A video translated by the MEMRI monitoring service shows an Al-Jazeera Arabic reporter’s visit to the site of tunnel-digging operations by the armed wing of Islamic Jihad under the Israeli border. A tunnel worker:
We are now in one of the tunnels of the Al-Quds Brigades, on which work began as soon as the war on Gaza ended and the ceasefire was declared. We have begun work and we are continuing it regardless of the threats by the Zionist enemy. We will not be hindered by the threats of the enemy, or by the ban on importing cement and other building materials.
A housing assessment by Shelter Cluster, chaired by the Norwegian Refugee Council with the participation of the U.N. refugee agency and the Red Cross, says Gaza will take 20 years to rebuild. Most rebuilding is due to the housing deficit of 75,000 units. Cost estimates for the restructuring are more than $6 billion. The housing assessment derives from the present level of goods transferable from Israel to Gaza. The present blockade hinders rebuilding efforts, as construction materials have restrictions to limit tunnel production. The 20 year timeframe takes into consideration 100 truckloads of building materials on a daily basis. Currently there is no mention of plans to ease blockade restrictions.
Abbas blames Hamas for protracting the war in Gaza, doubting the continuation of the Unity government. After 50 days of fighting when a truce came about, Hamas still declares victory. Abbas:
It was possible for us to avoid all of that, 2,000 martyrs, 10,000 injured, 50,000 houses (destroyed). They (Hamas) have a shadow government, if this continues it means no unity. The test is coming soon. The government needs to do its job and handle everything. I’m not saying everything needs to come to an end in one moment, this is a seven-year split that needs months or years.
The Egyptian formula was on the table on July 15th, it was backed by the Arab League, it was accepted by Israel but rejected by Hamas then and now more than a month later has belatedly been accepted by Hamas. As the dust clears from the conflict I’m sure many people in Gaza will be asking why did Hamas reject a month ago what it accepted today, and if it had accepted then what it accepted now, how much bloodshed could have been avoided.
More than 2,100 people are reported to have been killed in Gaza, most of them civilians, including about 500 children. At least 11,000 people have been injured and more than 17,000 homes destroyed or badly damaged, while around a third of the territory’s 1.8 million residents have been displaced.
On the Israeli side, 64 soldiers have died along with six civilians, including a four-year-old boy, and hundreds of families have relocated from homes near the Gaza border.
Netanyahu tells Blitzer that the difference between Israel and Hamas is that Israel doesn’t glorify extremists, but puts them in jail. On the suspected killers of Palestinian teenager Mohammad Abu Khdeir in an apparent nationalist attack:
We don’t glorify these killers. We put – we apprehended him in three – three days after the – that tragic killing, immediately put them in custody. We’re putting them on trial. They will serve a good chunk of their lives in jail. That’s what we do with the killers. We don’t name public squares after them. We don’t glorify them.
He says that Hamas begins indoctrinating people with extremism from a young age:
We don’t educate our people, our children in suicide kindergarten camps, as happens in the Palestinian side. And you should see what Hamas is educating them to, no peace, no two-state solution, nothing, just jihad, more and more violence, more and more murder, and more and more bloodshed. This is not our way. We have – I think a society is tested not by the extreme fringes of that society, but how it takes care of them. We take care of those extreme fringes. We basically isolate them and ostracize them and punish them.
The number of Palestinian deaths rises to 1,903 as five people are killed in fresh airstrikes after the 72-hour truce window ends. Israel says 65 rockets have been launched from the Gaza strip by Palestinian factions, and it has responded with 63 strikes. Three people were killed in an attack on a mosque in the Nusseirat refugee camp and two when a motorcycle was hit in the Maghazi refugee camp, Gaza’s Health Ministry says.
Palestinian officials involved in the negotiating process are seeking either further concessions or a reoccupation of the Gaza Strip, an Israeli official says:
These people are trying to do two things: convince us to give them more, or if it fails, convince us that we should come in [to Gaza]. We don’t want to do it, because we don’t want to be responsible for Gaza
Israeli officials leave Cairo after negotiations to extend the ceasefire break down, while the Palestinian delegates remain and say they are willing to commit to new talks on a truce.
