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Analyzing the Israel-Gaza conflict.
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The likely short-term outcome of this conflict is a repeat of the aftermath of Operation Cast Lead. Some kind of truce will be negotiated — perhaps mediated by Egypt, whose stance towards Hamas is much more sympathetic under Mohammed Morsi, as illustrated by the 24/7 opening of the Rafah border crossing. Further, there will be at least a temporary lull in rocket attacks from Gaza, as Hamas will probably restrain itself again and revive efforts to keep more radical militants in check.
Yet Hamas’ position in Gaza will not be weakened, and Arab governments across the region could start providing aid to Hamas. They could also abandon the PA, which, after its current statehood bid at the UN that is unlikely to translate to anything practical, may simply be left on struggling lifeline support from Israel and the West.
The traditional “resistance bloc” may have collapsed and Hamas’ officials-in-exile may have lost much of their influence, but the group in Gaza looks stronger than ever, and in turn, the Palestinian movement looks to be ever more divided.
Photo by IDF (creative commons 2.0).
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