US and UN: Israel and Hamas agree on a 72-hour truce from Friday, “immediate” talks in Cairo

Just as I forecast. This is a big victory for Netanyahu. Israel is permitted to continue destroying tunnels and its military can stay in place. Ted Belman


KERRYMOONThe 72-hour hour unconditional, humanitarian ceasefire announced by the US and UN, was scheduled to begin at 8 am local time Friday. The US State Department said that military forces will stay in place. The US and UN said they had assurances that all parties to the conflict had agreed to an unconditional cease-fire during which there would be negotiations on a more durable truce.

This was confirmed early Friday by a source in the Israeli Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem. The Paletinian Hamas and Jihad Islami also confirmed acceptance of the ceasefire, following which they fired two rockets into Israel.

Israeli and Palestinian delegations will “immediately” be going to Cairo for negotiations with the Egyptian government to try at reach a more permanent cease-fire, the State Department said.

“During this period, civilians in Gaza will receive urgently needed humanitarian relief, and the opportunity to carry out vital functions, including burying the dead, taking care of the injured, and restocking food supplies. Overdue repairs on essential water and energy infrastructure could also continue during this period.”

During the cease-fire,  Israel will be able to continue its defense operations to destroy tunnels that are behind its territorial lines. 

“We hope this moment can be grabbed by both parties, but no one can force them to do that,” US Secretary of State John Kerry said.

The Palestinian delegation is expected to include members of Hamas, which the United States and Israel consider a terrorist organization and cannot be negotiated with directly. So if the Israelis and Palestinians meet face to face, the Hamas members will not participate in those talks. The Egyptians will be the go-between for all of this and will help coordinate, a senior State Department official said,

August 1, 2014 | 19 Comments »

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19 Comments / 19 Comments

  1. There is no choice left; Israeli must rid itself of N., and all his ilk. Their failures are being counted in the souls of the IDF.

  2. We ARE in the midst of miracles. There is a force that will not allow one inch of Israeli soil to be given away and will reconstitute. Friend and foe alike, all ceasefire agreements fail.

    Israelis are perhaps being “moved” to the understanding that it is THEY who must say: NO MORE. no more of our beautiful young people sacrificed, no more of our nation in bunkers, no more of waiting for the coup de gras by those gathering for the signal.

    Israelis must demand of a new leadership; DO what your are sworn to do, what our military can do.

  3. @ SHmuel HaLevi 2

    Netanyahu is responsible for his abduction by refusing to conduct a war. And he placed the needs of Obama and Kerry above the safety of IDF troops. Hamas is evil but Israel’s leaders seem to think it can be reasoned with. They’re fools.

  4. @ Ted Belman:
    Just seconds ago it was reported on #7 Hebrew, that there is heavy fear that a soldier was take prisoner in the Rafah area… Gaza.
    I believe that we, the people must send to the GoI ensemble an harsh warning. Resign, get the hell out of there. We have had enough of the eunuchs and others in there.
    The people must act fast and firm and run the pestilence out of town or accept total defeat.

  5. @ Topaz:

    there will be nowhere for the Jews of Israel to go.

    Why should be go anywhere?

    When will God do the right thing

    Wrong question here. You probably don’t live in Israel. Here, even the most secular, even the Arabs, know that if it weren’t for G-d, we would have been finished a long time ago. Our existence and resilience is – and always has been – a miracle.
    And for the record, the Sinai Covenant happens everyday, meaning that Jews must accept it everyday.
    So the right question is: when will WE do the right thing?
    Shabbat Shalom, everybody.

  6. The IDF will have no means to protect them whilst still in Gaza. The rockets will fly again without an Israeli response.

    This is the stepping stone to the “final solution” for Israel by Nazi Hamas, when the military aircraft and advanced rockets arrive to overwhelm the Iron Dome.

    This ceasefire is the death-knell for Israel. I don’t even know how an Israeli military take-over of the country will now be even possible.

    With the ratcheting up of Jew-hatred and denial of US ViSAs to Israelis, there will be nowhere for the Jews of Israel to go.

    Lebanon will come into the fray with their tens of thousands of rockets and latest military hardware, they smell a willing sinking ship. Iran and Qatar will deliver the state of the art fighter planes and missiles that will precision target and overwhelm the Iron Dome. Israel will not use their ultimate weapon, probably be sabotaged by Jews.

    If it is illegal for the US to have a banned terrorist entity at the negotiations, how is it legal for Israel.

    My father used to say, “There is nothing you can do with stupid.”

    I feel that there is nothing left to say. I had, a number of years ago, sent out a Clarion Call to the Jewish people world-wide to become aware this time of what will be happening to them. There was an upsurge of Jewish activity, but it was NOT enough. I sent out a call that we must act, not react; can sue etc. That was NOT Enough.

    Maybe wiser heads than mine can provide the hope that I now cannot find.

    AND, the Jewish people have kept their promise to God through horrific slaughters of the innocents. When will God do the right thing and create another Mount Sinai, giving a clear and definite signal that attacks on the Jewish people ENDS, now.

  7. The gruesome collapse deepens. So far two violations of the “cease fire” w/o response. One mortar and one rocket salvo alert sounded for the South.
    Netanyahu is always ready to surrender so Mr. Obama did not have too much of a problem.
    Netanyahu will only attack Jews with intent. Preferably unarmed women and children and at night.

  8. @ SHmuel HaLevi 2:

    Already a question is thrown on the ceasefire with reports of heavy fighting in southern Gaza this morning. Whether it holds is any one’s guess but your point is still a valid one: the Israeli elite do not want to destroy Hamas. They want to come away looking good in front of the media.

