Truth: The First Casualty

There is an old say……”Truth is the first casualty of war”……..World War one, Vietnam, Iraq and now Gaza.

States must have an excuse to go to war these days if they want popular support….without it a war would be short lived or not happening at all……

Fast forward to a month ago……Israel is dealing with the kidnapping and deaths of three teens—-the reports coming out of Israel is that Hamas is behind the deed and they were most likely using the tunnels as a way into Israel to accomplish their desired missions which in this case was the kidnapping of Israeli teens.

As they say…the rest is history……Israel started its current operation in Gaza to retaliate for the deaths of the teens and to try and stop the odd rockets being fired into Israeli territory.

But there seems to be a twist in their logic…..,a twist that you will mostly likely NEVER hear here in the West……

BEIRUT: The Israeli Police Foreign Press Spokesman, Micky Rosenfeld, appears to have falsified the Israeli government’s claim that Hamas was responsible for the killing of three Israeli settler teens in June, by saying responsibility lies with a lone cell that operated without the complicity of Hamas’ leadership.

The kidnapping and subsequent killing of three Israeli settler teens last month is considered to be a flashpoint for the escalated violence in Gaza — that as of day 19 of the conflict has left 926 Palestinians, mostly civilians, dead.

At the time Israeli authorities placed the blame squarely on Hamas, with Israeli Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu saying “They were kidnapped and murdered in cold blood by animals in human form. Hamas is responsible and Hamas will pay.”

As normal…..TRUTH has gone out the window when a desired operation is planned.  This is how modern man justifies the killing, violence and destruction…….with a lie!

What Is Israel Doing?

Opinion from the desk of the Editor

It has been 4 weeks of carnage in the Gaza……and the narrative is that Israel has a right to defend itself so it has declared war on Hamas who is to blame for all the missiles being fired into Israel……also they say that they will keep fighting until Hamas is no longer capable of harming Israel in any way…..

I have been a student of the causes of war for many years…….and the actions taken to bring it to a quick end with victory for the good guy….whoever that be……this is where I question what Israel is really doing……

If it is truly a war on Hamas and not the Palestinian people why did it take 4 weeks to hit the Hamas leadership and their radio and TV network?  To me in any war you would take out command and control before attempting other actions…..but yet Israel waited 4 weeks…..why?

Here is the report from 29 July 2014 in an article in the Wall Street journal…….

They (Israel) damaged the home of the top Hamas leader in Gaza, Ismail Haniyeh, along with government offices and the headquarters of the Hamas broadcast outlets, Al-Aqsa TV and Al-Aqsa Radio. The Israeli military said it hit the broadcast center to silence Hamas propaganda and messages to its operatives. The TV station continued to broadcast but the radio went silent.

The bombardment hit 70 targets, the military said, including two used as Hamas command centers, four weapons storage sites hidden within mosques, a tunnel, and a Finance Ministry building. Israeli aircraft hit 10 Hamas operatives in targeted strikes, the military said.

I ask again….why would Israel wait 4 weeks of bloodshed before going after the command and control of Hamas?

There are two answers to that question…….1–Israel is inept and not the professional army that it pretends to be.  personally, I think that is NOT the reason.  2–They wanted to punish the Palestinian people….and that seems to be the most logical answer to why the 4 week delay.

Hamas had lost much of its support prior to this attack and now the longer Israel prolongs this war the more support Hamas will receive…..which will mean this will all occur again and again…….and maybe that is what Israel wants in the long term….

I do not question the right to defend….I do however question the tactics and the end game.

This is a game that need not be played.

The Road To Al-Baghdadi

Inkwell Institute

Middle East Desk

The news now a days is Gaza and MH17…….but with all that coverage there is still problems elsewhere that we would like to ignore……but do so at our own peril.

Iraq and Syria may have slipped from the headlines but both are a smoldering pile of fecal matter……death, destruction and extreme violence are all they have to look forward to in the near future…….ISIS then ISIL then Islamic State and now the Caliphate….what do we know about the man credited with forming the caliphate…..Abu Bakr Al Baghadi who now calls himself Caliph Ibrahim…….what do we actually know about the ‘enemy’?

Let me state first and foremost, I have zero confidence in our intel agencies….they have missed too much that has come back to bite us in the ass…..al-Baghdadi seems to be one of those nibbles on our tush…….

What do we know?

