everyone was pleased on either side. Israelis are complaining that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should have conceded nothing while Gaza residents said they didn’t get enough. Unconfirmed reports say Israel is easing some restrictions, including allowing fishing zones to extend to 12 km.
This is the worst fighting of the year and comes around a month before the United States intends to release a Middle East peace plan put together by White House Senior Adviser Jared Kushner.
While Netanyahu works to form his coalition government, the severity of the attacks – around 700 rockets and mortars fired in less than three days – makes one wonder if he’s only allowing the ceasefire because he still has political work to get done. If the government were fully formed, would he have backed down so quickly after having a clear mandate to push further?
While I’m not crazy about the notion of invading Gaza and ejecting Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad without a deal brokered with the Palestinian Authority to take over, it still seems like a weak move.
“Almost 700 were launched into Israeli territory, many casualties and injuries and four deaths – all of which result from the loss of deterrence – end with further surrender to the extortion of Hamas and the terrorist organizations. All that the government did, once again, is delay the next campaign.” – Energy Minister and Security Cabinet member Yuval Steinitz
This is going to happen again. As long as Hamas and the PIJ have control over Gaza, they will mismanage it and then lash out at Israel with rockets when the pressure gets too high. They’re a broken record. It’s time for a new song.