GAZA WAR UPDATE, Day #21: Obama calls Netanyahu to demand “immediate” cease-fire. UN Security Council now demands ceasefire. Kerry angers Israeli, Palestinian & Egyptian leaders. Turkey turns hostile.

UPDATED AT 10:30PM EASTERN SUNDAY: (Washington, D.C.) — The most dramatic developments of the weekend in the Gaza war were these:

  1. President Obama’s call to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday to demand an “immediate” ceasefire, even though Israeli leaders don’t feel they are yet finished neutralizing the terrorist threat posed by Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza.
  2. The U.N. Security council demand on Sunday for an immediate ceasefire, even though this will most help the terrorists.
  3. Secretary John Kerry’s disastrous efforts at negotiating a ceasefire, in which he actually managed to anger Palestinian, Egyptian and Israeli leaders all at once — as one regional commentator put it: “We are witnessing a grave strategic error by the Americans, who are succeeding in infuriating serious and strong allies like Israel, Egypt and Saudi Arabia in favor of a deception in the form of Qatar and Turkey, which has managed to quarrel with all of its neighbors.”
  4. Turkey’s aggressively anti-Semitic language towards Israel and the Jewish people, which has reached a dangerous new low.

First, President Obama. An immediate and unconditional ceasefire ending Israel’s assault on Hamas is a ‘clear strategic imperative’ to Israel, U.S. President Barack Obama told Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu in a phone call on Sunday,” reported the Jerusalem Post. ” While the conversation focused on the immediate concerns of the United States, the president also discussed the broader implications of Israel’s operation in Gaza, Protective Edge, now over two weeks old and burdened with a mounting death toll, both within the Israel Defense Forces and the civilian population of Gaza. Obama told Netanyahu he wants a ceasefire ‘that both allows Palestinians in Gaza to lead normal lives and addresses Gaza’s long-term development and economic needs, while strengthening the Palestinian Authority,’ the White House said, in a readout of the call to reporters.”

That said, the Post noted that “in a recent poll, over 85 percent of Israelis support the Israeli government continuing the military operation until Hamas’ tunnels into Israel are completely destroyed.”

To be clear, I want an end to the fighting and a restoration of calm as soon as possible. But an even higher priority to me is that the terrorist threat in Gaza be truly and fundamentally neutralized.

In the past nineteen days, more than 2,500 rockets have been fired by terrorists in Gaza at Jewish and Arab civilians living in Israel. Israel has also discovered dozens of terror tunnels dug from Gaza under Israeli sovereign territory. From these, terrorists have tried to launch attacks against Israeli towns and villages, and kidnap Israeli soldiers and civilians. Like any normal, democratic nation, the Israeli government is taking all actions necessary to protect its people and defeat the terrorists.

Shouldn’t the U.S. — Israel’s most important geopolitical ally — by trying to help Israel win this war against the terrorists, not force a premature ceasefire? You might think so, but instead the Obama administration is working so hard to get Israel to stop fighting the terrorists. Indeed, the Kerry cease-fire plan — rejected by unanimously by the Israeli security cabinet on Friday — would have allowed Hamas to keep its rockets and terror tunnels.


Second, the U.N. — “The U.N. Security Council agreed on a statement Sunday calling for ‘an immediate and unconditional humanitarian cease-fire’ in the Gaza war between Israel and Hamas and scheduled a meeting at midnight to adopt it,” reports the Associated Press. “The council was meeting as Muslims started celebrating the Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of the fasting month of Ramadan. The push for a cease-fire follows new attacks by Israel and Hamas on Sunday despite going back and forth over proposals for another temporary halt to nearly three weeks of fighting.”

Third, Secretary Kerry. What exactly is he trying to accomplish, and why is he angering not only Israeli leaders but Palestinian and Egyptian leaders as unhelpful and pro-Hamas?

Kerry is actually refusing to work closely with the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah such as Mahmoud Abbas. He is also refusing to build on the cease fire plan developed and advanced by Egyptian President Sisi and his team. Instead, Kerry is working closely with Turkey and Qatar, both close allies of Hamas, to come up with a deal that benefits Hamas. Incredibly, Kerry actually convened a mini summit in Paris to broker a deal — but didn’t invite the Israelis or the Palestinians or Egypt.


I would encourage you to read through some of the regional coverage of Kerry’s efforts that show the enormous frustration Kerry is engendering among America’s closest allies in the region:

Fourth, Turkey. Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan (pronounced “Air-do-wan”) has become increasingly belligerent towards Israel and the Jewish people in recent years. But his anti-Semitism has hit staggering new lows in recent days. Consider the following headlines.



  • Please keep praying for an end to the fighting soon — but let’s also pray that both Israelis and Palestinians in Gaza are liberated from the reign of terror imposed by Hamas and Islamic Jihad.
  • Please pray for the wisdom of regional leaders, and U.S and other leaders, to know how best to resolve this crisis.
  • Please pray for the Lord to comfort and heal those on both sides who have been injured and/or traumatized by this conflict.
  • Please pray that Israel’s leaders will call the nation to prayer and fasting and reading of the Bible, as all wise kings of Israel and Judah did in ancient times.


 Saturday, July 26, according to the IDF blog:

      • More than 22 rockets were fired from Gaza towards Israel.
      • At least 16 rockets hit Israel.
      • 6 rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system.
      • The IDF struck over 40 terror targets in the Gaza Strip.
      • 31 terror tunnels were uncovered by IDF forces since July 17.

Thursday, July 24:

      • More than 63 rockets were fired from Gaza towards Israel.
      • At least 43 rockets hit Israel.
      • 15 rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system.
      • The IDF struck over 90 terror targets in the Gaza Strip.
      • 31 terror tunnels were uncovered by IDF forces since July 17.

Wednesday, July 23:

      • More than 98 rockets were fired from Gaza towards Israel.
      • At least 70 rockets hit Israel.
      • 25 rockets were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system.
      • The IDF struck 160 terror targets in the Gaza Strip.
      • 31 terror tunnels were uncovered by IDF forces since July 17.
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