No Ceasefire Yet: Israeli Gaza Op a Message for Iran
TEL AVIV, Israel -- President Barack Obama called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and offered to broker a ceasefire, but so far Israel shows no signs of ending Operation Protective Edge.
Israel ended its fourth day of the operation by striking more of the terror infrastructure in the Gaza Strip. Netanyahu warned the operation to rid Hamas of its ability to fire rockets may take a long time.
But some analysts believe Israel's military campaign also sends a signal to Iran. While Western leaders might be willing to tolerate a nuclear Iran, Israel knows the Islamic Republic, with its nuclear weapons, poses an existential threat to the Jewish state.
The IDF's massive air campaign may be showing Tehran it's capable of mounting the same kind of large-scale air campaign necessary to destroy its nuclear infrastructure.
But for now, Israelis have been running to bomb shelters throughout Israel, including Jerusalem.
"Luckily the IDF's Iron Dome intercepted the rockets en route and took out the threat," IDF Spokesman Lt.-Col. Peter Lerner told CBN News.
The Iron Dome anti-missile battery just outside Ashkelon and others throughout the country are Israel's first line of defense. Without the success of this joint U.S.-Israeli project, it's probable that dozens of rockets would be falling on Israeli towns and cities.
Israelis said the Iron Dome makes them feel safer.
"It really changed the feelings of the citizens of Israel," one resident told CBN News.
But inside the Gaza Strip, Hamas seems to be putting its citizens in harms' way. Its leaders instructed people to ignore IDF phone warnings. The phone calls are Israel's way of alerting the people of Gaza before a building is about to be targeted. Israel calls it "the knock on the door."
Ron Proser, Israeli ambassador to the U.N., explained the difference between Israel's actions and Hamas' tactics.
"Israel is using precision strikes to avoid harming civilians, but Hamas is exploiting our concern for human rights by hiding in Palestinian homes, schools and mosques and using a Palestinian hospital as the headquarters," Proser told CBN News.
Hamas also calls on residents of Gaza to gather on the top of buildings about to be targeted to deter Israel from striking. The IDF has posted videos showing buildings they didn't hit because of the people.
So far, Hamas has fired nearly 600 rockets into Israel and now millions more Israelis are in range than ever before.
One way Israelis are dealing with the situation is by installing the free Red Alert Israel app from Gaza into Israel.
Christians around the world are also using the app so when they hear the signal they can pray for the protection of those cities and towns being targeted.