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Hamas has agreed to a ceasefire, says senior Palestinian official (Updated)

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Update (7/16/14):

Yesterday we reported Hamas had accepted a ceasefire with Israel based on a source within the PLO. As of right now a ceasefire has not gone into effect and The Guardian is reporting that Hamas has officially rejected the Egyptian cease fire proposal. While we stand behind the reporting of what were told, it has obviously not come to be. We are now being told by the same source that the delay in reaching a ceasefire is due to internal disagreements between Hamas’s political and armed-wings. The Guardian reports:

Hamas has officially told Egypt that it rejects an Egyptian-proposed Gaza ceasefire, a spokesman for the Islamist group has said.

“The outcome of discussions within the internal institutions of the movement was to reject the proposal and therefore, Hamas informed Egypt last night it apologises for not accepting it,” spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said on Wednesday.

Hamas’s armed wing had already spurned the Egyptian plan on Tuesday, and Israel, which briefly halted its Gaza offensive, resumed attacks after cross-border rocket fire from the Palestinian territory persisted.

We apologize for the error.

Original Post (7/15/14):

Smoke rises following what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike on a house in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip July 14, 2014 (Photo: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters)

Smoke rises following what witnesses said was an Israeli air strike on a house in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip July 14, 2014 (Photo: Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/Reuters)

Early this evening a senior official in the Palestinian Authority said Hamas has accepted a ceasefire with Israel as brokered by Egypt. The unnamed ranking member of government indicated Hamas would make the announcement in the coming hours.

I learned of the agreement at the end of a confusing day of diplomacy. Early this morning Israel stated that it had accepted a ceasefire with Hamas, ending the eight-day offensive that killed more than 190 Palestinians and made over 17,000 homeless in Gaza, living in United Nations shelters. One Israeli was killed by ordnance from Gaza. Yet throughout the day Hamas and the Gaza-based armed group Islamic Jihad have made contradictory remarks, claiming that they had not each been presented with a draft of the proposal through official channels.

A cessation of hostilities should have been a welcome relief in Gaza, but by morning’s end it was clear that while Israel had signed on, Hamas had not made up their minds.

Within an hour of Israel’s public assent to halt fire, a Qassam rocket was launched at the port city of Ashdod. The crude weaponry set off Israeli sirens and panicked the sleeping town. But the first hit after the Israeli ceasefire was not a violation because Hamas had not yet joined the agreement. In conflicting statements, both Islamic Jihad and Hamas said last night the agreement was under consideration and this morning spokespersons for each made a counter claim that they had never received an official “ask” to cease from fire. Specifically, they each said they found out about the ceasefire from “news reports”– television spectators of their own war.

“Initiatives shouldn’t be proposed through media outlets, but rather through the obvious channels, which are resistance factions and their leaders,” said a senior Islamic Jihad official Khalid al-Batsh to Ma’an News Agency this morning.

Curiously, the West Bank-based Palestinian Authority was contacted by Egypt in advance and presented with the conditions of the ceasefire. And the terms were all over the media by this morning. It would seem unlikely that one set of Palestinian leaders would be kept fully abreast of negotiations to end the massive devastation in Gaza, and another would be left in the dark. Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is set to arrive in Egypt tomorrow.

Still by mid-afternoon today with matters still unclear as to whether the cease-fire would go into effect, it seemed as though it was already discarded. By 3 pm 50 rockets had been fired from Gaza. Israel has resumed its air strikes. And shortly after I was told that Hamas had accepted the ceasefire, news broke that one Israeli had been killed after sustaining injuries from the shrapnel of a rocket that landed near the Erez crossing.

Commentators were perplexed if the ceasefire was already dead in the water, or if it had yet to go into effect. Israel on the first.  “In light of the continuing Hamas fire, we are now acting against it with force. Hamas initiated this campaign, and brought upon itself considerable damage,” said Major General Sami Turgeman, according to a Haaretz report. 

