Gaza Cease-Fire Ends (Again), Cue (Another) Blame Game

A three-day cease-fire between Israel and Hamas crumbled mere hours after it started. Predictably, both sides are blaming each other.
Posted at 10:20 AM, Aug 01, 2014

What was supposed to be an unconditional, 72-hour humanitarian cease-fire didn't last long. 

Really, it was only a matter of hours before fighting started again. (Via The Telegraph)

And predictably, both sides are blaming each other. Here's how it's playing out:

"Israel says Hamas has fired at least eight rockets into its territory and may have captured an Israeli soldier." (Via WBBM)

HAMAS SPOKESMAN: "If Israel continues its operation on the ground, it is our right to ... take the necessary measures against them." (Via Al Jazeera)

Basically, both sides are saying the other ended it — Hamas blaming Israeli occupation in general and Israel accusing Hamas of kidnapping an Israeli soldier and firing rockets into Israel. And while the U.N., which helped broker the cease-fire, admits it can't immediately confirm those reports, this statement from the U.N.'s Robert Serry saves condemnation largely for Hamas:

"If corroborated, this would constitute a serious violation ... by Gazan militant factions ... [and] should be condemned in the strongest terms."

When the U.S. and U.N. announced the cease-fire, a triumphant Jerusalem Post declared Hamas "bruised and battered," although it acknowledged the likelihood of the cease-fire not holding. 

And, of course, that piece blamed Hamas for breaking past cease-fires.

At the other extreme, though, Iran's Press TV undeniably puts the blame on Israel with the headline alone: "Israel kills dozens of Palestinians during Gaza truce."

The ultimate and perhaps obvious result here is that a peaceful, rational end to the conflict appears even farther away now. So far, more than 1,400 Palestinians and around 65 Israelis have died since fighting began in July.