To begin with if Bill O’Reilly is correct the he is a Muslim because he has a beard…….he is a terrorist because we are told he is…..he makes videos for posting on the internet……that my friends is what we know about al-Baghdadi…..all of which is hearsay and accusations….could there be more?

A reflection from a Mother Jones article……..

Baghdadi has become Iraq’s most prominent extremist leader. But for much of his adult life, Baghdadi did not have a reputations as a fiery, jihadist trailblazer. According to the Telegraph, members of his local mosque in Tobchi (a neighborhood in Baghdad) who knew him from around 1989 until 2004 (when he was between the ages of 18 and 33) considered Baghdadi a quiet, studious fellow and a talented soccer player. When the United States invaded Iraq in 2003, Baghdadi was earning a degree in Islamic studies in Baghdad.

But within a couple years of the US invasion, Baghdadi was a prisoner in Camp Bucca, the US-run detainment facility in Umm Qasr, Iraq. And a US compound commander stationed at that prison—and other military officials—have in recent weeks wondered whether Baghdadi’s stint there radicalized him and put him on the path to taking over ISIS in 2010 and guiding the movement to its recent military victories.

The details of Baghdadi’s time in Camp Bucca are murky. Some media reports note that he was held as a “civilian internee” at the prison for 10 months in 2004. Others report that he was captured by US forces in 2005 and spent four years at Camp Bucca. The reason why he was apprehended is not publicly known; he could have been arrested on a specific charge or as part of a large sweep of insurgents or insurgent supporters. (A confidential Red Cross report leaked in May 2004 suggested than around 90 percent of detainees of Iraqi origin were arrested “by mistake.”) Army Colonel Kenneth King, the commanding US officer at Camp Bucca in 2009, recently told the Daily Beast that he distinctly remembered a man resembling Baghdadi: “He was a bad dude, but he wasn’t the worst of the worst.” King noted he was “not surprised” that such a radical figure emerged from the facility.

In other words we not only originated AQ but now we help form a mass murderer, is that what they are saying?

U.S. officials now believed that two years after his release, Baghdadi was actively working with al Qaeda in the very city where he was arrested, a U.S. counter-terrorism official told McClatchy. The official cannot be identified under the conditions with which he discussed Baghdadi.

Looks like the intel community may have missed another sign of what was to come…….they continue to show me that we should have NO confidence on these agencies to keep us safe.

I believe the biggest problem that al Baghdadi is going to have is his Muslim brethren…..

Iraqi clerics meeting in Anbar described the recent declaration by the “Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant” (ISIL) of a “caliphate” as a violation of sharia.

ISIL’s declaration of caliphate clearly shows why the group has recently spilled blood and killed people, said Anbar Scholars Council spokesman Sheikh Abdul Hamid al-Alwani.

It is like an occupation and coercion to force people to agree with them under threats, and is also a violation of sharia and the requirements of a caliphate, he said.

“A caliphate requires consent and allegiance from citizens, and this did not happen with ISIL’s declaration, therefore making it a violation of religion,” al-Alwani said.

There are some level heads within the Muslim community, regardless of what the haters would have you believe……..

Dr Habash concludes with a counsel: “What we need is a revolution within the Muslim mindset that takes it back to the true Islamic values of freedom, justice, human dignity; away from the sacredness of the caliphate … to a political system that simply governs the affairs of people.”

The Syrian Muslim Brotherhood sees it thusly………The SMB said his caliphate was illegitimate because he had never shown his face in public – one of the main conditions for a legitimate imam in Islam is that he is known. The embarrassing argument was refuted after the video of Mr Al Baghdadi’s Friday sermon in one of Mosul’s largest and oldest mosques was released.

Al-Baghdadi may not be the threat that the war hawks want him to be…….but again,  without a reliable intel community we will just have to wait and see.

PS:  After I wrote this draft new info has come to light…..from the Centre for Research on Globalization……….

The former employee at US National Security Agency (NSA), Edward Snowden, has revealed that the British and American intelligence and the Mossad worked together to create the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

Snowden said intelligence services of three countries created a terrorist organisation that is able to attract all extremists of the world to one place, using a strategy called “the hornet’s nest”.

NSA documents refer to recent implementation of the hornet’s nest to protect the Zionist entity by creating religious and Islamic slogans.

According to documents released by Snowden, “The only solution for the protection of the Jewish state “is to create an enemy near its borders”.

Leaks revealed that ISIS leader and cleric Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi took intensive military training for a whole year in the hands of Mossad, besides courses in theology and the art of speech.

