The Dossier: Will the Israel-Hamas ceasefire hold?

· May 6, 2019  
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Hamas terrorists
Ashraf Amra/Anadolu Agency | Getty Images

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Israel and Hamas reach ceasefire

Israel and the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas have agreed to a ceasefire, following a weekend of seemingly endless rocket fire from the jihadi group that rules the Gaza Strip. 

At least four Israelis were killed by the rocket fire. Israel responded to the Hamas civilian targeting campaign by launching massive air strikes at Hamas’ military facilities.

“In the last two days we renewed the policy of assassinating senior terror officials, killed dozens of Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists and destroyed terror towers,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu commented Monday. 

“However, this isn’t the end of the battle, and therefore I ordered [the army] to prepare for what comes next and leave armored and artillery forces around the Gaza Strip,” he added.

In a piece for the Washington Free Beacon, Matt Brodsky of the Security Studies Group explored how the regime that rules Iran played a large part in instigating the latest flare-up between the two sides.

It is unknown how long the ceasefire will hold up. As a jihadi terrorist group, Hamas does not often abide by international norms and has developed a reputation for disregarding agreed-upon ceasefires.

Pompeo warns China and Russia on Arctic expansion

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned Russia and China Monday that the U.S. is monitoring their aggressive — and contested — claims and actions in Arctic territory. 

Given its geographic location, it’s harder to make the case that Russia should not be entitled to Arctic resources. However, China has also sought to make a play for the resource-rich area by proclaiming that it has a right to usurp energy in the region.

“Beijing claims to be a near-Arctic state, yet the shortest distance between China and the Arctic Circle is 900 miles,” Pompeo said in Finland Monday before a meeting of the Arctic Council. “There are only Arctic states and non-Arctic States. No third category exists — and claiming otherwise entitles China to exactly nothing.”

The move comes on the heels of President Trump threatening to impose massive tariffs on China, should Beijing not move forward with trade talks with the United States.

Trump admin sends aircraft carrier to Middle East following Iranian aggression

The United States has deployed an aircraft carrier strike group to the Middle East following aggressive behavior from Iran and its terrorist proxies.

Late Sunday, national security adviser John Bolton announced that the USS Abraham Lincoln and a bomber task force will deploy to the region.

The strike group will “send a clear and unmistakable message to the Iranian regime that any attack on United States interests or on those of our allies will be met with unrelenting force,” Bolton said in a statement. “The United States is not seeking war with the Iranian regime, but we are fully prepared to respond to any attack, whether by proxy, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, or regular Iranian forces.”

The Persian Gulf is a likely destination for the task force. Iran has threatened to shut down the strategically essential Strait of Hormuz (the bottleneck access passage to the Persian Gulf), which one-fifth of the world’s consumed oil passes through.

In addition to the military deployment, the Trump administration will announce new sanctions against the Tehran regime this week.

Venezuela’s Guaido contemplates asking for US military assistance

Venezuela’s contested interim president Juan Guaido, whose legitimacy is backed by a large swath of the Western world, told the BBC Monday that he is considering asking for U.S. military support in his home country. 

While maintaining that he will “evaluate all options,” Guaido personally thanked President Trump for standing with the Venezuelan people. 

“I think President [Donald] Trump’s position is very firm, which we appreciate, as does the entire world,” Guaido said.

Americans are largely united against the rule of socialist dictator Nicolas Maduro. However, Republicans and Democrats are in many different camps on the question of whether or not to support American military intervention to help oust Maduro.

Author’s note: This post originally appeared in Blaze Media’s The Dossier newsletter. For foreign policy news and views delivered to your inbox twice a week, subscribe here.


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Author: Jordan Schachtel

Jordan Schachtel is the national security correspondent for Conservative Review and editor of The Dossier for Blaze Media. Follow him on Twitter @JordanSchachtel.