The death toll continues to rise in Gaza to now number 718 as violence rages between Hamas and Israel. Overnight, an Israeli attack on Jebaliya refugee camp in Gaza killed six-members of the same family including an 18-month-old boy as it wounded another 20 Palestinians. A recent Hamas rocket attack into Israel landed with a mile of the international airport in Tel Aviv prompting a 48-hour-old ban of United States(US) and International flights into that area of Israel. The US restriction has now been lifted. Israeli casualties include 32 soldiers who died since July 17 when Israel launched the ground offensive into Gaza. Two other Israelis have died in the conflict along with a sole Thai worker in Israel. Thus far, this Israeli-Palestinian conflict has destroyed 475 homes in Gaza, damaged another 2,644 and damaged or destroyed 46 schools, 56 mosques and seven hospitals. Hamas has lobbied more than 2,000 rockets into Israel. United Nations(UN) Humanitarian Chief, Baroness Valerie Amos earlier today described the conditions in Gaza as "terrible" and "dire". Some 118,000 Palestinians have now sought shelter in UN schools in Gaza and food and water supplies are running low.
Baroness Amos described the need for a cease-fire in the conflict as "vital"; and vitally crucial is it needed in order to stave off a deepening humanitarian crisis.
But a cease-fire and a lasting peace to the Israeli and Palestinian peoples could only be brokered by both sides adhering to rational thought and reasoning. So far both Hamas and Israel appear incapable of sound reasoning in part because of the resounding need for the Israelis to secure their homeland; and by the fallible actions of Hamas to attack Israel over and over again and to demand their desires be met before a peace can been won.
That Hasmas's leader Khaled Meshaal, safely tucked away in Qatar, away from the carnage and destruction in Gaza, could make demands to the terms to a cease-fire while babies are dying in Gaza, is preposterous. Palestinians are dying. Meshaal is safe. But he want to set the terms under which babies will no longer die. Such is the lunacy of this conflict. That is why, US Secretary of State John Kerry's input is needed more than ever now to broker a cease-fire and a peace to the conflicting peoples. For to the leave the matter solely to the warring parties would be to condemn many more innocents to death.