US proposal for ceasefire: Blinken sees signs of hope

Status: 11.06.2024 20:19

Official reactions in Israel to the UN Security Council’s decision for a ceasefire have been sparse. And it remains to be seen what Hamas will decide. US Secretary of State Blinken, however, sees signs of hope.

“Stop the war,” “SOS USA,” “Mr. Biden, make a deal” – with signs like these, relatives of the hostages greeted US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who also addressed them during his visit to Tel Aviv and Jerusalem. In front of a hotel in Tel Aviv, he shook hands and took the time to encourage relatives:

We are working every minute to bring the hostages back. The world has spoken very clearly in the UN Security Council. This is clearly what everyone wants.

Reconstruction is also part of the plan

But nobody knows what the terrorist organization Hamas wants, how it will react to the US government’s three-stage plan – which is said to have been coordinated with Israel. Blinken sees it as a sign of hope that Hamas welcomed the vote in the UN Security Council in writing. Arab media made it clear that this was not a formal approval.

Blinken is also aware of this. “Everyone has voted, except for one: Hamas. That’s what we’re waiting for,” says Blinken. Now Hamas must move forward with the agreement – or not. “It’s clear what the international community wants, what the hostages’ families want, and what the people of Gaza so desperately need.”

An end to the fighting in the Gaza Strip and allowing the Israeli hostages to return home – that is the aim of the US government’s proposal. In return, the Israeli troops should withdraw from Gaza and the Palestinians should return to their homes. A reconstruction plan is also part of the plan.

“The whole world would help Hamas to rule”

But if you read it more closely, there are more questions than answers, says Giora Eiland, former national security adviser and former military commander of the Israeli army. The chances that Hamas will agree are not very high, says Eiland.

There is talk of “the bodies being handed over in the third phase of reconstruction. But it does not say when exactly. Such a project can take five years.”

If reconstruction takes place under the leadership of Hamas, it will not only remain in power, says Eiland, “the whole world will help it to rule.” Nevertheless, Israel should accept the deal, says the former military commander. The plan is difficult for Hamas because it does not clearly mention the end of the war. “But for them, that is the most important point,” says Eiland.

Netanyahu must listen more to the right again

During his visit, Blinken apparently also wanted to reassure himself that the Israeli government still supports the proposal. After all, the USA has lost an important negotiating partner who was considered moderate: Benny Gantz, minister in the war cabinet, who resigned. Nevertheless, there is a strong consensus to move forward with the plan, Blinken said after his meetings with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Joav Gallant.

But there are also voices in Israel that doubt this. Netanyahu must now listen more closely to his right-wing coalition partners, who do not seem to be interested in ending the war.

“We just have to convince this crazy government”

Opposition leader Jair Lapid, who also met with Blinken, also warned of this: “Our country and the United States will not rest until there is an agreement. We just have to convince this crazy government to agree,” said the opposition leader.

Netanyahu and his government remained silent. He commented neither on the US Secretary of State’s visit nor on the adoption of the ceasefire resolution in the UN Security Council.

Bettina Meier, ARD Tel Aviv, tagesschau, 11.06.2024 20:00

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