Willingness to continue Operation Protective Edge had carried throughout Israeli statements even days before the ceasefire was shopped around by Egypt. On Friday Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made clear additional rockets from Gaza would be met with an increased offensive, leaving a ground invasion an option. “No international pressure will prevent us from acting with all force against a terrorist organization [Hamas] that seeks to destroy us,” he said. The prime minister also sharply criticized failed efforts of American negotiators over the recently collapsed nine-months of direct negotiations. “I told John Kerry and General Allen, the Americans’ expert, ‘We live here, I live here, I know what we need to ensure the security of Israel’s people,’” he continued.

(P.S. If it were the case that an agreement was reached between Egypt and Israel and neither bothered to inform Hamas, it would be a blunder tantamount to the Dayton Accords: After a long night Serbian and Bosnian presidents came to an agreement—only to realize after they had forgotten to wake the Croatian president over their middle of the night agreement, even as they negotiated away part of Croatian territory.)

Allison Deger
About Allison Deger

Allison Deger is the Assistant Editor of Follow her on twitter at @allissoncd.

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51 Responses

  1. Kay24
    Kay24 on July 15, 2014, 2:35 pm

    CNN still reports there is no ceasefire agreement…it also reports the first Israeli death.
    Expect the whining to start, and the US to show their outrage, that one Israeli has been killed ( and we are supposed to ignore the 200 Palestinians killed, okay?)

    • Kay24
      Kay24 on July 15, 2014, 2:51 pm

      Haaretz also reports that Netanyahu has fired the Deputy Defense Minister, Danny Danon. Looks like Beebs is having some kind of rebellion in the knesset. Someone has suggested firing Lieberman too, for being rabble rousers, and making it difficult for a ceasefire agreement.

      • seafoid
        seafoid on July 15, 2014, 4:12 pm

        Danon is an arsehole. So is Netanyahu.

      • Kay24
        Kay24 on July 15, 2014, 4:23 pm

        So seafoid, looks like Israel is run by zionist rectum intestinum.
        No wonder their policies are so shitty. Heh.

      • Sumud
        Sumud on July 15, 2014, 9:25 pm

        That’s an insult to arseholes seafoid!

    • lysias
      lysias on July 15, 2014, 3:17 pm

      The report is that the still unidentified Israeli was killed by mortar fire. He (or she) was at the border with Gaza (Erez crossing). Do we know that he/she was not killed by friendly fire? This is the first suggestion I have seen that the Gazans may have been using mortars.

      • Maximus Decimus Meridius
        Maximus Decimus Meridius on July 15, 2014, 3:22 pm

        Well, half of all Israel’s casualties in the last Gaza assault were ‘friendly fire’ so I wouldn’t be surprised. I also wonder how an army which has a habit of killing its own men can be trusted with ‘protecting civilians’ on the other side.

        Apparently the person was ‘visiting IDF troops and bringing them food’. Seriously. Does start-up nation not provides its own troops with food? If this was a Palestinian, he and everyone within a hundred metres would be considered a perfectly legitimate target, but that won’t stop the Israelis whining.

      • lysias
        lysias on July 15, 2014, 3:30 pm

        Well, a further report says the Israeli man was killed by a mortar fired from the territory [of Gaza]. It also says, however, that he was “delivering food to soldiers Tuesday at the Erez crossing”.

      • Xpat
        Xpat on July 15, 2014, 4:55 pm

        he was “delivering food to soldiers Tuesday at the Erez crossing”.
        So, he was a volunteer provisioning the Israeli attackers. If the shoe were on the other foot and this was a Palestinian bringing supplies to an Islamic Jihad unit, he would be killed by the IDF, and labeled “a terrorist”.
        Am not saying his death, or any death, isn’t tragic, but killing soldiers is not in the same category as Israeli state terrorism, targeting civilian homes and massacring entire families including babies.
        And, by the way, when is the Israeli military brass at the Kiryah in Tel Aviv, going to stop hiding behind women and children?

      • asherpat
        asherpat on July 15, 2014, 6:58 pm

        So you all agree that the man bringing food to Israeli soldiers was a legitimate target, even if he is a civilian. So wouldn’t you agree that the by launching rockets specifically aimed at Israeli civilians in “sleepy town” are war crimes?

      • a blah chick
        a blah chick on July 15, 2014, 7:19 pm

        “So wouldn’t you agree that the by launching rockets specifically aimed at Israeli civilians in “sleepy town” are war crimes?”

