Israel Announces Daily 4-Hour Humanitarian Pauses

( – Since Israel’s current war with Hamas began on October 7, the Biden administration has managed to support the Jewish state, despite some dissent from far-left lawmakers like Representative Rashida Tlaib (D-MI). At the same time, it’s been pressuring the Israelis to do more to help Palestinian civilians caught in the war zone. Israel has now agreed to a daily “humanitarian pause” in the fighting.

On November 9, the White House announced that Israel has agreed to stop combat operations for four hours each day. The aim of the “humanitarian pauses” is to let civilians — not Hamas terrorists — leave northern Gaza, where most of the fighting is taking place, to the south. Israel has been telling Gazans to leave the north for a month, but Hamas has been encouraging them to stay at home. Now, with Israeli troops surrounding Gaza City, its remaining residents are getting another chance to escape.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is stressing that there’s no ceasefire in Gaza; he said Israel will continue its operations to destroy Hamas. In fact, Israel is downplaying the word “pause,” and pointing out that they’re “limited in time and area.” The Israeli emphasis is that it’s operating “humanitarian corridors” to allow civilians to exit and aid to enter. Biden is clear that he wants the fighting to stop; when he announced the daily “pauses” he said he’d asked Netanyahu for “a pause longer than three days.” Even if Netanyahu wanted to do that, public pressure wouldn’t let him; Israelis want their government to defeat Hamas.

A three-day ceasefire would also be a bad idea from a military point of view; 72 hours is long enough for Hamas to start recovering from the pounding they’ve taken. Instead, Israel’s priority remains to get the last civilians out of northern Gaza so they can carry on with the war — but Netanyahu and the IDF are determined to fight that war to the end, with no ceasefires.

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