The Delaying Tactics And Gaza Truce

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Context
20-11-2012_IsraelGazaAttackAccording to media reports, the truce between Hamas and Israel is close at hand. These reports were emanating from Egypt even before Hamas and Israel stated anything about it. In fact, as of yet, Israel has not even confirmed it is negotiating and continues to threaten a ground operation.

Since Egypt is playing a lead role in coordinating the truce between Hamas and Israel, it is obviously the source of the truce hype. However, there is more to it.

The present Gaza crisis has put Egypt, including Qatar and Turkey, under considerable pressure. If the crisis prolongs, their credibility will be on the line. Israel knows this very well, so it will, and is, trying to delay reaching a truce. This will help it get more favorable terms. Moreover, as more players are involved in assisting the parties reach an agreement, Israel will use this to its benefit and will want to have a guarantor to monitor the terms of the agreement.

This puts Egypt in a tricky position. On the one hand, it wants the truce swiftly, and on the other hand it may end up bearing the responsibility for ensuring that the terms of agreement are not violated. Israel will want the country to use its influence over Hamas to stop the rocket attack from Gaza. Furthermore, Egypt will also have to guarantee that its territory is not used for resupplying rockets to Gaza. And, for this the American role may become even more important.

This is not to say that Israel is devoid of any pressure. Despite differences with Hamas, Hezbollah has offered to come to its help, if Israel