        Hey, you wanna take every Hamas leader to the Hague I’ll drive…so long as their Israeli counterparts are in the back seat!

      • oldgeezer
        oldgeezer on July 16, 2014, 3:51 pm

        “Hey, you wanna take every Hamas leader to the Hague I’ll drive…so long as their Israeli counterparts are in the back seat!”

        I will personally pay for the gas. And gladly.

      • Xpat
        Xpat on July 15, 2014, 8:48 pm

        Israeli apologists try to equate the killing of the Israeli with Israel’s massacres in Gaza. Izz a-Din al Qassam obviously does not have the ability to pinpoint its targets with the technology that Israel has: satellites, drones, airplanes. So when Israel sends a missile directly into a hospital it threatened to destroy and kills helpless patients, that’s a war crime.
        Since the Palestinians don’t have that capability it’s open to interpretation. The fact is that all their missiles have not resulted in one death.
        What has any of this to do with Israel starting this war and killing 195 people to date.
        Where’s your outrage at that?

      • JustJessetr
        JustJessetr on July 15, 2014, 11:30 pm

        “The fact is that all their missiles have not resulted in one death.”

        Yeah! They’re just harmless firecrackers meant to send a message. There’s no intent to actually, y’know…kill anyone or anything.

        God bless the Iron Dome!

      • Naftush
        Naftush on July 16, 2014, 3:30 am

        It isn’t open to interpretation and it isn’t about bodycount:
        Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I), 8 June 1977.
        Article 51 — Protection of the civilian population
        2. […] Acts or threats of violence the primary purpose of which is to spread terror among the civilian population are prohibited.

      • eljay
        eljay on July 16, 2014, 9:39 am

        >> JustaJester: God bless the Iron Dome!

        What a strange request: Asking a “god” to sanctify a technology that permits an oppressive, colonialist, expansionist and supremacist state to continue – with impunity – its 60+ years, ON-GOING and offensive (i.e., not defensive) campaign of aggression, oppression, theft, colonization, destruction, torture and murder.

      • Sumud
        Sumud on July 15, 2014, 9:31 pm

        asherpat go and read Maximus & Elliot again. Both say (to paraphrase) that this volunteer would be considered by Israel as a legitimate target.

      • Xpat
        Xpat on July 16, 2014, 1:33 pm

        Israel chooses to direct its missiles directly at children and other innocents;
        Hamas may, or may not, have the same intent.

        You are silent in the face of repeated acts of targeted killings of innocents and speak up to argue points of law where there is no loss of life.

        Palestinian life is meaningless to you, because it is Palestinian.

        Take your racism somewhere else.

      • oldgeezer
        oldgeezer on July 16, 2014, 3:34 pm

        @Naftush – It isn’t open to interpretation

        You’re right. I’m surprised to see a zionist such as yourself speak out against the Dahiya doctrine but it’s a move in the right direction. I figured eventually some decent zionist had to get fed up with Israel’s methods of using terrorism.

      • Djinn
        Djinn on July 16, 2014, 5:12 am

        Take your hand off it asherpat. YOUR country believes the children and other relatives of political leaders are fair game. It believes children walking home from school are fair game. It believes cops are fair game. Hospitals are fair game, schools are fair game, ambulances are fair game etc etc

        You have no credibility whatsoever when it comes to this subject so do everyone a favour and take your whinning elsewhere.

  2. llib
    llib on July 15, 2014, 2:51 pm

    I think it was actually the Bosniaks who were not consulted about the partition of their territory by the Serbs and Croats

  3. jon s
    jon s on July 15, 2014, 2:51 pm

    A question for Allison: is the Palestinian unity agreement still in force? If it is , maybe it made sense for the Egyptians to officially contact the PA, since the PA and Hamas are ostensibly “united”. And don’t forget that the present Egyptian authorities hate Hamas, and have outlawed it.

  4. Bob_Salad
    Bob_Salad on July 15, 2014, 3:33 pm

    “Ahead of an Israeli cabinet meeting on Tuesday night, an Israeli citizen was killed by rocket fire from Gaza at the Erez border crossing, the first Israeli fatality of the conflict. The dead man was understood to be a civilian volunteer delivering food donations to soldiers in the area. An Israeli soldier was lightly wounded”.

