An Israeli man bringing food to IDF soldiers at the Erez Crossing into Gaza was killed just as an Egyptian brokered cease fire was set to go into effect.
The ceasefire, while it was accepted by the Israeli Cabinet, was rejected by Hamas after it was set to take hold. Hamas stated that they had received no communication from the Egyptians although our sources reveal that Egyptian officials went to great lengths to deliver the text to Hamas. The Egyptians, for their part, were under the assumption that Hamas had agreed to the terms.
The death of an Israeli civilian may indeed ratchet up the conflict, which we warned about in a previous post, but Arabs argue that he was killed in the vicinity of a “legitimate military target”, a nuance lost on the Israeli public who are reacting with outrage. Indeed, the acceptance by Jerusalem of the cease fire offer was the cause of angry denunciations by some Israelis who feel that Netanyahu is “all talk and no walk.” They also believe his measures are “halting and indecisive.”
Israeli military sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, say that, as one put it, “while the IDF are prepared to launch any kind of needed counter-measure, including a ground invasion, there have been no tactical, let alone strategic, objectives approved by the Cabinet.”
We have assessed that Hamas believes it has what it takes to offer unexpected resistance in a local order street battle. Our sources tell us Hamas is actually hoping for an Israeli ground invasion to prove the Israeli military is ‘beatable.’ The recent foray of Israeli special forces into Gaza was not met with that resistance, “because we do not want to waste this on a few enemy, we want to see large numbers of enemy come in to our reach”, as one Hamas operative is reported to have said.
Many Arab Palestinians ado not wish to be caught in the middle of this fight and, despite Hamas pleading with them to stay, hundreds and thousands are fleeing from the expected combat zones.
Stay tuned here for insights and more behind the scenes intelligence on this conflict.