There is nothing about that revelation that is surprising…at least to me…….waiting patiently for the MSM to act on this info……..and I wait!

Come on all you conspiracists….this is a perfect situation for you to latch onto and rant and rave…………….and I wait!

Israel: Is It Agression Or Self-Defense?

Opinion from the desk of the Editor:

Yep, when you are not beat about the head by reports from Ukraine then there are the numerous reports coming out of Gaza and Israel latest offense to chop off the head of Hamas…..first of all both of these areas are a massive PR campaign by the media.  I am not saying that either one is not a major story but the MSM has turned it into a PR campaign against Russia and the Palestinians.

As long as they can keep public opinion on the side that they push the better chances of a complete success without much push back from an uninformed public.

With that said…..do Americans realize that they are funding the war on Gaza and are indirectly responsible for the deaths and injuries?  That is right, sports fans….your tax dollars are killing and maiming!

Doubt what I say?

The US gives about $3 billion in aid to Israel a year and most of it is in the form of military ordinance…….and aid comes from the taxes that you and I pay to the government as part of our contract with the nation.  So you may not like to hear it but you and I are subsidizing the wholesale death and destruction of Gaza.

There is a way around this obscenity……it may be illegal what Israel is doing with the money we give them…….in an article written by Yousef Butt……….

The US Arms Export Control Act dictates the conditions under which foreign countries may use US military hardware or services. These include “internal security” or “legitimate self defense.” But the law specifically prohibits actions that “increase the possibility of an outbreak or escalation of conflict.” By killing mostly civilians in a disproportionately heavy-handed response and thereby sowing the seeds of yet more terrorism, Israel has undeniably escalated the conflict. In fact, Prime Minister Netanyahu has openly stated that he intends to escalate the conflict.

Bibi did say that the operation was moving from “Iron Dome to Iron Fist”……..that sounds like an escalation to me….but then I am not one that thinks everything Israel does is good or beneficial.

It is time for the US to make ALL recipients of our goodwill foreign aid to play by the same rules or cease the payments all together.  And it is time the Israel to be held accountable for the destruction that they impose on others in the name of security…….if you believe what the Old Testament says then Israel thinks it has the right to totally destroy a people in the name of “GOD”.

Think about it…..weaning Israel off American taxpayer money could eventually force them to look for a real way to a lasting peace…..and it could also benefit the US by lessening the anti-US sentiment and dropping the number of terrorists wanting to attack the US…….of course there is no guarantees but our undying support for Israel has made more enemies than friends.  Just a thought.

Time to stop treating Israel like the victim of the past….they have moved beyond victim and into the foot steps of oppressors.

 

Israel-Gaza conflict: The myth of Hamas’s human shields

There have been a lot of “he said, she said” about the most recent war in Gaza.  The one that is the most disturbing is the one about the use of “human shields” as an explanation to account for the increasingly high count of civilian dearths and injuries.

I have looked for some facts on whether this is actually happening or just part of a PR campaign used to lessen international blow back…….and then I came across this article.

 

Israel-Gaza conflict: The myth of Hamas’s human shields.

 

It appears that Israel is continuing its run from victim to monster……..and if the Old Testament is to be believed then this is what Israelis do……..GENOCIDE!

Israel using flechette shells in Gaza | World news | theguardian.com

I can understand the necessity for a war…….what I do not want to understand is the necessity to involve innocent civilians, no matter what side you may think is right, and then by using such horrific weapons as land mines, cluster bombs and now these bombs being used by the Israelis…..war is an obscene activity that benefits few……..

The bullshit of targeted strikes are a PR snow job not when a certain type of weapon is used……Weapons like this have No conscience and will harm anyone in its path…..weapons like this such be outlawed and if the world cannot do that then the users should be haul before the Courts and charged with crimes against humanity…..

This is a story that we in the US will never see in our media…….and for good reason.

 

Israel using flechette shells in Gaza | World news | theguardian.com.

Good Money After Bad?

Think back a year or more ago…..Syria had just used CWs on its population and the Neo-cons went bat crap crazy……..they demanded that the US do something……none were really too clear on what….but something must be done!

We have sent some humanitarian aid and various amounts of small arms….but neocons demanded more that we were killing the resistance to Assad by not sending bigger and better weapons and of course….we needed to do what we do best….airstrikes.

Well the Pentagon is set to pour more money into the Syrian civil war….they are seeking something like an extra $500 million for training of the Syrian rebels…….first we should ask….which rebels?  There are moderates and there are the fringe lunatics like ISIS……and how would we guarantee that the “proper” rebels would get the training?

