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Israel, Palestine And A Region On Edge

Israel and the Palestinians go to hot conflict again, this time in a region in turmoil, from Gaza to Baghdad.

Smoke rises after an Israeli strike in Gaza City, Tuesday, July 8, 2014. The Israeli military launched what could be a long-term offensive against the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip on Tuesday striking nearly 100 sites in Gaza and mobilizing troops for a possible ground invasion aimed at stopping a heavy barrage of rocket attacks against Israel. (AP)

Smoke rises after an Israeli strike in Gaza City, Tuesday, July 8, 2014. The Israeli military launched what could be a long-term offensive against the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip on Tuesday striking nearly 100 sites in Gaza and mobilizing troops for a possible ground invasion aimed at stopping a heavy barrage of rocket attacks against Israel. (AP)

Three Israeli teens, kidnapped and killed.  A Palestinian boy, apparently burned alive in revenge.  And suddenly, it’s rockets out of Gaza, and bombs in.  Forty thousand Israeli Army Reservists authorized for call-up.  Warplanes hitting Gaza.  Dozens of dead there.  Palestinian rockets flying.  As far as northern Israel.  It seems like a terrible drama we’ve all seen again and again.  But the surrounding region has changed this time.  In Syria, in the so-called “Islamic State,” in Iraq, in Egypt.  And the US, lower profile.  This hour On Point:  Israel and the Palestinians, squaring off in a region of fire.

— Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Michele Dunne, senior associate in the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s Middle East Program. Former Middle East specialist at the U.S. Department of State. (@MicheleDDunne)

Rashid Khalidi, professor of Modern Arab studies at Columbia University. Author of “Brokers of Deceit,” “The Iron Cage” and “Palestinian Identity.” Editor of the Journal of Palestine Studies.

Alan Elsner, vice president for communications at J Street. (@alanelsner)

Nicholas Burns,  professor in international relations at the Harvard Kennedy School. Former US Ambassador to Greece and NATO. (@RNicholasBurns)

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal: Israel Steps Up Airstrikes in the Gaza Strip — “Israel stepped up its attacks against the Gaza Strip on Tuesday in what it called the beginning of a prolonged assault on Palestinian militants and their infrastructure in the coastal enclave. Israeli warplanes hit 50 purported militant sites and the cabinet of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu authorized the call-up of some 40,000 reservists, as Israel mobilized for its third large-scale military operation against the Gaza Strip in five years.”

NPR: Israel Expands Attacks On Hamas In Gaza — “”Israel called up some 1,500 reservists, which seemed to mean that Israeli officials believe the tensions with the Islamist Hamas in Gaza will continue. An Israeli army spokesman said that in the Israeli airstrikes overnight, Israel destroyed the homes of several senior Hamas military men. Palestinian medics reported that at least nine people were wounded, including seven children.”

The Guardian: Israel steps up Gaza offensive and prepares for possible ground invasion — “Despite the continuing rocket fire, Israel’s prime minister, Binyanim Netanyahu, had shown a marked reluctance to be drawn into a military operation, offering Hamas ‘quiet for quiet’ despite increasing political pressure from hardliners in his cabinet. The Israeli foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, on Monday formally announced his party was leaving the Netanyahu coalition over the Gaza issue.”

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