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Israel Steps Up Airstrikes in Gaza as International Cease-Fire Efforts Stumble

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As Israel intensified its aerial assaults on Tuesday against symbols of Hamas rule in Gaza and other targets, new efforts were underway to forge a cease-fire, though they were mired in confusion and mixed signals after 22 days of fighting...

... After increasingly urgent international calls for a halt in the hostilities, the West Bank-based Palestinian leadership, led by President Mahmoud Abbas, announced that Hamas and Islamic Jihad, the main Palestinian factions fighting in Gaza, were ready for an immediate 24-hour truce, and that a Palestinian delegation was planning to head to Cairo for broader cease-fire talks....

... Mohammed Deif, the commander of Hamas's military wing who lives in hiding, said there would be no cease-fire until Israel stopped its attacks and the blockade on Gaza was lifted...

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/30/world/middleeast/gaza-israel-violence.html?_r=0

Jul 15, 2014 Israel announced it will agree to an Egyptian-backed ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, the security cabinet has stated. However, the peace plan looks in ruins, with Hamas rejecting the initiative, saying "this proposal is not acceptable."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hovCKcuiIeE

Published on Jul 29, 2014

Secretary of State John Kerry has been getting some flak over a Gaza ceasefire deal he proposed that wasn't just rejected by Israel, they called Kerry's proposal a "strategic terrorist attack."

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lioJ_9PmMoI

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This is a horrible situation. As an American Jew, I struggle with my feelings about this conflict. I feel Israel has a right to defend itself against those who have been trying to wipe the country off the face of the map since its establishment. Israel has better technology than Hamas/Palestine and does not hesitate to use it. I feel Hamas holds the lives of Palestinians in very low regard. That being said, I also think Israel can be a bully. I think both Israel and Palestine deserve the right to exist as sovereign nations. I think the everyday people of both sides desire peace, but the leaders of both sides will not give an inch. I don't think there will ever be peace in this area as long as each side refuses to recognize the others' right to existence.

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This is a horrible situation. As an American Jew, I struggle with my feelings about this conflict. I feel Israel has a right to defend itself against those who have been trying to wipe the country off the face of the map since its establishment. Israel has better technology than Hamas/Palestine and does not hesitate to use it. I feel Hamas holds the lives of Palestinians in very low regard. That being said, I also think Israel can be a bully. I think both Israel and Palestine deserve the right to exist as sovereign nations. I think the everyday people of both sides desire peace, but the leaders of both sides will not give an inch. I don't think there will ever be peace in this area as long as each side refuses to recognize the others' right to existence.
You stated my feelings exactly and better than I could do.

Thank you!

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It is difficult for many of us to comprehend the culture of revenge that exists in that part of the world. It seems that every action requires a retaliation of equal or greater violence.

I believe our funding should be for peaceful activities, not war. But that would be counter to every other way that we interact with countries in the middle east.

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For years I have supported Israel and the need for assistance to maintain a new country. I have friends who moved there and certainly I understood the issues.

Gaza has become a prison where families cannot leave, know that they will be bombed just for their existence, and have too many people in too little space. Gaza is small. All of it can fit into any one of many of our cities. It is a very young population. They are radical, as many young patriots are. They feel they have nothing to lose because they have so little and there is no way to get things better.

Up until this war between Israel and Gaza I felt that even if they were at war there were certain boundaries that the Israelis would not violate. Now it seems any and everything is able to be bombed. Today a UN school. Yesterday the power plant that not only provides electric but also the flow of water to the population.

Children are being killed daily. The survivors certainly have extreme mental health issues in addition to any medical issues. I find it hard to believe that both sides can be so stubborn so as to have the population (read PEOPLE) of Gaza wiped out. I have lost all respect for Israel and it saddens me that the US is continuing to supply aid to Israel while they kill children and would bomb a UN school.

Where is the outrage that we see against Russia? Is what Israel is doing any better than the shooting down of a commercial airliner? Approx. 300 souls were lost there. How many have been lost in Gaza and Israel? I guess Arab children are not seen as valuable as some other people.

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"I have told my sons that they are not under any circumstances to take part in massacres, and that the news of massacres of enemies is not to fill them with satisfaction or glee. I have also told them not to work for companies which make massacre machinery, and to express contempt for people who think we need machinery like that." - Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five

[video=youtube;fgWFxFg7-GU]

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Mark Fiore: Not Equal: Gaza in Over 1000 Frames - Mark Fiore - Truthdig

As of Wednesday, Hamas has killed three civilians in Israel compared to the Israeli military killing 1,328 Palestinians. (The UN estimates 74% of those Palestinians killed are civilians.) Hamas has killed 56 Israeli soldiers and three civilians, while Israel has killed over a thousand people in Gaza and bombed multiple UN facilities and hospitals.

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How many of those women and children killed by Israel were prevented by Hamas from leaving the area after Israel gave them notice of a shelling? How many were used as human shield by the cowardly Hamas. How many rockets has fired in excess of the number fired by Israel? If Mexico started firing constantly into AZ, or CA or NM, or TX would we expect a plea for us to NOT protect our own country?

Just spouting numbers doesn't tell the story.

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I skimmed through it. What there, is supposed to alter that fact that every time there is an agreed-to "cease fire", Hamas breaks that by firing rockets into Israel? Why is our administration treating Hamas like a country, instead of the terrorists they are? Why should Israel not defend her own country, especially when fired upon time and time again during those aforementioned ceasefire times?

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How many of those women and children killed by Israel were prevented by Hamas from leaving the area after Israel gave them notice of a shelling? tntrn

The women and children did go to "safe" places like UN school, and hospital grounds. Considering the size of Gaza and the population that is forced to live there the 5 minute warning is probably similar to evacuation of an entire 1000 bed hospital in 5 minutes.

Where can they go? The streets are filled with rubble that used to be homes, hospitals, schools. Where are they to go?

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