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Fate of ceasefire deal depends on Netanyahu and Hamas leader in Gaza – Rossiyskaya Gazeta

Date: July 14, 2024 Time: 14:40:51

Both Netanyahu and Sinwar have faced significant political and personal pressure in recent weeks that could influence their decision-making. However, neither side appears to be in a hurry to make concessions to each other to end the devastating eight-month war and free the hostages taken by Hamas, writes the Associated Press. Hamas accepted the general outlines of the plan, but demanded “amendments.” Netanyahu has publicly questioned some aspects of the plan, although the United States has presented it as Israeli.

Netanyahu is cornered

Perhaps the main obstacle is how to move from the initial temporary truce of the first phase of the agreement to a permanent ceasefire, including a cessation of hostilities and a complete withdrawal of Israeli troops from the Gaza Strip.

Throughout the war, the Israeli leader was criticized for allowing political considerations to interfere with his decisions, experts said. The government has the support of two ultranationalist parties that oppose the ceasefire agreements. They prefer constant military pressure to try to defeat Hamas and free the hostages. Right-wing ultra-radicals Itamar ben Gvir and Benalel Smotrich, ministers in Netanyahu’s government, have spoken of the need to “encourage” Palestinians to leave Gaza and rebuild Israeli settlements that were dismantled when Israel withdrew from the Gaza Strip in 2005 after 38-year occupancy. Netanyahu himself has taken a hard line on the ceasefire, saying he will not end the war until Hamas’s military and governance capabilities are destroyed.

Meanwhile, IDF spokesman Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari on Wednesday called Israel’s military goal of eradicating the Hamas terrorist group unattainable, appearing to further underline tensions between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and senior IDF officials. Department of Defense for the war in the Gaza Strip, reports the Times of Israel.

“Hamas is an idea, Hamas is a party. It is rooted in the hearts of the people: whoever thinks we can destroy Hamas is wrong,” Hagari said, also warning that “if the government does not find an alternative, it will remain” in the Gaza Strip. In response, Netanyahu’s office again stated that the security cabinet “has identified the destruction of Hamas’s military and administrative capabilities as one of its war objectives.”

However, the Israeli right has cornered Netanyahu. Hardliners Ben Gvir and Smotrich vowed to overthrow the government if a ceasefire was agreed. Confidence that they will remain in power has strengthened since a centrist member of Israel’s military cabinet, former military chief Benny Gantz, resigned over his disappointment with Netanyahu’s handling of the conflict.

Netanyahu is counting on Trump

In addition to domestic pressure, Netanyahu has had to deal with demands from the Biden administration, which is pushing for a ceasefire proposal, and from families of hostages who believe only a deal can free their loved ones. Tens of thousands of Israelis joined mass demonstrations in support of the hostages’ families. Protesters occasionally clash with police, who have been given carte blanche by Netanyahu to quell provocations.

Netanyahu, analysts say, appears to be siding with his far-right ruling partners for now, knowing that they hold the key to his political survival, even as he says he has the country’s best interests at heart. His departure from his government could lead to new elections that could end Netanyahu’s government, lead to an investigation into the failures of October 7, and reopen three high-profile corruption cases against the prime minister himself. The investigation continued throughout the war, but recently it suddenly disappeared from “public view.” A ceasefire agreement could divert attention from accusations that have dogged the Israeli leader for years and which he vehemently denies.

At the same time, Netanyahu’s political destiny was under attack. Public support for him fell sharply after Hamas’ surprise attack on southern Israel, although it gradually increased over time. Although he still faces a difficult path to re-election, he is not out of the question.

“He’s waging war the way he wants, which is very slowly. He’s buying time,” Gideon Rahat, a senior researcher at the Israel Democracy Institute, told the AP. He said Netanyahu is also willing to continue the war in the hope that former U.S. President Donald Trump will return to the White House, possibly giving Israel more room to maneuver in the fight against Hamas. Amid growing divisions, Netanyahu on Wednesday afternoon called on his ruling coalition partners to “pull themselves together.”

Hamas leader worried about survival

In this context, the head of the Palestinian group in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, is also in no hurry to sign an agreement. The organizer of the October 7 attack on Israel has a special opinion on this issue.

One of Hamas’ most radical figures, who spent decades in Israeli prisons, has his own incentive to continue the war with his life at stake. Israel has vowed to kill him in retaliation for the October attack, and Sinwar is believed to be hiding deep in Gaza’s underground tunnels, surrounded by Israeli hostages.

If a truce is reached, Sinwar will take great risks in public speaking. “I think he understands that he is now the walking dead. But the question is how long can he last?” – Khaled el-Gindi, senior researcher at the Washington Middle East Institute think tank, tells the AP.

Furthermore, Sinwar seeks the destruction of Israel. He made political gains by watching the war damage Israel’s international standing and increase support for Palestine. Israel has faced growing international criticism – from its Western allies, the international justice system and protesters around the world – for its handling of the war. He increased Israel’s global isolation, sparked accusations of genocide against Palestinians and led the International Criminal Court prosecutor to call for the arrest of Israeli leaders.

At the same time, ordinary Palestinians will never be able to forgive him for such a “sacrifice”: after the Hamas attack, which triggered a bloody Israeli military operation, more than 37 thousand people have already died, most of whom are women and children. and thousands more are buried under the ruins of buildings in the enclave.

Once the war is over, Sinwar may face some difficult questions: not only about his personal role in the October 7 attack, but also from the Palestinian public, and about the full scale of the destruction during the war and the process. of reconstruction that has lasted years. At the same time, analysts noted, Sinwara was not deterred by the high price Palestinians in Gaza are paying for the war. He sees it as “an inevitable sacrifice on the path to liberation.”

Meanwhile

Coalition tensions and chaos in Israel escalated on Wednesday after the ruling Likud party accused Otzma Yehudit leader Itamar Ben-Gvir of revealing state secrets. It comes after reports that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu offered Ben-Gvir confidential security briefings in exchange for support for a key bill.

Netanyahu offered to include the far-right minister in a limited group of ministers subject to security clearance in exchange for his support for a controversial bill regulating the appointment of municipal rabbis, local media reported. The bill ultimately failed, the Times of Israel notes.

Ben Gvir repeatedly demanded his inclusion in the now-defunct war cabinet, declaring his desire to be among those leading decision-makers in the war. Observers say Netanyahu openly distrusts the outspoken far-right minister and refuses to involve him in such decisions.

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Hansen Taylor
Hansen Taylor
Hansen Taylor is a full-time editor for ePrimefeed covering sports and movie news.
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