Palestinian armed forces have fired 19 rockets, missiles and mortars from Gaza into Sderot and surrounding farming communities in Israel’s Western Negev region since September 4th.. Residents of Sderot and the Western Negev have experienced one of the the worst periods of attack since Israel’s three week incursion into Gaza in January 2009.

In sum, Gazans have launched 424 aerial attacks into Israel since the cease fire on January 18, 2009:These attacks raise 2 important questions:

  1. “Where doe the attacks on the Western Negev and Sderot fit in the current middle east negotiationequation?”

  2. “What are the implications for the Hamas regime in Gaza in these negotiations”?

These attacks on Israel, perpetrated by the Hamas regime in Gaza demonstrate that Hamas remains fully in control of Gaza.

Hamas uses every opportunity to remind the world that Hamas prevailed in the elections of January 2006 in all areas of the Palestinian Authority, elections that were overseen by the European Union and by representatives of the US government.

In terms of current negotiations now underway between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Hamas leader Isamail Hanyia – who opposes these talks – constantly repeats that “No one is authorized to negotiate on behalf of the Palestinian people”. After all, Machmud Abbas’s term of office has expired, and no new Palestinian Authority elections are in sight, lest Hamas win yet another PA election.

The question posed by one million Israeli who live in rocket range of Gaza remains: If the Hamas attacks on Sderot and the Western Negev are not on the agenda of the the current negotiations, how can there be a genuine peace agreement?

Yet at this time, Israel and the PA have only agreed to three agenda items: Borders, Refugees, Jerusalem., in the context of a Two-State Solution, Where does that leave Gaza? With a “Three-State Solution”?.

That leaves Israel with two options: To negotiate with the Hamas regime that rules Gaza, which Hamas refuses to do, or to initiate yet another military incursion into Gaza, with the goal, this time, to defeat the Hamas regime, once and for all..