[Update 1:] Hamas and Israel agree to ceasefire: sources

GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel and Hamas agreed on Wednesday to a ceasefire brokered by Egypt on the eighth day of intensive Israeli fire on the Gaza Strip and militant rocket attacks out of the enclave, Israeli, Palestinian and Egyptian sources said. Hostilities IDF@IDF Spokesperson and War propaganda site Israel Under Fire.

First word of the truce came from a Palestinian official who has knowledge of the negotiations in Cairo, where U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was also pursuing peace efforts. Egyptian state TV had earlier said a news conference would be broadcast from President Mohamed Mursi’s palace shortly.

Asked whether a ceasefire deal had been reached, an Egyptian official in Cairo said: “Yes, and Egypt will announce it.”

Israeli sources said Israel had agreed to a truce, but would not lift its blockade of the Palestinian territory, which is run by the Islamist Hamas movement.

Bus blast rocks Tel Aviv

Title to original diary – Clinton Rushed to the Side of Netanyahu, Not the Palestinian People!

Why did the Egyptian negotiated deal for a cease fire not materialize as Hillary Clinton’s plane touched the runway in Tel Aviv?

Regional and International diplomatic pressure had been mounted on Israel not to go into Gaza with ground forces which would cause more harm to the holed-up civilians in Gaza City. President Morsi of Egypt was hailed for getting a cease fire deal on the table after days of negotiations, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was present to lend his support. Qatar, Turkey and the Arab Union had representatives on the ground in Gaza as the Israeli attack by air, sea and land continued. The rockets fired by Hamas, Salafist and Al-Qaeda groups continued also causing two deaths on Israeli side. The number of civilian deaths only in Gaza reached 80, many of them children or whole families wrongly targeted. Two Israeli targeted strikes on local and foreign media killed four yesterday.

In the opening press conference, it was astounded to see Hillary Clinton standing by the side of Netanyahu and in full understanding and support of the Jewish people of Israel. Clinton spared some words as lipservice for the rights of the Palestinian people. Benyamin Netanyahu used the press conference as a platform to reach out with pure propaganda and his talking points for domestic purpose only. The coalition formed by Likud with the far-right religious parties are putting pressure on him to go ahead with a ground invasion, larger number of troops than Iron Lead four years ago. He is urged to smash the Hamas terrorist organization once and for all by any means necessary. The citizens of the surrounding cities near Gaza are demanding it, or he will be punished by the coming parliamentary election in January 2013.

The timing and tactical choice of the Gaza War was a decision of Netanyahu only after the provocation of a Sudan strike last month and targeted assassinations at the start of hostilities. Hamas was on a route to following a course of diplomacy and ties to Arab nations for funding of humanitarian relief. Egypt’s President Morsi leads the nations of the Arab Uprising to take responsibility and reign in the Hamas militants. Netanyahu gambled but is losing the PR battle world-wide and knows Israel will be isolated further in the coming days, weeks and months. Settlement building and agitating the Palestinian people on the West Bank will continue. The Arab League had offered a peace deal to Israel in 2003, Israel is not interested.

Why did Hillary Clinton travel to Israel, for what purpose? The US has been limited in its influence on the region after the fall of dictators in its client states Tunesia, Libya and Egypt. The face of the Arab nations has changed and Israel and the US find it difficult to accept. The audacity of change is what the the citizens of Egypt may call this people’s revolution. President Morsi will be held responsible by its electorate in the next election. It’s called democracy.

PM Netanyahu and VIDEO press confereence ahead of meeting with Secretary of State Clinton

Not possible to embed video in this diary, click on link or see first comment below for video. Why travel to Jerusalem to protect the mightiest state in the region with a leader that has popularity rankings second only to George W. Bush.

Hillary Clinton: Glad Iron Dome functions so well …

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is traveling to the Middle East on Tuesday to meet with officials in Israel, the West Bank and Egypt …

She will “emphasize the United States’ interest in a peaceful outcome that protects and enhances Israel’s security and regional stability,” said Ben Rhodes, the deputy national security adviser for strategic communications.

Images of Destruction from the Gaza War

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Worldwide protests from London and Berlin to the Americas and Santiago

This is a follow-up diary to my two previous articles on the developments in the Middle-East. Netanyahu wagging the dog before his re-election and close partnership with Avigdor Liberman.

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