Ceasefire Declared

November 21, 2012

A ceasefire agreement was declared today after 8 days of Israeli military airstrikes aimed at putting an end to continual rocket fire coming from Gaza. It hasn't seemed to change much. A bomb exploded on a bus in Tel Aviv, Israel and immediately afterwards, Hamas Television broadcast its delight at the news that civilians in Israel had been targeted. Nothing like that had ever been aired on Israili TV, especially since the IDF and IAF have done everything in their power to avoid civilian casualties. Yet, Israel is condemned by the U.N. for disregarding civilian casualties while the celebrated targeting of civilian casualties by Hamas goes unnoticed. The following clip is from Hamas Al-Aqsa TV, reporting on the bus bombing in Tel Aviv.

Israelis in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem react with cautious relief to the news of a truce, with many still reeling from the shock of Hamas rocket fire that targeted their cities for the first time since the 1991 Gulf War. Residents are sure to remember this week for some time to come, as a new generation of Israelis are introduced to a new reality of rockets and violence.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said that if the truce with Hamas in Gaza does not work, Israel would consider "more severe military action". The so-called ceasefire agreement was brokered by Egypt and the United States after eight days of Israeli military airstrikes aimed at putting an end to the continual rocket fire coming from Gaza.

Rocket fire from Gaza continued right up until the final moments before the ceasefire went into effect, injuring four Israeli soldiers in Beersheba and hitting a house in Arugot. Around 1,400 rockets have been fired into Israel over the last 8 days since security forces commenced airstrikes over Gaza in response to four days of cross-border shelling.

Iran admits to providing Palestinian militants with the technology to produce long-range Fajr-5 rockets, at least one of which was fired at Tel Aviv. French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius accused Iran of provoking violence and called on Tehran to stop providing weapons to Islamist groups Hamas and Hezbollah.