The next question should be…..would this money be a waste?  Why ask that?

For one, it seems that Assad could be winning this war…….

 

Territorial Control: Syrian government troops have managed to hold on to most major urban centers, but large parts of the countryside are either in rebel hands, or a heavily contested no-man zone. The pro-Assad forces have a strong grip on the capital Damascus in the south, central Syria with the Homs province, and the Mediterranean coast in the west. The government controls key strategic routes connecting the capital with the coastline and with the Jordanian border in the south, ensuring the survival of the regime.
Military Power: Syria’s regular armed forces have been stretched thin by the widespread rebellion, suffering heavy casualties from daily ambushes and bomb attacks. However, the elite units numbering about 50 000 men are well-equipped, manned by Alawite loyalists from Assad’s home region, and backed by air support and heavy artillery. Plus, the regime has organized tens of thousands of supporters into paramilitary units that could continue the fight even if Assad himself were to lose control of the capital.

Even Syria’s dire enemy Israel does not see the rebels as winning the war……..this from a piece in the Times of Israel…….

“Assad has secured 70-80 percent of essential Syria,” the official said, sketching a line from Aleppo in the north down through Hama, Homs, Damascus and the southern areas near Jordan and the city of Dara’a – a Syrian city where the war began and, currently, a channel through which Sunni extremists enter Syria from Jordan.

The official’s depiction of the situation in Syria contradicts an assessment given by a top defense official, who in May told several journalists that Assad’s forces have lost the entire Golan Heights, aside from Quneitra and one enclave, and that, “In Aleppo, in Damascus, in the north near the Turkish border, in the Golan Heights – in all of these places he is losing.”

If Assad is truly winning the civil war….what will extra training for the rebels actually accomplish?

And we can ask…..If we had listened to John McCain would the outcome be different?  Would airstrikes in the early part of the war have made a difference?

I am sure that the GOP will make hay out of any defeat of the rebels as ….”Obama’s fault”……..The argument could be made that we could have made a difference……it could be made….but not be me.

 

 

 

Where’d He Go?

It is obvious that I have a big interest in what happens in the Middle East….and with good reason…I studied it at university and I worked in the region and now I write about it with the hope that I can help people understand that what is happening that we are told daily is not always as accurate as one would think.

I especially like the reporting done by Richard Engel and Ayman Molyeldin….they both speak Arabic and do excellent reporting from the region…..that is why NBC has made a  move that I do not understand………

Ayman Mohyeldin, the NBC News correspondent who personally witnessed yesterday’s killing by Israel of four Palestinian boys on a Gazan beach and who has received widespread praise for his brave and innovative coverage of the conflict, has been told by NBC executives to leave Gaza immediately. According to an NBC source upset at his treatment, the executives claimed the decision was motivated by “security concerns” as Israel prepares a ground invasion, a claim repeated to me by an NBC executive. But late yesterday, NBC sent another correspondent, Richard Engel, along with an American producer who has never been to Gaza and speaks no Arabic, into Gaza to cover the ongoing Israeli assault (both Mohyeldin and Engel speak Arabic).

https://firstlook.org/theintercept/2014/07/17/nbc-removes-ayman-mohyeldin-gaza-coverage-witnesses-israeli-beach-killing-four-boys/

Why was he removed?  The article asks many questions without many answers……

Engel is a very capable reporter…the poroblem is that he was not there when the attack killed the four boys and Ayman was…….then again….why was he removed?  We can postulate all we like but it looks like Ayman was removed because he was an eye witness and that would be very embarrassing for Israel…..

NBC needs to come clean on why Ayman was removed and the BS about security concerns is just that bullshit.  If I were Engel I would be pissed….why/  Apparently Ayman is more important to them than Engel…….until NBC comes clean the rumors and accusations will continue….why not just tell the truth and be done with it?

 

The Gaza Saga

Yep, we all know that Israel is kicking the crap out of the civilian population of Gaza….there are many views, many reports and many opinions…….I would like to bring my reader up to date on some of the stuff that may not be making into our MSM reports….after all they only have about 30 seconds to help make Israel’s case for them…..

Every Western media outlet has been reporting on the casualties in Gaza…..30…..50…..100 and now 200+ and it continues to rise……but now Israel does not have to hang its head when the dead civilians are brought up……for you see after 1200+ rockets fired by Hamas Israel now has a death……one single death……..