    “Hamas and other Palestinian leaders are also likely to be suspicious of the role of Middle East envoy Tony Blair, who has been acting as an interlocutor between Israel and Egypt. Blair is seen as a staunch defender of Israel’s interests and an enthusiast for Sisi’s regime”.

    • Sumud
      Sumud on July 15, 2014, 9:43 pm

      Blair is seen as a staunch defender of Israel’s interests and an enthusiast for Sisi’s regime”.

      … and general spawn of satan evil bastard.

  5. Palikari
    Palikari on July 15, 2014, 4:04 pm
  6. Taxi
    Taxi on July 15, 2014, 4:33 pm

    Al Mayadeen TV is reporting the opposite, Alison.

    Hamas and other Palestinian groups are rejecting the ‘calm for calm’ ceasefire proposition and vigorously rejecting any attempts by outsiders to “dismantle the Resistance”.

    Also reported on Al Mayadeen: the first israeli casualty (oh dear). Danon was fired by Netanyahu (mind you, not for being a mass-murderer, but apparently for being a rude pain the arse to other mass-murderers). Netanyahu afterwards, with thrusting sweaty neck, stood at a podium and threatened a bigger hammer upon the Gazans if the rockets don’t immediately stop. Meanwhile, Abbas, suffering from un-Palestinianism, well he went to Egypt tonight to get a good night sleep in a nice hotel there. And the jailed Marwan Barghouti, handcuffed but bright-eyed as ever, called upon all Palestinians to relentlessly support the Resistance.

    That’s all for now folks!

    Wait… last food for thought: this Danon firing, it’s clearly not a spontaneous decision – sooooo…. some serious funky mud-wrestling’s been going down in the israeli war theater huh? Something that you’ve heard much analysis on in Lebanon since the 2nd day of the current assault on Gaza, yet not a pip-squeak about this fascinating angle in the israeli or western press. They just love them gag orders in the “only democracy” bullshit state, don’t they?

    • a blah chick
      a blah chick on July 15, 2014, 7:17 pm

      “Wait… last food for thought: this Danon firing, it’s clearly not a spontaneous decision”

      Now he has time to spend with the family, or start another sex tourism business out of another embassy.

  7. Kay24
    Kay24 on July 15, 2014, 5:57 pm

    Real nice. First the bomb the heck out of the Palestinians, kill many, injure thousand, and then aww, they offer blood. These zionists are so considerate, no?

  8. Xpat
    Xpat on July 15, 2014, 6:04 pm

    Hamas’ conditions for a ceasefire as of last week were:
    1. Return to 2012 ceasefire.
    2. Stop the crackdown on the West Bank.
    3. Stop re-arresting the Palestinian prisoners released under the Gilad Shalit deal.
    I don’t see any mention in the media of #2 and #3. Instead, Israel has offered Hamas better border openings on the Gaza border.

    Is it the case that Israel has offered Hamas a benefit in Gaza but is refusing to answer its two demands on the West Bank? That would be in line with one of Israel’s objectives in attacking Hamas, i.e. breaking up the Gaza-West Bank/ Hamas-PA unity deal.

  9. Kay24
    Kay24 on July 15, 2014, 6:23 pm

    According to ex Mossad official, Hamas is not that bad, compared to others.
    He fears ISIS has it’s tentacles in Gaza.

    “There are worse options than Hamas,” former Mossad head Efraim Halevy said in an interview with CNN’s Christiane Amanpour on Tuesday.

    Halevy added that Israel should negotiate with Hamas, saying that while it was “inconvenient politically” for Israel and Hamas to acknowledge that they negotiate with each other, in reality they have been doing it for years.

    “We have coined a new method of diplomacy in the twenty-first century: we don’t meet with them, we don’t talk to them, but we listen to them,” Halevy said. “Each one listens to the other side. Somehow in the end an understanding is crafted.”

    “We have had several rounds with Hamas in recent years, and the previous rounds ended up in agreements … arrangements, as it was called. But in effect it was a negotiation between us and Hamas. When you had the deal on the kidnapped soldier Shalit, we negotiated with Hamas.”

