A truce agreement was reached after nine days of Israeli military attacks on the Gaza Strip, during which Israel assassinated many key leaders from the Hamas and Islamic Jihad armed groups. As part of the truce, Israel agreed to stop all hostilities against Gaza, by air or sea or land, and refrain from targeting any individuals. Palestinians agreed to stop all operations from Gaza against Israel, including shelling at bordering areas. Egypt got the guarantee from all parties to respect the agreement and refrain from violating it, and they will all refer to Egypt, the sponsor of the agreement.
The Israeli political and media circles considered that Israel failed to achieve its goals in Gaza, and that the excess of power cannot guarantee the safety of Israel, neither did the assassinations and air strikes.
The results of the military operations revealed the following:
1- The targeted airstrikes with F-16 planes and Apache helicopters, highlighted Israel’s strategic monitoring of the targets by drones.
2- Despite the destructive missile platforms, especially Fajr 5 which can reach key cities in the south and center of Israel, in addition to Grad and Cornet anti-tanks platforms, Hamas reached strategic targets, 80 kilometers away from Gaza. This endangered, for the first time, industrial Israeli cities and military compounds.
3- The strategic reserve of middle range missiles exceeded 1500 missiles, which destabilized the strategic balance and incited Israel to destroy them.
On the other hand, Hamas used new rockets to attack settlements and Israeli locations around Gaza and conveyed a strategic message of its ability to create a counterbalance, by being able to reach key vital targets, such as in Ashdod and Tel Aviv, as well as a compound for the military intelligence in the southern region.
And Hamas rockets halted classes in schools and universities which exerted pressure over Netanyahu to stop the operations against the will of Shin Bet, Israel's controversial domestic security service, which was suggesting a wider-range operation.
The Lebanese army increased its patrols while Hezbollah forbid Palestinian groups from firing rockets from south Lebanon and took other measures around the Palestinian camp of Ain-El-Heloui to stop the repercussions of Gaza war.
The results of the Gaza war were as follows:
1- The Israeli prime minister fell under the pressure from right wing parties about the importance of dealing firmly with the threats of the resistance organizations in Gaza and Lebanon.
2- The urgency of developing the highly expensive Iron Dome, and the need for additional funds to deploy more missiles, and the urgency to develop the “hets” missile with American support.
The Israeli operation against Gaza was endorsed by U.S. support to Israel’s right to self-defense which will affect the position of Obama’s new administration towards the truce.
The Gaza violence put in question Egypt’s role and commitment towards the Strip, especially that Hamas is asked for confidence-building measures with Egyptian support in the absence of any real guarantees within the agreement.
And in spite of Egypt’s calls for peace, it took preventive measures near the border and moved additional forces to that area.
In evaluating the results of the Israeli operation against Gaza we note the following:
The resistance organizations were seeking to restore the balance of terror, through rockets that target key residential conglomerations. But Israeli hostilities succeeded in diminishing the arsenal of rockets, especially from Islamic Jihad, as many strategic warehouses were destroyed while 1200 rockets were fired against Israel out of an estimated 2000, in addition to assassinating key military leaders in Hamas and Jihad.
The resistance proved to be able to manufacture locally mid-term rockets, which abolishes the efforts of monitoring smuggling routes.
This operation will certainly lead to more American pressure on Egypt to border control and stop the smuggling of weapons.
But the truce lacks any tangible steps after the confidence-building measures, while giving Egypt the responsibility of following up its implementation.
And it is unlikely that tangible steps will be taken to achieve Palestinian reconciliation in spite of the call from Hamas leader Khaled Meshaal to adopt a national political program based on resistance, while the Palestinian Authority’s priority is to get an observer status at the United Nations.
But most comments from Israeli security circles didn’t look optimistic about the extent of the ceasefire, adding that Hamas will decide when to violate it.
And they see that their biggest achievements were the protection of the Iron Dome, assassinating Hamas military leader Ahmad Al-Jaabari, hitting 1400 targets and destroying government buildings in Gaza. They also succeeded in winning international support to legitimize their acts and Egypt’s commitment to stop arm smuggling and guarantee the agreement. Israel’s success was also in getting the Muslim Brotherhood government to be mediators, and Hamas’ pledge to stop targeting Israel.
On the flip side, the results were as follows: Hamas’ ability to target Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, Hamas’ ability to go on fighting in spite of Al-Jaabari assassination, Israel’s refraining from launching a land invasion, with Hamas claiming that it deterred Israel from making this move.