An Israeli man was hit with a mortar and killed near the Gaza border today, making him the first Israeli to die in a lopsided conflict that has seen nearly 200 Palestinians killed. The man was delivering food to soldiers when the mortar struck, a police spokesman tells the AP. Hamas has claimed responsibility for the rocket, according to al-Jazeera.

Then there is the humanitarian needs……but first….I recall back about a year ago when Syria was starting to get ugly people like McCain and Graham were all bitchy and demanding that the US supply humanitarian aid to the Syrians….and yet they are so silent about the needs of Palestinians….why is that you think?

Gaza is in dire straights…….

Israel has intensified its efforts against Hamas, claiming to have intercepted four rockets in Tel Aviv and bombed 39 targets—including the homes of several high-ranking Hamas leaders last night—after a brief ceasefire yesterday, the New York Times reports. But now residents of the Gaza Strip have a new problem: no water and overflowing sewage systems, reports NBC News. The continued airstrikes have reportedly caused massive damage to water and sewage infrastructure in Gaza and destroyed at least 560 homes, according to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees, which is calling the situation an emergency. The Red Cross says the issue could “quickly turn into a catastrophe.” “Within days, the entire population of the Strip may be desperately short of water,” the Red Cross’ Israeli chief said in a statement. “Water is becoming contaminated and sewage is overflowing, bringing a serious risk of disease.”

Israel has had the support of most of the Western world for their recent actions taken against Hamas…..but that may be coming to an end…….

GAZA (Reuters) – Four Palestinian children were killed and one was critically wounded on a Gaza beach on Wednesday by a shell fired by an Israeli naval gunboat, a Palestinian health official said.

Asked about the incident, an Israeli military spokesman in Tel Aviv said he was checking the report.

“The kids were playing football on the beach. They were all … under the age of 15,” said Ahmed Abu Hassera, 22.

“When the first shell hit the land, they ran away but another shell hit them all,” said Abu Hassera, whose shirt was stained with blood.

“It looked as if the shells were chasing them,” he told Reuters.

Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesman for the Gaza Health Ministry, said four of the youngsters were killed and a fifth youth was in critical condition. “This is a cowardly crime,” he said.

The Gaza beach area has been shelled frequently since Israel began its offensive in the enclave on July 8 following a surge in Palestinian cross-border rocket strikes.

This will give Israel the bad press they richly deserve……I think that they will be looking for a way to end this current conflict……….they cannot afford to lose too much western support….it is what keeps them in control……

But Bebe has said unequivocally…..

Netanyahu was asked a number of times whether the government had certain political goals and whether he was in contact with Egypt or other countries to try to bring about a cease-fire through diplomatic means, MKs said.

“I am not talking to anybody about a cease-fire right now,” Netanyahu told the committee. “It’s not even on the agenda.”

Funny how events can make you out a liar…ain’t it?

P.S.  Israel in an attempt to control any bad press from the deaths of those children have declared a 5 hour ceasefire for “humanitarian” reasons…..

As I was writing this word came down that Israel will cease fire on Friday……funny how ‘humanitarian concerns kick in when the bad press starts, huh?

Gaza Under Seige–Yet Again

Inkwell Institute

Middle East Desk

The attacks has one single goal………to stop the firing of Hamas rockets into Israel proper……that was in 2008 and is as it is today…….the problem is that NO amount of airstrikes and ground forces have stopped the rockets and their deadly intention…….I believe that Einstein had an observation on this type of action……

Israel says that they are not targeting civilians but rather are going after Hamas members….the problem with that statement is that the bombs cannot telling Hamas from a civilian…….

Recently Israel was magnanimous….they offered a cease fire….if Hamas will stop firing rockets they will stop bombing……that was the deal in 2008 also……of course Hamas would reject the deal and once they did Israel would have a clear path for escalation.  In 2008 with Egypt’s assistance a deal was offered……….the terms were this…….

Israel shall stop all hostilities in the Gaza Strip land, sea and air, including incursions and targeting of individuals.

All Palestinian factions shall stop all hostilities from the Gaza Strip against Israel, including rocket attacks and all attacks along the border.

Opening the crossings and facilitating the movement of people and transfer of goods and refraining from restricting residents’ free movements and targeting residents in border areas. Procedures of implementation shall be dealt with after 24 hours from the start of the ceasefire.

