Tanks and armored vehicles poured into southern Israel today while busloads of soldiers were brought to the front, as a ground invasion of the Gaza Strip, the first since early 2009, seems to be coming closer.
Air strikes have been a virtual constant against the tiny strip over the past day, with large numbers of civilian casualties and Israeli officials talking up the idea that the attacks are just the beginning.
Israeli officials have condemned Hamas for retaliating against their attacks, with Benjamin Netanyahu terming the retaliation a “double war crime.” Officials say if Hamas continues to retaliate they will consider a ground invasion, but others have suggested they will keep launching air strikes whether Hamas reacts or not, and it seems increasingly that the timing of the ground invasion is just a question of getting reservists and other troops into the area, with a decision likely already made.
The 2008-09 Israeli invasion killed 1,417 people, with the overwhelming majority innocent civilians. Israeli officials have since touted it as a model of “deterrence” and have been talking up a repeat performance ever since. They say that this war’s goals are identical. It seems that repeat may begin soon, as there is little to no momentum coming from the international community to calm the situation down, with Western officials mostly reiterating that they support Israel.
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