An Israeli government spokesperson said Wednesday that Hamas had violated an agreement brokered by Qatar on the transfer of medicines to Israeli hostages, and that therefore there will be no deal on a ceasefire, despite ongoing media speculation this week.
Ilana Stein, spokesperson of The National Public Diplomacy Directorate, said there would be no ceasefire after Hamas had violated past agreements, including the agreement earlier this month to transfer medicines to Israeli hostages.
Israel had “not received promised evidence that the medicine was received,” Stein told the international press. She added that Israel would not give up on its stated goals of destroying Hamas, freeing all of the hostages, and preventing Gaza from threatening Israel ever again.
The media — Israeli and otherwise — have been filled with speculation this week about the possible terms for a hostage deal between Israel and the Palestinian terrorist group Hamas, as 136 Israeli captives remain in Gaza, some of them already known to be dead.
As Breitbart News reported, the Biden administration has reportedly suggested, via Egypt and Qatar, that Israel and Hamas agree to a three-stage deal in which Israel would end the war in return for a gradual release of all of the hostages.
This would amount to a defeat for Israel in the war, since the Israeli government would not be able to complete its mission of destroying Hamas’s terror capabilities.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu rejected the deal and vowed that Israeli soldiers would not have died in vain.
The Israeli media then reported that the Netanyahu government had proposed a two-month pause in fighting in exchange for a release of all of the hostages, and a release of some Palestinian terror convicts, followed by a potential return to fighting.
Israel also reportedly suggested that the Hamas leaders, such as Gaza-based Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar, leave Gaza for a third country.
Hamas reportedly rejected that deal, because it wants to use the hostages to secure a permanent ceasefire and victory in the war.
As these terms have been negotiated in public, through leaks to the media, Hamas has rejected a “two-state solution” to the conflict, while the United Nations and the Biden administration have pressured Israel to accept a Palestinian state at war’s end.
It is possible that an agreement will still emerge, especially given the intense domestic pressure in Israel to reach a deal, as the families of hostages continue to lead demonstrations urging the government to “bring them home.” But Hamas also has a say.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the 2021 e-book, “The Zionist Conspiracy (and how to join it),” now updated with a new foreword. He is also the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.