Ceasefire Ends between Israel and Hamas
Rapture Forum Staff: Chris
Welcome to this edition of the Rapture Report. We will be looking at developments in the Middle East and in particular with the State of Israel. The currents reports coming out of Israel indicate that the ceasefire between Israel and Hamas is officially over. In the days after the ceasefire many rocket attacks have been fired at Israel from within the the Gaza area. A Jerusalem Post article reports:
Hamas officially declared Thursday evening that it would not extend the six-month-old truce between Gaza factions and Israel, although 11 Kassam rockets and five mortar shells had already pounded southern Israel by mid-afternoon. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said that "there is no chance of extending the calm" and that Israel was to blame for the failure.
Over the past few days the rocket attacks had been increasing and there were attempts on the ground made to extend the ceasefire, however, they did not result in a continuance of the ceasefire. Instead, dozens of rockets were launched into Israel from Gaza and this has resulted in defensive attacks by the IDF against those launching rocket attacks.
Israel also indicated that they would hold Hamas responsible for any any future Gaza violence should the ceasefire come to an end. The Haaretz newpaper reported:
Minister of National Infrastructures and former defense minister Benjamin Ben-Eliezer warned earlier Friday that the Israel Defense Forces would use all its power to end the cross-border rocket attacks. "From our point of view when the truce ended - it ended, and the IDF will operate with all its power in order to eradicate the [rocket] fire. There is a limit to what Israel is able to accept," said Ben-Eliezer.
In other news, Israeli PM Ehud Olmert said that the recent rocket attacks demanded a response and that there would be one. Olmert was quoted as saying in the Jerusalem Post:
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert on Wednesday vowed a response to the ongoing rocket-fire against the western Negev. "The rocket fire is just clarifying what we've been saying all along, that we can't have a situation where supposedly there is an agreed-upon ceasefire, while the reality on the ground is completely different," Olmert said after voting in the Kadima primaries. "Of course this demands a [response]," the prime minister continued, "And there will be a [response]."
Hamas in turn responded that there is a possibility that they could return to using suicide bombers against Israel. The Haaretz newspaper reports:
Hamas representatives are also not ruling out a renewal of suicide bombings in Israel. Ayman Taha, a Hamas representative in Gaza, told Haaretz that under the current conditions, no cease-fire is in effect whatsoever. "Rocket fire is in the hands of the military wing. It will decide how to react," he said. "Resistance must continue in every way and by every means, as long as the occupation continues."
As we can see by the recent newspaper articles, the calm in the Middle East between Israel and the various terrorists groups appears to be coming to end. Israel has tried repeatedly to come to a compromise in order to gain peace. But it appears that any land for peace deals are just going to delay the inevitable, and that is more conflict in the future. The sad fact is that the fanatical Islamic terrorist groups are not going to compromise for peace. They have simply used the negotiations as a means in which to obtain as many concessions as possible through non-violent means. After they have received all they can this way, they resort to the usual violent terrorist tactics to obtain what they can't get through non-violent means.
I believe that at this time we need to pray for Israel during this difficult time as they will probably be forced to deal a harsh blow to the Palestinian terrorists. How effective the IDF is against the terrorists relies on whether Israeli PM Ehud Olmert lets the IDF do their job or if he gets in the way as usual as we saw during the Second Lebanon War. We definitely need to pray for the peace of Jerusalem and Israel as trying times are certainly around the corner. For students of Bible prophecy, we need to keep an eye on potential fulfillments of Pslams 83, Isaiah 17, and Ezekiel 38-39. We know that the Islamic hordes will eventually try to invade Israel again here in these last days. Heavy conflict between the Israelis and Palestinians could definitely move us closer to these prophecies being fulfilled. Let's us stay sober and watching as watchmen on the wall.