Egypt calls on Israel and Hamas to extend the ceasefire and return to negotiations after the original 72-hour window expires at midnight Eastern Standard Time and Israel reports rocket fire by Palestinian factions and resumes airstrikes. Foreign ministry:
Return immediately to the ceasefire and exploit the opportunity available to resume negotiations on the very limited sticking points that remain in the fastest possible time
There had been an agreement on the vast majority of matters that are important to the Palestinian people, but some limited points remained undecided, a matter that should have led to an acceptance to renew the ceasefire
Hamas is calling for a variety of conditions including an airport and sea port in the Gaza Strip but is primarily concerned with opening border crossings. Israel wants demilitarization of the Strip and disarmament of Hamas.
Israel resumes air strikes as the 72-hour ceasefire ends with rockets fired across the border by Palestinian factions. Hamas has said that it will not seek to renew the ceasefire. Tens of thousands of people in Gaza who had returned to their homes during the ceasefire rush back to the UNRWA-run shelters. Nidal Sultan, 21, of Beit Lahiya:
We were in the school on the first day of the ceasefire and came back this morning. There were strikes and shelling in the last hour or so. It’s not safe, so we have to come to the school however bad it is. We will stay now until the war stops.
The 72-hour ceasefire ends at midnight Eastern Standard Time or 8 a.m. local time as Israel reports that Hamas, which has said it will not extend the truce, has fired at least 35 rockets, with at least one falling short and landing in Gaza. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhum:
All the Palestinian factions, including Hamas, have agreed not to renew the ceasefire because [Israel] is refusing to accommodate our demands.
Hamas sources say the group will not extend the 72-hour ceasefire beyond its original deadline, and plan to resume attacking Israeli targets at midnight Eastern Standard Time on Friday (August 8). The statement comes as Palestinian and Israeli delegations are in mediated, indirect peace talks in Cairo. Sources:
The Al-Qassam Brigades and Jerusalem battalions will renew its attacks immediately with the end of the ceasefire period on Friday at 8 a.m.
Editors at Haaretz find that the newspaper’s Hebrew edition has several thousand readers in Egypt, presumably Egyptian intelligence operatives trained in Hebrew, while the newspaper is found to be the most cited and most trusted media source by both Palestinian and Israeli supporters.
The alleged ringleader of the 2014 Israel kidnappings has told police that he received money for the attack from Hamas operatives in the Gaza Strip, state prosecution says after a gag order on his arrest and investigation is lifted. Hebron resident Hussam Kawasme states that alleged killers Marwan Kawasme – his brother, who was released in 2011 in an prisoner exchange for Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit – and Amer Abu Aysha drove to his house after abducting and killing Yeshiva students Gil-ad Shaar and Naftali Fraenkel, both 16 years old, and Eyal Yifrach, 19. The three then drove to a plot of land in Halhoul purchased by Hussam Kawasme ahead of time, where they buried the bodies of the teenagers.
The International Tennis Foundation announces that it is moving Israel’s Sept. 12-14 Davis Cup match against Argentina out of Tel Aviv and that the playoff will not be held in any other Israeli city. Israel, as the team with home-court advantage, must choose among four venues for the new location: New York; Delray Beach, Fl; Krakow, Poland; or Tallinn, Estonia. Argentine Tennis Association president Arturo Grimaldi regarding the 204 Gaza conflict:
We are concerned. We have communicated with the ITF, which promises to make a decision about Davis Cup very soon.
Israel agrees to extend the 72-hour Egypt-brokered ceasefire deal beyond its Friday deadline, although it doesn’t specify how long the truce might be extended. There is no immediate comment from Hamas. Israeli official:
Israel has expressed its readiness to extend the truce under its current terms.
Gaza residents are reported to attack and beat Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri near the Shifa hospital due to anger at Hamas’ perceived role in causing the 2014 Gaza conflict. The Arabic-language report from Egypt’s Veto Edge quotes spokesperson for the Sisi Supporters Front, Mohamed Abu Hamed, as saying that Gaza is ripe for a revolution to overthrow Hamas, while Nabil Zaki, a spokesperson for the left-wing Tagamoa Party in Egypt, says that Palestinians are partly responsible for their plight as they voted Hamas into power, and that anger from civilians would bring few results without expanding into a revolution.
