Islamic Jihad-Cease Fire Possible

The Islamic Jihad expressed a willingness to accept an Egyptian-mediated cease-fire in the Gaza Strip on the condition there would be “removal of the siege on the Palestinian people and the opening of the crossings” on the Gaza border. Ziad al-Nahia said he would accept the deal because it would benefit the Palestinian population. The Islmic Jihad and other militant groups are agreeing initially to focus on a cease fire in the Gaza Strip but hope eventually the end of fighting would also extend to other areas such as the West Bank. The Egyptian news agency, MENA, said “all of the Palestinian factions have agreed to the Egyptian proposal on a truce with Israel.”

The Israel government has already indicated several objections to the truce proposal because it believes such a cease fire might allow militant factions to resupply and obtain additional weapons. The central issue is whether the Palestinians are prepared for a short or long term period of truce. It obviously makes sense to seek the longer term truce and accept the reality of breaches. But, unless one begins the process, the process will never achieve a fruition of purpose. The road to peace begins with a single step.