As the international community continues to pressure Israel for a humanitarian ceasefire, they are racing not just against a growing humanitarian disaster, but against the clock, for once the troops are in the strip a 48-hour halt will become a much tougher sell.
And while its been talked about essentially since before Israel started its bombing campaign in earnest on Saturday, the planned invasion of the Gaza Strip seems a done deal tonight, just waiting for some last minute preparations as thousands of Israeli troops and tanks are poised along the border of the tiny enclave waiting for the order to attack.
An Israeli hospital near the strip has been evacuated, and is waiting to accept the massive casualties that the invasion is sure to create. The Israeli military confirmed the move was in preparation of a ground invasion. Militants in the strip say they are ready to contest the ground forces, and they’ve been given ample time with Israel talking about the invasion for weeks.
Around 400 foreigners, who have been trapped in the Gaza Strip during the bombings, will also be allowed to leave tomorrow, another sign that Israel is moving closer to the next phase of their attack. The million and a half other residents of the strip will be left to take their chances with the invading forces.