The Israeli delegation arrives in Cairo to begin peace talks. The Israeli team includes Netanyahu aide Yitzhak Molcho, Defense Ministry official Amos Gilad and Yoram Cohen, head of the Israel Security Agency or Shin Bet. Earlier, Khalil al-Haya and Emad al-Alami of Hamas and Khaled al-Batsh of Islamic Jihad have traveled through the Rafah border crossing to Sinai after the Egyptians managed to receive assurances that Israel would not target them. Hamas is presenting a long list of demands including opening border crossings, the re-release of prisoners, and building an airport and seaport, while the two major Israeli objectives are to prevent Hamas rearming in the short term, and demilitarizing Gaza in the longer term, however Islamic Jihad senior representative Ziad al-Nakhaleh says disarming will not be discussed in the indirect negotiations:
This issue is nonnegotiable.
The Israel Defense Forces announces that its mission to destroy Hamas’s attack tunnel network is complete:
At least 1,867 Palestinians have died in the 29 days of the 2014 Gaza conflict prior to the latest ceasefire and peace talks getting underway. In Israel, 64 soldiers and three civilians are dead. The United Nations and Gaza human rights groups say that at least 75% of the Palestinians killed are civilians, however Israel Defense Forces spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner says that about 900 were militants, while the IDF separately estimates that between 750 and 1,000 of the Palestinian dead were combatants.
Gallup notes in a poll that 42% of Americans say Israel’s actions against Hamas are justified compared with 38% who say they are unjustified and 21% who are unsure, while only 14% say Hamas’ actions are justified. The results are similar to what Gallup measured for another period of heightened Israeli-Palestinian violence in 2002. It says Americans have generally disregarded the more vivid images of the conflict available via cable news and social media compared with 2002 when forming an opinion:
This suggests that Americans may have responded to both crises in ways that reflect their basic attitudes toward Israel and the Palestinians rather than the specifics of either conflict. In general, Americans rate Israel much more favorably as a country than the Palestinian Territories, and are much more likely to say they sympathize with the Israelis than the Palestinians when asked to choose between the two sides.
Americans remain ‘roughly divided’ on their support of Israeli actions against Hamas, however:
it is important to note that the pro-Israel sentiment on this measure is significantly below the percentage who routinely say that their sympathies are more broadly with the Israelis rather than the Palestinians in the Middle East.
The Israel Defense Forces calculates it has destroyed 32 cross-border tunnels in the 29 days of Operation Protective Edge prior to the ceasefire. It says 14 of them crossed into Israel and two had shafts located 300-500 meters from Israel, while 11 of the 64 IDF soldiers who died in the conflict were killed by Hamas gunmen emerging from the tunnels into southern Israel. IDF Lt. Col. Peter Lerner:
They were part of a strategic plan of Hamas, and an investment of approximately $100 million worth of materials, and we have now removed that threat
The IDF says that in the 29 days of Operation Protective Edge prior to the 72-hour ceasefire, Hamas fired 3,356 rockets at Israel, 2,303 of which hit Israeli territory, 116 in populated areas, while 356 were intended to target IDF forces operating in the Gaza Strip. A total of 578 rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile-defense system, and 475 landed within the Gaza Strip. Military statement:
Prior to the operation, the IDF estimated the Gaza rocket arsenal at approximately 10,000, one-third of which were fired at Israel, and an additional one-third was demolished by the IDF.
The IDF says that of 3,365 rockets fired by Hamas in the 29 days of the 2014 Gaza conflict prior to the 72-hour ceasefire, 597 were launched from civilian facilities, approximately 260 were launched from schools, 127 from cemeteries, 160 from religious sites such as mosques, and 50 from hospitals. Just under 70% were fired from the northern Gaza Strip, 12.9% were fired from the central Gaza Strip, and 17.3% were fired from its southern region.
The IDF says it has struck around 4,762 targets in the 29 days of Operation Protective Edge prior to the 72-hour ceasefire, most of them rocket-launching sites, nearly 1,000 of them command and control centers, about 240 Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades buildings, nearly 200 weapons storage and manufacturing facilities, nearly 150 terror training compounds and 1,535 additional sites.
A former chief commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards says Hamas rockets fired at Israeli targets are the ‘blessing’ of a technology transfer. Secretary of the Expediency Discernment Council, Mohsen Rezaei, quoted by state Arabic channel Al-Alam:
Palestinian resistance missiles are the blessings of Iran’s transfer of technology […] We need to transfer defensive and military technology to Palestinians so that they can build weapons under the blockade and defend themselves
Revolutionary Guards have said in the past that Hamas’ Gaza Strip arsenal includes Fajr-5 missile rockets that are produced locally from technology supplied by Iran without requiring direct shipment. He says he has asked President Hassan Rouhani to provide air defense systems to allow Hamas to shoot down Israeli aircraft, and says kidnapping soldiers is an effective technique:
Getting their soldiers captured is the weak point of Israelis. Should two or three be captured, all Zionists will surrender
Israeli authorities say the excavator attack that killed Rabbi Avraham Walles and wounded six others is nationalistically motivated and connected to the 2014 Gaza conflict, and that a quick response by security officials on the scene is the only factor that prevented more casualties. Ariel Tuito of the Nachshon unit of the Israel Prison Service is among security personnel that respond at the scene, and fires the fatal shot. Jerusalem police chief Yossi Pariente says that the response…
…averted a much more serious incident.
Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal tells CNN’s Nic Robertson the group did not agree to conditions of the 72-hour ceasefire that allowed Israel Defense Forces to remain in Gaza and continue operations to neutralize tunnels. The truce broke down after less than two hours as Israel bombarded parts of Gaza in response to the alleged kidnapping of a soldier. In an interview from Doha:
A truce is a truce, but the presence of the Israeli forces inside Gaza and destroying the tunnels means it’s an aggression. We did not deceive Mr. John Kerry, and we did not deceive the Israelis, we fight honorably. We told everyone that this is our position. … Therefore they are the ones who should be responsible for this.
The Israel Defense Forces says 2nd. Lt. Hadar Goldin has died in Gaza and is listed as a fallen soldier whose resting place is unknown. The decision to declare him dead is made according to the findings of a special board headed by IDF Chief Rabbi Brigadier Gen. Rafi Peretz, which takes into account medical evidence and halachic considerations of Jewish law among other factors. The message is delivered to the family by Peretz, Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon, IDF Head of Personnel Major General Orna Barbibay. Goldin in an interview on completing officer training:
In life, you can choose to do things for yourself and you can choose to do great things.
The UK government and Foreign Office are investigating reports that Rochdale man Kadir Islam has died following an Israeli airstrike in the southern city of Rafah. Friends say he was killed while delivering medical supplies to a hospital, but it isn’t known which agency he was working for. Prime Minister Cameron:
I’m extremely concerned about these reports and we are doing everything we can to get to the bottom (of them) and find out exactly what has happened. I don’t want to say anything before we’ve been able to do that but this only reinforces the need for an immediate unconditional humanitarian ceasefire observed properly by both sides. This slaughter, this killing has got to end.
An editorial cartoon in The Australian newspaper draws strong reaction from readers as it depicts a militant endangering a child in order to win the battle for public opinion in the 2014 Gaza conflict:
Fairfax Media apologizes for a cartoon considered anti-Semitic by Jewish groups that the Sydney Morning Herald published in its daily and online editions, and withdraws the online version. The cartoon, which showed an old man sitting alone in an armchair wearing a kippah skullcap and controlling the 2014 Gaza conflict by remote control, drew criticism from the New South Wales Board of Jewish Deputies due to its use of Jewish symbology and the fact that the old man has an unusually large nose, a genetic trait often associated with Jews. SMH:
It was also significant that the cartoon had its genesis in news photographs of men seated in chairs and lounges, observing the shelling of Gaza from the hills of Sderot. One of those photos depicted an old man, wearing a kippah, reclining casually as part of a group – with Mr Le Lievre seeing comparisons between this and someone watching their television
The Executive Council of Australian Jewry and the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies say the editorial ‘unreservedly apologising for the publication of an antisemitic cartoon’ means the matter is now closed.
The U.S. says it is appalled by a strike that kills at least 10, including children, at a United Nations Relief and Works Agency school where around 3,000 are sheltering, apparently in response to militant actions near the UNRWA facility. The comment is the State Department’s strongest criticism yet of Israeli actions during Operation Protective Edge. Spokesperson:
The United States is appalled. The coordinates of the school, like all UN facilities in Gaza, have been repeatedly communicated to the Israeli Defense Forces […] Israel must do more to meet its own standards and avoid civilian casualties. The suspicion that militants are operating nearby does not justify strikes that put at risk the lives of so many innocent civilians.
Thousands attend the funeral of 23-year-old IDF Second Lt. Hadar Goldin at the military section of the Kfar Sava cemetery, with only those on a list created by the family admitted to the cemetery and the rest of the crowd gathering outside the gates. The fiancee, mother and twin brother of the Givati Brigade reconnaissance soldier, initially believed kidnapped by Hamas and later confirmed dead, express their regrets along with two family rabbis while his father urges the crowd to ‘live righteously.’ Simha Goldin:
You who came en masse, live righteously and don’t hate one another. Hadar wanted to be a Jewish fighter. Do the same as he did. Take the bible with you and become Jewish fighters. I thank the crowds who came from far and wide to be with my family.
