Israel resumes military operation in the Gaza Strip

To use Antony Blinken’s phrase, credit the war to Hamas — again. Over the previous 24 hours, the terrorist government of Gaza took credit for a murderous attack at a Jerusalem bus stop that killed three people, failed to provide a list of hostages to release today, and then fired “several” rockets back into Israel.

Having received the message, Israel returned to full-scale war operations earlier today.

The Israel Defense Forces resumed its military offensive in the Gaza Strip on Friday after a week-long truce as the Hamas terror group broke the ceasefire, firing rockets into Israel and failing to provide a list of hostages it intended to release by 7 am.

The Prime Minister’s Office said in a statement that Hamas “violated the framework, did not meet its obligation to release all hostage women, and fired rockets at Israel.”

“Amid the return to combat, we stress the government of Israel is committed to achieving the goals of the war — releasing our hostages, eliminating Hamas, and ensuring that Gaza can never again threaten the people of Israel.”

And thus does this ‘cease fire’ with Hamas end just like every other ‘cease fire’ with Hamas. Hamas never fails to violate these pauses and cease-fires, because Hamas doesn’t want peace or coexistence with Israel despite all of the drizzly nonsense that Israel’s Western allies spew. Hamas wants to annihilate Israel, and they just want a lot of help in achieving it — which is why they continually start wars.

Perhaps the next time Hamas declares they want war or just keeps starting them, Blinken will believe them, eh?

For the moment, Qatar isn’t getting the message.

The IDF’s aerial bombing of Gaza complicated mediation efforts to reach an agreement to restore a “pause” to the war in exchange for hostages release, Qatar’s Foreign Ministry said on Friday.

“The Ministry stresses [that] the continued bombing of the Gaza Strip in the first hours after the end of the pause complicates mediation efforts and exacerbates the humanitarian catastrophe in the Strip,” the ministry said.

Qatar calls on the “international community to move quickly to stop the violence,” it said, as it underscored that efforts were ongoing to mediate a second truce that would include hostage releases.

What kind of ‘pause’ does Qatar envision? Another ‘pause’ in which Hamas terrorists shoot Israeli civilians and bus stops? Or a ‘pause’ where Hamas bombards Israeli civilian centers? The absurdity of this Mom He Hit Me Back formulation would be clear to any parent, but apparently escapes the bien pensants of Washington DC, Brussels, and Doha.

The IDF has published a rather detailed ‘evacuation zone’ map to warn Palestinians in southern Gaza to find safe areas during the upcoming operations. This came in response to complaints from Blinken about conducting war in heavily concentrated civilian areas, while completely ignoring Hamas’ crimes for hiding and operating in those areas in the first place.

The map, which does not yet include evacuation routes or instructions, was also issued in Arabic, with the message that those living in each block must “follow the instructions of the IDF through various media and obey them.”

That map makes clear that Israel plans to fight Hamas from one end of Gaza to the other. Fighting renewed in the northern region of Gaza but the airstrikes are now targeting Khan Younis too, where Israeli forces believe Hamas retreated in the first days of the ground war:

The IDF said its fighter jets began carrying out a wave of airstrikes against Hamas targets. Loud, continuous explosions were heard coming from the Gaza Strip, and black smoke billowed from the territory.

Hamas said the airstrikes hit southern Gaza, including the community of Abassan east of the town of Khan Younis. Another strike reportedly hit a home northwest of Gaza City.

Apparently, Israeli leaders plan to use more precision targeting in southern Gaza, likely because of the concentration of civilians. The Washington Post reports that as a bone tossed to Blinken, but Israel was likely to follow that plan anyway. (The Post is still regurgitating casualty reports from ‘Gaza’s Health Ministry’ without identifying them as Hamas, too.)

Will negotiators convince Israel to enter another operational ‘pause’ at some point? Perhaps, but the behavior of the international community — and the US in particular — during this last week should be instructive to Israel’s unity government. Not only did their putative allies treat them as the terrorists while entirely ignoring Hamas’ massacres of civilians that started the war, they made it clear that their own political benefits took precedence over the survival of Israel and Jews. Based on the transcripts from yesterday’s meeting with Blinken, it appears that the Israelis have had enough lectures from the gang that abandoned 14,000 Americans to the Taliban.

Hamas started this war as the elected representatives of the Gazans. If Gazans want an end to this war, they can either wait for Israel to crush them, or formally capitulate and surrender Hamas forces to the IDF. There are no other legitimate ways to truly end this war, because Hamas never wants this war to end.

Dan Butcher

Dan Butcher (aka HP Pundit) is not a Democrat or Republican. He is a free thinking independent bringing you news and commentary with a dose of much needed common sense.

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