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Retired US General: Temporary Truce will Negatively Affect Israel

Retired US Brigadier General James A. Marks said the Israeli occupation forces’ will be negatively impacted by the temporary truce in the besieged Gaza Strip.

In an interview with CNN, Marks said the Israeli army’s “access to targetable intelligence” regarding Hamas’ forces will begin to “atrophy” and the intelligence information collected over the course of days in Gaza will begin to collapse around them. Hamas, in response, would reposition itself and do everything possible to reinforce its security, he added.

“The pause in military activity is an extremely challenging task,” he explained, adding it was one which will prompt the army to transition into a “defensive stance.”

“I think we have reached the point where the army must make a very difficult decision, because the soldiers in Gaza are exposed in the tunnels where Hamas remains prevalent as the tunnel network is still active and has not been taken over,” he explained.

He also noted that if the truce is extended from four days to five or six days “it will become a very difficult military mission. The Israelis will have to move to a defensive position at that stage.”

Yesterday, the Qatari Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that a humanitarian truce agreement had been reached in the Gaza Strip between the occupation and Hamas, through joint mediation with Egypt and the US.

The Qatari Ministry said that the agreement includes the exchange of 50 Israeli prisoners of war, including women and children, currently held in the Gaza Strip during the first stage in exchange for the release of a number of Palestinian women and children detained in Israeli prisons, adding that the number of those released will be increased in later stages of implementing the agreement.

The Qatari Foreign Ministry spokesman said in a press statement on Thursday, “Work is continuing with the two parties and our partners in Cairo and Washington to ensure the rapid start of the truce.”

An Israeli official has, however, said no prisoners would be released until tomorrow, at the earliest.

Source : MEMO