Obama calls on Hamas to demonstrate that it can meet ceasefire commitments by releasing Israel Defense Forces 2nd. Lt. Hadar Goldin who has been dragged into a tunnel by militants 90 minutes into the 72-hour truce agreement:
If they are serious about resolving the situation, that soldier needs to be unconditionally released as soon as possible. I think it’s going to be very hard to put a ceasefire back together again if Israel and the international community can’t feel confident that Hamas can follow through on a ceasefire commitment.
A video by France24 appears to confirm that Hamas is launching rockets from the Shifa hospital. The video uploaded to Youtube by the news channel’s Arabic service shows a correspondent reporting from the hospital, when a rocket is launched next to her at the end of her report.
Israel’s security cabinet decides the country will not send a delegation to Cairo for truce talks after the planned 72-hour ceasefire designed to facilitate negotiations breaks down. Instead, it will seek to resolve the 2014 Gaza conflict unilaterally and reach understandings with Egypt, the Palestinian Authority and the international community on rebuilding the Gaza Strip, demilitarizing Hamas and supervision of goods. Senior official:
If we feel that deterrence has been achieved we’ll leave the Strip based on the principle of calm for calm. If we feel deterrence has not yet been achieved, we’ll continue the operation in the Gaza Strip, or leave and press on with aerial strikes.
Voight denounces the open letter signed by Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz and others as ignorant and inciting anti-Semitism:
You have forgotten how this war started. Did Hamas not kidnap and kill three young teenagers for the sake of killing, and celebrated after the killing? What a travesty of justice. I am asking all my peers who signed that poison letter against Israel to examine their motives. Can you take back the fire of anti-Semitism that is raging all over the world now?
He says they are unaware of the genesis of the conflict:
They are obviously ignorant of the whole story of Israel’s birth, when in 1948 the Jewish people were offered by the UN a portion of the land originally set aside for them in 1921, and the Arab Palestinians were offered the other half. The Arabs rejected the offer, and the Jews accepted, only to be attacked by five surrounding Arab countries committed to driving them into the sea. But the Israelis won. The Arabs tried it again in 1967, and again in 1973, launching a sneak attack on the holiest Jewish holiday. Each time the Jews prevailed but not without great loss of life. And when Israel was not fighting a major war, it was defending itself against terrorist campaigns.
On more recent history:
And yet Israel has always labored for a peaceful relation with its Arab neighbors. It voluntarily returned the Sinai Peninsula to Egypt in return for peace, and gave the Palestinians all of Gaza as a peace gesture. What was the response? The Palestinians elected Hamas, a terrorist organization, and they immediately began firing thousands of rockets into Israel.
The Israel Defense Forces says the 70,000 residents of the northern town of Beit Lahiya can return, signaling its offensive in the area is winding down. All-clear statement:
The residents are advised to beware of explosive devices Hamas has spread across the area
Hamas says Israel mobilized machinery and troops at 06:30 a.m. local time, 90 minutes before the midnight Eastern Standard Time commencement of the 72-hour ceasefire and penetrated up to 1.5 miles into Rafah before destroying homes on the pretext of searching for tunnels, and deploying rooftop snipers.
We in the Hamas Movement hold the Zionist enemy fully responsible for breaching the humanitarian truce more than once since early morning. We also hold it responsible for continuing to perpetrate heinous massacres against the children of our people. We would like to stress that we would be willing to abide by the truce so long as the Zionist enemy abides by it
Israel begins scaling back forces in Gaza, with eyewitnesses reporting tanks pulling back from urban areas towards the border. The drawdown is aimed at allowing Israel to regroup and plan its next course of action, with troops set to soon pull back from densely populated urban areas once tunnel destruction is completed, and decide over the next three days how to proceed with its goals. Netanyahu makes a televised speech:
We promised to return quiet to Israel and that is what we will do. We will continue to act until that goal is reached, however long it will take and with as much force as needed
Hamas says it has no clear indication of the whereabouts of Israel Defense Forces Second Lieutenant Hadar Goldin or of militants that the IDF says kidnapped him, and assesses that he has been killed by his own side. In a statement:
We have lost contact with the group of fighters that took part in the ambush and we believe they were all killed in the (Israeli) bombardment. Assuming that they managed to seize the soldier during combat, we assess that he was also killed in the incident.
