1) The causus-belli, the kidnapping and death of three Israeli teenagers was false. This has now been admitted by Israeli officials. There was never a scrap of proof, only supposition.
2) Bibi said Hamas did it, and started a war based on that, for vengeance.
4) Except that we all know it was just a pretext. Doing it based on a lie just rubs that in.
5) Hamas has been fighting better than last time, inflicting enough Israeli casualties to matter.
6) Israel has been deliberately leveling large parts of Gaza. The damage is much worse than Cast Lead. Most refugees will have no home to go back to.
7) Israel wants truces now, but by and large it’s Hamas who is refusing them.
9) Because the status-quo ante is unacceptable. Gaza was under siege, unable to bring in most goods, food, water and so on and most residents could not leave, even for life-saving medical care.
10) Hamas’s condition for the end of the war is substantially “life the siege”. If the siege is not lifted, the parts of Gaza which have been flattened cannot be rebuilt, because the equipment needed cannot enter Gaza.
11) Israel can inflict as much collective punishment (a war crime) as it likes on the Gazans, but it can’t make Hamas stop fighting, or shooting missiles.
12) Israel also wants, as part of a condition for peace, for Hamas to let it keep hunting down the tunnels. In other words, it wants Hamas to allow Israel to destroy its ability to fight back even a little.
By Dan Whitcomb, reuters.com
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