    While acknowledging that “Hamas is a very bad option,” Halevy said that the Islamic militants in Iraq and Syria were a lot worse.” Haaretz

    I think Israel will have HUGE problems if and when ISIS gets involved. No more pushing around Palestinians.

    • Citizen
      Citizen on July 15, 2014, 8:33 pm

      I read that ISIS troop casualties were being serviced in Israeli hospitals. I guess those are from the fighting in Syria, not Iraq?

    • Sumud
      Sumud on July 15, 2014, 9:54 pm

      Israel had a golden opportunity after Hamas was elected in 2006 to just let things progress naturally. Simply being part of the electoral process – being in competition with Fateh for the vote of Palestinians – would have forced it to moderate some of it’s unpleasantness to appeal to as wide a voter base as possible.

      Instead the US and Israel attempted that coup with Dahlan which went tits up and then Hamas are ruling Gaza by force instead of consent of the governed.

      Israel needs a bogeyman.

      Kay24 – do you think ISIS or IS now will attack Israel itself or just that some Palestinians in Gaza will start an IS faction there?

      • Kay24
        Kay24 on July 16, 2014, 7:22 am

        Israel does need a bogeyman to keep perpetrating it’s crimes of land theft and to keep the military occupation going. They will NEVER lift the siege and never give them the Palestinians their rights and freedom.
        ISIS is dangerous and if ISIS decides to “help” the Palestinians, it will change the dynamics of the entire situation. Israel will realize they cannot pick on helpless civilians living in the world’s largest concentration camp anymore, and have a real enemy to contend with.

      • SQ Debris
        SQ Debris on July 16, 2014, 2:38 pm

        Yes, without a bogeyman the entire zionist enterprise loses its justification. Israel has to generate animosity so that it can claim the status of refuge. One of the awful ironies of the moment is that Hamas was Israel’s creature from the start. During the first Intifadah Israeli troops would allow bus loads of Hamas supporters to travel across checkpoints to beat up supporters of the Unified National Leadership. The idea was to splinter Palestinian unity. That story hasn’t changed a lick.

  10. Kay24
    Kay24 on July 15, 2014, 7:04 pm

    What it’s like on the ground in Gaza – pictures by Sophia Jones of The Worldpost.

    Amazing pictures that are so haunting. The comments are interesting, mostly supporting Gaza. These pictures will make the entire world realize the brutality of Israel’s crimes. There is absolutely NO justification for these killings.

  11. DICKERSON3870
    DICKERSON3870 on July 15, 2014, 8:23 pm


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    To donate, please print out brochure or send a check with your name, address, telephone number, and email address to:

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    PO Box 380273
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    SOURCE: Gaza Mental Health Foundation –

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    Ted Rynearson
    Therese Saliba
    Tom Suarez
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  12. Penfold
    Penfold on July 15, 2014, 8:36 pm

    I am not sure what was going on but it seems like the ceasefire process was more a cruel joke of incompetence than anything else…

    “The general idea was that if the Egyptians had issued a cease-fire proposal, it would be inappropriate for Israel to reject it,” said one minister. “Netanyahu and Ya’alon told us this is an opportunity to strengthen the alliance with Egypt, and a positive response to the Egyptian proposal would earn us a lot of brownie points internationally and increased legitimacy to expand the operation against Hamas if needed. This was true and logical, and most of the ministers were convinced. But a few hours later, we discovered we’d made a cease-fire agreement with ourselves.”

    It sounds like everyone was so busy posturing and puffing up their own importance that they forgot to involve half the combatants in the process.

  13. a blah chick
    a blah chick on July 15, 2014, 8:41 pm

    Massive attack on right now, cease fire over.

  14. Citizen
    Citizen on July 15, 2014, 8:50 pm

    Israel paused for six hours. The dead and wounded toll is now bigger than in 2012 cycle of violence. There’s a distinct Alice-In-Wonderland quality about this back and forth. Sure glad I don’t live in Gaza.

    Does anyone think any HAMAS leader actually expects Israel to end the blockade of Gaza? Is the idea that if they fire enough longer range rockets enough Israelis will be upset by the inconvenience they might push their local leaders to suggest a door to the blockade should be opened? Are the rockets simply a cry to be noticed?

