There was a cease fire, brokered by Egypt. Israel kept it for 24 hours, while Hamas ignored it. Why? Because Hamas knows that it is to their political advantage to have Israel slaughter their children. They sacrifice their children for that political advantage. And Israel is only too happy to oblige.
So here's what you need to know about the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict:
"The enemy of your enemy is not your friend."
What does that mean? Think about it. Stalin and Churchill had a common enemy: Hitler. But they were not friends. And so it is in the Middle East.
Those of you who oppose the actions of Israel, you share a common enemy with Hamas. But Hamas is not your friend.
Those of you who oppose the actions of Hamas, you share a common enemy with the Netanyahu Administration, but the Netanyahu Administration is not your friend.
Those who choose to destroy Jewish homes and businesses in France and throughout Europe, well, you simply were looking for an excuse to act on your hatred for Jews from the last war. Hamas is not your friend either.
In fact, Hamas, and the Netanyahu Administration, both have the same common enemy:
But they are not friends.
I wrote an article in Tikkun Magazine 14 years ago, before the Intifada, in the last year of the Clinton Administration, when there was still hope for a peaceful resolution in which I wrote:
The relationship of both secular and traditional Jews to the land changed severely after the 1967 war. With the annexation of new territory, the traditional culture that sought to preserve the land as an extension of G-d's will quickly became a culture that worshipped the land itself. Believing the land was theirs to rule, both secular kibbutsniks and religious Jews too easily accepted the role of occupier. Yeshayahu Leibowitz in his essay 'The Territories,' written shortly after the war, predicted that this decision to retain rule over the occupied territories would have tragic consequences. He suggested that the religious traditionalists, in arguing that the land has biblical significance, were actually idolizing the land, thus corrupting the very religion they strove to maintain. Instead of Jews working together on the land and in all levels of society, the process of maintaining rule over a hostile population of 1.5 to 2 million foreigners within the territories would have significant social repercussions. Arguing that hierarchical relationships would necessarily develop between Jewish Israelis and the Others, he predicted that in a few years there would be no Jewish workers or Jewish farmers, that Arabs would be the working people and Jews the administrators, inspectors, officials, and police. In short, he predicted the dissolution of Israeli social fabric and boundaries as surely as the boundaries of the country itself.Dr. Leibowitz proved to be omniscient. The greatest military success in the history of Israel turned into its greatest failure.
Yes, the Occupation is horrific, dehumanizing, and has been oppressing innocent Palestinians for decades. It has to end, for many, many, obvious reasons. For that to happen, though, Netanyahu must have a personality change, and Hamas must agree that Israel, with borders to be agreed upon, has the right to exist.
In the meantime, Netanyahu knows that any peace settlement will involve giving up land that he has no intention of losing as Israel's PM, so any chance he has to gin up conflict with Hamas will be taken, so that the people of Israel will agree that negotiations would be ridiculous.
And, at the same time, Hamas has no interest in living peacefully, side by side, with Israel, and is sacrificing the Palestinians living under its rule in order to strengthen itself and its cause.
There are many, who are disenfranchised, abused, and oppressed, and will bear the burdens without taking actions against their oppressors. IF, however, they lose loved ones due to the bombings, now they potentially become aggrieved avengers of the murders, willing to risk their lives for the destruction of their enemy.
It is in Hamas' best interest to create such aggrieved avengers, as long as the aggrieved believe that Israel was wholly responsible for the murders.
The losers in all this? The poor Palestinians, who have been oppressed and living with this, in varying degrees of intensity and oppression, for the last 47 years.