Once the deal was accepted then missiles no longer were fired into Israel…….that worked out well for Israel but they did not live up to terms….there were airstrikes, there incursions into Gaza and fishermen were harassed and arrested and the economic blockade remained…..of course the tried and true excuse for a continuation of violence is that they had intel that Hamas was planning something and they had to act…..

On the 24th of December 2012 the rockets resumed to target inside Israel…..and of course the condemnation of Hamas began all over again and the killing resumed……

Like I wrote Israel offered a deal for the hostilities to stop…..it was rejected by Hamas.  But why did Hamas reject the proposal?  Hamas remembers how well Israel accepted the terms of the last ceasefire…..not much changed other than Hamas was silent for a period of time…….Hamas sees this deal NO better than the screwing they took in the deal of 2008.  Plus since Hamas took over in Gaza there has been an economic blockade of the region that Hamas wants ended so the people of Gaza can have a normal life…..

Hamas did not like the deal the Egypt and Israel had come up with and has offered Israel a 10 year truce deal….a counter proposal……

The first demand, according to Maariv, is the withdrawal of Israeli military tanks from the border fence area to a distance that enables Gaza farmers to access their fields and tend them freely.

In addition, Israel must free all Palestinian prisoners detained after the abduction and killing of three Israeli teenagers in the southern West Bank including those who were freed as part of Gilad Shalit prisoner swap. This precondition also includes softening procedures against all prisoners in Israeli custody.

A third demand stipulates that Israel ends the crippling siege on the coastal enclave, which means reopening all border crossings and allowing the entry of construction materials and all requirements needed to run the Gaza Strip’s power station.

The fourth demand stipulates the opening of an international seaport and international airport in the Gaza Strip to be run and monitored by the United Nations.

Hamas and Islamic Jihad also demanded that Israel increases the Gaza fishing zone to 10 nautical miles and allows Gaza fishermen to use large fishing ships.

Furthermore, the Rafah crossing between Egypt and the Gaza Strip should be monitored by international crews from friendly and Arab countries.

Israel must commit to a ceasefire for 10 years which includes closing Gaza airspace to Israeli aircraft, it added.

Moreover, Israel must give Gaza residents permission to visit Jerusalem and pray in the al-Aqsa Mosque.

Another stipulation demands that Israel abstain from any intervention in Palestinian internal affairs including political arrangements and the reconciliation agreement and all its consequences.

Finally, the Gaza industrial zone must be re-established.

A 10 year peace deal?  Why would Israel balk at the prospect?

About the only item that would appeal to Israel is the ceasing of rockets into Israel……there is NO way that either side is going to control themselves for 10 years…..

Any agreement regardless of who proposes it should include a couple conditions……

1. An agreement must be clear in terms of what constitutes a violation so that the actors will have to consider the ramifications of public condemnation before committing a violation.

2. An agreement must take into consideration the dramatic imbalance of power between the sides. If there is a Palestinian violation, Israel retains the capacity to hold them accountable independently and at will, often inflicting disproportionate causalities leading to escalation. But when Israel violates the cease-fire, Palestinians cannot hold them accountable. The absence of any mechanism for monitoring Israeli violations and holding them to account creates incentives for Palestinians to do so in other ways, like firing projectiles.

3. An agreement must ensure that Israel does not use its position of power to unilaterally change the terms. The previous cease-fire included an easing of restrictions as part of the detailed understanding between the parties negotiated through Egypt. This meant fisherman could fish up to six nautical miles from the coast instead of the previously imposed three nautical mile mark. It also meant Palestinians could access farm land up to 300 meters from the fence, previously Israel had fired at Palestinians as far as 1500 meters away. But during the course of the cease-fire, Israel unilaterally changed those terms, reinforcing the three nautical mile mark and going back to shooting Palestinians near the fence even as far away as 1500 meters.

4. An agreement must take into account the devastating human rights crisis and humanitarian situation in Gaza that lies at the foundation of discontent there. As mentioned above, when it came to “easing restrictions” the previous agreement was mostly about determining what would be the dimensions of the prison cell that is the Gaza Strip. For real progress, an agreement must challenge the very notion that Palestinians should be stuck in this prison at all and move toward ending the collective punishment that is Israel’s siege on the Strip.

There can be a sustainable peace in the region but all sides MUST sign on and hold up their end of the agreement……and ALL sides have got to want peace…….unfortunately I do not see that has a priority….and since it is not then this cycle will continue and the West will sit on their hands and wait…….and while they wait and do nothing more Palestinians will die.