  15. a blah chick
    a blah chick on July 15, 2014, 11:19 pm

    Love this tweet from someone safe and comfortable and offering advice to the Gaza man dodging bombs: “Do you people not understand, No one will save you or come to your aid you must remove Hamas or you will Die.”

    Diplomacy by Mafiosi.

    • annie
      annie on July 16, 2014, 3:19 am

      chick,there were some really awful tweets last night posted by a gazan @alayham2008 who had been warned his house would be blown up. he said 40 people were living in the building and they were not leaving. and some israelis started sending him awful messages. he has not posted for 9 hours. i hope he survived the night.

  16. Marnie
    Marnie on July 16, 2014, 1:09 am

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Congress is showing tangible support for longtime ally Israel as Gaza militants fire rockets, backing a measure that would double the amount of money for Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system.

    The Senate Appropriations defense subcommittee approved a defense spending bill on Tuesday that would provide $621.6 million for Israeli missile defense, including $351 million for the Iron Dome system that intercepts short-range rockets and mortars. In the latest hostilities between Israel and Hamas, Iron Dome has been successful in shooting down rockets and preventing Israeli deaths.


    Overall, the defense bill would provide $549.3 billion for the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1. The bill spares several of the weapons programs that the Pentagon had proposed scaling back or eliminating, including the A-10 Warthog, the close air support aircraft and the USS George Washington aircraft carrier.–politics.html

    Enough! Americans need to brush up on French history, specifically the French revolution, and put an end to this madness! What are these whores in Washington getting in return for their treason? How much money, what kind of drug or how good is the pussy that would make these “elected” representatives of the people sell out the very people they are there to serve? Hell is going to be so crowded……………

  17. German Lefty
    German Lefty on July 16, 2014, 4:25 am

    All In With Chris Hayes 07/15/14
    Netanyahu vows intensified Gaza attacks

  18. anthonybellchambers
    anthonybellchambers on July 16, 2014, 6:43 am

    There is only one imperative.That is to stop Israel’s state terrorism from targeting innocent civilians by using the activity of a minority of dissidents, who are still under occupation after 47 years, as a deliberate excuse to terrorise and kill unarmed women and children in order to extend further its illegal settlements in the Occupied Territories so as to frustrate the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

    The UN General Assembly in emergency session should CONDEMN this terrorist action of the Israeli government and demand a complete withdrawal of all illegal settlers in the West Bank failing which there should be a complete embargo on bilateral trade with the Israeli state, worldwide.

    No one should be allowed to benefit from atrocities carried out by Israel’s new style death squads using killer drones, missiles, helicopter gunships and F16 bombers against a primarily unarmed civilian population.

    It is a war crime under the provisions of the Geneva Conventions to which the whole of Europe and the United States is a party. When will those responsible be indicted and brought before the ICC?

  19. Kay24
    Kay24 on July 16, 2014, 7:25 am

    Well, it looks like Israel is beginning to feel the consequences of their violence.

    Now their economy is beginning to take a hit, looks like those rockets are hitting a target that will hurt Israel quite hard. BDS will get the same results without anyone getting hurt.

    I guess sugar daddy will be harassed until it helps the warmongers.
    Congress will fill in their coffers with our tax money.

  20. Walid
    Walid on July 17, 2014, 12:31 am

    A temporary 5-hour cease-fire sponsored by the UN has been agreed to and set to take effect at 10 am local time (3 am NYC time) for humanitarian reasons, which is less than 3 hours away. BUT, the Israeli airstrikes are still ongoing at this time and homes are still being destroyed.

    Looks like Israel wants every last drop of blood entitled to it up until the hour the cease-fire is set to start. It doesn’t want to lose a precious minute of killing. It reminds of the 2006 war when a cease-fire had been agreed to and a week was needed to finalize the wording on the document but Israel kept at it all this time going so far as dropping 2 million cluster bombs all over Lebanon’s south during this period.

    Every single drop of Palestinian blood due to it is what Israel is now after until 10 am.

