Hamas is backing down. From the latest AP update:
Late Sunday, a top Hamas leader in Gaza said his group would halt the rocket fire. Israeli officials said they would wait to see if things remained quiet before calling off the offensive.
There is also this, which makes me wonder if the AP is reading blogs:
After the airstrike, Mohammed al-Hindi, Islamic Jihad’s top leader in Gaza and the West Bank, said the group would no longer honor the cease-fire. “There is no talk of a truce, there is only room for talk of war,” he said.
Although the truce has brought a sharp drop in fighting, Islamic Jihad has carried out a series of attacks in recent months, including three suicide bombings in Israel. The group says all of its attacks have been in response to perceived Israeli violations of the truce.
However, Mahmoud Zahar, leader of the much larger Hamas group, said he had ordered an end to rocket attacks and a halt in military-style celebrations in order to preserve the truce.
This, only a day after taking the Hamas line in another article. Can the editors finally be recgnizing their reporters’ bias?
Meanwhile, Israeli troops, backed by armored bulldozers, tanks and armored personnel carriers, massed outside Gaza. Israel set up five artillery pieces on the border, and fired test-rounds into empty fields in northern Gaza to calibrate their guns in preparation for a possible artillery assault. There were no injuries.
In the past, Israel retaliated against Palestinian rocket fire with air strikes or ground incursions, but not artillery fire, which is imprecise and could cause many casualties in densely populated Gaza.