War in the Middle East, the US is pushing for a second truce. Hamas shows a video with three hostages

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By John

The US does not leave Israel alone against Hamas and confirms military support, but pushes decisively for an increase in humanitarian aid to the Strip. Just as international pressure is growing arrive at a second truce, evoked by a new resolution from the United Arab Emirates which is being worked on at the UN headquarters in New York after the American veto of recent weeks. However, the complex diplomatic game underway does not stop at the UN Security Council. In Warsaw, the head of the Mossad David Barnea, the Prime Minister of Qatar Sheikh Mohammed Al Thani and the head of the CIA William Burns met to test the possibility of reopening negotiations on the truce and on a new exchange of Palestinian hostages and detainees. Everyone agreed that these are “long, complicated and more difficult negotiations than before”.

While a new video released by Hamas came to the fore of the negotiation with an intervention by three elderly Israeli hostages still in captivity in the Strip. Military spokesman Daniel Hagari dismissed it as “a criminal terrorist video”, in which the three kidnapped states that they do not want to die under the raids of their own army and call for release “at any cost”. The video of just over a minute ends with a biblical quote: ‘Do not abandon me in old age. The second member of the Biden administration to arrive in Israel in a week on a political-military shuttle, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin reiterated American support for its long-time ally. The head of the Pentagon underlined that there is no “US timetable” for the war, the conduct of which however requires a reduction in civilian casualties through “surgical” and targeted attacks, according to the lines already expressed by Secretary of State Antony Blinken at Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. “We will continue to provide Israel with the necessary equipment, including crucial ammunition, tactical vehicles and air defense systems,” Austin said. And we will support Israel’s effort to free the hostages.” At the same time he insisted on the need to take care of “the most urgent needs” of civilians tormented by more than two months of conflict. “We must ensure – explained Biden’s envoy – that greater quantities of humanitarian aid are forwarded to the two million displaced people in Gaza”. The general political framework, he summarized, remains that of the 2-state solution. «We know how difficult it is, especially after October 7, but the continuous instability and insecurity play into the hands of Hamas», underlined Austin, who for the post-war period confirmed to the Israeli leadership (from Netanyahu to Gallant) that Washington is in favor of control of the Strip by the Palestinian National Authority. Precisely this, despite the US line, remains one of the most controversial points of the resolution being worked on at the UN, given Israel’s well-known opposition. Netanyahu’s government also warned the Americans about what is happening on the country’s northern border with the Lebanese Hezbollah: “If diplomatic efforts are unsuccessful – the Defense Minister warned – we will not hesitate to attack the north.” Meanwhile, on the ground the Israeli army appears to have firmly taken control of Beit Hanoun, in the north of the Strip, conquering the Hamas strongholds. In Gaza City, the military spokesman announced that many militiamen had been captured, including some of those responsible for the October 7 attack. In all, over 150 targets were hit in the last 24 hours. While Hamas said in the last 24 hours, 110 Palestinians were killed in Israeli attacks in Jabalya. The total number of deaths – according to the Gaza authorities who do not distinguish between civilian and militia victims – reached 19,453 in the Strip, with 52,286 injured. And if in the West Bank the situation is boiling – with 4 Palestinians killed in Tubas in an army operation but also with an attack on an Israeli – in Lebanon the reality is increasingly one of open conflict with rockets from across the border and raids Israelis.