  9. @ Ted Belman:
    Disarmament never works unless a military victory opens that option and the victor throttles the loser out of will and power into disarming. Japan and Germany after WWII were so forced.
    Dr. Lerner confirmed that there is no clear cut truth on the tunnel destruction fig.
    Netanyahu lies and deceives as a way of life and he is leading even worse trash such as Livni, Lapid, Weinstenu

  10. @ SHmuel HaLevi 2:

    When the IDF and the PMO are already blaming each other, you wonder what went wrong. This war had no clear political goal and the Israeli elite chickened out on the idea of pursuing victory. The political clock has now run out and we’re back to where we were four weeks ago with Hamas having plenty of rockets still on hand and no official word on how many tunnels have actually been destroyed. If this is a “victory” I’d hate to see what a defeat looks like.

  11. @ nfarbstein:

    Aaron Lerner asked the questions of both the IDF and the PMO and they’re already being evasive:

    The Prime Minister’s Office declines to answer regarding destruction of tunnels during ceasefire Dr. Aaron Lerner – IMRA 1 August 2014

    At 08:50 Dr. Aaron Lerner of IMRA reached David Baker David Baker, the Senior Foreign Press Coordinator in the Office of the Prime Minister, on the telephone and asked: “during the course of the humanitarian ceasefire can the IDF detonate explosives to demolish tunnels.”

    David Baker replied: Ask the IDF Spokesperson’s Office.

    IMRA told Baker: The IDF Spokesperson’s Office says to ask the Prime Minister’s Office.

    Baker replied: We have nothing to add to the reply of the IDF Spokesperson’s Office.

    IDF Spokespersons Office: Questions relating to ceasefire to be answered by Prime Minister’s Office Dr. Aaron Lerner Date: 1 August 2014

    IMRA contacted the IDF Spokesman’s Office News Desk at 08:03 this morning and asked: “during the course of the humanitarian ceasefire can the IDF detonate explosives to demolish tunnels.”

    The IDF Spokesman’s Office News Desk replied that “all questions relating to the ceasefire are to be answered by the Prime Minister’s Office.”

    IMRA has contacted the Prime Minister’s Office but has not yet received a reply.

    In a conversation with IMRA when the ceasefire was announced Saskia Ramming, Spokesperson, Office of the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, decline to take a position as to whether Israeli forces could detonate explosives in order to destroy tunnels during the ceasefire.

    News reports on Israel Radio regarding the terms of the ceasefire say that “the IDF will continue to DEAL WITH the tunnels during the ceasefire” but it should be noted that the term “DEAL WITH” includes filling up tunnel shafts with dirt.

    Israel Radio Arab Affairs Correspondent Gal Berger reported this morning on Israel Radio Reshet Bet after 08:00 that it is the position of Hamas that Israeli action destroying tunnels would be considered a violation of the ceasefire.

    During the course of the previous humanitarian ceasefire the IDF Spokesperson told IMRA twice that tunnels could not be exploded during the ceasefire but the next day the answer became more complicated, with the reference to the use of explosive material during the ceasefire being an airborne strike against a tunnel entrance in defense of IDF ground forces under attack from terrorists firing from a tunnel opening.

    Take note: when the count of destroyed tunnels was renewed after the end of the ceasefire – a figure not provided during the ceasefire – it turned out that there was the exact same number of “destroyed tunnels” after the ceasefire as before the ceasefire.

    So it turns out Israel can’t even destroy the tunnels with explosives and for Hamas that would be a violation of the ceasefire. If this is a victory, no wonder neither the IDF nor Netanyahu are rushing to claim credit for it. In other words, Netanyahu threw away almost 60 Israeli lives with nothing to show for it but a worthless piece of paper. This will not go down well in Israel.

    And now the Iranians know Netanyahu and the IDF are nothing to fear. Israel won’t risk casualties to annihilate Hamas. People expect the Prime Minister to stop an Iranian nuclear bomb? Puhleeaze? I’m dying of laughter and after four weeks, Hamas’ rocket arsenal remains mostly intact.

  12. Ted,

    Do explain for us how demilitarization will be enforced in the absence of the destruction of Hamas. Hamas won simply by surviving to live to fight another day. Not too low a bar for it to clear. If Israel wants to prevent Hamas from rebuilding, it has to permanently remain in Gaza. And as we have seen, humanitarian ceasefires mean nothing to Hamas.

  13. I am currently writing an article to say not only will a more permanent agreement not be worked out but the ceasefire won’t hold, providing Israel continues to demand real demilitarization. I did not say this was a victory of Israel. I said it was a victory for Netanyahu. If he sticks to his demand and achieves demilitarization in fact it will be a victory for Israel. Meanwhile the IDF has three days, unmolested, to complete the destruction of the tunnels.

  14. SHmuel HaLevi 2 Said:

    Within 6 months Hamas will be ready to the level of Hezbollah is after Olmert and Livni also “won” a cease fire in Lebanon.

    I would say put that on their headstones but I doubt the Muslims will leave any graveyards intact.

  15. Nothing short of the annihilation of Hamas is a “victory”. This is a defeat for Israel and perhaps one of the last staging points to Israel’s final destruction.

    So it’s the same old, same old – another defeat for Israel engineered by Kerry and Obama this time.

  16. I would like my betters to explain to me how a “cease fire” in place and purportedly an allowance to destroy a few more tunnels after 24-25 days of a military campaign that did not take out the enemy is a “victory”. I mean, it took 85 thousand soldiers, virtually all our ammo, the loss of 61 plus soldiers and maiming of 200, plus many civilians and what we see is a victory? I’ll be……..!
    Within 6 months Hamas will be ready to the level of Hezbollah is after Olmert and Livni also “won” a cease fire in Lebanon.