  21. Walid
    Walid on July 17, 2014, 1:10 am

    About that failed “Egyptian” cease-fire, Richard Silverstein that’s one of the better IP analysts around referred to the proposed Egyptian offer that nobody decided to consult Hamas about a charade and a fraud cooked up by Israel. Richard was polite to not implicate the other rogues in this masquerade, Abbas, Blair and the Arab League. A small excerpt from his piece:

    by Richard Silverstein on July 16, 2014

    “… Let’s talk about the faux ceasefire. Really a fraudulent ceasefire. Egypt’s ceasefire with no one. My Israeli source, who was consulted as part of the negotiations, tells me that this was not, in reality, an Egyptian proposal. It was, in fact, an Israeli proposal presented in the guise of an Egyptian proposal. Israel wrote the ceasefire protocol. The Egyptians rubber-stamped it and put it out under their letterhead as if it was their own.

    Jodi Rudoren typically called the ceasefire “one-sided,” meaning Israel honored it and Hamas didn’t. But it was “one-sided” in a way she hadn’t considered. Only one-side prepared the ceasefire and essentially presented it to itself and accepted it. The other side wasn’t consulted.

    The contents of the ceasefire proposal were a fraud as well. They promised and delivered nothing. They only called for a cessation of hostilities on the part of Israel and Hamas. The same document has been signed in the past only to see Israel violate it almost as soon as the ink was dry. There were no provisions for easing the Israeli siege. No provision to open the border with Egypt. Most importantly, the ceasefire didn’t address any underlying issues between the parties. It was a guarantor for resuming hostilities at the earliest possible opportunity: these wars have come at two-year intervals over the past six years. The next one will be in 2016, if not sooner.

    The reason Israel felt compelled to do this, as Haaretz reports, was that John Kerry phoned the Egyptians and Israelis and told them he was coming to Cairo for the ceasefire talks, when essentially, there were none. Bibi could smell a trap. He knew this visit by Kerry was meant to embarrass Israel and maneuver it into defending its unconscionable assault on Gaza’s civilian population. So the ceasefire was a ploy to deflect a U.S. stratagem. As usual, Bibi is very deft on political tactics, but clueless as to a strategy.

    Haaretz also makes clear that neither Hamas’ military or political wings were consulted in preparation or negotiation over the plan. So how the Hell do you make such a proposal without including one of the parties? Well, you don’t unless the entire exercise is a charade.”

  22. jon s
    jon s on July 17, 2014, 1:11 am

    As we’re waiting for the “humanitarian ceasefire” – the siren sounded here : four rockets were fired at Beersheva, Iron Dome intercepted all four.

    It looks like the Hamas terrorists want to see more blood, up to the last minute (and beyond?). They’re not satisfied with killing one Israeli , and causing the deaths of over 200 Palestinians, aside from the material damage on both sides.

  23. Walid
    Walid on July 17, 2014, 8:02 am

    More elaboration by Jonathan Cook on the “Egyptian” cease-fire scam involving strings pulling by Blair, all to screw Hamas and the Palestinians.”

    How US and Blair Plotted ‘Ceasefire’ Scam

    By Jonathan Cook

    “…According to Haaretz, Blair secretly initiated his “ceasefire” activity after “coordinating” with US Secretary of State John Kerry. On Saturday he headed off to Cairo to meet with the US-backed Egyptian dictator Abdel Fattah al-Sisi to persuade him to put his name to the proposal.

    Immediately afterwards, he travelled to Israel to meet Benjamin Netanyahu on Saturday afternoon. Sisi and Netanyahu were then supposed to thrash out the details. When they failed to do so, Blair intervened again on behalf of the Americans and the pair spoke by phone on Saturday evening.

    Here’s the key paragraph from Haaretz:

    ‘……Senior Israeli officials and Western diplomats said the reason the Egyptian cease-fire initiative was so short-lived is that it was prepared hastily and was not coordinated with all the relevant parties, particularly Hamas.’

    Wonderful that throw-away last line. In all this activity, it never occurred to the US, Blair, Sisi or Netanyahu – and no doubt Mahmoud Abbas, who is strangely absent from this account – that it might be necessary to sound out Hamas on the terms of a ceasefire it would need to abide by.

    Now it seems Kerry is using US muscle to get Egypt, Qatar and Turkey to strong-arm Hamas into surrendering…”

    For more on the details of how they tried to pull it off:

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