The IDF’s Hannibal Procedure rule states that no soldier of any rank is to be captured, and includes standing orders to bombard possible escape routes in the event of an abduction.
The 72-hour truce agreement breaks down less than four hours into the ceasefire period as Israel says Hamas breaches the terms of the agreement. Palestinian and Israeli officials confirm Jerusalem has told United Nations envoy Robert Serry Statement that the truce is over. Netanyahu’s office:
Once again the terror organisations in Gaza flagrantly violating the ceasefire to which they committed themselves, this time to the US Secretary of State and the UN Secretary General
Gaza officials and Palestinian media say at least 10 people have been killed and 15 wounded around four hours into the 72-hour ceasefire period. Health Ministry official Ashraf al-Kidra and Gaza police spokesman Ayman Batniji say Israeli tanks shelled the eastern part of the town of Rafah in the south of the enclave shortly before 1000 local time, 0200 Eastern Standard Time. The Israel Defense Forces says a heavy exchange of fire has erupted in the area.
Finland’s Helsingin Sanomat reports rockets fired from ‘right in the back of the parking lot’ of Al-Shifa hospital around 2 a.m. local time. Unnamed correspondent:
Really, it happened right in the area, the sound of it was really loud […] It’s true that rockets are launched here from the Gazan side into Israel
Rabbi Shmuley Boteach of the This World: The Values Network promotes an essay by Wiesel accusing Hamas of using children as human shields and comparing this to the Jewish myth of Abraham sacrificing his son Isaac:
[…] we have produced this advertising campaign with Elie Wiesel, to stop the terrorist cowards of Hamas from hiding behind innocent children and pregnant women
The campaign includes full-page ads in The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Chicago Tribune, The Los Angeles Times, The Miami Herald and use of social media.
The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says Gaza residents are receiving extremely limited supplies of electricity after Israeli shells are said to knock out the territory’s only power plant. UNOCHA:
Gaza city is receiving electricity for about two hours a day, while localities in the Middle Area have no supply at all […] According to the Palestinian Energy Authority, repairs could take months to complete, exacerbating the Gazan electricity crisis. This will affect private households, companies, and public services provision, including water, sanitation and health facilities. Hospitals will depend more heavily on their own diesel-powered generators, which are not adequate to power services for extended periods. Previously, hospital generators have burned out with extensive use, and power fluctuations damage finely calibrated medical equipment
Abbott calls on both sides to cease hostilities:
It should be a ceasefire immediately by both sides. That’s what there should be, because plainly, too many people are dying. It’s just wrong what’s happening, so there should be a ceasefire
Canberra’s support for Israel isn’t unconditional
[…] they’re capable of making mistakes just like everyone else is, but no one intends, or should intend, any attack which results in the death of innocent people
Support for the Palestinian right to statehood also depends on recognition of Israel:
that’s got to go hand-in-hand with the recognition of Israel’s right to exist behind secure borders. The problem in the Middle East is that in the end so many people are not prepared to accept Israel’s right to exist.
The Pentagon confirms that Israel has been allowed to draw tank shells and illumination rounds from a cache of U.S. arms and equipment stored on Israeli soil. Known as the War Reserves Stock Allies-Israel program or WRSA-1, the billion-dollar reserve was established as part of expanded mutual cooperation during the 1980s and can be accessed with U.S. approval, according to a report from the Congressional Research Service the last time Israel was allowed to tap the stockpile was during the 2006 Lebanon war against Hezbollah.
The Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University find in a poll that 95% of Israelis support Operation Protective Edge as “just” and only 4% or less say that the Israel Defense Forces has used excessive force in the 2014 Gaza conflict:
Over the course of the surveys, Israeli Jewish public opinion has been consistently almost unanimous in its definition of Operation Protective Edge as justified – an average of 95% (96%, 92%, and 97% over the course of the three surveys).
The Home Front Command is given an average grade of 9.1, 8.6, and 9.1 on a scale of 1-10, with one being very poor and 10 being very good, while the performance of the government was rated as 8.0, 6.3, and 8.0.
Two missiles fired by the Israel Defense Forces are said to strike the home of Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, which is empty at the time. No casualties are reported. His son, Abdel Salam:
The Israeli enemy struck our house twice.
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