Uh oh. As soon as you think you can see the end....
Ceasefire went from cynical to sinister this morning as Hamas took advantage of the 72-hour stoppage to capture a soldier who was performing 'UN permitted' tunnel dismantling. This was a terrible idea, IDF has become a sitting target as it dismantles tunnels in plain view of Hamas.
The parents of the kidnapped soldier have been notified. 2 soldiers with him have fallen. Obama still asking for return... And there are at least 63 soldiers dead, plus more wounded this morning. Some in this war have been wounded so gravely their physical lives are forever altered by this.
This kidnapping will get played out on the international stage, and we all have a front seat to this as talks go on in Egypt, with the US in attendance. First word from the UN is that Hamas committed a foul. Will they keep up that cry? Will others?
A kidnapping puts the peace process in stark relief, and tests the fairness and standards of the players. As it is meant to. If Hamas uses the soldier for a bargaining chip, negotiations are overtly strained. And the longer the IDF stays in, the more chances there are for more such nonsense.
It will be an anxious Shabbat for many. If cool heads and fair hearts prevail, the IDF finishes the tunnels this weekend and gets the hell out of dodge.
[Best article I have read (minus the dodgy rape reference). Written by a Palestinian Canadian. Detente!]