Ceasefire declared!

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Eddie and Jackie SantoroThe attack on Israel is officially over. After a seven hour Security Cabinet meeting, a ceasefire agreement was accepted yesterday after 460+ rockets and mortars were fired onto Israel. Although Israel responded to the attacks, it was a relatively constrained response with an emphasis on avoiding fatalities.

Many in Israel were disappointed with the announcement and the ceasefire was met by protests in the southern city of Sederot which is consistently the target of much of the rocket attacks each time this situation occurs. In addition, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman announced today that he is resigning over the decision to accept the cease fire. In a speech this morning, Liberman said that he saw the Gaza ceasefire as a “surrender to terror”. There is a possibility that Liberman’s resignation will spark new elections in the near future as it significantly weakens Netanyahu’s coalition.

It is clear that this decision was not an easy one to make. The overriding feeling though was that this was not the time to enter into a major military escalation. The country had just gone through a major war with Gaza in 2014 with too many Israeli soldiers killed. Although Israel caused great damage to the Gaza Strip, there was no fundamental change in the terrorist organization that runs the Strip and the situation has remained basically the same. The whole issue of controlling the Gaza Strip and the
humanitarian crisis that exists there is an incredibly complicated political issue that a military victory wouldn’t solve. Please pray for the successful resolution of this long standing conflict. It is clear that there needs to be a new creative strategy.

The US State Department has announced a five million dollar reward for information which would lead to the capture of specific Hamas and Hezbollah leaders. These groups receive almost all their weapons which they use against Israel from Iran.

It is obvious that there is much happening politically and diplomatically behind the scenes that the public can not see or understand. The government was willing to absorb this recent attack which was one of the biggest and most destructive in order to avoid a major war at this time. These are incredibly volatile and challenging times. Let us continue to stand together and pray that these leaders will hear the counsel from heaven and that God’s purposes will be manifest and his Kingdom advanced in Israel and throughout the world.

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